Veterans Week

Amie - posted on 11/07/2009 ( 5 moms have responded )

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Wear your poppies with pride, and remember this: A veteran is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to "Canada" for an amount of "up to and including my life."

Canada can be substituted with whichever respected country you are from. =)

What are you all doing from Remembrance Day? (In the states it's Veterans Day, not sure about other countries.)

We are going to the ceremonies at our kids school and the big one at CUC here. Our oldest is a part of these ceremonies here as she is a Navy cadet. We're proud of our children, I can't wait to see her out there honoring the veterans in uniform. They've already gone to the veterans hall last week and paid their respects personally to them. Our poppies have been on our jackets since Halloween.

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Sharon - posted on 11/07/2009

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We have poppies here as well. The veterans give you a plastic red poppy when you make a donation.



Our veterans are special to me. not enough is done or said for them.

Lindsay - posted on 11/07/2009

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We have a parade tomorrow and will take the kids out. Their school put on a lunch for all the local vets and the choir sang some patriotic songs and I've got my flag on the house.

JL - posted on 11/07/2009

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We wear poppies here in the US as well in solidarity for our Veterans. In live on a military installation and the Veterans association set up booths outside of the PX (the post exchange which sells various items) and the Commissary (the military version of a grocery store) where they had out poppies. My daughters Daisy Troop makes homemade poppies which we hand out to the soldiers here on base. We go to the ceremonies here on the military installation. Last week our ceremonies started with a tribute to the fallen and a run in memory of those who have lost thier lives. Every time a gun shot went off in remembrance of a fallen soldier who was in one of the battalions on Fort Gordon it made me tear up. I am very honored to be a part of the military environment and am proud of my husband all the other men and women that have served and continue to serve the WORLD.

Isobel - posted on 11/07/2009

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I think we're going to take the kids downtown to see the ceremony in front of the memorial. It's really quite beautiful, and at the end, everybody takes the poppy from their lapel and "plants" it in front of the memorial.



Edited to add...there are thousands by the end of the day.

Amie - posted on 11/07/2009

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It's been brought to my attention to that poppy wearing is a Canadian thing. Here's a brief explanation:



In Flanders Fields, written by Canadian soldier and physician, John McCrae, about the poppies that grew wild over the great battlefields of France and Belgium during World War I.



“On Flanders fields the poppies blow…” is the familiar and loved line that begins his poem, almost as familiar as the poppy that we wear in our lapels--though it’s actually a bit of an anomaly to wear this particular flower, I've sometimes thought.



A common wildflower that blooms in Europe in springtime, it’s a bit strange to wear a poppy on a November day in Canada that usually has a hint of snow around the edges. But its symbolism is something we seem to feel in our very bones.



It’s an interesting point that just before World War I, few poppies grew in Flanders at all. However, during the tremendous bombardments of the first year of the war, the chalky soil became rich in lime from all the rubble, and wild poppy seeds began to bloom everywhere. Fields of poppies were the result, becoming the indelible symbol of our remembrance of the soldiers who fell on now-legendary battlefields.



In the years following, though, the once prolific poppy fields in Flanders faded as the war years receded and the lime was re-absorbed, echoing McCrae’s worry that fallen soldiers would not be remembered. “To you from failing hands we throw the torch, be yours to hold it high…” he wrote, but then lamented “…we shall not sleep…” if forgotten.



McCrae did not survive the Great War. He managed to live through all its horror right until 1918 when he caught pneumonia in January of the last year and died. But his words and sentiments have lived on in that vivid red symbolic wave of all the poppies we will see in the next week.



Here's the poem:



In Flanders fields the poppies blow

Between the crosses, row on row,

That mark our place; and in the sky

The larks, still bravely singing, fly

Scarce heard amid the guns below.



We are the Dead. Short days ago

We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,

Loved, and were loved, and now we lie

In Flanders Fields.



Take up our quarrel with the foe:

To you from failing hands we throw

The torch; be yours to hold it high.

If ye break faith with us who die

We shall not sleep, though poppies grow

In Flanders Fields.

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