Just a few more weeks to go for July 4th! Have you decided how you’re going to celebrate this year? What will you be doing differently this time around? Are you thinking of cutting back on or expanding your celebrations? Share your thoughts!
· Fireworks constitute the grand finale to July 4th celebrations. But do you know that unlike many of the other traditions, this is not a recent addition? Fireworks have been a part of July the 4th celebrations since 1777, the first anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence.
The ringing of bells, firing of 13 guns and a grand display of fireworks marked that momentous occasion.
· Will you be having a fireworks display in your own backyard? Even then, the experience of a public fireworks display at a local park or a famous one such as the Macy’s fireworks display, which is known to be the largest and grandest, or the celebrations in The National Mall, Washington, DC is definitely worth your while. If you’ve always wanted to experience one of those, this year may be a good time to find the best travel and hotel deals.
· Patriotic music and songs often accompany fireworks displays. Here’s a list of patriotic songs you could brush up on, in time for July 4th. How about learning some of them with your kids and making this July 4th a true family celebration?
· Speaking of patriotism, will you be proudly displaying the American flag outside your home, in your yard or on your vehicle? Then here are some pointers you should bear in mind regarding flag do’s and don’t’s.
Over time, the warm weather and other factors, such as schools closing for the summer led to the adoption of various other July 4th traditions -picnics, block parties, baseball games and barbecues being some of them. One aspect clearly stands out in all of this.
July 4th is more of a gathering with friends and family than a private celebration. It is one occasion that gives people the chance to come together and celebrate with their neighbors, friends and families.
So, write in and tell us – which is your favorite 4th tradition? Have you created a July 4th family tradition?
Hi recently we were listed as a Cool Website of the Day by a very large website makeuseof.com Here is what they wrote about us
GotFreeCards - Provides a quick and hassle-free way to send animated ecards to a loved one, coworker and friend. The site has ecards for Birthdays, Mother’s Day, Get Well Soon, Holiday, Friendship etc. You can customize the ecards by adding an image or by uploading music to give it a personal touch. Read more: GotFreeCards: Free Ecards, Event Reminders and Printable Cards
There are many other blogs that have reviewed us but one desrves special mention The Momma in Flip Flops2. Please visit her site and read the free ecards review.
From baseball games to barbecues, block parties to parades, fireworks to picnics – do you ever wonder how on earth we came up with these countless ways to celebrate the Fourth?
And why not?!
Isn’t it just the best time of the year to celebrate? With allergy season behind you and winter months far from your thoughts, July 4th is the perfect date, falling smack in the middle of the calendar year.
Who can resist the beautiful outdoors with clear summer skies and warm, lazy, long afternoons that stretch well into the evening?!
If you think about it, July 4th is a celebration of not just the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, but of all things American.
Families plan the entire July 4th weekend, at times, the whole week around their favorite Fourth tradition. It is one of the busiest times of the year to travel, be it by road or air. Airline tickets for this weekend get booked months ahead. Tourists throng amusement parks, beaches and other attractions. This is the ideal family vacation time for most people because it coincides with the kids’ summer vacation and the weather is great in almost every part of the country, with a very few exceptions.
If there’s one holiday in the year that everyone in the family loves and looks forward to the most, I’m guessing it would be July 4th in most cases. And well, who wouldn’t like a low stress, high fun holiday anyway?
In coming posts, we’ll explore some of the favorite July 4th traditions, myths surrounding the 4th of July celebrations and other interesting aspects of this great American holiday. If you have a favorite Fourth tradition in your family or a funny or interesting memory of a particular July 4th, do write in and share it with us.
Do you tweet? Do you like to party?
How do you like the idea of a Twitter Party?
Never heard of it?
Well, you have now. And once you find out more, you probably won’t be able to stop talking about it! Here’s why.
Introducing the Twitter Party Invite.
It’s this brand new feature we’ve added on got-free-ecards! With this you will be able to send out a party invitation to your friends and family, using Twitter.
All you need is a twitter account and twitter friends/followers you’d like to invite to a party.
Ok, got those? Great! Your Twitter Party has just begun.
Take a look at our Twitter Party Invitation. It’s a simple one-page form. No complicated questions to answer. No uncomfortable information to fill in. No cards to buy or envelopes to lick. Here’s what you do instead.
-Sign in on our home page with your twitter account. (Relax! Your information is not stored.)
