"Give them a conscious understanding of how powerful and important and valuable and perfect they are." Abraham-Hicks
About The Project
WHY DO I LOVE YOU? was written for all the beautiful children of the world, so that they "feel" wholeheartedly loved simply for being themselves.
There are so many wonderful children's books out there letting a child know that they are loved but, are there books explaining why they are loved? In my short time of being a parent I haven't found any, and so began the process of writing WHY DO I LOVE YOU?
I have a dear friend called Claire who I trained to be a nurse with. She has always had tremendous confidence and inner belief. In fact she is one of the happiest most successful friends I know. She would often tell me that as a child her mam would say to her, "why do I love you?" Claire and her brother would always answer "because I'm me." Knowing the gorgeous person my friend was and still is, I knew that the belief that her mam Eileen had instilled in her, that she was perfect simply for being herself, was the secret to her happiness and inner confidence. I vowed as a young student that when I had children I would pass on this legacy. Years passed and I forgot about this wonderful question. Until.....
I love to read and when I became a parent, to my boy Fionn in 2014 and daughter Elise in 2015, I embraced every type of child related book. I read books on sleeping, eating and raising children. Two of the many books I read were "The Complete Secrets of Happy Children" by Steve Biddulph and "Unconditional Parenting, Moving from Rewards and Punishments to Love and Reason" by Alfie Kohn. Biddulph states that
"kids become what we tell them they are."
He talks about the importance of unconditional praise and letting a child know you love them simply for being themselves.
"They don't have to earn this love and they can't ever lose it. Imagine how good this feels - to be unconditionally loved, just because you exist."
I took a picture of the section Biddulph had written on unconditional praise and sent it to my friend Claire, marveling at her mothers visionary parenting style. From that moment and because Fionn was only a baby, I made up a song for him which included the lyrics "I love you very much, because you are you".
Kohn supports Biddulph's stating
"children need to be loved as they are, and for who they are. When this happens, they can accept themselves as fundamentally good people, even when they screw up or fall short. And with this basic need met, they're also freer to accept (and help) other people. Unconditional love, in short, is what children require in order to flourish."
However Kohn warns that
"what counts is not just that we believe we love them unconditionally, but that they feel loved in that way."
I truly believe WHY DO I LOVE YOU? will help parents to express the unconditional love that lies within their heart to their beloved children. Parents feel unconditional love, but it can be hard to put into words. My book reminds parents to tell their children they are perfect just as they are. By saying it consistently from the day they are born we can help ensure our children "feel" loved in this way, instilling an inner happiness and confidence that will serve them their whole life.
"You do not have to make your children into wonderful people. You just have to remind them that they are wonderful people. If you do this consistently from the day they are born they will believe it easily." William Martin
I absolutely adore the words and illustrations to WHY DO I LOVE YOU? They express the bursting love I have in my heart for the two little angels in my life. The story follows a child through a day in their life, showing them how perfect they are in every moment. It recognizes some of the challenges a little one can face and reassures them that regardless of what happens, they are loved simply for being themselves and without any desire to change them.
"Accept the children the way we accept trees—with gratitude, because they are a blessing—but do not have expectations or desires. You don’t expect trees to change, you love them as they are.” Isabel Allende
Here's the complete story ❤❤❤.
WHY DO I LOVE YOU?
Hello, my darling, do you know, why it is I love you so? The answer's simple and unique, a secret I could never keep!
I love you because you're you! And oh, my baby what a view. A perfect angel to my eyes, a treasure like the summer skies.
When I wake up to your sweet voice, it makes my heart sing and rejoice. There's nothing more I'd rather do, than hug you and say, "I love you!"
One and all, we are unique. Different, too, in how we speak. No matter if you're tall or small, dream big and you can have it all.
I whisper gently just for you. Thank you, dear, for being you!!!
In school you love to count and draw, and play outside on the see-saw. No matter how you score on tests, to me you always are the best.
Keeping tidy's hard for you. You dearly love your toys and shoes. I'll help you clean and when it's done, we'll play together, cherished one.
You love it when I watch you play. With pride I shout a big "Hooray!" Winning matters not to me- when you are happy and carefree.
Being you is always enough!!! You never have to earn my love. Because I care and love you so, It's my job to help you grow.
When you're sad and feel upset, I'll stand close by so you don't fret. And when you have a trying day, breathe deep and it will be okay.
