Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day!

We took our children to a local memorial to those who have given their lives for our country. The VFW does a fantastic display of American flags along with the flags from each of the states.

As we walked through the flags and up to the memorial, our little ones were full of wonder at the flags flying in the breeze. As we stood at the memorial and looked at the names that were enscribed, we shared with them that these people gave all they had so that we could have freedom. We then tried to explain to them (particularly our daughter) what freedom is and why it is so grand. She must have understood because her questions, comments, and the sincerity in her voice reflected the honor that we hope to instill in both of our children.

Sometimes, holidays become all about the day off of work, the picnic, the fun times. We often forget that holidays, such as today, should be days of reflection along with all the excitement. I feel that way about the "Buddy Poppy." You see, today I learned about the origins of the "Buddy Poppy." You know, the little red flowers from the VFW...

I have always associated them with the VFW and I knew that they were used to raise funds for veterans but I never realized that those poppies have an interesting history and a touching poem from which they were inspired...

In Flander's Field
by John McCrae

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow,
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky,
The larks, still bravely singing, fly,
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the dead.
Short days ago,
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved and now we lie,
In Flanders Fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe
To you, from failing hands, we throw,
The torch, be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us, who die,
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow,
In Flanders Fields.


  1. Love this post.
    We had plans to make our cemetery visit (grandparents and what not) but geesh...after I arrived home... I was tired and the little ones had mud all over them. Yep, mud. They were having fun playing with big sis - Boo - in our backyard. The mud shows what a sorry state our backyard is in. Anyways, I just was not in the mood to clean them up, re-dress them and pack them up at 5pm....Now, after reading your post, I feel a bit guilty that we did not do something as important of teaching our children about remembrance. Oh well... another day.

  2. I knew someone who hated holidays. He felt that if you love someone you shouldn't wait for their birthday or Valentine's day to let them know. He felt that everyday you should express those feelings and not just once a year.
    I do love holidays but I do see his point. Don't beat youself up about not going to the graveyard on Memorial Day. The service of those who defend our country and our freedom should be something that we appreciate every day. Didn't you recently post about "In their Memory and Honor?" You are instilling a patriotic appreciation in your children.