Northern Michigan in Focus: Lucy the Ladybug

Inspiration can come in all forms.

For one woman, it became a ladybug; a symbol of her journey, who shares a lesson for young people through words and pictures.

Corey Adkins introduces us to the author in this week’s Northern Michigan in Focus.

“There’s an adventure. She has her tasks and when she’s done with hers she finds her friends and sees if they need any help.”

In a house that sits in the woods outside of Baldwin in Lake County, author and illustrator Eli Heckler is working on life lessons on a few different levels.

“She offers her help and they work together as a community to improve the overall aspect of what’s going on in the world, as small as it may be,” says Eli.

The children’s book "Lucy the Ladybug: Summer in Farmer’s Garden" is a concept that came out of a garden from Eli and her husband during growing seasons.

“We’re very concerned with how food is grown,” explains Eli. “Ladybugs are beneficial and they eat other things that are damaging to plants, so that’s where it started. What does a ladybug do in the garden, what are beneficial? There’s a character in there, Randolph the garden gnome, he collects water, he collects the raindrops as a way to take care of your garden. There’s little bits of things told from the perspective of the bug.”

Perspective is something Eli has been searching for. She suffers from depression and some other things. Writing Lucy the Ladybug has almost forced one of those lessons on her.

“Writing a kids book is making me be a grown up. I’m learning to believe in myself. It’s something I avoided for a long time, but it’s turning out to be the best thing I’ve done in a long time,” explains Eli.

She wants people to listen to her message.

“If you’re not having fun with what you’re doing, then life is not enjoyable and you got to get out there and I finally figured I need to do what I love. She’s like me in a way, she’s been hidden in her corner of the world and is ready to get out and see what else is available,” says Eli.

Big time life lessons through something as little as the perspective of a bug.

“Just listening to my story about perseverance and just stick to it. Be aware of your surroundings, and the smallest things have an effect at some point down the road,” says Eli.

Like Lucy the Ladybug.

“When she and Randolph are at the end of the day they look back at what they’ve done and ponder what’s to be and that leads into the next book, which I’m in the middle of, and then from there it has grown into almost a series. We’ll see what happens,” says Eli.

To get your copy of Lucy the Ladybug, click here

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