Tag: Holiday

Where Did Father’s Day Come From?

Father’s Day is around the corner so I thought I’d dedicate this week’s posts to that topic. You may not like everything I write but I hope that it at least gives you something to think about. Last year I wrote about my opposition to celebrating mothers on Father’s Day. This year I plan to write something equally thought-provoking, so I hope you stay tuned!

Since it’s the beginning of the week, I think that I’ll start with the origin of Father’s Day:

Father’s Day started in 1910 by a woman named Sonora Smart Dodd, who was often referred to as the “Mother of Father’s Day.” She was 16 years old when her mother died in 1898, leaving her father William Jackson Smart to raise Sonora and her five younger brothers on a remote farm in Eastern Washington. In 1909 when Sonora heard a Mother’s Day sermon at Central United Methodist Church in Spokane, she was inspired to propose that Father’s receive equal recognition. The following year with the assistance of Reverend Dr. Conrad Bluhm, her pastor at Old Centenary Presbyterian Church (now Knox Presbyterian Church), Sonora took the idea to the Spokane YMCA. The Spokane YMCA, along with the Ministerial Alliance, endorsed Dodd’s idea and helped it spread by celebrating the first Father’s Day in 1910. Sonora suggested her father’s birthday, June 5th, be established as the day to honor all Father’s. However, the pastors wanted more time to prepare, so June 19, 1910 was designated as the first Father’s Day and sermons honoring fathers were presented throughout the city. It was years, however, before Father’s Day gained national prominence. In 1924 President Calvin Coolidge recognized Father’s Day and urged the states to do likewise. In 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed a proclamation calling for the third Sunday in June to be recognized as Father’s Day and requested that flags to be flown that day on all government buildings. President Richard M. Nixon signed a proclamation in 1972, permanently observing Father’s Day on the third Sunday in June. So voila, here we are!

So what should you get your dad? Some of the more traditional gifts include: watches, techy gadgets, shaving sets, new shoes, a pair of cufflinks, a BBQ set, tickets to a sporting event, a wallet, power tools or the good old standby – cologne.

Celebrating fathers is expensive. This year it is estimated that the average gift for dads will be about $113. Total spending for the holiday may reach up to $12.5 billion*. Whew! That’s a lot of money. And to think I’ll be spending at least one millionth of that on my own dad this year so you can’t say I’m not doing my own part to help the economy 🙂

And so the countdown begins! Get your gifts together because Father’s Day is in less than 1 week!

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*The National Retail Federation

The Bad Guys Want Your Holiday Presents Too

I hope everyone is enjoying a safe Christmas season so far! The National Crime Prevention Council has disseminated 10 easy tips to prevent being a victim of theft since so many criminals will be among all of the people out shopping. But in true Chocolate Vent style, I’ve decided to add my own “spin” on these very helpful tips –

1. Don’t buy more than you can carry – If you have too much stuff try to get someone else help you carry your packages out to the car. But let’s face it, if you bought that many gifts you’re probably spending more than you really should be.

2. Shop online with companies you know & trust – Check a company’s background if you are not familiar with them. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true it usually is. Plus, why would you try to do business with a brand new company just a few weeks before Christmas, anyway?

3. Save all your receipts – Print and save all confirmations from your online purchases. Start a file folder to keep all receipts together and to help you verify credit card or bank statements as they come in. But in case you forget or misplace them, your purchases should all be listed on your credit card statements. Also, most retailers give store credit in case you throw away your receipts like I do.

4. Consider alternate options to pay for your merchandise, such as onetime or multiuse disposable credit cards or money orders, at online stores and auction sites – My alternate options are just not to buy anything at all. I’ll just wait to get my Christmas gifts, exchange them all after the holiday for store credit & use that to buy what I really want.

5. Leave the lights on at your house or install a “timer switch” so that your return home can be much safer – It’s always nice to give the illusion that you are home when you really aren’t. It might scare some people off from breaking in. I like leaving my lights on anyway so I don’t stumble over all the new stuff I’ve just bought when I walk into my front door.

6. Deter pickpockets – Carry your purse close to your body or your wallet inside a coat or front trouser pocket. But if you’re broke like me & get pickpocketed, it shouldn’t be that big of a deal.

