This is Natalie's story, told by Anastasia , the artist who painted this lovely portrait of Natalie:

Natalie's Story

When I first met Natalie, she was no longer in this world.

I had just started my own chemotherapy sessions for breast cancer and her story touched me deeply. Almost a year later, I was commissioned to paint Natalie’s portrait by her mother.

I worked from pictures and stories.Often I would cry as I looked at a video of happy times, and at the heart wrenching images that showed how her illness disfigured her beautiful features.

As the design progressed, and the painting took shape, I got closer and closer to the little brave and strong girl that was Natalie.

Her face became prettier every day as her soul shined from her eyes. And I forgot the ravages of her illness and I finally felt that she was always beautiful, and she will continue to be so in my heart and my memory.

Anastasia Czerniakiewicz

You may download this selection from the spring collection by clicking here
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"For Natalie" from our "Spring" collection

"I first saw Anastasia's paintings when they were on display at the
Cancer Counseling Center that we both attended. I was struck by how realistic her portraits were. I couldn't think of anyone more perfect to paint a portrait of Natalie.

Everyday when I look at Natalie's painting, I count my blessings that we were allowed to love this special, brave, and funny little girl, if even for a short time. What she contributed to our lives is indescribable. Even though cancer is very, very hard, we know that Natalie lived the life she was meant to live and we were able to give to her as much of life as possible. Our family is so much richer in life because we are blessed to call Natalie "my daughter" and "my sister"." Natalie's mom, Jill.

We would like to express our gratitude both to Anastasia and Natalie's mother, Jill, for allowing us to share the story of this very special little girl with you. The cat in the picture was Natalie's favorite cat "Daisy". Natalie died in 1998 at the age of 9 from brain cancer.

The painting "Natalie" on which this stationery was based is copyright (c) 1999-2000 by Anastasia, and is used with premission.

This stationery and the "Spring" collection are dedicated to the memory of Natalie.

Thundercloud & Eightball, February, 2000.