On Memorial Day Remember Women Who Made the Final Sacrifice

The practice of honoring those who have fallen in battle dates back to ancient Greeks and Romans. This Memorial Day enjoy your holiday, but also take a moment to remember women who made the final sacrifice as well as all the men who’ve died in military service for our country. Continuing with this blog’s tradition of reporting on women of history, I remember women who made the final sacrifice while serving in one of the United States military services. I include links where lists of names or histories of individuals are available. The American Revolutionary War During the American Revolutionary War (April 19, 1775-September 3, 1783) women often accompanied their husbands. They foraged food, cooked meals, mended uniforms, and tended the sick. We know women served on the front lines, too. They swabbed cannons with water and carried water for the soldiers to drink. Women also acted as spies. Stories about Margaret Corbin, and Deborah Sampson are available on this blog. Were some women who posed as men in the military killed during their service? Probably, but records are incomplete. The American Civil War According to battlefields.org, an accurate count of women who served in the Civil War (April 12, […]

Joy and Peace to All

No matter what holidays you celebrate or don’t, I’m wishing joy and peace to all of you. To say it’s been a hard year for everyone is a little glib. For some, it has been beyond difficult. My heart aches for all your losses, big and small.  We’ve finally come to the end of the year. You may wish to never look back at the year 2020. There were so many negative thoughts and feelings and events you may recall nothing else.  Memories It’s easy to look back and see all the negative. The challenge is to to find the moments of joy and peace. Maybe it was the birth of a child or a quiet moment in nature, where and what is different for each of us.  The problem is that we recall bad memories, traumas, the negative stuff far more easily than the good. These highly emotional events trigger the parts of our brains that record memories.  What’s the message there? That we need to guard and record our good memories, moments of joy and peace. For some people, that’s taking lots of photographs. Others record their lives in journals. Still others keep a memory jar. Thank You […]

Mixing Holiday Traditions With Science

Putting up the Christmas tree is one of my beloved holiday traditions. For many years, I went to a tree farm a couple of weeks before Christmas. We’d cut down a tree, bring it home, and decorate it. I wasn’t mixing holiday traditions with science back then. But the science of Christmas trees is fascinating.  The Traditions The Romans decorated their temples with fir trees for the festival of Saturnalia. Christians used fir trees as a sign of everlasting life with God. Many people credit the Germans with bringing the Christmas tree into their homes.  Records show that Martin Luther, a 16th century preacher, was one of the first to bring a Christmas tree into his house and put lights on it. Read more about the first Christmas trees. Oh Christmas Tree When shopping for a Christmas tree, we want the right shape, the right height, and color. We want the tree to hold on to its needles as long as possible. And we want the tree to look fresh for weeks. These are the traits Christmas tree growers want to foster in their trees. Fraser and noble firs are the most popular species for Christmas trees. Christmas trees are […]