Dear Kid,

My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw George Washington quote DearKidLoveMom.comHappy Washington’s Birthday.

Once upon a time when I was a child, we had school holidays for both Washington and Lincoln’s birthdays. Then the birthdays were smooshed together and we had Presidents’ Day off. Now kids just take off every day for cold weather.

Today is not officially Presidents’ Day because the officially renaming never happened (federally speaking, that is. Many states choose to call it Presidents’ Day).

I do not have any earrings commemorating president’s day. You do not need to rectify that particular oversight.

The United States has been celebrating Washington’s birthday pretty much as long as the United States has been around. GW himself lost interest after he died, but the country kept celebrating and in 1885 George’s birthday became a federal holiday.

On February 22nd of almost every year since 1888, Washington’s Farewell Address has been read in the US Senate. This is partly because it’s nice for GW’s ghost to hear his words and partly because what he had to say Back Then is a good reminder in the Here and Now. The MomNotes version of the speech: be careful of political factionalism, watch out for geographical sectionalism, keep other countries out of our internal affairs, national unity is critical, and never tell a lie.

GW-ConstitutionIn 1971, lawmakers wearing bell bottom leisure suits created the Uniform Monday Holiday Act which moved holidays like Columbus Day, Memorial Day, and Veterans Day to a Monday so that department stores could spend lots of money advertising big sales and so that workers would have more three day weekends. (This only works if you have national holidays off from work.)

These days we celebrate G’s birthday with big sales and cherry pie. Which, while not reverent, may not be the worst birthday celebration I can think of.

Happy three day weekend.

Love, Mom