Hello-Hello, welcome to a Wednesday.
We are now a week away from Christmas and the usual frenzy seems to be gathering steam. Yesterday there was a shortage of parking places at the local Post Office; I thought I might be flattened by an enormous SUV driven by someone evidently feeling less-than-jolly. Inside? Bah humbug moments everywhere. We have all been there, feeling we’ll be crushed by what can seem like an overwhelming number of commitments, celebration and obligations that can also create frustration.
I was grateful that yesterday was my usual volunteer shift at the gift shop of a local nursing home. There’s nothing like spending some time away from the fray among those for whom each and every day is precious, it will set your mind right in a hurry. Even if I arrive feeling like little Miss Crankypants, I leave feeling better. Little issues I turned into gargantuan crises have been returned to their proper places.
That made me think about the enormous effort this past weekend to get wreaths placed on as many veteran’s gravesites as possible. It is a project called Wreaths Across America, something I first wrote about last year at this time. The organization works to honor veterans by placing wreaths at gravesites during the holiday season. One of the activities related to the placement of wreaths at Arlington National Cemetery is a ceremonial escort of the trucks carrying the wreaths. This year’s escort officially began at Maine’s West Quoddy Light, the easternmost point in the USA.
The convoy on its way to Arlington.
National Wreath Day was this past Saturday, below we see a truck getting ready to drop off its load of wreaths at Arlington.
A look at Arlington National Cemetery after the volunteers did their work, via Brit Hume’s twitter photo.
It snowed later at Arlington, the National Cemetery posted this photo on its Facebook page, thanking all WAA volunteers.
It was also snowy at Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery in Elgin, Illinois; this photo comes via NuMark Credit Union, one of many organizations donating time, money, services, and of course, wreaths.
On the Wreaths Across America Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery Facebook page, Christopher Jackson posted this photo, writing “I had the Honor of placing a Wreath at my Father’s Grave.”
Virginia’s Daily Press shared this photo from Hampton National Cemetery.
Volunteers laying wreaths at the Massachusetts National Cemetery in Bourne, via the Cape Cod Times Twitter feed.
M. Scott Mahasky posted this photo on Twitter of Army NG Sgt. Anderson volunteering at Arlington.
Mr. Mahasky also shared this image of a wreath being placed at the Tomb of the Unknowns.
There are now 700 locations in all 50 states taking part in the movement, including 24 national veteran cemeteries on foreign soil. Below, ceremonies in Alaska.
From Jacksonville National Cemetery via the Florida Times-Union Facebook page.
Volunteers place the majority of wreaths, but family members also come to take part. Below, the activity at Houston National Cemetery.
Hunter Harvey, also at Houston National Cemetery. He misses his dad.
It is so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of this season. While that’s exciting and even fun it is not necessarily important. A simple green wreath and red bow can be a powerful reminder of a loved one lost and a memory honored.