MINTY: Grandmother’s unique book is an artful gift of love

Cheryl Grundy's My Story of You was inspired by her letters written to her grandchildren when they born

What inspires you? What is your passion in life, and in living everyday? Was there a moment in your life that made you decide to travel the road less travelled by?

For grandmother Cheryl Grundy, there was sort of a synchronicity of events that motived her to publish a very special book. My Story of You is more than a storybook, a scrapbook, or collection of quotes. It took a lot of persistence, patience, and vision to get this project to completion.

It took more than two years to get this final product completed. In the process, Cheryl had to find an artist that could create the kind of artwork she imagined. The paintings are by Agassiz artist Avalon Butchart.

Getting the right artwork was only part of the journey. A publisher had to be found.

“I didn’t even get rejections so much as just not hearing anything at all,” this dauntless entrepreneur admits. She had to find her own printer, and learned how to import the final product. Since she once owned a bookstore, she might have had some idea of how to start.

What is so special about this book is that you write it yourself – sort of. There are 18 envelopes included with each artwork, and an inspiring quote to inspire you.  The concept is that you take the time to write a letter, a postcard, or save something significant in each envelope.

Originally inspired by Cheryl writing letters to her grandchildren when they born, she was inspired to create this book to safeguard her special treasures.

Cheryl understands that as we move more into the digital age, it is important to keep our connections with our loved ones in real and tangible ways. With her book you can give your children and or grandchildren your heartfelt letters written on real paper and kept in a real book.

It is important that you put yourself into each envelope.  Use words rather than presents.  Preserve the art of the hand-written word.

When all the envelopes are filled, you give the book to the person you created it for – a child, grandchild, or other person you watch grow up.

You create it with love. That is the first quote in the book: “Love is, above all, the gift of oneself.” (Jean Anouth).

The story is more than the artwork, the quotes or the envelopes filled with your contributions. A portion of the proceeds goes to the Stephen Lewis Foundation for their Grandmothers to Grandmothers campaign.

Grundy is single now and raising her grandchildren alone. That in itself is another story, but it did make her aware of the obstacles. The foundation helps grandmothers in Africa who are raising grandchildren, but in poverty. The AIDS epidemic took the lives of so many parents, that only the grandmothers are left to raise the children.

There are so many connections, and wishing to preserve a letter written to her granddaughter started the book.

I absolutely love this book, on so many levels. Not only does it provide a source of lovely artwork and inspirational quotes, it gives you a chance to express your side of the story of the life of a child special to you. Maybe a picture is worth a thousand words, but captions are important. Write the words, you can include a picture.

You can find the book only at local businesses: Rustic Rooster Café and Gift Shop in Cloverdale, Whitby’s Books and Gifts in White Rock, Visions Book Store in New Westminster, Reflections Bookstore in Coquitlam, and Village Books in Richmond.

Visit Save a part of yourself while sharing with a child. It’s art, it’s creative, unique and something only you can do. What a gift!

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