How will you spend Labor Day? Working? Enjoying a holiday?
Years ago when we visited the house where we now live in Mississippi, Bill’s Dad barbecued chicken on Labor Day and his Mom made homemade peach ice cream. We took turns sitting on the top of the wooden bucket holding the silver bucket of custard, adding ice and coarse ice-cream-salt, and turning the handle of the ice cream freezer.
The hunters spent the afternoon working at Dove hunting. Hunting is like a strong work-ethic to my husband. When I married fifty years ago, Mildred Barlow Caughman, Bill’s Mom, gave me only one piece of advice and I have kept it. “Cook whatever they bring home, but don’t ever clean their game!”
Past Labor Days we spent the evening watching the hunters plucking dove feathers as we watched the “Miss America Pageant,” cheering for Miss Mississippi!
What Happened to August?
What ever happened to August? Summer is now much shorter. Teachers and students used to have three months of vacation, winding down the summer with lazy August days and a last fling of vacation before beginning school the day after Labor Day.
“Not so long ago—well within the memory of half the American population—August was the vacation month,” so stated a “Wall Street Journal” columnist. The clever but thoughtful column stated that August “used to be the perfect peak of idleness but we’ve ruined the month with work, school, and calendars run amok.” David M. Shribman summarized the lost days of August: “August is America at its best. Let’s take it back.”
You wise Home School Moms can choose to begin school in September, plenty early.
Labor Day in our country is a time for relaxing on a day off from work. Our United States Congress passed a law in 1894 signed by President Grover Cleveland designating a legal holiday on the first Monday of September saluting American workers.
I wonder how many today appreciate a good job, meaningful work, and the importance of a good honest days work. I was raised with a strong work ethic. My grandfather and his two sons, one of them my Daddy, each had a house but worked together in the family store and for a time shared one family car. I had chores at home but each of us worked in J. P. Morris and Sons: General Merchandise. I loved “the store,” enjoyed the meaningful work I was assigned, and learned many important life lessons from the people I worked with and worked for.
Enjoy This Story: The Farmer’s Cow
I liked a story I read a couple of years ago by Vicksburg native, Charles Hendrix. An old farmer was selling his best cow. The prospective buyer asked the farmer about the cow’s pedigree, butterfat production, and monthly production of milk.
The farmer replied, “I don’t know what a pedigree is and I don’t have any idea about butterfat production, but she’s a good cow and she will give you all the milk she has.”
Hendrix suggested, “Perhaps we should follow the example of the milk cow and give all that we can in our chosen fields.”
In the New Testament, Paul instructs us that whatever we do, work at it with all our hearts, as we are working for the Lord, not for men. (Colossians 3:23). Good advice. Do your best at whatever you do! Enjoy your days off. But find something meaningful in your work!
August is gone. Happy September, friends. Love, Nana