You may be familiar with the story of Sadako, the young Japanese girl who came down with leukemia after her exposure to the radiation from the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima. As she waited in the hospital, she set out to fold one thousand paper cranes. Legend has it that anyone who folds one thousand cranes will have their wish come true. Sadako never finished her cranes – she died at 12 years of age – but others learned of her story and took up the cause. Since that time, origami cranes have become a symbol of peace and love.
When Big Guy and I got married, I wanted to incorporate origami cranes into our wedding. I studied Japanese language and art in college, and I love paper arts. But more importantly, I love the idea of working toward something that feels so difficult to achieve in order for your with to come true. In addition, cranes mate for life. What could be a better symbol for starting a life together? I folded most of the cranes, but Big Guy helped, and our friends and family were enlisted in the cause. Once you’re familiar with the process, folding is a relaxing way to pass the time.
We are all familiar with the relief efforts that continue in Japan following the devastating earthquakes and resulting tsunami. Often our kids hear these stories and want to help out. OshKosh B’gosh has given families a way to get involved and give back. Their Cranes for Kids project, which runs through the month of April, invites families to fold origami cranes and bring them to OshKosh B’gosh stores. They will collect the cranes and ship them to Japan, but they will also donate a piece of clothing for each crane folded.