Monday, November 8, 2010

It Makes You Pause and Think...

It's quite easy to get caught up in the details of your own life, particularly when your children are small and one day tends to run into the next.  We all know that we should take time out for ourselves, but it just isn't realistic when there is so much to be done.  We do the best we can and move on. 

Part of my ME time has been to read the blogs of (mostly) other women and see what they are baking, creating, laughing, or crying about.  I enjoy the pictures of their creations, the colours they choose, the journeys they undertake, and the professional courtesies they extend to me (making me feel, rightly or wrongly, that I might be part of that vague and wonderful group of people called Artist someday).

On my blog travels today, I came across a blog post forwarded from Two Dresses Studio via Loves Stitching Red.  Her blog describes a wonderful effort that is underway to create 1.5 million butterflies for the Holocaust Museum Houston.  During the Holocaust, it is estimated that 1.5 million children were killed and so this project is gathering the butterflies to represent all the children that died.  A rather daunting project, but I can only imagine how visually amazing and humbling the final exhibit will be once they are all in place.

Below is the excerpt that I cut and pasted from Twodressesstudio's blog as it clearly describes the project and how it came about.  Please take a moment to read it.

The Holocaust Museum Houston is dedicated to educating people about the Holocaust, remembering the 6 million Jews and other innocent victims and honoring the survivors' legacy. Using the lessons of the Holocaust and other genocides, we teach the dangers of hatred, prejudice and apathy. And the tag line following it reads:

Stop Hate. Starting Here.

That grabbed my attention. I read on.....The Butterfly Project mandate is to remember the 1,500,000 innocent children who perished as a result of the Holocaust by collecting 1.5 million handmade butterflies. In Spring 2013, these butterflies will then become a break-taking exhibition to serve as a memory of this event.

Can you imagine? 1.5 million children translated into 1.5 million butterflies....? If you wondering why a butterfly, the project is based on this poem -

I Never Saw Another Butterfly

The last, the very last,
So richly, brightly, dazzlingly yellow
Perhaps if the sun’s tears would sing
against a white stone....
Such, such a yellow
Is carried lightly ’way up high.
It went away I’m sure
because it wished
to kiss the world good-bye.
For seven weeks I’ve lived in here
Penned up inside this ghetto.
But I have found what I love here.
The dandelions call to me
And the white chestnut branches in the court.

Only I never saw another butterfly.
That butterfly was the last one.
Butterflies don’t live in here, in the ghetto.

Written by Pavel Friedman, June 4, 1942
Born in Prague on Jan. 7, 1921.
Deported to the Terezin Concentration Camp on April 26, 1942.
Died in Aushchwitz on Sept. 29, 1944.

He was 23. 23. I have a daughter that age.

After a brief moment, I decided, I have to send a butterfly. Then I thought of how I'd love to send a lot of butterflies. Then I thought of the great group of artist friends here ! Who doesn't love a butterfly? And who wouldn't be touched by this poem and this tragedy and want to contribute to this meaningful and lasting exhibit and tribute? And wouldn't it be rewarding to encourage as many people as I could to play along with me???

I believe when I come from a place of abundance, a place of Giving, of Heart and of Light, anything is possible. The universe will support me and everyone else when we act from that Higher Place.

I can already see butterflies arriving in my mailbox from kindred spirits like you who share a similar belief. I'll open the envelope, photograph the butterfly and begin collecting a box full of butterflies to send on behalf of all of us!

Will you play with me? Would you like to be a part of this? Join in and make a butterfly? We'll call it ....The Butterfly Effect "OPEN"...borrowing from chaos theory, but much more importantly based on the wonderful notion that if enough people think enough healing thoughts, then slowly our world will be at peace. No one said it better than Gandhi - Be the change you want to see in the world.  The power of the collective consciousness. Wouldn't this be a great place to start?

Consider yourself invited!
Follow the instructions as outlined by the Holocaust Museum highlighted in blue below. When your copyright free butterfly is completed, pop it into an envelope including your name, email and blog or web address and mail it to:

Two Dresses Studio
1554 - 20 Avenue South
Lethbridge, AB T1K1E9

DEADLINE - next year, December 31st, 2011

Or, if you'd prefer to bypass the group project, (though it won't be as much fun!) you can mail your butterfly or butterflies directly to:

Holocaust Museum Houston
c/o Butterfly Project
Education Department
5401 Caroline St.
Houston, TX 77004, USA

The deadline for butterflies to be received at the museum has now been established as June 30, 2012

Here are the Instructions for Making the Butterfly:

  • Butterflies should be no larger than 8 inches by 10 inches.
  • Butterflies may be of any medium the artist chooses, but two-dimensional submissions are preferred.
  • Glitter and all glitter-related products should not be used.
  • Food products (cereal, macaroni, candy, marshmallows or other perishables) also should not be used.
End of blog excerpt


 I am hoping to get kids involved in the schools to make a few butterflies for me, but at the very least I will send one myself.  I will probably send them directly to Houston.  If you are in West Kerry and want to send a butterfly, you are welcome to forward it to me and I can send them all on together.  There are some examples of the butterflies made and received on Two Dresses Studio's blog, if you need inspiration.  People from all over the world are sending them on to the museum and I'd like to think that in these troubling economic times that we an climb outside of ourselves for a few minutes and remember so many children. 


  1. What a fabulous project! I'm thinking this would be a wonderful project for my 2nd grade class...hmmmm now you have me thinking-which some may say is dangerous! ;)

  2. I think its a brilliant way to teach kids about the Holocaust. I am going to talk to my son's teacher about doing it with his class....

  3. I love watching the word spread about this meaningful project. Thanks for letting me know of your plans.

  4. I enjoy watching the news of the museum's project spread - thank you for letting me know about your post.