ImageWith Earth Day coming up in less than a week, my little family decided to go see the new IMAX movie “Flight of the Butterflies.”  It was an amazing movie that held beauty, magic, wonder and inspiration within its story. To me, it was truly a story of miracles and the difference one person can make.

So, today’s post is about people who have made a difference in this beautiful world of ours. I hope their stories inspire, motivate and help you see a glimmer of the potential you hold within. I am going to begin with the heroes of the movie, Dr. Fred Urquhart and his wife Norah…

Dr. Fred Urquhart and his wife Norah: Fred began his love of butterflies as a young boy and wondered where the butterflies went for the winter. That one little thought sparked his journey that would take him years and years into the world of Monarch butterflies. He read everything he could get his hands on in his youth, which then led him to eventually become a zoology professor. He observed, watched, followed and knew the only answers he would find were held in the wings of this beautiful butterfly. He began creating glues that would stick to the wings to track where these miraculous creatures went. Eventually he and his wife founded the Insect Migration Association (known today as Monarch Watch). This association enlisted thousands of volunteers across North America to tag butterflies hoping to find their migration route. From the year 1940 until the year 1974 they searched and searched, hoping to find the hidden answer to where the millions of butterflies disappeared to. Two scientists in Mexico helped in the search and in 1974 hidden in the mountains west of Mexico City millions of butterflies were found. The treasure was finally found. A life long search had come to an end and the end was beautiful.  For more information, pictures and story details go to   AMAZING!

“I do not know of any species of insect that has aroused a greater interest among the populace in many parts of the world than the monarch butterfly. One of the great pleasures Norah and I have had in our studies of the monarchs has been receiving letters from children and adults alike, expressing their delight at being introduced to the study of nature through our program of monarch butterfly tagging and research. It has been a source of great happiness for us.”  -Fred Urquhart, 1987

Rachel Louise Carson: She was a marine biologist who became a full-time nature writer & her books are credited with truly advancing and helping the environmental movement. She had many books that made a difference, but her book Silent Spring gathered examples of environmental damage attributed to DDT in Sept 1962. She died two years later.

“Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts. There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature–the assurance that dawn comes after night, and spring after winter.”  -Rachel Carson, Silent Spring

Julia Butterfly Hill: She lived in a 180 foot tall, 1500-year-old California Redwood tree for 738 days December 10, 1997-December 18, 1999. She lived in the tree that she called “Luna” to stop loggers from cutting it down.

“Nature’s wisdom teaches us that where life is in motion, it’s healthy; where it’s stagnant, it’s dying. But people have to interpret that journey in a way that’s authentic for them…whatever helps you. We call it “finding your own true north”–like on a compass. In production-drive societies, we’re tricked into believing that true both is outside of us. So we’re constantly looking outside ourselves to figure out if this is the right job, the right house, the right relationship, the right subject to be studying. But our true north is invariably inside us…if we do what we love to do, what we’re inspired to do, what we believe in, it creates an entirely different response.”   -Julia Butterfly Hill

For additional inspiration—here is a link to a list of 26 people making a difference.

“It is from numberless diverse acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped. Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.”  -Robert F Kennedy

There is also a great book about kids making a difference in the world. I duplicated the stories this past Christmas and incorporated them into our day. There are some great stories. the book “Real Kids, Real Stories, Real Changes: Courageous Actions Around the World” by Gath Sundem

“How wonderful that no one need wait a single moment to improve the world.”  -Anne Frank

What one little thing are you going to do today?? Something to think about.

Make it great!!  -Heather

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