15 Ways to Show Your Patriotism

Summer is filled with opportunities for you and your children to show your spirit.Summer is filled with opportunities for you and your children to show your spirit. From Memorial Day through Labor Day, patriotism is often the unofficial sponsor of the season. Get your children and your entire family in on the action this, and every, year with these 15 fun-filled ways to be patriotic.

1. Fly the flag. Do you fly a flag outside of your home on a regular basis? Do. It's an opportunity to teach your children flag etiquette and to show your spirit to the neighborhood!

2. Wear your heart on your sleeve. Jeans with flag patches on the knees or inexpensive t-shirts are a fun way to dress up your attire in a patriotic way.

3. Get baking. Make flag-shaped cakes or cupcakes topped with raspberries, strawberries, and blueberries as Old Glory.

4. Host a neighborhood get-together. Invite the neighbors over for a Memorial Day BBQ, 4 th of July picnic, or run through the sprinkler on Labor Day. These patriotic holidays are an opportunity to join together as a community.

5. Send a care package. There's nothing that shows your appreciation for your country than putting together a care package for those who serve in the armed services. Contact a local military base or USO to determine what help you can provide, and involve the whole family in the process.

6. Experience the nation. Take advantage of summer break and take the kids to experience our nation's history. Visit Washington, D.C. and take in the monuments. Go camping at a National Park. Visit the Appalachian Trail or a local historic site.

7. Decorate! Pull out that red tablecloth, blue streamers, and red, white, and blue glittery stars that decorate the table and walls. String red, white, and blue holiday lights outside for a party or a night outside with your friends and family.

8. Read non-fiction with the kids. Children aren't as likely to read non-fiction. Bring home a few patriotic books that tie in with the summer holidays-read about the history of the flag, Betty Ross, and the Declaration of Independence. Make real history the stuff bedtime stories are made of.

9. Pitch in with a local food bank, homeless shelter, or other volunteer organization. The spirit of community is no fresher in your mind than when you and your family help others. Find a local organization that matters to you and pitch in.

10. Turn on a good flick. Watch "Independence Day," "The Miracle," or "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington" with the whole family. These patriotic feel-good films are good entertainment and will stir your patriotic heartstrings.

11. Play a trivia game. Select a trivia game with a U.S. History category. Test your knowledge of our history and see what you do (and don't) know!

12. Add a festive touch. Wear a flag pin, put red, white and blue ribbons in your little girl's hair, or teach the kids to make friendship bracelets to share with the rest of the family and their friends.

13. Don't forget your bumper sticker. Choose from "I support our troops" or a simple yellow ribbon.

14. Have a fundraiser (no matter how small). Are your kids interested in a lemonade stand? Encourage them to keep half of their profits and donate the other half to a worthwhile organization that supports Americans-consider the USO!

15. Root for your fellow Americans. Root for the Americans when you're watching the 2012 Olympics or any world competitions (like the World Cup). You might have a few competitors that you like from across the globe, but be proud to see your fellow patriots win a medal or come home the victors.

Content by Kelly Herdrich.

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