Tag Archives for " Holidays "

Thanksgiving Day Traditions
Nov 23

Thanksgiving Day Traditions

By Jerry | Blog

Happy Thanksgiving Day Traditions

Thanksgiving Day traditions vary widely, I’m sure.  In preparation for this holiday post, I looked up a lot of them.  While they included many great traditions, some of which we practice in our home, a couple of my favorites were missing.

First, the common traditions that we practice here are no doubt among the most common across the country. Macy’s Parade starts the day, very much as a background to the cooking and last-minute calls about who’s to bring what and when they’ll be here. It’s the ‘official’ start of Christmas movies and Christmas music playing virtually non-stop through the end of the year.  Pies and bread baking in the oven, along with a 14 to 20 pound bird and plenty of savory and sweet side dishes fill the house with mouth-watering aromas.  Gift exchanges are setup and our kids enjoy getting the names of their siblings in the secret Santa drawings.

Perhaps my favorite pastime – missing from the traditions I read about – is listening to the women in the kitchen.  Since the passing of my brother-in-law, Tom, many years ago – the family matriarchy presides over the kitchen absolutely.  Tom was perhaps the best conversationalist I’d ever known, and a great listener. Now it’s purely the women running the kitchen, from my wife and daughters to my wife’s sisters, (and formerly my mother-in-law before she passed) and they dominate the conversations about things that matter. The men are relegated to a mixing drinks, a steady stream of appetizers they can have now (vs. save that for the meal!), and to taking out the trash.  Conversations among the women range from the foods being prepared to dates for family camping in the coming year, to the progress of our adult children and our grandchildren in their pursuits and more. I enjoy the life they bring to the holiday, as well as the love and food they prepare for the table.  Of course, by this time, the guys are watching A Christmas Story or Miracle on 34th Street for the 211th time, and, of course, a football game.

The house is decorated for Thanksgiving, and the Christmas decorating begins in earnest on Thanksgiving weekend, if it hasn’t begun already.  Much like Christmas Eve, I enjoy the time after all the visitors have gone.  The time devoted to enjoying a glass of wine or a cocktail with my wife who evaluates what went well (or not), sharing some news that perhaps I hadn’t heard, and beginning plans for next year. That’s among the finest of traditions.

More Thanksgiving Day Traditions

Here are a few places to think explore more Thanksgiving Day Traditions to consider for your own family, along with a few comments.

I got a practical start to the research at a blog for International Boarding Schools, of all places.  The post, “Top 10 Thanksgiving traditions in the US” suggested this post was on the right track.

Oprah offers a nifty slide-show of 34 Unique Thanksgiving Traditions Your Family and Friends Will Adore   You may get a pop-up or two to start with, but I found the slide show easy to glide through, with nifty matching graphics and a few sentences bringing the ideas in each slide to life.

Country living shares the 30 Best Thanksgiving Traditions to Try With Your Family This Year on a single long page of “fun and unusual activities will keep the crew entertained.”

I could (maybe next Thanksgiving) do a post about Friendsgiving – a tradition I witnessed my own adult kids getting into perhaps a decade ago – and mentioned several times in the research, including the links above.  We enjoy having friends over on Thanksgiving, as well as family. I think the whole idea of Friendsgiving is a great one.  My wife has a great banner on her website, CindyCooks.comTreat Friends Like Family, and Family Like Friends.   The flip side of this research was learning that some traditions flat out don’t match up with what we learned about the origins of Thanksgiving, between the Pilgrims and Native Americans, in grade school. While many traditions are no doubt shared, if you Google “native american thanksgiving traditions” you may find links to “a day of mourning.”

When all is said and done, Thanksgiving to me is simply a day to celebrate our blessings and to give thanks…a shared day of celebration and thanks if you’re lucky.  Be lucky.  Happy Thanksgiving!

With all best wishes for you and yours to enjoy a Happy Thanksgiving!

p.s.: Thanks to our friend, Keith Klein of our vendor company OnYourMark, LLC, for sharing this post so we could share it with you.

We welcome your comments, questions and suggestions.  Please contact us with questions.  Best to callemail or visit our site for the best response.  We do invite you to engage with us on social media (just not for immediate needs).

