Here we are again. Celebrating Labor Day that is always celebrated on the first Monday in September - the transition from summer to fall. As kids, we remember that Labor Day signified our return to school from our summer vacation. As adults, we put away our white slacks and white shoes and prepare the grill for that last barbecue of the season. It is a looked-forward to three-day weekend from our chores or work, planning that last picnic or trek to the beach.
Can you wear white after Labor Day? This old tradition goes back to the late Victorian era, where it was a fashion faux pas to wear any white clothing after the summer officially ended on Labor Day. The tradition isn’t really followed anymore. Emily Post explains the logic behind the fashion trend – white indicated you were still in vacation mode at your summer cottage.
Labor Day is also the unofficial end of Hot Dog season. The National Hot Dog and Sausage Council says that between Memorial Day and Labor Day, Americans will eat 7 billion hot dogs.
Labor Day was originally celebrated by parades, demonstrations and rallies of workers banding together, Today, it is celebrated by family barbecues, major department store sales, and the joy of a three-day week-end.
It was originally celebrated for workers' contributions throughout America and Canada. Examples of accomplishments of the labor union movement include the eight hour work day, 2-day weekends, minimum wage, and decent working conditions. This is a far cry from the 58 hour week of old, although many people still work those hours!
Labor Day is a good day to reflect on the past summer and the advancing fall. Since it's the time in between these two seasons and a break from work, it's beneficial to just kick off your shoes and relax. We work hard all year and this day of celebrating and recognizing those efforts and the mantra of the day is R-E-S-T.
Rest is very important to our wellness and health. If you are working too hard or looking tirelessly for a new one job, and don't get enough rest, you compromise your immune system and open the door to illness and disease. As important as work is to our lives, rest is imperative, too.
God directs us to rest in His Book of Guidance and even He rested. God created the universe in six days and rested on the seventh. Thus, the Sabbath day; the anointed day of rest. Genesis 2:2-3.
It makes perfect sense that our bodies and minds require rest after periods of hard work; we are created in His image. It is for our own good that God gave us His example of resting and commanded us to rest and be refreshed, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” Mark 6:31
We can add: Bring along some hamburgers and hotdogs!
This Labor Day weekend, be kind to yourself. Put work in the backseat and enjoy your family, loved ones and friends. Refresh yourself. When the weekend is over, you will be ready to pick up your work again. Your rest will give you added focus and energy. And with the summer behind us, maybe the traffic will not be so heavy!
Have a wonderful, relaxing, and renewable weekend. Travel safe if you are going out of town.
© Marie Coppola Revised August 2017