|Sierra's custom designed logo with stylized mountains representing our foothills location, brown for the golden hue of California's Summer slopes, and green for our wonderful trees. This is a registered Service Mark of Sierra Enrterprises LLC.|
|Originally known as Saint Valentine's Day or the Feast of St. Valentine, we now refer to this day simply as Valentines Day. The history is fuzzy due to its Roman era origins, but the common threads in the legends are that Saint Valentine was persecuted by the Romans for helping young lovers. Celebrated in mid-February since Valentine's death in about 270 A.D., we now celebrate Valentines Day on February 14th with cards, candy and flowers which often include the color red from early pagan festivals.|
|St. Patrick was patron saint and national apostle of Ireland who is credited with successfully bringing Christianity to Ireland. Legend tells that he drove the snakes from Ireland as well, but probably not since they're not native to the island. We wear a shamrock on St. Patrick’s Day because, again legend says, St. Patrick used its three leaves to explain the Holy Trinity. St. Patrick's Day is celebrated on March 17th in commemoration of his death in 461 A.D. The first St. Patrick’s Day parade in the American colonies was held in New York City on this day in 1762.|
|Easter Sunday celebrates Christ’s resurrection from the dead, following crucifixion. Colored eggs (representing new life), the Easter Bunny (or hare, an ancient symbol of fertility), the lamb (representing goodness), and the Easter Lilly (representing purity) are all symbols of Easter. In the US, Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday following the first full moon after or on the vernal equinox, the first day of Spring. This definition makes Easter the only holiday recognized in America that cannot be predicted by a computer program owing to the variation in the moon's cycle and the Earth's orbit around the Sun.|
|Mother's Day. In the United States, Mother's Day is celebrated on the second Sunday of May. In some countries it was changed to dates that were significant to the majority religion, or to historical dates. It's modern origins go back to 1908 when Anna Jarvis promoted the idea, first at the local level then nationally becoming a national holiday in 1914.|
|Memorial Day is set aside for the remembrance of all of those that have lost their lives in America's armed forces. Originally known as Decoration Day, it was a day to clean military headstones and statues to the fallen, often in the late Summer with picnics and family gatherings. Since 1971 Memorial Day has been observed on the last Monday of May. It is customary to wear a red poppy on this day, a tradition that started after WWI with the poem, "In Flanders Fields".|
|In keeping with the wishes of the Founding Fathers, the Fourth of July brings memories of parades, picnics, band concerts, and of course fireworks "from one end of this Continent to the other". But all Americans know it represents much more; the adoption of the Declaration of Independence by the original 13 American colonies in 1776. It would be a long battle to secure this independence, but July 4th, 1776, the Fourth of July, started the "American experiment" with the statement that, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."|
|Welcome to the Dog Days! Most of us think this relates to the hottest days of Summer but it's really got nothing to do with dogs and only indirectly references Summer. The best detailed explanation we've found is offered by National Geographic here: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2015/07/150710-dog-days-summer-sirius-star-astronomy-weather-language/ In the meantime, enjoy our logo in celebration of the Dog Days of Summer.|
Labor Day. The 1st Monday of September. The unofficial end of Summer. But wait, it's much more. Labor Day is intended to recognize and honor the significant contributions workers have made to the strength and prosperity of our nation. It helps us remember that this country was built by the sweat of countless brows, the strain of muscles, and the determination to get the job done. While you and your family are enjoying this Labor Day weekend, be sure to stop for a moment and Honor Labor.
|Always recognized on the last day of October, Halloween, or All Hallows Eve, can be traced back to an ancient Celtic festival that celebrated the end of harvest. The line between the worlds of the living and dead was believed thinnest at this time. Around 900A.D. the Catholic Church declared Nov 1st to be All Hallows Day, or All Saints Day, to recognize Catholic saints. Carving pumpkins is an American variation on the old Irish tradition of carving the faces of demons into lit hollowed-out turnips to scare away spirits. Trick or Treating didn't start until the late 30's.|
|Veteran's Day is recognized on November 11th. This federal holiday recognizes all who have served in the armed forces of the United States. November 11th was previously recognized as Armistice Day marking the anniversary of the end of World War I; major hostilities of World War I were formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, when the Armistice with Germany went into effect. The U.S. remembrance was renamed Veterans Day in 1954.|
|Born of Native American harvest celebrations and colonial services dating to the late 16th century, the most widely known early Thanksgiving is that of the Pilgrims in Plymouth, Massachusetts, who feasted for 3 days with the Wampanoag people in 1621. In a 1789 proclamation, President George Washington called on the people of the United States to observe a day of thanksgiving. Devoting a day to “public thanksgiving and prayer,” as Washington called it, became a yearly tradition in many communities. In the US it became a national holiday in 1863 being celebrated on the 4th Thursday in November since 1941. Why turkey? At one time it was a rare treat, reserved for special celebrations. During the 1830s, an eight- to ten-pound bird cost a day’s wages.|
The 'Holidays', or as we like to say "Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!". Celebrated on the 25th of December since the 4th century, Christmas Day celebrates the birth of Jesus. Evergreen branches were used to symbolize life in ancient solstice festivals, represented today by our Christmas Trees. Christmas lights evolved from candles meant to symbolize guiding beacons for the Christ child. Santa Claus, Kris Kringle, and Father Christmas are mythical gift givers, perhaps based on the story of the Three Wise Men. On the other hand, St. Nicholas, a 4th century Greek Bishop, was made famous for his legendary habit of secret gift-giving.