Memorial Day Moments

It’s Memorial Day – summer is kicking off, it’s a long weekend (for us day-jobbers, anyway) and hopefully the weather is beautiful where you are! We’re talking today about our favorite things to do on this day – traditions, trips, and more. So Wickeds, what’s the plan for today?

Jessie: I will be in the U.K. over the holiday weekend. One of my kids is planning the trip and is keeping everything a surprise so I have no idea what my plans are yet. It should be fun!

Julie: Jessie, have a wonderful trip! I love Memorial Day weekend. It is a time of reflection (the reason for the holiday). It also marks the end of winter, and the kick off to summer. Summer in New England is a marvel, and I relish it. I always toast the ocean (or a body of water), and paint my toenails. Not at the same time.

Barb: Julie, I love the idea of painting your toenails. I always welcome barefoot weather, the best months of the year. I’ve wracked my brain, but I can’t think of any Memorial Day traditions. Patriot’s Day (mid-April), yes. Fourth of July, for sure. But in New England Memorial Day is as apt to be cold and gray as sunny and warm, so it’s hard to make plans and I got nothin’.

Sherry: We don’t have any big traditions for Memorial Day either. Growing up we didn’t live close to any family so there was no visiting graves. This Memorial Day will find me writing as I try to meet a self-imposed deadline. Wish me luck!

Edith: It’s time for me to start a new book, Sherry, so I’ll be writing, too, until we go to some friends for a cookout or maybe a cook-in, because, as Barb said, this year the day is forecast to be rainy and chilly.

Artist Ellen Rogers with the banners. Photo by Bryan Eaton, Newburyport Daily News.

But I’ll also walk across town to visit an amazing memorial a local artist has created this year. She filled a field across from her house with 7000 white banners. Each has the name of an American service person who died in Irag and Afganhistan, and each includes the number of dead on that date. Sobering.

Readers: What’s your plan for today? Traditions?

10 Thoughts

  1. Cold and rainy here too. We had a bigish get-together here yesterday – 20 of us, one dog and one 3-month old piglet. It was good to see everyone.

  2. I’m a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, so there’s a lot of military (or at least, militia) way back up the family tree, and all are in Massachusetts. It’s kind of a long trek to pay tribute to them, but I visit the graves regularly throughout the year. I don’t think any of them died in battle (else I might not be here), but I honor their service in creating and defending this country.

    As for today? Clean-up! Finally between books, at least for the moment, and I haven’t decided what the next one will be.

  3. When I was a kid, Memorial Day was a big deal. It took me a long time to understand why. There was a parade in the morning. As a Girl Scout, I had to march-not my favorite thing to do. After that, there were the family members’ graves to visit with Nana, some in New Hampshire and some in Massachusetts. We would plant small red geraniums at each site and water them in with a jug of water, looking them over afterward in silence.
    Later there was the family picnic. We would always be at an uncle’s house for a picnic in the afternoon. I know the adults reminisced and conversed. Us kids played and ate and listened to conversations. I think I learned a lot of my family history during those times.
    I moved away from New England so the grave sites are far away. The family is dispersed and not in touch as much. Many are gone. There are new family members and some new traditions but I think the conversations about those passed are missing. The family history continues only sporadically. Good time to rethink tradition.

    1. Sounds like a fun, full day tradition. Remembering those who “went ahead,” as my late mother-in-law used to say, is important.

    2. What a treasure trove of memories you have. How fortunate. Thank you for sharing them with us.

  4. Attended Sit, filled bird feeders, will go back in town later to Community Table, where picnic fare will be served, but probably inside with this changeable weather.

  5. Hot here in CA, at least the parts I was in. I spent the weekend visiting relatives, so I was driving from north east of Sacramento down to So Cal today. Fortunately, only hit one bad area of traffic and it wasn’t as bad as I feared it would be.

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