- Type in the name of your Event. Say, ‘Mike’s Graduation Party’ or ‘Amy’s Surprise Baby Shower’
- Provide the venue, date and time.
-Create a brief personal note.
-From your list of Twitter followers, select the Tweeple you want to invite to your upcoming event or party.
- Send Invite.
And in seconds, your friends and followers would have received your personalized Twitter party invitation as a direct message.
With the Twitter Party invitation, you can strike one thing off your party planning list almost instantly.
So, what are you waiting for? Grab your shopping list and head out to get party supplies.
Hope your Twitter Party is a blast.
(And, don’t worry. You don’t have to limit your conversations to 140 characters!)
What would you like to do now?
Send a Twitter Party Invite?
Share this cool feature with your friends?
There are many fun Father’s Day activities that go beyond presenting Dad with a card and/or gift in the morning, but the real secret to knowing what to do with Dad is about knowing all about what your dad likes to do! Father’s Day is a special day to commemorate all the great things he does for the family throughout the year, so Father’s Day presents an opportunity to show him appreciation and to show him a good time.
Hobbies: Getting Out
A father’s personal hobbies are a great place to start when thinking about what types of Father’s Day activities dad might enjoy. His interests will determine what type of outing to plan:
- Fishing: Organize a fishing trip, or a trip to the aquarium.
- Cars: Take dad to a car show, or present him with tickets to an upcoming car show or parade event.
- Hiking or biking: Organize a Father’s Day hike or ride through an enjoyable trail within driving distance, or if you live by the beach, rent bicycles for the whole family and ride the bike path along the shore.
- Movies: Agree on a movie the whole family can enjoy and take dad out.
- Music: Take dad to a concert or present him with tickets to an upcoming show that you know he’d enjoy.
Relaxation: Staying at Home
For some dads, staying at home and relaxing is the best Father’s Day present there is! Here are some ideas to help dad celebrate his special day at home:
- BBQ: Organize a cookout at home, and be sure to make dad’s favorite foods. You can make the home look special by making and hanging personalized streamers, posters and blowing up balloons. Alternatively, cooking his favorite meal, complete with a special sweet, is a great idea.
- Movie night: Rent one or two movies that are your dad’s favorites and make an enjoyable family movie night out of it right in the living room, complete with freshly made popcorn and other snacks.
- Chore-free day: Many dads spend the weekends doing work around the house. This Father’s Day, divide up Dad’s usual chores and inform him that today is his day off. Start the day fixing dad’s favorite breakfast and fetching his paper. On Father’s Day, he is king for a day!
Gift Ideas for Dad
Here are gift recommendations from top sites:
It’s pretty easy to figure out what to get people on most holidays. On birthdays and Christmas, either someone makes a wish list, or you can always just give them money. When there’s a wedding, or when someone you know is having a baby, the lucky bride/husband/mom/pop to be usually takes a wish list a department store. How easy is that? And speaking of easy…on Mother’s Day, all you have to do is give her a hug and some flowers, and Mom is happy. But Father’s Day? That one’s not so easy.
Think about it. When you ask Dad, “What do you want for Father’s Day,” he’ll give one of two responses: “I don’t care,” or, much more likely, “Nothing.” Now, you and I both know that Daddoes care what you get him, to some degree, and he certainly doesn’t want you to get him nothing. But dads just don’t have it in them to tell you what they want for Father’s Day. And so, you kind of have to guess.
But it doesn’t really have to just be a guess. You just need to pay attention. Is Dad a football fan? If so, what’s his favorite team? My dad likes the Pittsburgh Steelers. Does you dad have any hobbies? My dad loves to work out on the grill. Just by paying attention to things like these, you’ll never run out of ideas for things to get for Dad for Father’s Day. But do not forget you can always send him fathers day ecards.
Father’s Day: Two Points of Origin.
Father’s Day originated in the town of Spokane, Washington, in 1909, though it was actually celebrated for the first time a year earlier. This perhaps makes Father’s Day the only major American holiday to have two completely different origins, coming from opposite ends of the country.
The true beginning of Father’s Day can be attributed to Doctor Robert Webb, a minister at the Central United Methodist Church in Fairmont, West Virginia. On July 5th, 1908, Dr. Webb delivered a sermon based upon the idea of the importance of fathers. If mothers were important enough to have their own holiday, Webb believed, then surely we could afford fathers that same sort of appreciation.
