Friday, September 4, 2009

Labor Day!

Today is the last day of a crazy work week and I must confess that the minutes are ticking by ever so slowly….I know that, since it must be 5 o’clock somewhere, we all should be allowed to get out of here and go home and begin our “relaxing” weekend that is meant to congratulate workers across the globe for a job well done with a well-earned long weekend.

In case you were wondering (and this comes straight from Wikipedia. Read the full story at ) …..

Labor Day is a United States federal holiday observed on the first Monday in September (September 7 in 2009).

The holiday originated in Canada out of labor disputes ("Nine-Hour Movement") first in Hamilton, then in Toronto, Ontario in the 1870s, which resulted in a Trade Union Act which legalized and protected union activity in 1872. The parades held in support of the Nine-Hour Movement and the printers' strike led to an annual celebration in Canada.

In 1882, American labor leader Peter J. McGuire witnessed one of these labor festivals in Toronto. Inspired, he returned to New York and organized the first American "labor day" on September 5 of the same year.

The first Labor Day in the United States was celebrated on September 5, 1882 in New York City. In the aftermath of the deaths of a number of workers at the hands of the US military and US Marshals during the 1894 Pullman Strike, President Grover Cleveland put reconciliation with labor as a top political priority. Fearing further conflict, legislation making Labor Day a national holiday was rushed through Congress unanimously and signed into law a mere six days after the end of the strike. Cleveland was also concerned that aligning a US labor holiday with existing international May Day celebrations would stir up negative emotions linked to the Haymarket Affair. All 50 U.S. states have made Labor Day a state holiday.

The form for the celebration of Labor Day was outlined in the first proposal of the holiday: A street parade to exhibit to the public "the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations," followed by a festival for the workers and their families. This became the pattern for Labor Day celebrations.

Or……simply host a bar-b-que! Go camping. Have a party. Go fishing. Eat ice cream.

This is supposed to be a workers’ holiday….a time to celebrate and rest from work.

Hmmmmm… from work?

Do we ever really rest? In the age of cell phones and email and smart phones and mp3 players, and Facebook, do we ever truly “turn it off” and spend some quality time just (figuratively speaking, here) sitting on the front porch and wile away the hours….resting?

If given a chance, would we?

Maybe our mission this weekend is to find a hammock or chaise lounge and put our feet up for a while and just do nothing…..or…..if you must do something productive….take a nap.

Or eat ice cream.

I have heard that you never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you've made up your mind that you just aren't doing anything productive for the rest of the day.

That moment arrived, for me, about 4 days ago.

I hope you enjoy your Labor Day weekend and PLEASE take some time for yourself and/or your family. Shut the phone off. In fact, shut it ALL off and just “be”. The time that you spend with those that are important to you is truly the remedy for the stress and strain of the work-a-day world.

There is no better way to celebrate than to do it with family and friends…..and eat some ice cream.

Have a glorious weekend and we’ll chat on Tuesday.

Until then, I remain….1SweetMama

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