7. Have your keys in hand when approaching your vehicle – Check the back seat and around the car before getting in. If nothing else, you can use your car keys as a weapon to scratch someone up if they try to attack you in the parking lot. If you have a newer car just use the “Alarm” button on your car remote to signal for attention. But yelling out “Chips & Salsa” for no apparent reason also helps people look in your direction too =)

8. Do not leave packages visible in your car windows – Lock them in the trunk or, if possible, take them directly home. But be sure to put the packages in the trunk before you go to your next shopping destination. I always throw my jacket over anything I leave in my backseat. Or you can just get all of your windows tinted so no one can see anything in your car, including you.

9. Tell a security guard or store employee if you see an unattended bag or package – The same applies if you are using mass transit. Just remember, if it looks suspicious, it probably is. But it is the holiday season, so if you see a package just laying around consider it a free Christmas present to yourself (lol).

10. If you are shopping with children, make a plan in case you get separated – Select a central meeting place and make sure they know how to ask mall personnel or store security employees for help. Or if you’ve decided you’d like to donate your children for the holidays feel free to let them continue to roam around the mall all alone.

Happy holiday shopping everyone!

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Holiday Travel Sucks

With Thanksgiving here there are reportedly 43 million people traveling during this holiday weekend. I, myself, have had the misfortune of having to board a plane this holiday and similar to my last post about flying I thought I’d share more of my observances from my time in the friendly skies

  • The person sitting next to the window should not be able to control the window shade – If there are 3 people sitting on that row, a vote should be required to decide to whether or not the shade will go down or stay up. Why should someone else decide whether or not I get to see the sky & the clouds? If you don’t want to see the scenery, then switch seats with someone who does
  • Bathrooms should have a time limit – No one should be in any public restroom longer than 3 minutes! Unless you have a small child with you or you are over the age 65, what on earth are you doing in there?! I think if you are in there for longer than that the doors should unlock automatically and the lights come on so you get the hint to leave. Remember folks, this is recycled air we’re all breathing & there is no fan or deodorizer in that little closet of a bathroom, so please be mindful of others that need to use it
  • Each row should come with its own trash can – I shouldn’t have to wait until the flight attendant comes by to get rid of my garbage. Maybe there should be a little bag underneath the seat, or in the seat pocket. After all, that’s where all the trash ends up anyway, right?
  • Why is there no sunroof on the plane? – What good is it being 30,000 feet up in the air and all you can see is the wing of the plane? If we can’t look below on the ants, I mean people here on Earth, then we should at least be able to see what’s above us
  • Why does the flight attendant wear gloves? – I’ve seen a few flight attendants with little white gloves on. Why is this? Are you too good to touch the seats? Does touching my luggage offend you? Are you afraid of getting vinyl on your hands? If you’re such a nosophobic, maybe you should consider another line of work

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“There Are No Atheists In The Foxhole”

As a military man, my dad told me a long time ago that there is no such thing as an atheist when you’re on the battlefield. It has been declared that whenever someone is in distress regardless of their religious (dis)beliefs, they call on the name of God. Whether someone is in severe pain or has a family member on their deathbed, they often call out God’s name. Why is it that someone who has no association with religion whatsoever would even utter the name of Jesus or God? Well today is the day that proves JESUS is real. Real & alive!

Today is Resurrection Sunday, otherwise known as Easter, and I am proud to say that as a woman of God I am excited about what this day means for you & me. Resurrection Sunday is the MOST important day to all Christians.  Christians, Protestants, Lutherans, and even Catholics can all agree on the purpose of this day. Resurrection Sunday is the day that Jesus Christ rose from the grave, redeeming the entire human race. You see, the reason that I believe in Jesus Christ instead of any other religion is because Jesus is alive! What good does it do to worship a god who promotes vigilantism? Why believe in a god who is dead?  Why would I bow to a statue? Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism and the Muslim faith are vastly different but I serve the only living God.

So, what does this mean to you? This means because of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and through his resurrection, we have the opportunity to receive the gift of salvation directly from the Lord.  Not from the Pope, not from a priest or a pastor but directly from God himself. Salvation guarantees us eternal life with God himself. This is so much better than getting an invitation to the White House! John 3:16 tells us “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whosoever believe in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.”

Happy Resurrection Sunday! CHRIST HAS RISEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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