Hey Bob, and welcome to the forums!
If I could recommend a camera, it would be the Nikon. Personally, it's because I used to shoot Nikon film for many many years with great prime lenses. I've never owned a Canon DSLR, but I have used them and they are good. I've had a Canon P&S (Point and shoot) camera, and it's very nice.
One thing that I like about Canon is that they all have nice features, and the video is great on them. If the video is important, then a Canon is the choice.
A problem with Canon is that they change their lens format more often than Nikon, so later, she'll have to buy new lenses if she ever gets a new camera body.
Nikon is good for speed, it has a faster frame rate than Canon. They have less megapixels, but are still very comparable. The Nikons are very good cameras. I prefer them because I like the feel of the bodies better, but that's a personal thing.
A problem with the Nikons is that they don't usually have as many features, and the video quality isn't as good.
Lens wise, VR is great. If you really want good lens quality for less though, get a second hand Nikkor prime. Perhaps it doesn't have VR or AF, but the quality is GREAT. They don't build lenses like that anymore!