Bethany Naab runs Stella and Poppy, a store named for her two dogs. She recently opened a location in downtown Granite Falls. We sat down with her to learn more about the store and her background.
Naab grew up in Duluth. She came from a family with three generations of truckers. She studied law enforcement in school, but during one summer decided she didn't want to go back to school, and picked up the family business.
She loves being on the road but also always loved coming back home to Minnesota. She almost always took the back roads to see the countryside. One of her favorite areas was New Mexico, seeing the desert and cacti.
She had an accident where she fell out of the back of her truck and hurt her back. That put her on a long road of trying various pills, yoga, physical therapy, anything to try to help. One thing that consistently helps her is magnesium baths. She's also going to be holding yoga classes in the store starting in October, to help herself and others learn more about proper positioning and balance.
Another thing that steered her toward her current calling is she had started to develop headaches and skin sensitivities from other products. She loved cooking, so making her own soap and salves fit pretty well.
She was able to use what she learned to help out her friends and family as well. She told a story of how her dad was stung by a bee. She went out to his yard, and picked a leaf of plantain, a fairly common weed. She chewed up the leaf and put it on the welt, which disappeared within 15 minutes.
Occasionally she's gotten the criticism of "You're not a chemist" when the use of herbs comes up. Her response is that natural herbs have been used for a long time, they are natural and what modern medicine is based from.
Naab experimented with making various soaps and salves, and giving them to friends and family before eventually started to sell online. She outgrew her operation in a former hog barn at home, so she opened up the physical location in Granite.
"I've been so enjoying the people coming in here. It's fun to have them come in and welcome me, I already feel so fulfilled."
The store's namesake, the two dogs, were keeping us company during the interview. She walks several miles a day with them. Naab plans to attempt to collaborate with other local businesses to help bring a little more natural health and wellness to Granite Falls.