Decoration Day

This is a re-post from last year. It really means a lot to my family to celebrate this Holiday. Thank you to all the Men and Women who have served our country to make it as special as it is.

When I was a teenager I had the opportunity to live with my Grandmother in Iowa. I still remember it as the best year of my life. I learned so many things from her and got to know her like I never would have had the chance to. She taught me how to cook, how to clean, how to be on time, what it really means to take care of a house and yard, and showed me many things that I consider traditions. My Grandma never misses the opportunity to visit the grave sites of our family near where she lives. My Grandfather served in World War II and was a prisoner of war.

My Grandma called Memorial Day, Decoration Day and now I do to. Decoration Day started in the South by some strong Southern women. At the end of the civil war, a group of them went out at the end of May and decorated the tombstones of the civil war solders, both North and South. Some didn’t have tombstones of family to decorate so they decorated the ones they could. Many women left what little they had, scraps of fabric and wild flowers. They did it in hopes that someone would be decorating the graves of their loved ones buried far away from home. The tradition grew and was renamed and a National Holiday was born.
But along the way we have lost much of the tradition. So many of us now are transplanted and have no family around to visit, and flowers to leave on grave sites. The spirit of the Day can still remain, don’t loose this tradition. Take your children out and explain what it is all about, visit a veterans cemetery and let them lay flowers on any grave site that they like. Adopt a Grandparent that served in the military, or look for family names similar to yours. Keep the spirit of Decoration Day alive.
This year we “adopted” the parents of a good friend of mine. The Groves were two of the kindest and nicest people you could have ever met. Brother Groves served in two wars and raised a beautiful family. Sister Groves was a gracious and supportive wife who was stunningly beautiful. They lived their lives in a way that I can only hope to live mine. I am so thankful we were able to go out Monday and visit. It was such a spiritual experience for my little family and created such neat conversations with each of the kids, we are more determined then ever to not let the spirit of Decoration Day slip away.
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