Memorial Day has significant meaning for so many of us. Because of its connection to the armed forces, patriotism is the uniting factor on Memorial Day, when we gather to celebrate the unofficial beginning of summer. Here are a few ideas for making the most of Memorial Day this year.
Create a family tradition
Whether you’ve lost someone in your family to war, or any other cause, Memorial Day is a perfect opportunity to honor what that individual meant to your family. Some do this by decorating grave sites. Others use this as an opportunity to gather the family. If you’re planning the latter, a family project can be meaningful. Consider working together on a floral arrangement of favorite flowers, or pack a picnic and enjoy lunch at your loved one’s resting site. Or, go to their favorite restaurant in their memory. There are many options, but the purpose is focused on togetherness.
Kick off your summer
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Speaking of togetherness, many people recognize Memorial Day by spending time together outdoors if the weather is nice. Memorial Day also happens to be my birthday weekend, so you’ll find me soaking up rays by the pool. Summer gatherings can be a challenge for the health conscious, so I always look for fun ways to eat healthy during the warmer months. When it comes to grilling, you don’t want to mess too much with a good thing. I’ve been known to throw on some chili lime chicken burgers ready-made from a market or foil-wrapped veggie kabobs and pineapple chunks. These alternatives are much healthier options, with a nod at the traditional barbecue fare.
Patriotic party pleasers
If the patriotic spirit of the weekend captivates you, I’ve kept my eye on a few festive dessert ideas that are sure to please. “Jell-O Firecrackers” are inexpensive and easy to assemble. To start, make a batch of berry, cherry and non-flavored gelatin (with a splash of milk added to the cooking process for white coloring). Add them to small plastic cups in layers and allow each layer to cool completely before adding the next. Save the red mix for last and add a cherry to the top. These are adorable, delicious and much healthier than other carb-loaded treats like cake and cookies.
Make the most of this Memorial Day by spending it with your loved ones and enjoying the simple pleasure of togetherness. Happy Memorial Day!
Kat’s Money Corner is posted on Dollars & Sense every Tuesday. Kat Hnatyshyn, when not blogging or caring for her little ones, is a manager with CommunityAmerica Credit Union. For more financial chatter, visit http://communityamerica.com.