As always, if you like, you will find us on the following social media sites, among many others:
Facebook
LinkedIn
Twitter

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Thanks to our friends at OnYourMark, LLC, for preparing this post so we could share the message, and our wishes for a Happy Thanksgiving, with you.

Staff Sergeant Jeff Kazmierski, 484th Army Band, leads a former Vets Day Parade; image for a Veterans Day 2022 blog post
Nov 04

Veterans Day 2022 – Thank you for your service!

By Jerry | Blog

Veterans Day 2022 – and every year – falls on November 11th. This is the day when you should absolutely thank a veteran. Memorial Day is to remember those who died serving. Veterans Day is for thanking those who are still with us.

This year our son, Sean “Sarge”, is a civilian. He and many like him, think they have done nothing noteworthy or deserving of recognition. I contend that the Armed Forces are huge machines, requiring large numbers of support personnel to be effective. Every cog in the machine serves a necessary function. Some are worthy of special honors. All are deserving of our recognition and worthy of our gratitude.

Milwaukee’s Veterans Day 2022 parade is Saturday the 5th at 11:00 AM.  My wife, Anne, and I went in 2018 and the weather was awful. Here’s a photo with snow on the grass. Attendance was sparse, which made me sad. We were thanked by MANY vets as they passed by. They were so appreciative of the few people who showed up.

Proud parents of a veteran will show their gratitude for all veterans at the Milwaukee Veterans Day 2022 parade.This year looks like it will be windy and rainy, with temps in the upper fifties. The parade will go on, with some older participants riding in vehicles. Others will march through the rain and wind (which probably brings back memories). If you’re able, please dress for the weather and show up to thank our vets. They deserve it.

 

 

 

Support the Veterans Day 2022 Parade

Support for the Wisconsin Veterans Day 2022 Celebration comes from the generous support of our supporters and sponsors. All proceeds from the Wisconsin Veterans Day Parade cover costs associated with the parade planning, promotion, and execution, and remaining proceeds are donated to the Wisconsin Veterans Community Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charity dedicated to supporting service providers and community organizations addressing critical needs of Wisconsin veterans, service members, and their families. Sponsorship inquiries can be directed to .

Details for the Wisconsin Veterans Day 2022 parade are here at https://wiveteransday.org/wivetsparade

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Thanks to our friend and vendor, Mark Mullarky of Great Lakes Tech Services, LLC for posting this originally, and sharing it with us – to share with you.

We share his sentiments:  Happy Veterans Day!  Thank you for your service!

We welcome your comments, questions and suggestions.  Please contact us with questions.  Best to callemail or visit our site for the best response.  We do invite you to engage with us on social media (just not for immediate needs).

As always, if you like, you will find us on the following social media sites, among many others:
Facebook
LinkedIn
Twitter

 

 

The Grand Experiment Liberty Bell https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?search=liberty+bell&title=Special:MediaSearch&go=Go&type=image&haslicense=attribution-same-license
Jul 04

Long Live The Grand Experiment: Happy Independence Day 2022!

By Jerry | Blog

Long Live “The Grand Experiment!”  Happy Independence Day!

Allow us to share original thoughts of some great Americans to celebrate the 4th of July, the anniversary of the American Experiment; The Grand Experiment.

“No experiment can be more interesting than that we are now trying, and which we trust will end in establishing the fact, that man may be governed by reason and truth. Our first object should therefore be, to leave open to him all the avenues to truth. The most effectual hitherto found, is the freedom of the press. It is therefore, the first shut up by those who fear the investigation of their actions.”

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) US President (1801-09)
Letter to John Tyler Washington (28 Jun 1804)

The U.S. Bill of Rights

Note: The following text is a transcription of the first ten amendments to the ConstitutionFor the Grand Experiment, an image of The Bill of Rights from https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Bill_of_Rights_Memorial-2.jpg
in their original form. These amendments were ratified December 15, 1791, and form what is known as the “Bill of Rights.”  [This text and the text below are from https://www.archives.gov/founding-docs/bill-of-rights-transcript

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Amendment II

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

Amendment III

No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Amendment VI

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.

