Memorial Day – 2012

Nothing makes us happier than having the family together on Memorial Day.

We roll around in the grass (and swing in the trees)…

… revel in nature …

… make (and eat) lots of food …

… chase each other around (tag…you’re it) …

… conduct tea parties …

… play some games …

… loll around …

… make (and eat) even more food …

…play in the water …

… on the water …

…around the water…

… through the water …

… and help Grampy get out of the water.

In fact, we play constantly and then fall asleep in a tired, happy, slightly sweaty heap at the end of the day.

We also take the time to talk about the meaning of Memorial Day.

At some point on Memorial Day we stop what we are doing to think about our country and honor the men and women who have given their lives to defend our freedoms.

Last year, we made poppies and had a special ceremony at the flag.

This year, we all picked a Peony from the garden and met at the flag to talk about Memorial Day and to read the Gettysburg Address.

The sentiments contained in the Gettysburg Address clearly represent the honor and respect we owe to our soldiers and the responsibility we all have to carry forward the ideals from which our country was founded.

Mommys and Daddys and Aunts and Uncles were all part of the group as well, just not in the picture.

Before I read the two minute speech, I asked a few questions.

Who was Abraham Lincoln? (Some answers: our 16th President, our favorite president, he had a tall hat,  he kept notes in his hat, he had a beard, Grampy has a beard, did Grampy know President Lincoln?)

What was the Civil War? (Some answers: a war we fought with ourselves, many states were angry with each other, brothers fought with brothers, brothers shouldn’t fight, sometimes I have to fight my brother..but I don’t mean it)

Why do we celebrate Memorial Day? (Some answers: because we want to remember that soldiers died for our country, to say thank you, to celebrate America, to think about what America means).

Please note.  Not one of the kids mentioned picnics, sailing, playing or food.  They were all crystal clear on the meaning of Memorial Day.   After I read the Gettysburg Address I explained the meaning in easy to understand language.  If you are interested, you can find my explanation on our What Will We Do Today Facebook Fan-page (click on Follow me on Facebook).

The Gettysburg Address:

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation, so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate, we can not consecrate, we can not hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg, PA, November 19, 1863

After I was done reading, everyone stood and said the Pledge of Allegiance and then sang The Star Spangled Banner.

It was a very good day.


Category: Create, Holidays and Entertaining, Memorial Day, Memories and Traditions, New Traditions, Old Memories, Smile
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(2) Comments and (2) Replies

  1. Miranda | May 30, 2012 at 2:43 pm | Reply

    I didn’t know you had a paddle board. Can i use it next time i come? That memorial day looked like a lot of fun! 🙂

    • jill | June 1, 2012 at 10:08 pm | Reply

      Uncle Brad and his friend, Alison, brought the paddle boards with them from Utah, but we’ll have a lot of other fun things for when you come!! Love you

  2. Miranda | June 23, 2012 at 9:32 pm | Reply

    ok! i cant wait to see you next week. love you too! 🙂

    • jill | June 26, 2012 at 10:01 am | Reply

      Me too!!

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