My perfect little precious one, don't ever change for anyone. Be who you are and you will shine. I'll always proudly call you mine.
When bedtime comes you often fight and do not want to say "goodnight." But that's okay because I know, it's just that you don't want to go.
Do you know I love you so? You’re oh so wonderful you know! I'm so blessed you're in my life. I thank the stars above each night.
Perfect in your own special way. Thank you for being you today.
WHY DO I LOVE YOU? is a truly beautiful story, however I fully recognize that for this book to be a success it needs to also be beautifully illustrated and printed. The story is being illustrated by the tremendously talented, Pilar Lama http://pilarlama.blogspot.ie/ and http://www.wendylynn.com/pilar/. As you can see from the completed illustrations she is amazing!
I was conscious of not sacrificing on this crucial component of my story and so this is where the bulk of the funds will be going. By pledging to support this project, you are making it possible to pay this incredibly gifted artist to create stunning illustrations that reflect the heartfelt sincere message of WHY DO I LOVE YOU?
Pilar lives in Madrid and although we are a sea and a language apart, it has been so much fun working alongside her. Her warmth and sincerity is evident in every illustration she creates.
At every step of this creative process I have gone for quality over cost. Illustrations done in watercolor and pencil are expensive due to the time and skill required and the fact that alternations cannot be made after the illustration is completed. It was so worth it.
In additional to the illustrations, I will need funds for the design and layout of the book, printing and shipping. The book will be a 8.5" x 8.5" hardcover, with a gorgeous dust jacket. The 32 pages of WHY DO I LOVE YOU? will be produced to the highest quality and it contains a verbal narrative that is meant to be understood and enjoyed by all ages for years to come. Age Range: 2+.
I vow to produce a gorgeous keepsake picture book to be treasured by young and old alike.
As you can see the manuscript is finished. It was professionally edited by the amazing Michele De Filippo of 1106 Design http://1106design.com/. Her diligence and persistence has truly transformed WHY DO I LOVE YOU?
1106 Design is also looking after the design and layout of the book. Their reputation for producing high-quality, custom book designs has resulted in IngramSpark (the main producer of print on demand books worldwide) listing 1106 Design on their Experts page. My dedication to creating a spectacular book meant 1106 Design really were the only option for me.
Not only is the manuscript complete so too is the storyboard for the complete book. A storyboard a graphic representation of how a book will unfold, shot by shot. Barring a few small changes here's a glimpse of the remaining sketches for WHY DO I LOVE YOU?.
The spread numbers at the start of each verse of WHY DO I LOVE YOU? correlate to the spread numbers at the bottom of every sketch on the storyboard.
"People who know they're loved irrespective of their accomplishments often end up accomplishing quite a lot. Being accepted without conditions helps them to develop a healthy confidence in themselves, a sense that it's safe to take risks and try new things. From deep contentment comes the courage to achieve." Alfie Kohn
How Does Kickstarter Work?
If you haven't used Kickstarter before, here's how it works. I have 30 days to raise €9,000. If I don't raise the total amount by the end of the 30 days I don't get anything. On the right side of the project page you will see all the different levels of rewards. Whatever you can give between €2 and €180 really makes all the difference.
December: Kickstarter project ends
January - April: Complete the illustrations, book design and layout
April: Send to the printers
As this is my first kickstarter campaign I am enlisting help every step of the way, to reassure all of my wonderful backers, that this project is being professionally and efficiently managed. As a result, I am going to use BackerKit to manage the fulfillment of the rewards to each and every one of my backers. BackerKit has helped over 1800 projects, so it knows what it is doing.
Risks and challenges
As you can see the current production process for the artwork has yielded amazing results, but it takes time. Fortunately the hard work really is done. Pilar is booked in to complete the illustrations starting the first week in January. On average it will take her one week per illustration. This is pretty impressive as the industrial average is 2 weeks. Barring any delays it will take 3 months to complete the illustration process.
As each illustration is completed, I will be working closely with Michele and her team at 1106 Design to complete the design aspect of each page. As a result, once the last illustration is submitted, the completed PDF file will be ready, to submit to the printers, approximately two weeks after the illustration process is over.
The printing process will also take several weeks, but I am very confident that the June estimated delivery goal is not only completely realistic but very attainable. If any unforeseeable delays emerge, you can rest assured that I will communicate with all of my backers and work very hard to get the book and other rewards on your doorstep as soon as possible.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)