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The first time I wandered past 309 9th Street in Pacific Grove, I felt like a child who had stumbled onto a magical enchanted wonderland in an otherwise typical residential neighborhood. A kaleidoscope of vivid pinks, oranges, greens, yellows, reds and purples enveloped me. Butterflies were everywhere – some painted, some ceramic, some metal.

When homeowner J Jackson came out to chat, my eyes filled with tears as he related the story behind their home. This one-of-kind creation was a gift of love from him to his wife of nearly 40 years, Sonja.

The eye disease retinitis pigmentosa has been slowly stealing Sonja’s eyesight. When doctors told them that bright colors would be the easiest thing for her to see, J got out a paintbrush and began transforming their once-ordinary house into the delightful place it is.

He’s been working on his creation four hours a day for nearly eight years.

J’s gift to his sweetheart has become a gift to the whole community. Known as “Butterfly Town, USA,” Pacific Grove is home to wintering monarch butterflies.

It’s a 7-½ hour drive from San Diego and a sight that you’ll never forget. thebutterflyuniverse.com.

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Comments

aquarimary Aug. 25, 2009 @ 1:39 p.m.

Wow! I'm planning a road trip to see this place! Is it ok to take pictures? What an inspiring story...I've always wanted to do something like this with my hummingbird collection, but too afraid of theft.Thank-you for some truly worthwhile info.

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amie800 Aug. 29, 2009 @ 8:06 a.m.

yes, absolutely bring your camera. you're free to take all the photos you'd like.
Enjoy!

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