Mary Reinhart, known to her grandchildren as Kamama, has the gift of seeing the wonderment of the world as experienced through the eyes of the young. Her first career in teaching allowed her to celebrate life’s curiosity along with her students. As a wife and mother, she explored more of the love and joys of daily living. Widowed at a young age, life’s journey led her into a second career as a facilitator of alternative healing and wellness practices.
Through years of embracing the opportunity to engage in story-telling with her 11 grandchildren, Mary became inspired to put on paper the compassion, joy, and love that she and her grandchildren share.
She came to know that what matters most in life is that we give the love that is innately present in all of us and that we open our hearts to receive this wondrous gift of love from others.
Mary is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, SCBWI. She lives in Whitefish Bay, WI. Her two youngest grandchildren, who are the inspiration for The Magical Love Box, formerly of Marin County, CA, now live in Bend, Oregon.
Why do Mary’s grandchildren call her Kamama? While working at a wellness center in 2000, Mary asked her friend, Arrowhawk, a Cherokee Native American, the name for Grandma in his native tongue. It is Tsalagi. A beautiful word, but it wasn’t easy to say.
So she checked out other words in the Cherokee language starting with the letter ‘A’. When she got to the word ‘Kamama’, she knew the sound would be fun for her grandkids to say. The meaning? Butterfly! Perfect! Mary has loved butterflies ever since she was a little girl. Can you find the two hidden butterflies in the book?
As an artist, Shawn McCann is one who loves to explore the relationship of art, space, and interaction. Having graduated the Minneapolis College of Art and Design with a BFA, Shawn has grown into a multi-media, multi-disciplinary artist whose work explores color, texture, form, and content. Within each of these areas, each project has been created with its own voice, its own character and culminates in a rich experience for the viewer.
As a respected illustrator of children’s books, Shawn adds the spark that is needed to bring the books alive! He is currently the President of the Children’s Book Illustrators Guild of Minnesota, Board of Directors member at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts(MCBA), member of the Society of Children’s Book Writer’s and Illustrators, and past vice president and member of the Minneapolis College of Art and Designs Alumni Board of Directors.
Lori Voskuil-Dutter is a rural Wisconsin artist whose work has been enjoyed by people across the country for over three decades. She has earned numerous awards and ribbons at various art exhibits throughout her career. Her deep reverence for nature and its inhabitants is reflected in each piece of her art and verse.
The idea for this piece of artwork came about after Mary watched an emotional acceptance speech by Lyn-Manuel Miranda at the Tony Awards in 2016. Mr. Miranda repeatedly spoke the words ‘Love Is’ as hearts were filled with much needed hope for our world and our children. While writing the book, The Magical Love Box, Mary asked the artist, Lori Dutter, to capture those words in illustration. It is an honor to include her art in The Magical Love Box, as a reminder for all ages to constantly be inspired by the power of Love!
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