After cancer diagnosis, woman paints and hides rocks with upbeat messages

In 2015, after feeling a lump in her breast, Constance Huls was diagnosed with breast cancer.

"I just in my heart knew," said Huls, of Blind Bay, B.C. a small community on the southwest end of Shuswap Lake.

What she didn't expect though, was to find out a few months later that she has metastatic breast cancer, meaning it has spread to other parts of her body.

"I was kind of lost and sort of devastated I guess at first. But, you've got to go on," said Huls.

Submitted by Constance Huls

Unable to work any longer, Huls began to look for something to do and came across kindness rocks, which is an art project in which people paint positive and inspirational messages and pictures on rocks and hide them for others to find.

People can keep them, or hide them somewhere else for someone to find.

After painting a few and enjoying it, Huls started a Facebook page to encourage others to join in and paint rocks and post pictures of the ones they find.

Submitted by Constance Huls

So far, she has painted over 500 rocks, hiding them all over the southern Interior from Sicamous to Anglemont, she told Daybreak Kamloops host Shelley Joyce.

"I'm looking for places where people are going to see them and where it's not going to be in someone's way, they're not going to step on them," said Huls.

"I paint anything and everything. If I think that maybe I can do it, I try it."

Submitted by Constance Huls

Sometimes the rocks, painted with acrylics, are themed for holidays such as Christmas, or Remembrance Day, or they have animals on them, or messages like 'Enjoy your day.'

"Whatever people would like. Whatever I think someone might find appealing [I paint]," said Huls.

Positive response

People all over the Shuswap area are now posting photos of rocks they've found. Some have even travelled with them and shared pictures from New Zealand, Australia, Hawaii and Winnipeg.

"I'm getting a really good response. Way better than I thought," said Huls.

"I get lots of comments about how it's so much fun and how it's made someone's day. Maybe they found a rock that had a nice saying on it or something that they've connected with."

Submitted by Constance Huls

Huls thinks some people keep the rocks without posting anything.

"Which is fine too right? Because I want them to feel good, that's sort of the whole point," she added.

It makes Huls happy to think maybe these rocks will live on for many years in people's gardens or homes.

"I think that's really kind of awesome, isn't it? It's a little piece of me."