Amendment VII

In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

Amendment VIII

Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Amendment IX

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment X

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

 

The Gettysburg Address

Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
November 19, 1863

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
November 19, 1863

John F. Kennedy’s Inaugural Address

The following is from a lesson plan for 3rd to 6th Graders at https://www.jfklibrary.org/learn/education/teachers/curricular-resources/elementary-school-curricular-resources/ask-not-what-your-country-can-do-for-you:

Goals/Rationale

John F. Kennedy’s inaugural address inspired children and adults to see the importance of civic action and public service. His historic words, “Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country,” challenged every American to contribute in some way to the public good. In this lesson, students learn about a theme in President Kennedy’s inaugural address, civic action, and consider how it applies to their own lives.

Essential Question: How does a leader inspire a nation or a group of people?

 

The Grand Experiment – The American Experiment

I am grateful and proud to live in a country that established the Grand Experiment – the American Experiment, the fist and longest-lived democracy in the world, imbued with ideals, like The Rule of Law under Constitutional, Representative Government.  We need to keep vigil, to work endlessly and tirelessly on the Grand Experiment…relentless work toward a more perfect Union.

Regards,
Keith Klein


Thank you to our friends and vendor, the people of OnYourMark, LLC, for sharing this post with us so we could share it with you. It’s not your typical 4th of July greeting with Flags and fireworks pictures.  It is a great reminder that we are fortunate to live in a Democratic Republic, the first & oldest on earth – the Grand Experiment.

We welcome your comments, questions and suggestions.  Please contact us with questions.  Best to callemail or visit our site for the best response.  We do invite you to engage with us on social media (just not for immediate needs).

As always, if you like, you will find us on the following social media sites, among many others:
Facebook
LinkedIn
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Memorial Day 2022 Image Graves at Arlington on Memorial Day
May 26

Memorial Day 2022; Remember the Fallen

By Jerry | Blog

In observance of Memorial Day 2022, we share the following from Wikipedia.

Memorial Day (originally known as Decoration Day[1]) is a federal holiday in the United States for mourning the U.S. military personnel who have died while serving in the United States armed forces.[2] It is observed on the last Monday of May. It was formerly observed on May 30 from 1868 to 1970.[3]

Many people visit cemeteries and memorials on Memorial Day to honor and mourn those who died while serving in the U.S. military. Many volunteers place an American flag on graves of military personnel in national cemeteries. Memorial Day is also considered the unofficial beginning of summer in the United States.[4]

Many cities and people have claimed to have first celebrated the event. In 1868, General John A. Logan of the Grand Army of the Republic called for a “Decoration Day”, which was widely celebrated. By 1890, every Northern state had adopted it as a holiday. The World Wars turned it into a generalized day of remembrance instead of just for the Civil War. In 1971, Congress standardized the holiday as “Memorial Day” and changed its observance to the last Monday in May.

Two other days celebrate those who have served or are serving in the U.S. military: Armed Forces Day (which is earlier in May), an unofficial U.S. holiday for honoring those currently serving in the armed forces, and Veterans Day (on November 11), which honors those who have served in the United States Armed Forces.[5]

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Thank you to Wikipedia.  The copy and images above first appeared at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Memorial_Day

This Memorial Day 2022, we hope you’ll take a moment to remember those who have given “the last full measure of devotion.”

Thanks to our friends at our vendor OnYourMark, LLC who first published this for sharing among friends and clients.

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We welcome your comments, questions and suggestions.  Please contact us with questions.  Best to callemail or visit our site for the best response.  We do invite you to engage with us on social media (just not for immediate needs).

As always, if you like, you will find us on the following social media sites, among many others:
Facebook
LinkedIn
Twitter

Easter celebration image of Harris's Hawks
Apr 15

Our Easter Celebration: Anchor of Hope – Righteous Redeemer

By Jerry | Blog

In observance of our Easter celebration this year, we share this post from a “sister site” – Crown of Compassion (more below).

“Great is the Lord, and most worthy of praise/ Refuge of strength to the end./ Righteous redeemer and mighty to save/ He’s the anchor of hope for all men.”- Ellie Holcomb, Anchor of Hope

“On that evening of the first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you!’  After he said this, he showed them his hands and side.  The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.”- John 20:19-20 (NIV)

Wherever you go, there you are.”- Thomas a Kempis

The Harris’s hawk, native to the southwestern United States, is larger than a Cooper’s Hawk, but smaller than a Golden Eagle.  In addition, the length of a Harris’s hawk ranges from 18 to 23 inches.  And its wingspan varies from 41 to 47 inches.  Females weigh nearly twice as much as males.

