Inauguration Day is fast approaching; every four years on January 20th at noon the individual elected to be the president of the United States takes their oath and is officially sworn into office. This, like many other aspects of the U.S. election system is full of traditions that at this point have spanned decades. Where did these traditions come from? Have they always been in place since the beginning of our presidential system, or did they develop over time?
Did you know:
- William Henry Harrison had the longest inaugural speech of any president, but the shortest term.
- Theodore Roosevelt was the only president not to be sworn in with the bible.
- Dwight Eisenhower, in 1953, was the beginning of the January 20th inauguration trend.
- The inauguration of Lyndon B. Johnson was the first to take place on an airplane, and the first oath of office administered by a woman.
Interested in finding out more quirky presidential facts? Check out the Library of Congress’ Resource Guide here!
Did you know that November 13th is World Kindness Day? With the swirl of emotions stirred up by last week’s election, there’s never been a better time to spread some compassion through random acts of good in your community.
We’re feeling inspired to stretch this celebration through the end of the month and hope you’ll do the same. To help inspire you to get started, we’ve put together a few fun ways to brighten someone else’s day (and maybe yours too) with some simple smile-worthy moves.
- Spread the love with sticky notes. Take some post-it notes and write some sweet messages or affirmations on them. Stick them in public bathrooms at school, on your mirror, or hide them around the house for instant good vibes.
- Write a note of gratitude. A simple heartfelt letter to someone you appreciate can make a big impact. Take the time on your own or check out our next DIY Designs program (during Teen Study Hall) on Tuesday, November 21st, 4 – 6 p.m. at the Valencia Library where we’ll have card making supplies ready for you.
- Volunteer your time. Spend some time helping at a soup kitchen, a homeless shelter, or your local library (we’d love to have you!). So many people could use a helping hand – so if you have even an hour to offer, why not spread the kindness and try out volunteering.
- Make a donation to Goodwill. We all have clothes or toys that we’ve outgrown, just don’t wear or don’t have room for anymore. Talk to your parents about taking some time to look around and donate what you don’t need to a charity store like Goodwill or the Salvation Army, so that your unwanted treasures can brighten the days of people in need.
- Smile at 10 strangers. If you’re in the right headspace to smile (and it’s okay if you’re not at the moment), you might want to give this one a try. Next time you’re going down the street, make an effort to beam out a genuine smile at 10 strangers you pass.
If you have more suggestions for ways to spread kindness during this month, talk to your teen librarian. We’re here to listen and support you!
For many of you, it may be your first opportunity to vote in this election. As many of you know, this election has been particularly contentious; however, please don’t let that dissuade you from voting. If you haven’t voted already (some of you may have through mail-in-ballots or early voting) tomorrow is election day and time to go out and use your new ability to make your voice heard.
Some of you may have heard the words “My vote doesn’t really matter” this election. With how stressful the election season can be sometimes it can feel easier to just say that you’re singular vote won’t make a big difference and try to separate yourself from it. Remember, your vote does matter, and not just for the presidential election. Not only will the candidate elected for President of the United States be the one to choose who will fill the the empty seat on the Supreme Court, a decision that could have an impact far longer than the four year term we’re electing a president for, there are also numerous decisions about other candidates from state to local and countless propositions that will effect the state of California.
Did you know that there are seventeen different propositions that will also be decided during this election? Everything from medication costs to the death penalty to educational funding are mentioned. Because there is so much focus on the presidential election, sometimes these are viewed as less important, a fact that can make votes of individuals even more important.
Not sure where to vote? Check out this site and just put in your address to find out where your polling place is!
Good luck, get out there, and vote!