Memorial Day – bless us, every one

Thank you to those who served. May God bring comfort to those who sacrificed everything. Have a safe and blessed day.

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Remembering our Fallen

Memorial Day is often thought of as just another three-day weekend, a chance for barbecues, awesome sales or even a day at the beach. I like all of those things too and will probably participate in some of them this weekend. But I also like to take some time to reflect on the hundreds of thousands of men and women who  gave their lives so that we can enjoy our freedoms. Please pray for our fallen and their families.

 

Memorial 2014 – With Gratitude

memorial day 2014  with gratitudeOn this 3-day weekend we look forward to some time off and gatherings with friends and family.  Often forgetting the real reason for the holiday. Picnics are great. So are fireworks. Lemonade. Watermelon. Ice-cold beer. All good.

But I try to remember that we have holidays, picnics, great food, freedom of travel and gathering because of those who have stood the watch. Because of those who’ve defended our freedoms and liberties  – often with their lives.

Small things matter

My room mate just got back from grocery shopping and he told me there was a man ahead of him in line who was a Viet Nam vet. He was badly injured and burned and had a hard time putting his groceries in his cart. It took a long time.  My room mate gave him bags and helped him pack his groceries and carry them to his car. A small thing. But it made me proud of my room mate that he stopped and cared.

From Valley Forge to Afghanistan selfless Americans have gone to war to protect this country and its citizens.

I thank them for their service. I thank their families for their sacrifice. I keep them in my prayers.

Be safe this holiday weekend – and if you get the chance, do a small thing for someone to show you care.

 

God Bless

Writer Chick

 

 

Memorial Day Memories

Flags at GraveWhen I was a kid I always loved Memorial Day.  Mostly because it meant we’d all pile into Dad’s red chevy and head to the park.

Once we got to the park, the fun started. There we would converge with a bevy of aunts, uncles, cousins, and family friends to start putting the feast together.

Mom always made the best potato salad, Aunt Aggie brought her jello salad, Dad and the men comandeered the barbecue and threw on the dogs and burgers. The smell was heavenly and the tables were laden with everything from deviled eggs to watermelons as big as me.

And there were plenty of other families doing the same.  It almost seemed like a big old block party.

The park was just across the way from a small amusement park and my brother Alan, my cousin Tom and I would sneak to the edge of the property and watch the screaming people digging on the roller coaster. We’d lie in the grass and watch for hours, daydreaming about taking that big ride.

We were too little – but we sure could dream.

Eventually Mom would call us back and we ate until we had to lay flat on our backs in the grass because it was the only position that didn’t make our stomachs hurt.

The bees and flies buzzed overhead and we swatted and sweated in the humid air but was still the best day of the year.

Once the sun went down, we each got 6 sparklers that we could light and wave around.  I always ended up stepping on one and burning my foot – couldn’t keep shoes on me.  But I still loved it.

Flags at GraveThen the fireworks, where we oo’d and ahh’d throughout the entire display.

Then back in the red Chevy and falling asleep in the backseat…

When I was older I learned the meaning of Memorial Day – to honor Americans who had died in the defence of our great nation.

I have to admit, it made the holiday a little less gleeful and yet more important.

Today, I still love the holiday because it harkens the memories of family outings, good food and innocent fun – but it also inspires pride in my country and the people who sacrificed everything so we could have so much.

I hope at some point during the day you’ll say a little prayer of thanks and blessing to those people who have made what we have possible.  I know I will.

Have a great and safe Memorial Day.

