Since scrapbooking is so often about pretty papers and ribbons, about buttons, birthdays, and babies, the thought of connecting Yom Hahshoah and scrapbooking at first rubbed me the wrong way. But almost immediately, I realized how appropriate it would be to use scrapbooking to commemorate this day. Yes, we scrapbook the cute kids, the big events, and even the little moments, but most of all, we are trying to record our memories and our stories. And that, after all, is what Yom Hashoah is about. Zachor. Remember. There is a lot to remember. We remember the tragedy to make sure that it doesn’t happen again. We remember an entire culture that existed and that was destroyed. And, we remember the stories of the people who were lost, and the people who survived.
So it was that I felt inspired to create this page about my father in law, Zvi Deutsch, who passed away 4 years ago. As a child, he escaped Belgium, because of the courageous act of one man, the Portuguese consul in Bordeaux who, against his government's orders, and at the cost of his career, provided visas to 30,000 refugees. My father in law and his immediate family (who had fled to France) were able to leave in time, but so many others that he knew, did not. And, I think it was knowing that he lived when others didn’t that directed the rest of his life. He educated countless people of the horrors that occurred. He wrote about the man who saved his life. And, he always cherished the family he had, especially his grandchildren.
I kept the layout pretty subdued in keeping with the solemnity of the story. I first turned to the Passover collection, probably because Passover is still on my mind, but also because the theme of peace, freedom, and family, all struck me as being in the spirit of the day. But I also used the blue in the background from the Chanukah collection, and the strip of patterned paper in the center is from the Rosh Hashana collection. They are all beautiful and versatile, and made telling this story easy.
What stories can you tell today to commemorate Yom Hashoah?