Harris’s hawks usually nest in small trees like the mesquite or paloverde.  They also nest in organ pipe cacti and in the arms of the giant saguaro, 12-25 feet above the ground.  Also, these hawks hunt actively in low flight, pursuing prey around bushes and thickets.  Their long, yellow legs allow them to chase prey along the ground.  In one hunting technique, several Harris’s hawks surround their prey, while another hawk flushes it out.  Most significantly, Harris’s hawks cooperated in the hunting and nesting process.  No other bird of prey is known to hunt in groups as routinely.

Thus, Harris’s hawks stay put in one place to achieve their hunting goal.  Writing in The Power of Place (2021), Daniel Grothe observes that God assesses the fruitfulness of our lives by the quality of our service to the people around us.  With our righteous redeemer, Jesus, as our anchor of hope.  Pastor Grothe explains:

“In fact, sometimes the most significant thing you can do is stay in a place — stay for the long haul, stay and give your life away for the good of these people in this place (emphasis Daniel’s).”

However, Pastor Grothe counsels, avoid leaning toward what he terms accidental Gnosticism.  As a result, Christians who espouse this concept think of themselves as eternal souls trapped in transitory bodies.  Yet, the physical stuff of our very existence matters to God.  And, as poet, essayist, and novelist Wendell Berry underscores, God calls us to love in particular the little worlds that we all inhabit.  Furthermore, Berry adds: “No matter how much one may love the world as a whole, one can live fully in it only by living responsibly.”

In conclusion, Wendell Berry stresses, only two types of places exist in the world: sacred and desecrated.  Hence, there’s no such place as nowhere.  So, we need to see beauty right where God has placed us.  The mysteries we behold around us metabolize a kind of reverent holiness within us as we stabilize ourselves in our anchor of hope.  Even if Nazareth is that place.  Pastor Grothe encourages:

“Jesus coming from Nazareth is a statement once and for all that there is no such place as nowhere.
The God of eternity past moved into the ‘middle of nowhere’ so that from then on, every place is a somewhere.”

Consequently, Pastor Grothe emphasizes, treat your place sacredly, as the holy ground upon which God visits you.  As you commit to and persevere through the inconveniences in this place, the author notes, you’ll gain the greatest treasures.  And perhaps Jesus knows that the inconvenience evoking your feeling of ‘stuck’ = the gift you didn’t know you needed.  Value a love of – and devotion to – your place.  One person and need at a time.

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This post was first published by Dave Henning of Crown of Compassion, at https://www.crownofcompassion.org/2022/04/11/anchor-of-hope-righteous-redeemer/.  Dave’s site is managed by the same folks who manage our site.  Thanks for sharing, Dave, so we may further share with our viewers.

Dave’s post is not a “one-off” Easter celebration.  An interesting point to make here is that Dave posts daily.  Every day.  Every single day for quite a few years now.  Because of the persistent good messages, his site enjoyed over 500,000 visitors in 2021!  (unique visitors, per month, total for the year)  I guess you could say that Dave provides an Easter celebration every day.

Thanks again, Dave.  We hope you’ll enjoy a wonderful Easter Celebration!


We welcome your comments, questions and suggestions.  Please contact us with questions.  Best to callemail or visit our site for the best response.  We do invite you to engage with us on social media (just not for immediate needs).

As always, if you like, you will find us on the following social media sites, among many others:
Facebook
LinkedIn
Twitter

Happy New Year 2022 Image to illustrate blog
Dec 31

Happy New Year 2022 Goals

By Jerry | Blog

Our goal, first and foremost, is to wish all of our visitors a Happy New Year 2022!

Just as importantly, we share proven techniques to make your resolutions for a Happy New Year 2022 a reality for you.  We share three steps to achieving your goals: SMART Goals, Zig Ziglar, and Becoming Your Best when you Do What Matters Most.

SMART GOALS

The November 1981 issue of Management Review contained a paper by George T. Doran called There’s a S.M.A.R.T. way to write management’s goals and objectives.[1][4] It discussed the importance of objectives and the difficulty of setting them.

