A Gift From The Heart

As they say, the best gifts are gifts from the heart.

I just wanted to share with you a gift my daughter gave me for Christmas this year.

I also think it was pretty cool that she painted it on a fungi from the woods here in Dalhousie. If you’ve read “Bitter, Sweet” you’ll understand how important the woods were in the book.

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  1. Fungi – as in mushroom? Is that a quote from the book? What gave her the idea to paint it on “a fungi”? Not being rude – it’s creative. Can you explain a little more about the actual paint? I have several friends that are painters – portrait, seascape, wildlife, etc, one is a folk artist in Georgia, but I’ve never heard of painting a ‘shroom. Awesome. I like it. Elaborate – please.

    • Sorry, Dave. I suppose if you’re not from the area it would be a bit confusing. These fungi sometimes grow on our fir trees. If you cut them off and dry them they become hard, much like wood. They come in different sizes, and are full of character. My husband is forever finding weird and unusual things in the woods and when my daughter was home for a visit last summer, she took some of these home with her. I believe she just used water colours and used some of the colours that was on the book cover. She just paints for fun.

      Yes, the quote is from the book.

      I hope this makes more sense now.

      • Just paints for fun? You kiddin’ me? That is some seriously awesome work. If you get a chance – post a picture one of these days showing what the “fungi” looks like – minus the paint. Pass along the kudos for me. Very cool. (I like the quote too.)

  2. Laura, this is such a thoughtful gift. She obviously is very proud of her mother … AND has read your book! :)

    This is a wonderful thing to keep forever. You are very blessed.

  3. Wow! What a sweet and thoughtful gift!! It does echo the cover of your book – those little swirling vines, and the colors, look great! I like the quote, too. How special!

    • My camera certainly didn’t do the colours justice. The photo is much darker than the original piece. You also can’t make out the lumps and bumps on the surface.

      Yes, it’s very special and unique. I love it!

  4. I agree, Laura! The gifts my daughter makes for me always tug on my heartstrings. Sure, the store-bought gifts are fun, but the ones we’ll always cherish are the ones our kids made using their hands, hearts and imagination.

    I think what your daughter created is beautiful.

    Your book is next on my list and I can’t wait to read it. By the way, my daughter loved the cover and asked what the book was about.

    ‘Course after that post of yours not too long ago, I’m not sure whether or not I should let you know what I thought about your book.

    HINT: I’ll post on my blog about it so if you really don’t want to know, skip the post with your name in the headline.

    • Thank you, Leah.

      From what I’ve read on your blog, I’m not so sure this is your kind of book. I wondered about that when you said you’d ordered it. I guess we’ll see. Won’t we? But it’s okay if you don’t like it. I don’t expect everyone will. There’s all kinds of books out there and we all have individual tastes.

      I don’t mind knowing what people’s opinions are but you won’t ever find me asking. It might be interesting to know if someone from a totally different area can relate to it at all. From what I’ve been told many people have read it because of the setting as they are people who have ties to the area. I guess that makes sense. It seems as though it’s being read by adults mostly but maybe that’s just because I’m only hearing from the adults.

      Don’t worry about me, Leah. I’ve got a thick skin..lol!

  5. Wow. Thanks for the compliments, everyone. :)

    I’m really glad you liked the gift so much, mum. Love you!

    • I don’t just like it, I love it!!!

      The office is finally shaping up and I can hardly wait to find and official spot for it!

      Love you, too!

  6. chezjlb

     /  January 22, 2010

    That’s definitely a keeper!

  7. What a wonderfully personal gift, and beautifully painted. We see a lot of fungi and burls on trees here in western Canada. In a co-op craft store on Vancouver Island one of our members painted scenes on fungi but I don’t recall any that combined art with text like this. Lovely!

    • Like you, I’ve seen scenes painted on fungi but this one is definitely unique. It’s a one of a kind, which is what makes it so special, that and the thought behind it.

  8. What a special gift, Laura!!
    I wonder where you have placed it?

    I still haven’t read Bitter, Sweet. I just finished Outlander last night, and guess what I’m beginning today. I’m excited to read it!

    • At least you know, Jennifer, I’m not going to put you on the spot and ask THAT question…lol!

      That said, I do hope you enjoy it!

      • All done, Laura! I did enjoy. What a sad story. I cried. I know I’m pregnant and hormonal and cry all the time now, but I cried!! A ton when Issy drank her tea. I really like Issadore – such a strong woman who managed to pass on the joy of life to her kids despite it all! Thanks for the read, Laura – I hope there will be another novel coming.
        (first time I ever get to thank the author for writing a story – neat :)

  9. Thanks so much, Jennifer for your kind words! It’s strange to say but while I was writing the story, I didn’t see it as particularly sad and, although I knew it was, it didn’t sadden me at the time to write it. But once all the edits were done and I sat down to read it through, I have to admit it tears me up as well. I’m sure that must sound silly. That was why I had a difficult time choosing what to read for Word on the Street. I wanted to read the third chapter but figured I’d end up with quivering lips so I chose something more safe. Isadora was such a strong presence for me. If only I could be as strong and as wise.


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