Though Webb may have had the idea first, it wasn’t until a year later in Spokane that Sonora Smart Dodd actually put a name to it. Ms. Smart, while listening to a Mother’s Day sermon delivered at her church, began to reflect on how in her life, her father had been a much more influential figure than had her mother. She believed a “Father’s Day” was in order, to honor our fathers just as we already did our mothers on Mother’s Day.
Most other holidays we celebrate have a single point of origin or influence. But Father’s Day is unique, in that it took two people, a thousand miles and a year apart, to think of the idea independently of one another.
A Fun Project for Kids
If you have young kids, here’s a delightful Mother’s Day project idea. Check out our printable cards section along with your kids. If they’re old enough, let them browse the section by themselves, pick out a template, type in the message and choose the images by themselves. Help them print the card out. Encourage them to add a personal touch with a photograph or by creating a hand-made drawing on the printed card. Remind them to include their names or initials along with a short, hand-written note. And presto! At no cost, your kids would have created a personalized, yet professional looking greeting card that Mom is sure to love and cherish.
When was the last time you were rewarded for being forgetful? You could be well on your way to wining an iPod Nano for that very reason. Yep! Go ahead and register for an event or birthday reminder feature on Got-free-ecards.com, before the end of May 2009. Set up a reminder for special occasions that are coming up. And then forget about it. Not only will we make sure that you remember to send the person a birthday wish or make it to an event on time, but you will also have the chance of winning an iPod Nano! Just for registering. Now, what are you waiting for?
Register here and enter yourself in the May Mania iPod Nano Draw.
This Sunday, on May 10th, people in most parts of the world will try to say “Thank you” to our mothers for all the things they do, by setting aside an entire day to honor them. Personally, I don’t think a single day every year is enough of a thank you, but you work with what you have, I guess.
As far as most of us are concerned, the “history of mother’s day” is nothing more than a collected memory of all the years we forgot to buy Mom flowers. But Mother’s Day has an actual history behind it, too. The modern incarnation of the holiday, as most of us know it, was created by a woman from the U.S. state of West Virginia, named Anna Jarvis. Oddly enough, one of the co-founders of Father’s Day, regularly known as the calendar “compliment” to Mother’s Day, was from Fairmont, West Viriginia: a town fewer than twenty miles away from Grafton.
Ms. Jarvis’s own mother died in 1905, and two years later, on May 12th, Anna held a public memorial, to honor her mother’s memory. From that small memorial service, Jarvis began holding annual days of honor for all mothers, and she embarked on a tireless campaign to have Mother’s Day recognized as a national holiday. In 1914, she succeeded in her goal: Mother’s Day became a nationally recognized holiday.
But if we think that by buying chocolates and flowers we’re honoring the founder of Mother’s Day, then we are dead wrong. Anna Jarvis, as a matter of fact, went from being the founder of Mother’s Day, to its most vocal public opponent. See, Jarvis became disgusted at what she perceived to be a materialistic, and over-commercialized, attitude behind the celebration of Mother’s Day. Quite simply, Anna Jarvis felt that a day she had created in memory of her dead mother had been turned into yet another excuse for shop owners to drag even more money out of consumers.
Jarvis became so disillusioned with the holiday she founded, in fact, that she formed the Mother’s Day International Association, an organization dedicated to fighting the commercializing of Mother’s Day. Jarvis and her sister, Ellsinore, became so wrapped up in their campaign against Mother’s Day that they were both died penniless, having squandered every penny of a shared inheritance in support of their cause.
It’s a little ironic, then, that after all of Jarvis’s concerns and misgivings, that Mother’s Day isn’t nearly as commercialized as some other similar holidays. While there are, of course, the expected cropping up of roadside flower shops every April, and signs plastered to every store front window reading, “Don’t forget Mother’s Day!”, the holiday has, at its core, become a day of honor—much the way Jarvis originally intended it to be.
Think about it: yes, you’ll probably buy your mother a gift this Mother’s Day; if nothing else, you’ll buy her some flowers that curiously seem more expensive this time of year than any other. But above all else, you’ll spend Mother’s Day going out of your way to make sure that Mom knows how much you care about her. And you, I, and everyone else knows that sure, Mom may like a shimmery diamond necklace; but nothing makes her happier than getting a big hug and kiss from her son or daughter, and a warm, heartfelt “Thank you.”