Gardening, Cooking and Decorating on the Prairie of Kansas

Welcome to Linderhof, our 1920's home on the prairie, where there's usually something in the oven, flowers in the garden for tabletops and herbs in the garden for cooking. Where, when company comes, the teapot is always on and there are cookies and cakes to share in the larder.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Decoration Day

Was what my grandmother always called May 30th. Not Memorial Day as did everyone else. But, then, of course, it is no longer on May 30th but rather the 4th Monday in May so that it can be a 3 day weekend.

Instead of honoring our fallen heroes, the day is spent boating and picnicing and BBQing.

But as a child, Memorial Day was a family day when my family would go over to my grandmother's after we visited the cemetery and placed flowers on my other grandmother's grave and Miss Mamie's grave.

There we would have a noon dinner, then load the trunk of the car with fresh flowers -- peonies, iris and the most beautiful red roses. All placed carefully in coffee cans filled with water.

And off we would go to cemeteries far and near. At each stop, we would carefully make a bouquet of flowers from the stash in the trunk and respectfully place it on the grave of the departed loved one.

The cemetery far was where my great great grandmother was buried and my grandmother always told the story of how when she died, there was no money for a headstone. Instead a tree marks the spot where she is buried. I loved the story and wish now that I had asked my grandmother to tell more stories of this amazing lady. But, alas, a child doesn't think of those things.

Tomorrow our National Cemetery will have a ceremony to honor all those buried there. Not just the fallen heroes but the others who served their country and were fortunate enough to come home.

And at 3 p.m. tomorrow, our time, we shall observe the National Moment of Remembrance, by pausing in whatever we are doing for a moment of silence.

Our family has been fortunate for all of our soldiers came home.

And this weekend, we shall decorate the graves of both our soldier ancestors as well as our other ancestors.


Susan @ A Southern Daydreamer said...

Martha, you are lucky to have had a grandmother to teach your family the real importance of the day! I hope you are having a wonderful Memorial Day weekend surrounded by family and friends! ~ Susan

Mary Bergfeld said...

Martha, thank you for reminding us of the importance of this holiday. Have a wonderful day.

Puna said...

What a nice tribute. Have a wonderful day.

Karen at Nittany Inspirations said...

I had forgotten that my family called it Decoration Day, too. We always went to the cemetary beforehand so the grave would look pretty for the holiday.

I promised my Aunt Ruby that I would be the one in the family to always carry on that tradition, but we have moved far away and I had to break that promise.

My great grandfather gets a small flag put on his grave by the veterans for his service in the Civil War. He lied about his age to get in. He does not have a headstone, just the holder for the little flag.