I am the granddaughter of an Ojibwa Native American and a Lithuanian woman. My grandfather was removed from his White Earth Reservation at age eight and taken to the Carlisle School in Pennsylvania, or, what he referred to as "white man's training school". He never returned to his reservation, nor saw any of his native family again. As a child, I spent many hours with my grandfather as he recanted to me the "old ways". He had lived a hard, honest life that he was grateful for and it was extremely important to him that I would know who I was and where I came from. When I was seven, my grandfather took me to a stream, tossed in a pebble, and as we watched ripples spread across the water, he told me that the choices I would make would create ripples throughout my life. He taught me that I could embrace my Ojibwe heritage. He taught me that life was best lived by the seven Ojibwe teachings of truth, wisdom, peace, respect, bravery, honesty, and humility. I have always held this knowledge deep within my heart, and because of that deep connection, I've worked toward reaching my heritage on a spiritual level through my studio practice. My Lace Bead Heritage body of work comes both from the time spent in the studio and from the research and extensive traveling I've done for both my Native American Ojibwa and Lithuanian cultures.