Ideally speaking, each corporate, department, and section objective should be:

  • Specific – target a specific area for improvement.
  • Measurable – quantify or at least suggest an indicator of progress.
  • Assignable – specify who will do it.
  • Realistic – state what results can realistically be achieved, given available resources.
  • Time-related – specify when the result(s) can be achieved.

Notice that these criteria don’t say that all objectives must be quantified on all levels of management. In certain situations, it is not realistic to attempt quantification, particularly in staff middle-management positions. Practicing managers and corporations can lose the benefit of a more abstract objective in order to gain quantification. It is the combination of the objective and its action plan that is really important. Therefore serious management should focus on these twins and not just the objective.

— George T. Doran, There’s a S.M.A.R.T. way to write management’s goals and objectives[1][4]
MOTIVATION
Zig Ziglar, a favorite of mine for decades, offers insight and motivation.  I found his voice grating at first (after purchasing audio of him on cassette tapes back in the 70s or 80s).  That bit of irritation quickly subsided when I relaxed and enjoyed the sincerity and wisdom and folksy rhythm of his words.

Zig Ziglar has 7 Steps to goal setting, outlined here (a 2-3 minute read).
Google (search terms: smart goals zig ziglar) listed them succinctly:
Zig Ziglar, an American motivational speaker, pulled together a list of seven steps associated with goal setting (or goal achievement). They are: Identification, Benefits, Obstacles, Skills, People, Plan and Timelines.
Jul 27, 2021

Do What Matters Most

That subheading is also a favorite book of 2021, Do What Matters Most.  
I’m big on goal setting, list making, and reading.  Do What Matters Most pleasantly combined all of them.  Google (search term: do what matters most) gave this description:
Do What Matters Most is a practical book on how to identify what matters most in your life then focusing on making it happen and increasing your productivity. The big 3 high performance habits of leading with a vision, setting your roles and goals, and pre-week planning are the basis for this book.
This book presents you with an approach summed up in the title: Do What Matters Most is a great at reminding you that, in addition to professional achievement, what really matters most is usually family and other loved ones.  Helping clients is great, helping family members and friends is just as important. Recognizing and planning for both the personal and professional matters.  This book, discussed at BecomingYourBest.com, can help you balance the personal and professional missions of your life.

Happy New Year 2022!

Best wishes to you and yours ~ may health, happiness and prosperity be yours in the New Year!

 

 

We welcome your comments, questions and suggestions.  Please contact us with questions.  Best to callemail or visit our site for the best response.  We do invite you to engage with us on social media (just not for immediate needs).

As always, if you like, you will find us on the following social media sites, among many others:
Facebook
LinkedIn
Twitter

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Thanks to Keith Klein, Author of WebForging, Organizer, Wisconsin Business Owners and Founder & CEO of OnYourMark, LLC for sharing this post so we could share it with you.
Twas The Night Before Christmas 1912 Edition of the Poem Illustrated by Jessie
Dec 24

A Visit from St. Nicholas ~ Happy Christmas!

By Jerry | Blog

A Visit from St. Nicholas

A Visit from St. Nicholas, more commonly known as, “Twas the Night Before Christmas,” the first phrase of the classic poem by Clement Clarke Moore.

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

Twas the Night Before Christmas - 1912 edition of the poem, illustrated by Jessie Willcox Smith

A Visit from St. Nicholas

‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were nestled all snug in their beds;
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
And mamma in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap,
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.
The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow,
Gave a lustre of midday to objects below,
When what to my wondering eyes did appear,
But a miniature sleigh and eight tiny rein-deer,
With a little old driver so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment he must be St. Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name:
“Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! now Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! on, Cupid! on, Donner and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!”
As leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky;
So up to the housetop the coursers they flew
With the sleigh full of toys, and St. Nicholas too—
And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.
His eyes—how they twinkled! his dimples, how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard on his chin was as white as the snow;
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke, it encircled his head like a wreath;
He had a broad face and a little round belly
That shook when he laughed, like a bowl full of jelly.
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight—
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”

Text from https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/43171/a-visit-from-st-nicholas

Images credit: https://picryl.com/collections/twas-the-night-before-christmas

 

Thank you for the opportunity to share the classic, A Visit from St. Nicholas, with you.  Happy Christmas!

