Stars and Mariposas in San Miguel

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Sun-drenched homes in every imaginable rainbow hue adorned the treacherous, narrow cobblestone streets of San Miguel de Allende.The trees in the town center, clipped with meticulous precision, formed a perfect topiary square which actually floated eight feet above the heads of the throngs who converged there at all hours of the day and night. I had traveled to San Miguel to attend a destination wedding and wanted to do something meaningful to honor my cousin Mike and his beautiful bride, Stephanie. Sharing a hands-on Soaringwords project with dozens of orphans was my way to express gratitude for the creation of a new family, with all of the attendant hope and possibility, as these two special people joined their lives together. What better wedding gift could there be than to celebrate the local children whose eyes sparkled with hope and radiance in the afternoon sun? So, on Friday morning, dozens of friends and family came together to spend a couple of hours with twelve delightful and beautiful girls from the Sollano Orphanage. The girls’ were wearing immaculate uniforms and were excited to be on a field trip, a world away from the confines of their school. Their mastery of English was mucho mejor than most of our rusty high school Spanish. We had fun making name tags and getting to know each other with animated conversation and hugs over cold papaya juice. Everyone paired up and started decorating the red and white Soaringwords quilts alongside new friends. Rainbows, smiley faces, mariposas (butterflies), mountains and suns, puppy dogs and stars, were some of the universal designs that bridged our two cultures and created An immediate bonds and pearls of laughter. The girls were thrilled to be able to make colorful designs and write inspirational messages for their friends at the orphanage. The wedding guests were grateful to touch the hearts of the children and came away feeling energized, having enhanced this magical city in a simple yet profound way. Later that night, fireworks lit up the sky well into the morning, mimicking the explosion of color and joy we created earlier that day. To see more photos from this beautiful day click here.