June: Holiday History & Craft

Father's Day Craft - Holiday History & CraftIf Mother’s Day is in May, guess what holiday we have in June? Father’s Day! Do you know when it became an official holiday in the United States? Do you need a gift idea? Here’s your Holiday History & Craft for June.

(This article and project were prepared for children and it’s written accordingly.)

We’re going to learn about how this holiday began and make a pen or pencil holder. Come join the fun!




President Nixon made Father's Day an official holiday.

President Nixon made Father’s Day an official holiday.

Remember how Anna Jarvis started Mother’s Day? (You can read about it here.) Well, another lady – Grace Golden Clayton – wanted to do something special for her dad. Her dad had passed away and she knew a lot of children had also lost their fathers in a mining accident in her town in West Virginia. So on June 5, 1908, Grace and her friends held a special church service to honor their fathers. This was the first time “Father’s Day” was held in the United States, but unfortunately the idea wasn’t very popular and Grace didn’t try to encourage others to accept the holiday.

But in Washington State, another lady – Sonora Smart – also wanted to honor her father. Throughout her life, Sonora encouraged people to set aside a special day for dads and talked to retailers and lawmakers about the holiday. Different presidents offered support for the national holiday, but it wasn’t until 1972 that President Richard Nixon signed the bill which made Father’s Day an official holiday.

Father’s Day is always the third Sunday in June!


I made a lot of these for my dad when I was little. It’s a pen or pencil holder for his desk at home or at work. I hope you like this craft! *Adult supervision is recommended*

What You’ll Need:

Father's Day Craft - Holiday History & Craft15 0z. tin can

Craft Sticks (a.k.a. “popsicle sticks”) – I used 36 and had extras left over

Wood paint, any favorite colors

Foam paint brush

Paper plate

Wax paper

Glue (I used hot glue, but normal glue will work too)

Table knives

Rubber bands

Father's Day Craft - Holiday History & CraftDirections:

Begin by emptying and washing out the tin can. (I used peaches…yummy!) Dry the can and set aside. **Be careful the raw edges of the can may be sharp**

Next, layout the wax paper, pour some paint onto the paper plate and start painting those craft sticks. I used three different shades of blue, but you can use any colors you like. Try to think of you dad’s favorite color combinations.

Father's Day Craft - Holiday History & CraftWhen all the craft sticks are painted, left them dry really well. (I left mine overnight.)





Father's Day Craft - Holiday History & CraftDecide on your type of glue and prepare to assemble your pencil / pen holder. Lay out the wax paper. Use two table knives to help hold your can in place to reduce its rolling tendency. (See photo) Now begin gluing the painted craft sticks onto the can. Be careful not to extend the stick over the bottom edge because then it won’t stand evenly; cheat any extra to the top.

Make a pattern if you have multiple colors. **If you’re using a glue gun, be VERY careful – I actually burned myself during this project, and it HURTS**

Father's Day Craft - Holiday History & CraftContinue gluing the craft sticks around the can until they meet or over lap. Next, take the rubber bands and place them around the can and sticks; this is especially important if you are using regular glue. Let it dry well, then remove rubber bands.





Father's Day Craft - Holiday History & CraftAdd some sharpened pencils or Dad’s favorite pens. Your Father’s Day gift is ready!



January 2015: Holiday History & Craft

Happy New Year! And welcome to our first Holiday History & Craft. (This article and craft is designed for younger children and is written accordingly). Did you or your mom get a new calendar for the new year? I did…I’m lucky; one of my brothers always gives me a new calendar book for Christmas. But I realized I need a wall-hanging calendar for my office cubical where I volunteer. So I thought it would be fun to make a calendar – then I started wondering where calendars came from. What’s their history?