Regards,
Gerard I. “Jerry” Schritz
Founder & CEO, Intelegist, LLC
Sponsor & Member, Wisconsin Business Owners

We welcome your comments, questions and suggestions.  Please contact us with questions.  Best to callemail or visit our site for the best response.  We do invite you to engage with us on social media (just not for immediate needs).

As always, if you like, you will find us on the following social media sites, among many others:
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This post first appeared on OnYourMark.com at https://www.onyourmark.com/a-visit-from-st-nicholas-happy-christmas/  Thanks for sharing, so we may share it with our viewers.

Happy Thanksgiving Thought Experiment
Nov 25

Happy Thanksgiving Thought Experiment

By Jerry | Blog

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving posts are usually about counting our blessings and giving thanks.  Steven Johnson compels us to consider this thought experiment:  If your daily newspaper were published once-in-a-century, and it came out today, what would the banner headline read?

This is, indeed, something to be truly grateful for: Human life expectancy at birth doubled, worldwide, over the last hundred years.

Here’s a video Steven Johnson referred to in his TED Talk; under two minutes:

I plan to listen to the Audible Book.  I recommend Audible Books.

Happy Thanksgiving post image of Extra Life book cover

Extra Life
A Short History of Living Longer

By: Steven Johnson
Narrated by: Steven Johnson
Length: 8 hrs and 26 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 05-11-21
Language: English
Publisher: Penguin Audio
4.7 out of 5 stars(91 ratings)

 

 

Happy Thanksgiving Poems

I’ll likely do a more traditional Happy Thanksgiving Holiday Greeting for some client sites, and I’ll share a couple of thoughts along that line here.

Here’s a great poem, among many at https://www.weareteachers.com/thanksgiving-poems-for-kids/ (that’s for kids of all ages!).

Happy Thanksgiving Poem Image

I was pleased to find this little gem among many via https://www.google.com/search?q=thanksgiving+poems

You’ll find more fun Thanksgiving Day poems for kids at https://gatheredagain.com/thanksgiving-poems-kids/

With all best wishes for you and yours to enjoy a Happy Thanksgiving!

Regards,
Gerard I. “Jerry” Schritz
Founder & CEO, Intelegist, LLC
Sponsor & Member, Wisconsin Business Owners

We welcome your comments, questions and suggestions.  Please contact us with questions.  Best to callemail or visit our site for the best response.  We do invite you to engage with us on social media (just not for immediate needs).

As always, if you like, you will find us on the following social media sites, among many others:
Facebook
LinkedIn
Twitter

This post first appeared in the personal site of Keith Klein at https://www.keithklein.me/happy-thanksgiving-thought-experiment/  Thanks for sharing, so we may share it with our viewers.

Wisconsin Veterans
Nov 11

Wishing Wisconsin Veterans – and All Vets – Happy Veterans Day!

By Jerry | Blog

Wisconsin Veterans enjoy recognition in the We Energies 2021 Cookie Book, Celebrating military service.

Note:  Thanks to our friend and vendor, Keith Klein, Veteran, U.S. Army, Organizer, Wisconsin Business Owners & Founder & CEO, OnYourMark, LLC for sharing this post, so we could share it with you.

My wife kicks off the holiday season every year with a trip to the ball park in Milwaukee for the We Energies Cookie Book.  Every year we get multiple copies of a well produced set of dozens of Christmas Cookie recipes.  Limit 2 to a customer.  Every year I get dragged along, because that means a couple more cookie books.  If you knew how passionate my wife is about Christmas, you’d know this is a BIG DEAL – her annual kickoff to the holiday season.

This year our youngest daughter joined us to get cookie books.  Home from a year working in Spain, and staying with us, we shared stories of many prior trips to the ball park, including Santa and reindeer sightings, a cookie and hot chocolate, and other sights and treats – all curtailed because of the pandemic.  What we found this trip was an even bigger treat.  As we slowed to a brief stop to be handed our books, the lady who handed us six books excitedly proclaimed, “Check out the recipe at the top of page 23!  My mom sent those when I was deployed to Desert Storm ~ they’re great!”  We all exclaimed “Thanks!” and “Merry Christmas!” and drove off.

