Category Archives: History

Sometimes Even a President Has Doubts

Lincoln's Gettysburg AddressToday is the 151st anniversary of of  President Lincoln’s renowned  two minute Gettysburg speech dedicating the cemetery there. After the speech President Lincoln told a friend,  “That speech won’t scour. It is a flat failure.”

Due to Lincoln’s  busy schedule, no one thought he could attend the ceremony.  Therefore, Mr. Edward Everett, a famous orator from Massachusetts was the main presenter. Mr. Everett had studied the war, the military records  and presented an accurate picture for the crowd.  He spoke for two hours and it was reported that many were in tears when he stepped away from the podium. Then Mr. Lincoln presented his Gettysburg Address.

The next day Mr. Everett wrote to Lincoln and  praised the “eloquent simplicity & appropriateness” of his remarks. “I should be glad, if I could flatter myself that I came as near to the central idea of the occasion, in two hours, as you did in two minutes.”

Both were valuable speeches but Mr. Lincoln’s is the one most of us remember today.  Still at that time the President doubted whether or not his speech was effective. Mr. Lincoln’s speech  was short,  well thought out and it came from his heart.  It was definitely not a flat failure.

Many times I’ve heard parents question whether they are doing enough for their children, and like Lincoln might wonder if their actions might be a flat failure. Are they spending enough, planning enough, finding enough opportunities?

Learning  doesn’t have to involve complex and expensive lessons.  Simple well thought out opportunities that are matched to a child’s interests  prove successful time and time again.

Of course – the lessons learned may not result in renowned speeches, but for your own family history they will become priceless memories  and stepping stones on your unique families path.







Land Use of North America

Interesting site to explore from USGS.

They share:

Earth is a dynamic planet. As we come to appreciate its history and the long-term trends that have shaped the present, we realize that continuous change characterizes the planet, from the movement of continents to changes in the chemical composition of the atmosphere. Perhaps nowhere is change more obvious that on the planet’s surface, where human land use shapes landscapes, alters ecosystems, and influences the diversity of life they support.

Land Use of North America

Lakota Winter Counts

What is a Lakota Winter Count?  The website describes them as:

Winter counts are histories or calendars in which events are recorded by pictures, with one picture for each year.

The Lakota call them waniyetu wowapi.  Waniyetu is the word for year, which is measured from first snowfall to first snowfall. It is often translated as “a winter.” Wowapi means anything that is marked on a flat surface and can be read or counted, such as a book, a letter, or a drawing.

Lakota Winter Counts