SPOT ON GRANNY—A "GiGi" Who's Turned Baking Into A Business
We are excited to feature Millie Kay Drum as our very first SPOT ON GRANNY and hear about her life as a grandmother…
THE GRANNY DIARIES: Welcome Millie Kay! Tell us a little about yourself—do you work? What do you spend your time doing? What are your hobbies?
MILLIE KAY DRUM: My husband Rob and I have been married for 32 years and have four grown children—three sons, and one daughter. I love my job teaching preschool at God’s House Kindergarten in Birmingham, AL. I’ve been teaching there nine years. I look forward to having my grandbabies there, too—our oldest granddaughter started this year. This summer, I started a “Paleo Friendly” baking business, Sunrise Baking Company, which grew out of my lifelong interest in fitness and nutrition, and my love for cooking and baking. I love spending time with family and helping with our three grandchildren as much as I can! I also love oil painting, and I take a weekly painting class. I’ve been working out at Orange Theory Fitness for the last few years, and really enjoy the challenge and friendships. Exercise is an important part of being a grandparent, too. I don’t think I could carry the babies around, up and down stairs, and lift the heavy car seats and strollers if I didn’t work out!
DIARIES: Do you have any special memories about your grandparents from childhood?
MILLIE KAY: I was close with all of my grandparents and have so many happy memories of them. My grandmothers were both wonderful cooks and did lots of baking. I think of them often as I bake. I’ve been rolling out pie dough with my grandmother’s rolling pin this week. One of my grandmothers made the best banana bread. I remember baking it with her. She had her measuring spoons and cups all organized and hanging on little hooks under the cabinet. (She wouldn’t be impressed to see how mine are organized!) My other grandmother made the best cornbread. It was the kind that has a crispy crust from pouring the batter into a sizzling hot skillet. She made it EVERY single day for my granddad.
All of my grandparents loved the Lord and had a strong faith that was very much a part of their lives. I am thankful for this example and teaching that they passed down to us. I especially remember my grandparents as they got older, sitting together everyday listening to Charles Stanley on the radio. I always thought, I want to have a marriage like that! I’m very thankful to say that Rob and I share a strong faith and enjoy being part of a wonderful church.
DIARIES: Tell us a little about your grandchildren. What is your “granny” name?
MILLIE KAY: Our oldest grandchild is our granddaughter, Everette. She’s two and has a younger brother (just 12 months younger!) named Hank. We also have a grandson, Wells, who is 10 months old. All four of our children live nearby, so we are thankful that all of our grands are close!
Only one of our grands can talk so far. She calls me “GiGi”.
DIARIES: What do you enjoy about being a grandparent? Any favorite moments or stories you’d like to share?
MILLIE KAY: I love seeing each new thing the babies learn, and how excited they are about simply watching the birds at our bird feeder, or the chipmunks—which my granddaughter called “meeka punks”—play outside the kitchen window. They are so excited to see the garbage truck or mail truck coming down the street. I love witnessing the excitement and wonder in their faces as they experience for the first time the little things we don’t always appreciate as we get older.
I also really love watching our children become parents! It’s very rewarding to observe how well they are doing, and seeing them with their children makes me so proud and happy. I love discovering the characteristics of our children and daughters-in-law in the grandbabies. It brings back special memories of our children when they were that age. It’s wonderful to share this new parenthood part of life with our adult children, and to be able to be a help to them.
Some of my favorite moments as a grandparent are waiting at the hospital, seeing them for the first time, rocking them before bed when they have their head on my shoulder and I can feel their baby breath on my neck…what could be sweeter? And I love that my granddaughter says, “Pap?” (her granddaddy) when she sees me, “cupcakes?”, “muffins?”, “park?”, and “people?” These are the things she associates with me: her granddaddy, baking, going to the park, and singing “Wheels on the Bus” which she calls “people”.
DIARIES: Do you have any advice or words of wisdom for our readers who aren’t yet grandparents?
MILLIE KAY: I think being a grandparent is a huge blessing and responsibility! As a grandparent we have the opportunity to pour love and value and FUN into the little lives of our grands. We have the opportunity to help shape them, and to teach them about Jesus by the example we set. Little eyes notice everything we do! Thinking about these questions makes me more aware of the need to be intentional about time I spend with them.
As far as advice to future grandparents: start or continue working out and building some muscle—you’ll need the energy it gives you to be able to keep up with them!
DIARIES: Thank you Millie Kay for sharing your grandparenting experiences with us. Your words are full of wisdom, warmth, and inspiration.
Millie Kay Drum’s new Sunrise Baking Company offers grain, dairy, and refined sugar free (gluten friendly) baked goods packed with nutritious ingredients. They are available by email order and at Bloom Studio in Birmingham, AL. To learn more visit sunrisebakingcompany.com and follow on Instagram @sunrisebakingcompany and Facebook.
SPOT ON GRAN features interesting grannies and grandpas from all stages and phases of life. Nominate a grandparent you’d like to see in the spotlight through our “contact” tab.