Our Hearts Are With Our Gold Star Mothers Today. . .

Sep 28th

It started out to be a nice morning, just getting daylight when I got out of bed and got breakfast started.  All was going fine, until I moved the already heated griddle to make room for doing something else, it slipped and burned the three of my fingers.  Four hours later I’m still typing a few words, then grabbing an ice pack, then typing a few words, etc.   It was my dominant hand of course – isn’t that always the way it goes?  So, here I sit, with hubby working out in the garage, laptop on my lap, fingers gripping an ice pack, watching a Hallmark movie and trying to get today’s celebrations done.  To top it off, I’m getting a headache.  Hoping it goes away soon – I have a lot to do today! 

Gold Star Mother’s Day – This is a special one.  My heart, as a mother, reaches out and identifies as only a parent can.  Today the Army and the nation  honors mothers who have lost sons or daughters while fighting in America’s wars.  Congress first created “Gold Star Mother’s Day” in 1936 to honor these women whose children were taken from them as a result of war.  The Gold Star Mothers, along with all family members, who bear the enormous burden of loss, will always be cherished members of the Army family.   Today, in the nation’s capital, the Army will join all Americans in support of the 2013 Gold Star Mother’s Day.  Memorial events will be held in Arlington National Cemetery, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and the Tomb of the Unknowns.  Army leaders are also encouraging soldiers, their families and Army civilians to take the time to remember both those who have given their lives in service to their country and the loved ones they have left behind.  Many Army installations have events honoring and recognizing Gold Star Mothers, including picnics, luncheons and breakfasts.  Think about it, we have Mother’s Day every May, but when you have lost a son or daughter in service to our nation, Mother’s Day isn’t the same.  The loss of a child is so profound anyway, but knowing your child made the ultimate sacrifice for our  nation makes it so bittersweet.  The pride in their sacrifice is combined with the sharp pain and emptiness that their loss leaves behind.  And it’s not just mothers.  This day has evolved to include all family members who have lost loved ones to war- fathers, wives, husbands, grandparents and children all participate in the ceremonies done for them today.  Please say a prayer of support and peace for these people.  They are hurting, that hurt will never go away, and acknowledging their loss is the least we can do.

Ask a Stupid Question Day – You ever have a question but you don’t voice it because it just sounds stupid – or you think it will to someone else?  Well today is your opportunity to speak up and ask all of those questions that you were afraid to ask and they’ve just been piling up.  Unload them! Give it a try.  Yes, people may laugh, but if you remind them ahead of time what today is, maybe they’ll restrain themselves . . . it would be nice if they did.  And if not, oh well!  Sometimes what sounds like a stupid question turns out to be something that someone else wants to know also, but they were afraid to ask too, so you can help them while getting your own answers!  You know how sometimes people say there are no stupid questions?  Yeah, that’s not true, but if it makes you feel better, you go ahead and think that.  But again, that’s OK!  Even stupid questions deserve to be answered.   So where did this start?  Well the roots go back to the 1980s.  At the time there was a push by teachers to get kids to ask more questions in the classroom, but the kids would hold back, fearing that their question was stupid and would result in being teased by the other kids.  Teachers created this day, and it happened to land on September 28th.  If that happened on a weekend like this year, then they would celebrate it on the last day of the month.

Good Neighbor Day – Are you a good neighbor?  Do you have good neighbors?  Well, today is about being a good neighbor.  I think we’re good neighbors to the others who live on our street.  We aren’t noisy, we don’t bug them for anything, we don’t have wild parties and we keep to ourselves.  We don’t pile garbage outside, and we keep our yard relatively trimmed up.  For me, a good neighbor is someone who doesn’t bug us, who doesn’t try to borrow things, who isn’t noisy or intrusive.  A good neighbor realizes that some of us have to work early and doesn’t make a lot of racket into the night on a work night.  We have mostly great neighbors by that definition, and one bad set of neighbors. These folks are pretty doggone rude!  They routinely have parties on work nights making lots of noise well into the night.  They are constantly peering either through the trees, or driving slowly past our driveway with their necks craned to the point of what must be painful, to try to see what may be going on at our house.  This nosiness just strikes me as so strange, since we’ve lived here for about 8 years and they’ve never made a move to try to meet us.  I honestly envy people with close friends in their neighborhood – you see them in the movies, all getting together and helping each other, having block parties, visiting each other.  I’ve never had a great deal of luck with that though.  I got close to someone once.  She lived across the street and we became best friends . . . it didn’t end well.  There are some boundaries some people aren’t reluctant to cross and well . . . let’s just say she crossed them – and then some.  I haven’t trusted a neighbor since then.  If you have great neighbors, I’m happy for you.  Recognize them with a card, a basket of goodies, or just a happy/friendly wave as you go by.  Appreciate them because honestly, I’ve found that good neighbors are few and far between.

Food Celebration of the Day

National Drink Beer Day–  There are so many different kinds of beer.  Some are awesome, some are disgusting, some are just in between.  I personally  never cared for beer until a few years ago, but now I am perfectly happy to sip at a dark, sweet porter, or a lovely pumpkin beer.  Today though, we can take this beyond just drinking a beer.  Let’s cook with beer too!  I often bake with beer . . . beer makes cake moist, adds a richness to breads and gives a depth of flavor to soups, stews and sauces.  If my fingers get to the point where they aren’t hurting, and I get a couple of other things done, I may try to make a loaf of the beer bread from the listed recipes below.  Looks easy AND delicious! Enjoy a beer today!

Well, my fingers are still smarting a little, I’ve put lavender oil on them, and I’m holding onto an icy glass of ginger ale.  At least it’s better than it was!  The clouds and gloom outside make me happy to be indoors doing things in here, now I just need to be able to put down this icy glass long enough to do those things!  I’d better get started with what I can.  God Bless You and I’ll see you tomorrow!

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