November 11: The Real Meaning
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Today, I have a wonderful guest poster – Courtney who wrote a beautiful post about Veteran’s Day and some ways to celebrate it with your family.
It comes around every year on November 11th—Veterans Day. A holiday we use to remember brave soldiers, to express gratitude, and to honor those who have served and are serving our country. Many people have forgotten or never learned about what the day is all about. Have you ever wondered how it all began?
Let’s go back almost one hundred years to November 11, 1918. On this day at eleven o’clock on the eleventh day of the eleventh month, World War I fighting came to an end when an armistice between Germany and the Allied nations went into effect. (An armistice is when hostilities stop temporarily). The day was eventually recognized as a national holiday, first as Armistice Day. Years later after World War II, the name was changed to Veterans Day to celebrate veterans from all wars.
Ideas for Celebrating
Help your children understand the importance of the day as more than just another day off. Here are some tips for making your Veterans Day meaningful.
- Get crafty. Spend some quality time together doing crafts with a patriotic emphasis. That can include red white and blue wreaths, face painting, homemade house decorations, finger painting…use your imagination! Help your kids understand what the day is about and have some fun making cute crafts that have Veterans Day tie-ins.
- Head to a flag raising ceremony. This is a fun and easy way to get out of the house and support events in your local community. It will probably include singing the National Anthem and reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.
- Make thank you notes with the kids. Have each member of your family write a personalized thank you note to someone who has served or is currently serving. Send it to a stranger, a family member, or a friend, whoever you want to support as they serve our country.
- Visit your local VA hospital. The rules and visiting hours are different depending on the hospital, so check online for details before you head out. You can take one of the thank you notes you made and hand deliver it to a veteran. Even a short visit helps let them know that they are appreciated and cared for.
- Hold a moment of silence. 11:00am is when the armistice went into effect in 1918, and is a perfect time to hold your moment of silence. Take a few minutes to be still and remember the immense sacrifices that have been and continue to be made in behalf of maintaining our rights and freedoms.
These are only a few of the many ways you can make the day’s focus on honor, respect, and gratitude. Because November 11th falls on a Sunday this year, Monday November 12th will be the observed holiday.
Courtney writes about VA news for MilitaryVALoan.com, a resource for veterans to save on their home loans by providing information on VA loans, VA loan rates and options, and refinance opportunities.