Today we honor them

“[W]hat sort of soldiers are those you are to lead? Are they reliable? Are they brave? Are they capable of victory? Their story is known to all of you. It is the story of the American man-at-arms. My estimate of him was formed on the battlefield many, many years ago, and has never changed. I regarded him then as I regard him now — as one of the world’s noblest figures, not only as one of the finest military characters, but also as one of the most stainless. His name and fame are the birthright of every American citizen. In his youth and strength, his love and loyalty, he gave all that mortality can give. … [W]hen I think of his patience under adversity, of his courage under fire, and of his modesty in victory, I am filled with an emotion of admiration I cannot put into words. He belongs to history as furnishing one of the greatest examples of successful patriotism. He belongs to posterity as the instructor of future generations in the principles of liberty and freedom. He belongs to the present, to us, by his virtues and by his achievements. In twenty campaigns, on a hundred battlefields, around a thousand campfires, I have witnessed that enduring fortitude, that patriotic self-abnegation, and that invincible determination which have carved his statue in the hearts of his people. From one end of the world to the other he has drained deep the chalice of courage. I do not know the dignity of their birth, but I do know the glory of their death. They died unquestioning, uncomplaining, with faith in their hearts, and on their lips the hope that we would go on to victory. Always for them: Duty, Honor, County; always their blood and sweat and tears, as we sought the way and the light and the truth.” –General Douglas MacArthur

Today is for those men and women who have given their lives for our freedom – so among the hotdogs, parades and fireworks, let’s say a prayer of thanks. God bless our troops and keep them safe.
WC

All Gave Some – Some Gave All

You know, it is easy to forget that the personal freedoms we take for granted are not entitlements – but privileges hard won. And won through the efforts and often lives of others. People we likely never knew but who nonetheless were willing to and often did give their lives to secure our freedoms.

While Americans like to celebrate Memorial Day with barbecues, holiday sales, fireworks and alcoholic beverages it wouldn’t hurt any of us to stop at least for a moment to silently thank those who gave us our freedoms. Prayers, good thoughts, wishes spoken aloud, meditation – whatever floats your boat. Please find a way to say thank you – not just to those who have secured our freedoms and continue to do so but to the families of those injured and fallen men and women.

Regardless of the side of the political spectrum to which we align, we have much to be thankful for and many to whom we owe our gratitude. To all veterans, past, present and future and to their families I say, Thank you.

As the saying goes, ‘Freedom ain’t free.’

A Day to Remember

Memorial Day is that first big picnic and three day outting holiday of the year in the states. And I have many fond memories of the family gatherings at local parks, the smell of burgers and hot dogs on the grill – juicy watermelon dripping down my chin, mom’s macaroni salad and of course the waiting for nightfall so we could light our sprinklers. It’s all part and parcel of this holiday.

Though, I would ask, that we all take a moment of silence to thank God for those who have spilled blood and given their lives so we can celebrate this holiday. And to say a prayer of thanks and Godspeed to all our troops worldwide – who carry on the tradition of standing the watch.

It’s days like these that I wish I had the wherewithall to send a home made bbq to Iraq and Afghanistan – with vat’s of mom’s special macaroni salad on ice. Unfortunately, I haven’t so…I offer the recipe instead. I suppose it is possible that one or two of our troops might find the recipe and be able to convince somebody to make it for them???

Okay –

2lbs of large elbow macaroni

1/2 small brown onion, minced fine

3 stalks minced celery

1 very small jar of pimentos

2 large dill pickles, minced fine (are you sensing a trend here?)

3 large hard cooked eggs minced fine

1/4 cup of dill pickle juice

3 TBS yellow mustard

paprika

1 can of tuna (optional)

1-2 cups of whole egg mayo (depending on how dry or wet you like your mac salad)

Cook elbow macaroni and drain and rinse. Place in large bowl in fridge and let completely cool. Once mac is cooled pull out of fridge and set aside (it works well if you make the mac the night before and leave in fridge over night – cooled mac does not absorb the liquids as much and keep the salad much more moist). Take mayo, mustard, pickle juice and mix in separate bowl, set aside.

To the mac, add the celery, onion, egg, pimentos, pickles and tuna (if you are using) and toss thoroughly. Then again, put in fridge for about an hour. This lets the flavors marry and seep into the mac first.

Then pull out of fridge and add ‘sauce’, again tossing thoroughly. Sprinkle with paprika on top, cover with plastic wrap and keep cool until ready to serve. If you find that the mac has absorbed the liquid too much and is a little dry, just add a little water to bring it back up. Quite yummy.

Have a safe and happy Memorial Day.

WC