With the Labor Day holiday upon us, I am reminded of childhood memories regarding one of my favorite holidays. Back then, Labor Day weekend served as the last big hurrah of Summer break. Mixed emotions ruled the day, not wanting the Summer vacation to end just yet while simultaneously anticipating the new school year, making new friends, and learning from new teachers. Going school supply shopping for me was met with anticipation and my office laughs at me around this time as I stock up on gel pens, highlighters, binders and so much more to last us the year ahead. It remains a very sweet memory for me.

Growing up in Vancouver Canada, memories of the Jerry Lewis Telethon for Muscular Dystrophy airing for hours that day was a very fond memory. We were given $50 to call in and make a donation backed with a challenge to other friends and family to match our donation for research. My Mom would prepare a feast for us that evening and it symbolized a healthy kick off to a new school year.

In America, Labor Day is a public, federal holiday celebrated on the first Monday in September. Labor Day honors the American labor movement and the vast contributions workers make day in and day out to the prosperity and well-being of the nation. Unofficially, it marks the end of summer across Canada and some US states.

Starting in the late 19th century, as trade unions and labor movements blossomed, workers proposed setting aside a day to celebrate hard work and the working class. In 1887, Oregon became the first state to recognize “Labor Day” as an official public holiday. The US government made Labor Day an official federal holiday in 1894. Perhaps, being from a working-class family and having deep working-class roots, explains why I am so fond of Labor Day. In my mind, it celebrates ordinary people doing our best to provide for our families and perform our work with excellence.

Happy Labor Day Friends! This holiday is met with great anticipation to RENEW my capacity to keep “chipping away” in one of the hardest years ever. (John always laughs at some of my Canadian terms.)

Onwards and upwards!

Love R