As my wife drove and our daughter held our new puppy, I was struck by the great slices of life in the Cookie Book.  On page 23, next the the recipe for Mom’s Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies and under a mouth-watering picture of the cookie was this caption:

Wisconsin VeteransChristy Schultz Veteran
Specialist, U.S. Army
New Berlin
While deployed to Desert Storm, my
mom would send care packages
with tins of homemade cookies.
A squad favorite was this peanut
butter chocolate chip cookie.

Thank you for your service, Christy Schultz, and thank you for an extra-fine start to our holiday season.

Wisconsin Veterans are represented throughout the 2021 Cookie Book. I was struck by the stories shared, as well as the recipes shared.  Here are a couple more examples that I hope you’ll find as moving as I do.

Ribbon Cookies, page 21 top:

Submitted by Janine Sijan in memory of

Wisconsin VeteransCaptain Lance P. Sijan
A Milwaukee native, Captain Lance P. Sijan was a U.S. Air Force officer and Vietnam fighter pilot who posthumously received the Medal of Honor, the United States’ highest military award, in 1976. In addition, the Air Force created the Lance P. Sijan Award, one of the branch’s most prestigious awards, to recognize individuals demonstrating the highest qualities of leadership in their jobs and in their lives.
Submitted by Janine Sijan in memory of
Captain Lance P. Sijan
This recipe was my brother Lance’s
favorite. My mom would bake dozens
of cookies and send them to him
when he was attending prep school,
the Air Force Academy, pilot training,
and Vietnam. — Janine Sijan

Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls, page 21, bottom:

Wisconsin VeteransKyle Zierer Veteran
Sergeant, U.S. Army
Brookfield
While serving in the Army, one of
my civilian co-workers invited me
to his home for Thanksgiving. They
served many great treats like this one.
I will never forget their kindness by
including me during a time when I
would have otherwise been alone.

The Cookie Book is a fine tribute to Wisconsin Veterans from communities all over our state.  Perhaps it is the holiday spirit of sharing that makes their stories all the more poignant.

Without copying the whole book, I’ll just highlight the following from page four:

Hometown heroes: 128th Air Refueling Wing

The 128th Air Refueling Wing, Wisconsin Air National Guard, has a long and illustrious record of service to the State of Wisconsin and the United States of America. From natural disasters to service in the Korean War and operations Desert Storm, Restore Hope, Enduring Freedom and Noble Eagle, the 128th Air Refueling Wing has responded to changing world events and tasking requirements with dignity, honor and courage. https://www.128arw.ang.af.mil/

 

Members of the 128th Air Refueling Wing held a contest to choose a recipe to submit for Cookie Book consideration. They couldn’t choose just one and neither could we. We’re featuring all three recipes they submitted.

 

Wisconsin Veterans
Sweet Spotlight:
Organizations Supporting Our Troops

Support for our active and retired military comes in many forms, including organizations committed to providing care for those who serve. It is our honor to share recipes fromfour of these groups, which you will find on Pages 8 and 9.

 

Blue Star Mothers of Southeastern Wisconsin Chapter 2 — Unites military mothers of all types in supporting our military forces and veterans, as well as each other. https://www.bluestarmomssew.com

 

Fisher House — Provides a home away from home for families of veterans and active military who need temporary housing while their loved one receives care at the Clement J. Zablocki VA Medical Center. https://www.fisherhousewi.org

 

Operation Home Baked — Sends holiday cheer in the form of cookies to our service members stationed overseas, with more than 300,000 cookies sent to date. https://www.youarespecialwi.org

 

Stars and Stripes Honor Flight Inc. — Honors veterans with a life-changing trip to Washington, D.C., to visit the memorials and experience a day of honor and thanks. https://www.starsandstripeshonorflight.org

____________________________

Thank you to We Energies, and the staff who produced the Cookie Book!  To download a free copy of this book or find additional recipes, go to https://www.We-Energies.com/recipes

_____________________

Happy Veterans Day, Wisconsin Veterans!

Thank you all for your service.

