Simple Service: Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day!

Hi! My name is Anna and I am the president of Your Light International, a nonprofit where we take professional family photos for those in need. I'm thrilled to be part of Little Hands Can for the summer and share ways I find to serve with my young daughters. 

I love holidays and celebrations. People give service during certain holidays such as Christmas, but I've also found that there are creative ways to give back and teach children during the seemingly small holidays as well. Here are some ideas from the recent celebrations.

Earth Day

We invited some friends and went up to one of our favorite mountain spots to clean up the trash. There was a surprising amount to gather and we were able to teach the kids about the importance of not littering, taking care of the earth, and respecting others.

The happy cleaning crew:

May Day

For a couple years now I've also celebrated May Day, (May 1st) where traditionally people would hang May baskets on others' doors, filled with flowers, candies, or gifts. I think it's a sweet idea and even though many don't know about it anymore, it's a great way to teach service. I had my girls help me make some paper cones and fill them with flowers. Then we picked people around the neighborhood who we thought might appreciate them. Everyone loved the surprise!

Memorial Day

And lastly, of course- Memorial Day. Memorial day is another great chance to get involved in a unique way. This year I was able to talk to my girls about death more and have them understand. We talked about why it's important to still honor those who have passed on. So we went to the cemetery and looked for graves that seemed lonely and in need of some cheer. I kept it simple and bought a few things from the dollar store and let the girls pick where to put them.

It was a calm and special afternoon. And then on the way out we noticed a woman who was sitting at a gravestone crying, so my oldest daughter ran up and gave her the last flower we had. The woman was touched and placed it on the headstone and after that all my girls wanted to do was to go find more sad people and make them happy with some flowers.

Treats and festivities can set days apart from the norm, but I'm finding that when you think about others and giving back, that's when normal days get transformed into days to remember.