Memorial Day is due March 31st this year – a day for us to remember and commemorate those who gave their lives fighting for our country. If you’re wondering how to pay your respects and celebrate accordingly, I hope this guide helps you.
Memorial Day is often celebrated like any other holiday, but it’s important to understand and respect its true meaning. After all, you’re honoring the dead – it’s not considered polite to wish a “Happy Memorial Day because what truly matters is to show respect for those who gave their lives and their families that still live on.
This is why it’s a bit strange to “celebrate Memorial Day, as it is a day of mourning. Here’s what you can do to respectfully honor our fallen soldiers and show your patriotism!
“You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today." – Abraham Lincoln
Fly the American flag
The American flag should be flown at half-staff during Memorial Day. It should remain so from sunrise until noon, and then quickly raised to the top until sunset.
The flag is usually flown at half-staff when Americans are mourning. You should always raise it to the top and then slowly lower it to half-staff. There’s a lot to unpack when it comes to flag etiquette though, so read more about flag etiquette here.
Decorate your home
There are many ways you can decorate your home to honor Memorial Day. You don’t have to make huge investments too, since the most effective decor is fairly easy to come by.
Here are a few ideas on Memorial day decoration:
- Red, white and blue table cloth
- String lights
And those are just a few simple ideas. Read more on ways to decorate for Memorial Day!
Make a red poppy
The red poppy is a common way to signify your honoring of fallen soldiers during Memorial Day. You can surely purchase a few for this occasion in a local store, but it’s quite easy to make your own with tissue paper.
All you need to do is cut a stack of red tissue paper into flower shapes and then staple them together, finalizing with a poppy punch. Check out this red poppy tutorial for more details!
Visit a nearby military cemetery
This is particularly interesting if you’re taking the opportunity of Memorial Day to teach children about our military. Perhaps pay a visit to your local cemetery or military base, taking the moment to inform yourself if there will be any events nearby relating to Memorial Day.
Many Americans have soldiers in their family lineage who passed away decades ago – this is the perfect opportunity to honor their memory and remember the sacrifice they made for our country.
Spend time with the family
It’s very common for American families to gather up during the holiday. A simple family Memorial Day barbecue is all you need to spend time together while honoring our fallen soldiers.
There’s no secret here, but a good burger is always a nice pick for a relaxing family barbecue, as well as some decoration, playing with the kids, and perhaps even educating them on the true meaning of this important day and why it’s a day of mourning.
Veteran’s Day (November 11th) is usually the day we focus on our veterans, but there’s no reason why we should wait. Take a moment during Memorial Day week to get in contact with a known veteran, your local old people’s home, or military base, and learn more on how you can help veterans.
You can do this directly by giving them gifts, sending letters, visiting, or indirectly by donating to a military institution. Many of them focus on helping veterans and their families, so donations are always very appreciated.
Any Veterans Day stories you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments below! Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for more great tips and inspiration!