Regards,
Gerard I. “Jerry” Schritz
Founder & CEO, Intelegist, LLC
Sponsor & Member, Wisconsin Business Owners

We welcome your comments, questions and suggestions.  Please contact us with questions.  Best to callemail or visit our site for the best response.  We do invite you to engage with us on social media (just not for immediate needs).

As always, if you like, you will find us on the following social media sites, among many others:
Facebook
LinkedIn
Twitter

Happy Labor Day Parade Red Granite Wisconsin 1908
Sep 03

Happy Labor Day with some Labor Day History

By Jerry | Blog

Happy Labor Day!  Labor Day, observed the first Monday in September, is an annual celebration of the social and economic achievements of American workers. The holiday is rooted in the late nineteenth century when labor activists pushed for a federal holiday to recognize the many contributions workers have made to America’s strength, prosperity, and well-being.

Many Americans celebrate Labor Day with parades, picnics and parties – festivities very similar to those outlined by the first proposal for a holiday, which suggested that the day should be observed with – a street parade to exhibit “the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations” of the community, followed by a festival for the recreation and amusement of the workers and their families. This became the pattern for the celebrations of Labor Day.

Speeches by prominent men and women were introduced later, as more emphasis was placed upon the economic and civic significance of the holiday. Still later, by a resolution of the American Federation of Labor convention of 1909, the Sunday preceding Labor Day was adopted as Labor Sunday and dedicated to the spiritual and educational aspects of the labor movement.

American labor has raised the nation’s standard of living and contributed to the greatest production the world has ever known and the labor movement has brought us closer to the realization of our traditional ideals of economic and political democracy. It is appropriate, therefore, that the nation pays tribute on Labor Day to the creator of so much of the nation’s strength, freedom, and leadership – the American worker.

Unofficial end of summer

Labor Day is called the “unofficial end of summer” because it marks the end of the cultural summer season. Many take their two-week vacations during the two weeks ending Labor Day weekend. Many fall activities, such as school and sports, begin about this time.

In the United States, many school districts resume classes around the Labor Day holiday weekend. Some begin the week before, making Labor Day weekend the first three-day weekend of the school calendar, while others return the Tuesday following Labor Day. Many districts across the Midwest are opting to begin school after Labor Day.

In the U.S. state of Virginia, the amusement park industry has successfully lobbied for legislation requiring most school districts in the state to have their first day of school after Labor Day, in order to give families another weekend to visit amusement parks in the state. The relevant statute has been nicknamed the “Kings Dominion law” after one such park. This law was repealed in 2019.

In the U.S. state of Minnesota, the State Fair ends on Labor Day. Under state law, public schools normally do not begin until after the holiday. One reason given for this timing was to allow time for schoolchildren to show 4-H projects at the Fair.

In U.S. sports, Labor Day weekend marks the beginning of many fall sports. National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) teams usually play their first games that weekend, and the National Football League (NFL) traditionally plays their kickoff game the Thursday following Labor Day. The Southern 500 NASCAR auto race has been held on Labor Day weekend at Darlington Raceway in Darlington, South Carolina from 1950 to 2003 and since 2015.  At Indianapolis Raceway Park, the National Hot Rod Association holds their finals of the NHRA U.S. Nationals drag race that weekend.  Labor Day is the middle point between weeks one and two of the U.S. Open Tennis Championships held in Flushing Meadows, New York.

In fashion, Labor Day is (or was) considered the last day when it is acceptable to wear white or seersucker.

There are numerous events and activities organized in major cities. For example, New York offers the Labor Day Carnival and fireworks over Coney Island. In Washington, one popular event is the Labor Day Concert at the U.S. Capitol featuring the National Symphony Orchestra with free attendance.

Labor Day sales

To take advantage of large numbers of potential customers with time to shop, Labor Day has become an important weekend for discounts and allowances by many retailers in the United States, especially for back-to-school sales. Some retailers claim it is one of the largest sale dates of the year, second only to the Christmas season’s Black Friday.

_______________

Happy Labor Day

Happy Labor Day to you and yours.  We hope you enjoy the celebration.  The text and images above are open source, from sites including Wikimedia, Wikipedia, and the U.S. Department of Labor.

_______________

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p.s.:  We say “thank you” to our friend and vendor, Keith Klein, of OnYourMark, LLC, for writing this post and sharing it with us, so we may share it with you!
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