Did you know most societies and civilizations throughout history (even way back in Abraham’s time) had some form of calendar? Calendars count days and group them into periods, usually called months. A Lunar calendar groups days based on the lunar phases (this refers to the time between full moon); there are about 12 lunar phases in a year. There is also the Solar calendar which groups days based on seasons; the ancient Persians (the civilization where Queen Esther lived) developed this time of calendar. The Julian Calendar was introduced by Julius Caesar in 46 BC (about 46 years before Jesus was born). It divided years into 365 and a 1/4 days. How do you have 1/4 day? That’s why we have a leap year every 4 years. In that fourth year there is an extra day in the month of February. Pretty cool, huh?

Julius Caesar introduced the Julian Calendar with 365.25 days

Julius Caesar introduced the Julian Calendar with 365.25 days

The most used calendar today is the Gregorian Calendar which was introduced in 1582 by Pope Gregory XIII. It is very, very similar to the Julian Calendar, but has a few technical refinements. Most countries and cultures have adopted this calendar style, but a few continue to use other calendar forms unique to their religion or society.


Let’s make a calendar! (Suggestion: first, ask your mom or dad if it’s okay – this might get a little messy and you might need their help)

What You’ll Need:

Calendar Pages (can be made on a personal clip art program or searched for on-line)

Extra Paper


Something sticky (glue stick, rubber cement, double sided tape)

Pens, pencils, markers, or other drawing/writing devices

Old magazines or other art materials (stamps, drawing materials, stickers, etc. etc. etc.)

Stapler Supplies for January 2014 Holiday Craft Organize your calendar pages; stack them in order, so January is on the top. Lay a blank sheet of paper over the January calendar page (trim to size if necessary). Next you’ll need to decide how you’re going to decorate your calendar. If you are a wonderful artist you might enjoy drawing pictures. Stamping is fun or stickers are super easy. However, I decided it was time to use some magazine that had been around since 2009. I cut some pretty pictures that I like out of the magazines and got to work! January Craft 2014 Fold back the blank page covering January and decorate the part now above the January calendar page. Try to choose something wintery if you can. (If the page needs to dry, set it aside).

Now pick up the January page and lay it above February (make sure it is laying correctly). Decorate February’s page. Continue turning and decorating the pages. Let them dry if you’re using glue.

Remember you don’t have to use magazines. Be creative. Personalize your calendar with things you like and most of all, have fun! If you want, you can decorate around the magazine pictures with handwritten quotes or fun designs.

Now carefully gather your calendar pages. Check one last time to make sure they are in the correct order! Make sure they are laying together neatly and, with mom or dad’s help, staple the top of the calendar pages together.

Now you’ve got a personal calendar! If want to leave a comment below, I’ll enjoy reading about your project.

Ooh, Fireworks…?

Happy 4th of July!

What are you celebrating today?  You’d really make my day if you’d leave a comment – one or two word answer to the question would be perfect!

There’s a historical movie that I occasionally like to watch and in one scene a British  supply ship is blown up by the Patriot guy.  On shore a clueless lady standing next to the British officer says “Ooh, Fireworks!” clapping her hands and imaging that this serious event is actually a display for her amusement.  (Can you name the movie?  Leave a comment…)

You know, there are a lot of clueless people today – especially in the younger generations – who are going to say “ooh, fireworks” and not give a single thought about what we’re actually commemorating.  They’re going to celebrate 4th of July with BBQs, surfing, and fireworks!  There’s nothing wrong with that, of course – I love a good hamburger and pretty fireworks…  But there’s a problem if you think that 4th of July is nothing more.

On July 4, 1776, the Continental Congress voted that the American Colonies should be free and independent states!  America was born – Huzzah!  And it’s been 238 years of defending and advancing that freedom through sacrifice and legislation. 

4th of July Gazette665 2014

Take a minute or two and remind your kids and/or friends why we celebrate 4th of July – the day of independence.

So, Happy 4th!  I hope you’ll enjoy your BBQ and the fireworks and remember why we’re celebrating.  Let’s defend our legacy of God-honoring freedom.  Don’t be naïve and think that today is only about fireworks, okay?

God Bless America!

Your historian,

Miss Sarah