Words by Jan Brand

Photography by White Orchid Photography

 

What was once just another nursery rhyme turned into a dream come true for fourteen-year-old Granbury native Kate Reedy. When other little girls were playing with dolls or talking on the telephone with friends, Kate was learning to bake.

In the third grade Kate joined the 4-H Club and was part of a cooking team where the girls were given a basket of mystery ingredients and had to create something edible to present to the judges. The following year she decided to enter baked goods into the county 4-H show. That first year, as a fourth grader, she earned her first 4-H Blue Ribbon. This praiseworthy event was followed by four more blue ribbons, a Grand Champion prize in 2005, and a Best in Show Award in 2017.

Some of her inclinations come through her DNA. Her grandmother, Judy Neill entered the same competitions as a young girl. Her aunt, Kristi Perry, bakes specialty cakes.

Debbie Davis, a family friend, was a huge influence in Kate getting started. She worked with her when Kate was eight years old, showing her decorating techniques and how to improvise when creating recipes. Kate doesn’t copy recipes- she creates her own because she wants to put out a unique product. She baked for two weddings. One was cake, but the groom of the second wedding didn’t like cake, his favorite desserts were snickerdoodle cookies. Kate created and produced two-hundred snickerdoodle cupcakes and the groom enjoyed a favorite flavor on his special day.

Kate has done a lot with charities. The batch of cranberry-orange cookies that won her first Blue Ribbon brought in a whopping $685 for charity. Last year she donated a cake for the United Way fundraiser which raised $1700. She has donated cakes for several adoption fundraisers for friends adopting, and for the senior class graduation fundraiser.

Last summer she had an idea to do a cookie fundraiser to help her two brothers raise money for church kids’ camp. They put out a Facebook video, and in twelve hours had orders for thirty-seven dozen cookies. She quickly showed her brothers how to help, and they spent 16 hours baking and packaging cookies for delivery. They raised enough money for both boys to go to camp.

When she started to make money with her baking she wanted to give back. The first year she won at the stock show she gave part of the money to a children’s home her family helps support in Uganda.

Each time she sends funds, the director contacts her to see what she wants to do with the money. The first year she provided toys and diapers for the babies. Kate bought a female goat another year to provide milk for the kids in the orphanage. Another year, Kate bought a female goat to provide milk for the kids in the orphanage. She has added goats since and the goats have multiplied. This year the director of the orphanage told her they used some of the money to pay for a shepherd for the goats because there are so many. The goats now provide milk for all the kids in the orphanage. Sending money, knowing that it is going to help children in need, is now one of her favorite things to do. Her efforts attest to the wisdom of scripture to “despise not small beginnings.” One can never know the good they can do.

Kate now has her own business, Goodness ‘n Grace. With each order she prays and asks God to give her a scripture for the person who placed the order. She then hand-writes the verse on a card that is then placed with the order. One of her first orders was a lemon-blueberry cake. The verse she wrote was, “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart,” from Psalm 37. Her customer got teary and told her it was confirmation for what she had asked of God.

Even if you didn’t know about the impressive achievements of this teenager, with blue eyes sparkling with kindness, you’d be impressed by her gracious ways and unassuming personality. Her smile in infectious. Kate found the secret to fulfillment at an early age; do something you love to do and do it well, and you’ll always be successful.

She earns money by babysitting and works with the kids’ ministry at StoneWater Church, where she attends with her family. Her heart gravitates to special needs children. Kate has set her sights on bigger dreams and begins a culinary class this fall. One day she hopes to have her own bakery and perhaps a show on Food Network.

Not only is Kate a delight, her family exemplifies all that is good about America. Her mother, Kasey, teaches Pre-K at Glen Rose Elementary. Dad, Brad, works for Magnolia Realty and is an ordained minister who spends a lot of time on mission work.

In 2011, Brad and Kasey spent four months in Uganda, and many of the things they saw were painful reminders of how good we have it in the USA. One thing in particular was a little boy, four-year-old Martin, who begged in the streets for food because his family couldn’t afford to feed him. He went home at night only to sleep, where his one-year-old sister, Kamrynn, lived on a limited supply of beans and rice because she was too young to beg.

Brad and Kasey fell in love with the little brother and sister, and soon began the adoption proceedings. The Reedy’s biological son, Sam, now had a brother and Kate had a little baby sister.

The family fell in love with Uganda and considered moving there. Their good friend, Pastor Bernard Bogere, went to the region in the 1980’s to form Lugazi School, which now has a thousand students enrolled. Little Miracles International, their adoption agency in Uganda, houses orphans at Karama House in Jinja, Uganda.

The Reedys are teaching their children the importance of making a difference for good. Kate’s teachers have even commented on how she finds joy in everything, big and small.

Brad and Kasey Reedy have also taught Kate and Sam to strive to do well. When met with a challenge, Kate takes it on. She was asked to make chocolate cupcakes for a boy who was allergic to dairy, eggs, corn and gluten. The result was a delicious cupcake where those ingredients weren’t missed. When asked to make a gluten-free lemon-raspberry cake, Kasey told her daughter not to stress over it. She could always say no. Her mom knew the mettle of her daughter and the determination, when Kate looked at her and said, “Mom, I’ve got this.” And, she did.

Kate isn’t just about building her business or baking better cookies. Her servant’s heart has already made her a success in life.