This week on the blog, our monthly fun fact inspiration is back for the month of November! Thank you to our wonderful Volunteer-Coordinator Lois who researched November fun facts and wrote this lovely blogpost!
It's November... and that means it's winter season! Thank you Susan for making these lovely winter themed cards for the seniors! We love how you made snowflakes out of buttons to celebrate World Button Day!
Happy November everyone!
Before I start, it is worth mentioning that there are a few upcoming holidays that are celebrated in the United States but not around the world. In November, the United States celebrates two federal holidays, chief among them, Thanksgiving. Please be mindful of the fact this is a U. S. holiday. If you’re writing internationally, please keep this in mind so you don't send letters and cards for a holiday that is not celebrated in that country!
However, if you wish to mail to Canada, we have great news for you. Although overshadowed by Thanksgiving in the U.S. this year, World Cake Day, which always occurs on the twenty-sixth of the month, offers a festive option for you. This iconic holiday also is observed in Canada on Nov 26.
When you consider the Mission of Letters Against Isolation – to spread JOY and combat Senior isolation and loneliness in a spirit of inclusion – a significant day in November comes early, World Kindness Day on the thirteenth! Card designers, this is your chance to shine! Please help us spread love, joy and kindness to the aging members of our population by using this theme if you’re mailing early in the month.
November is World Caregiver Appreciation Month. Keep in mind that many Seniors in independent living facilities or who receive Meals on Wheels may have at least a part-time caregiver. The statistics support this, especially in the US: 29% of the U.S. population – some 65 million Americans – engage in some form of care giving. Also, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, over 40 million Americans age 15 or older provide unpaid care to the elderly alone. Our seniors may appreciate a reminder about Caregiver Appreciation month, particularly those who truly have a caring helper by their side.
Flower of the Month
The flower of November is the Chrysanthemum, often referred to simply as a Mum. Available in a wide range of shapes and sizes, some of which are large and bold, the flower is said to represent loyalty and honesty. It is used to express happiness, love, longevity and joy!
There are two U. S. cities where the flower is a matter of pride (Google it for more facts about this flower!):
The chrysanthemum is the official flower of Salinas, California.
The one U. S. city where you would want to avoid use of the flower is New Orleans, as it has an association with death and funerals there.
Some fun/unique days celebrated in the U.S. during November….
1st World Author’s Day (Since 1949, this date recognizes and celebrates our many great American book authors. It’s a greattopic for your letters, as you can ask the recipient if they like to read, what genre, do they have a favorite book, etc. Also talk about a book you particularly like and why. Just make sure it’s not a topic that might be depressing, offensive or frightening to an older person)
3rd Sandwich Day (Sandwiches are a daily luncheon staple for millions of Americans. This is another great topic for your letters. Ask if the recipient has a favorite sandwich. Talk about your favorite sandwich, culinary skills, etc.)
6th Saxophone Day (The Saxophone is a classical woodwind instrument, essential in jazz bands, symphonic bands, marching bands and more. Another great topic for your letters…ask if the recipient likes jazz, if they have a favorite song, Sax player – well-known names like John Coltrane, Stan Getz, James Moody and Charlie "The Bird" Parker, to name a few)
10th Forget-Me-Not Day (This day is intended to remember the living. Place a seed packet on the face of your cards, or a picture of these flowers. How apropos is this day?)
11th World Origami Day (A form of art first practiced in ancient Japan by those clever enough to make intricate objects out of squares of paper. We’ve seen some nice origami designs that you’ve made. Why not make more and send them to our Seniors in commemoration of this day? We’re sure they’d love to have one of your designs to dress up their bulletin board!)
12th Chicken Soup for the Soul Day (Originally created as ".... a celebration of who you are, where you've been, where you're going, and who you will be thankful to when you get there" by the publishers of the book series by the same name, it’s also a day to celebrate the healing value of chicken soup for many things that ail us. How perfect a day is this to focus on? If you love this series of positive, uplifting books, you can talk about your favorite, ask if they’ve ever read any books in the series, and also ask about their culinary skills. Dollar Tree often sells mini Chicken Soup paperbacks for $1 each. For those of you who like to do more, you could include a few, asking the staff to make available to any of their residents who might enjoy them. Sometimes, they can use them as prizes or rewards, although many recreational activities have been curtailed. In these times of Covid, please make sure any little thing like this you might send is new, not used.)
13th World Kindness Day (A day set aside to spread some joy, love and kindness to others!)
16th Button Day (Now we know you could have fun with this one! All you card designers, we can hear those wheels turning….)
16th Have a Party with Your Bear Day (We know your creative design minds are working overtime on this card design, so have fun with it! Like children, many older adults have a special stuffed animal…sort of like a security blanket. Teddy bears may be more popular with children, but people of all ages are fascinated by Panda Bears. Get your party hats on so you’ll be ready to celebrate. Invite your friends for Tea & Teddies!)
26th Thanksgiving & Cake Day (Although it competes with Thanksgiving this year in the U. S., it’s perfect for writing to those in Canada where Thanksgiving Day has long passed! )
27th You’re Welcome Day (A day that encourages us to say "You're welcome." It helps to put manners back into society. This very special day occurs on the day after Thanksgiving – a day for giving thanks. It makes sense that You're Welcome Day immediately follows “thank you” day. This interesting tidbit could be something you note in your thanksgiving message.)
If you want to find more topics to write about, say the flower of the month as an example, you can always Google the name (in this case "chrysanthemum") and you just may find some useful, fun facts about marigolds that you can incorporate into your writing. It's always fun to learn new things. Best of luck!
Are you in need of more inspiration? Click here to view the full collection of letter writing and decoration inspiration blog posts!