Mirabella the Monarch's Magical Migration Make-A-School Project. Pictured here are the student illustrators standing in the shape of a monarch butterfly.
Mirabella the Monarch book, bookmark and cookie
Mirabella the Monarch along with the bookmark made by PTO parent volunteer and a beautiful monarch butterfly cookie donated by Cookies By Design. The local nature center also donated a packet of flower seeds with every book.

Butterfly Book Celebration

Make-A-Book Project Celebration Panorama Photo
This is the celebration for Mirabella the Monarch. The student illustrators were seated in a circle of tables so that family and friends could walk by and get their books signed. You can see the author, Scott, signing books on the right-hand side. In the back of the room, there is a table full of food and drink. When we celebrated the Cupcake Boy, the PTO did a matching bake sale, which paid for the price of the project.

Finally, the best part of the whole project — the book celebration. We were honored to have hundreds of community members attend and support both the book and the monarch butterfly.

Many people told me it was a smash hit. It was amazing to see how proud all the students were to sign their pages in the book. We had a packed room for the whole night. If you click on the above image you can see me on the far right; like the student illustrators, I was busy signing books all night until my hand hurt. Luckily a friend got a book signed for me with each signature in a different glittery color.

Mirabella the Monarch’s Magical Migration has been a year in the making starting with meetings and grant writing. As the author-in-residence, I spent hundreds of untold hours, and including all the volunteers, staff and students, we have spent about 3000 hours to create this book to help save the butterflies, not including all the related projects, like:

  • Planting a butterfly garden
  • Raising and releasing butterflies
  • A song by the music class about butterflies
  • The Glow Show, a black light and bigger-than-life butterfly garden sculpture.
  • Reading month
  • And much more. Read about all the projects here.

In fact, I’ve been so busy that I didn’t have time to write a lot of updates about the project. Below is a small selection of photographs about our book celebration. One photo I missed was the project coordinator Nuria Lopez donating a 24×36″ framed class photo to the principal Dr Simmons. I hope it will be a timeless piece of art for the school office.

We donated 559 books to students. Here Nuria and Allyson are stuffing the books with bookmarks for the big giveaway and celebration.
Julian getting ready to hand out butterfly garden seeds to the guests. Thanks to Mill Creek Watershed Council.
A great thank-you card from room 1108. It’s nice to know the hard work was appreciated and, more so, that the project was a success to inspire kids and help butterflies.
A beautiful fused glass butterfly sign for my garden. Thanks to the project coordinator Nuria Lopez.
A mysterious gift of beautiful garden stakes. (If you know where they came from, please let me know so I can thank them.) I didn’t know a coneflower is the same thing as echinacea.


Thanks to the 559 students and their parents. Thanks to the staff of Parker Woods Montessori; in particular, principal Whitney Simmons for her commitment to educating not only students but staff and parents, the art teacher Suzanne Nall for her artistic vision that is apparent in every illustration, PTO member and project coordinator Nuria Lopez, whose desire to make the world a better place for our children fueled every step, dedicated parent Allyson Stone-Weil for the bookmarks and helping whenever needed, teacher Beth Schlick for organizing the celebration events, and Jodi Weber for writing the grant. And thanks to the dozens of other volunteers who supported the project at each step. Hopefully, I honored everyone along the way.

Please share:


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More stories about the making of this book

Finally, the best part of the whole project — the book celebration. We were honored to have hundreds of community members attend and support both the book and the monarch butterfly.
Like many species on our planet, monarch butterflies face many challenges. The population has shrunk dramatically, and their great migration has nearly collapsed more than once. Here is how you can help.
This is another one of my favorite all-time photographs. Unlike the past three photographs where I was standing on the roof of the school, this is photographed using a drone. It took hours of preparation and was called off several times. Read more about how I made this photos.
Footprint in the sand

Subscribe to my newsletter ​

I enjoy sending short stories about my adventures. I also send updates with free worksheets, new books and inspirational ideas to help you live a more joyful and meaningful life.