Happy Labor Day!

Can you believe that it is actually Labor Day? Heaven knows that I can’t!  I have to admit (this seems to be the week of admissions – but what the hay!), that I didn’t know the what’s or why’s of Labor Day. So, I went to for some answers to find some super answers and – actually – some super inspiring information. The Shining Moment is that in addition to learning about it myself, I now have the opportunity to teach my students about this holiday.

Wishing you a very Happy, Restful and Rejuvenating Labor Day!


Labor Day, an annual celebration of workers and their achievements, originated during one of American labor history’s most dismal chapters. In the late 1800s, at the height of the Industrial Revolution in the United States, the average American worked 12-hour days and seven-day weeks in order to eke out a basic living. Despite restrictions in some states, children as young as 5 or 6 toiled in mills, factories and mines across the country, earning a fraction of their adult counterparts’ wages. People of all ages, particularly the very poor and recent immigrants, often faced extremely unsafe working conditions, with insufficient access to fresh air, sanitary facilities and breaks.

As manufacturing increasingly supplanted agriculture as the wellspring of American employment, labor unions, which had first appeared in the late 18th century, grew more prominent and vocal. They began organizing strikes and rallies to protest poor conditions and compel employers to renegotiate hours and pay. Many of these events turned violent during this period, including the infamous Haymarket Riot of 1886, in which several Chicago policemen and workers were killed. Others gave rise to longstanding traditions: On September 5, 1882, 10,000 workers took unpaid time off to march from City Hall to Union Square in New York City, holding the first Labor Day parade in U.S. history. The idea of a “workingmen’s holiday,” celebrated on the first Monday in September, caught on in other industrial centers across the country, and many states passed legislation recognizing it.

Congress would not legalize the holiday until 12 years later, when a watershed moment in American labor history brought workers’ rights squarely into the public’s view. On May 11, 1894, employees of the Pullman Palace Car Company in Chicago went on strike to protest wage cuts and the firing of union representatives. On June 26, the American Railroad Union, led by Eugene V. Debs, called for a boycott of all Pullman railway cars, crippling railroad traffic nationwide. To break the strike, the federal government dispatched troops to Chicago, unleashing a wave of riots that resulted in the deaths of more than a dozen workers. In the wake of this massive unrest and in an attempt to repair ties with American workers, Congress passed an act making Labor Day a legal holiday in the District of Columbia and the territories.

More than a century later, the true founder of Labor Day has yet to be identified. Many credit Peter J. McGuire, cofounder of the American Federation of Labor, while others have suggested that Matthew Maguire, a secretary of the Central Labor Union, first proposed the holiday.

Labor Day is still celebrated in cities and towns across the United States with parades, picnics, barbecues, fireworks displays and other public gatherings. For many Americans, particularly children and young adults, it represents the end of the summer and the start of the back-to-school season.


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mm08282017Strength doesn’t come from taking the easy path. ~ Unknown

Isn’t that the truth?!?!?! (~Randi Rentz)

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america the beautiful


Geez Louise! Remember, we are America the Beautiful and Home of the Brave!! I read this quote and wanted to share it with all of you.

Peace, love and diamonds!


No matter what, we always have the power to choose hope over despair, engagement over apathy, kindness over indifference, love over hate.

~ Cory Booker

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In honor of the week that celebrates the independence and freedom of this great nation, I thought I’d post one of my favorite inspirational quotes that gives me perspective and gratitude for the freedom and liberty that we are so blessed to have.

Hope you have a beautiful, fun-filled and inspiring 4th of July (Shining Moment)!


“Those who expect to reap the blessing of freedom, must like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it.”

~Thomas Paine

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Memorial Day


Memorial Day is a beautiful day to reflect on the strong, courageous, and dedicated men and women who have put themselves in harm’s way in order to serve this amazing country. I found this Memorial Day infographic on the The Huffington Post and had to share it with you because it is not only informative, but also powerful…well, at least I think so.

Please, take a break from barbecuing at 3:00 p.m. for a national moment of remembrance and to reflect on the real reasons behind the holiday and to remember those who have served so bravely.

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What are you doing to celebrate? I happen to love guacamole. Just sayin’…

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