Saturday, November 14, 2009

A beautiful gift

Let me give you the background story to the story about the beautiful gift that we received this past week. It all centers around "The Red Couch" in The White Swan Hotel in China. Most adoptive families stay at this beautiful hotel on Shamian Island while they are completing all of the necessary steps and paperwork needed for the United States to allow their child to leave China and head home to the US. A day or two before you leave, you get together with your group if you are with one and by yourself if you are not and take a picture of all the children on the Red Couch. There are actually several red couches in the hotel lobby so any one of them will do. Even if you do not stay at this hotel you will most likely have made your way to the hotel to get this picture taken. It is one of the China Adoption rites of passage. I will not generalize but 99.99% of us have a picture like this.

Red Couch

As you can see, none of the children in Katie's travel group look that pleased to be on the red couch; certainly not as pleased as their parents were who have placed them there. Our picture was even crazier than most as there is not a dry eye in the house. All of these wonderful children are Katie's Gansu sisters and they all are very special to us. If you cannot tell, Katie is the one on the top row to the far left.

So now on to the beautiful gift. Marc's cousin, Nina is an artist. Way back, just after we adopted Katie, she saw our photo and was very taken with it. She asked us if she could borrow it as she might like to paint it. We were thrilled at the prospect and of course handed it right over.

Nina did end up painting the picture and then she began showing it in galleries and shows around where she lives in the NYC metro area. We were happy that others would get to see this picture but secretly hoped that someday it would be ours. We were overjoyed and completely taken aback this past week when this tremendous surprise came in the mail for us; the painting of our red couch photo!!


We love her interpretation of it. She had told us at first that she had made the red couch another color, not realizing it's significance but she was set straight by adoptive families that viewed it and changed it to the red color. She has taken artistic license with some of the details but we totally LOVE it!! It means so much to us. Of course, my picture cannot do it justice as I took it tonight with poor lighting but you get the wonderful idea.

Thank you Cousin Nina from the bottom of our hearts; what a meaningful gift you have given to us!


Tammie said...

What a breathtaking painting!!

Dawn said...

I love it, really love it.

Wanda said...

What a wonderful gift your cousin has given you. This will be a heirloom in your family for generations.

Gives me goosebumps!

Teresa said...

What a wonderful gift. She is wonderfully talented.

You are one loved lady, my friend.

M3 said...

Wow, wow, wow!!!

Love Letters To China said...

I just got chills down my spine when I scrolled down the page. That is so beautiful and will look amazing on the wall in your home. Such talent.

Diana said...

WOW is right...AMAZING!!!

val said...

I have followed your blog since day one & have never left a comment before this.
I also got goosebumps having been there in 2008 to meet my granddaughter.
What a beautiful memory of such a special time!
BTW your children are absolutely adorable!!!

Vivian M said...

That is a most awesome gift and one that I know will be proudly displayed in your beautiful home. Can't wait to see it in person some day!

Donna said...

Oooooh! That's so pretty! I looked at the largest size of it on flickr and marveled at how perfectly Nina captured each child's expression. Your cousin has an amazing talent! I love the little changes she made too. Any chance she does this sort of thing for hire?


Our blog: Double Happiness!

M and M Girls said...

Love the painting. What a great true treasure