Take a Vet out to dinner, go clean the house for a veteran or service personnel and their family you know. Go take a picnic to the families of service personnel stationed elsewhere. Take them with you to the Lake, to the Beach, to the softball game at the State Park or to the movies one time. It couldn’t be that hard to get to know them. They’ve worked hard for us and done without.

Plan a barbecue for family, neighbors and friends and then genuinely invite them to participate and be a part of. – Everyone likes bringing their favorite dishes or some contributions of Iced Tea, Colas or whatever. Bring a volleyball out or get a little baseball game going – or horseshoes or dominoes or something. There are fishing holes that nobody serving in the military can ever find without a little help and good company. Why not – who doesn’t want to show our appreciation to the memory of those who’ve served and thank the so-and-so’s we still have that have worked their last hind end off for us?

(If you can’t or won’t trust the people who’ve trained to save our lives with the sacrifices they’ve made and try to get to know them, then who do you think you can trust? You may want to take a good long look at that while you holiday to honor those who’ve served for all of us.)

Why should they be at home washing dishes and mowing the yard this weekend and miss the party? Unless, of course they really do want to – in which case, if we’ve made it reasonably clear that we really mean to include them in the festivities for the holiday – let’s make it happen for them to holiday with us another time. There are ballgames we go to that could stand an extra ticket or two for a veteran and their spouse to go with a babysitter arranged for the kids. I mean, let’s be practical. Inclusion – really means, “including,” believe it or not – people in the community that are around us.

Written by Cricket Diane C “Sparky” Phillips, 05-24-08, USA