Founding Fathers and the Joy of Living

December 10th, 2013 by Christina | No Comments

An expert on wellness in New York City, Dr. Claire Fitzpatrick is a chiropractor who believes in an integrative approach to wellness.  Happy people are healthier.

She interviewed me just before Thanksgiving, and we talked about how important it is to enjoy your life, and how the Founders can help.

Dr. Claire is a fabulous interviewer who really should be working for NPR. It was a treat to connect with her in this way.

Here is the interview. Thank you, Dr. Claire.

 

The History Channel: 10 Things You Don’t Know about the Founding Fathers

December 10th, 2013 by Christina | No Comments


In May 2013, I received an email from the History Channel.

Henry Rollins, former member of Black Flag, author, activist, performance artist, was the new host of 10 Things You Don’t Know about. They were doing an episode of Founding Fathers, and would I be interested in participating.

The subject matter? Which founders hated each other and why. I could talk about that for days.

We met at the Fraunces Tavern in Lower Manhattan, where General Washington said goodbye to all his officers. Spent four hours geeking out about the Founders and Lincoln and Lyndon B. Johnson.

So it aired on November 16, 2013 on H2. Here is the recording.

My segment airs at 18:00 in the recording.

 

 

Photo by Katie Settel of Katie Settel Photography

What They Don’t Teach You about July 4th

July 5th, 2013 by Christina | No Comments

Who was the real hero of July 4th?

Why was the Declaration of Independence just a memo for a while?

What really happened on July 4th?

Find out in this webinar.

NBC News 4 NY Recording

July 4th, 2013 by Christina | No Comments

On July 3rd, I was on NBC News 4 NY. Here is the recording.

 

 

 

Today Show Recording

July 4th, 2013 by Christina | No Comments

On Wednesday, July 3rd, I was on the Today Show with Kathie Lee and Hoda. Here is the link!

 

NBC News 4 and More

July 1st, 2013 by Christina | No Comments

Wow. There’s more on July 3rd.  I will be appearing on the NYC NBC 7p News program! What?

So that’s July 3rd, 7p. Channel 4 in the New York area. See you then!!!!! This is so fun.

Not only that, but I’ll be on WOR radio in a man-on-the-street interview during the day. I’ll keep you posted on the time! New York, here I come!

The Today Show

July 1st, 2013 by Christina | 1 Comment

I am thrilled to announce that I will be appearing on the Today Show on Wednesday July 3rd.  It’s the Who Knew? segment with Hoda and Kathie Lee.

We’ll be chatting it up about July 4th and Independence. Can’t wait!

I’ll appear at 10:30a or so, so I’ll see you then.

 

 

Top 10 Things Every American Should Know about July 4th Part 2

June 26th, 2013 by Christina | 19 Comments

And to finish up… (Part 1 if you missed it)

5.  No one, not even Thomas Jefferson, thought much of the Declaration when it was first signed.  The big deal was they voted through Independence, not the Declaration of Independence.  It was a well-written memo for years, until America started taking shape and people realized the import of those famous 55 words at the beginning.

4.  Jefferson did not come up with all those ideas himself. As I detailed in my 5 Rockstars of the American Revolution book, Jefferson referenced some brilliant game-changers who came up with ideas like “All men are created equal” and “Governments must rule by the consent of the governed.”  These include Frances Hutcheson, Francis Bacon, John Locke, and Montesquieu.

3.  Only one-third of the population supported Independence.  One third was against it, and one third was indifferent.  This fluctuated during the war, depending on how well George Washington was doing against the British, but it’s worth noting that this was a civil war.

2.  American Independence sent a ripple effect across the entire world. Kings and royalty were shaking in their shoes, wondering if their people would one day declare their own independence.

1.  John Adams did all the work, but Thomas Jefferson gets all the credit.  Adams was the one making all the speeches, coming up with plans to transition to their own post-Great Britain governments, working on a zillion committees to support George Washington’s efforts.  Jefferson sat quietly, and at the right moment, wrote something beautiful and long-lasting.  But even Jefferson thought that John Adams was the man of the hour.

 

 

Christina Frei is a youth motivational speaker, presenting leadership programs about the Founding Fathers to schools, historical societies, and libraries all over CT. Her latest book, 5 Rockstars of the American Revolution, was recently endorsed by 2 Pulitzer Prize winning authors and the top youth speaker in America. See her in action at www.christinafrei.com.

Top 10 Things Every American Should Know about July 4th

June 24th, 2013 by Christina | 1 Comment

Here are the top 10 things every American should know about July 4th. Part 1.

10.  Something did happen on the 4th, but not what you might think.  Independence was NOT voted through, and no one signed anything.  It was the day they approved Thomas Jefferson’s Declaration (after cutting a huge chunk of it, mortifying the poor redhead).   It was such a non-day that Jefferson wrote about some shopping he did and John Adams wrote nothing at all – totally unlike him.  In fact, John Hancock was the only one to sign it on the 4th.

9.  John Adams and Thomas Jefferson expected the holiday to be July 2nd.  That was the day that Independence WAS ratified.

8.  John Adams and Thomas Jefferson both died on July 4th, 1826, 50 years after the official day.

7.  Most of the actual signing happened on August 2, 1776, but even then, many delegates were absent.

6.  The Declaration of Independence did not start the American Revolution.  The war had started a year prior at Lexington and Concord.  It simply cut off all remaining ties or hopes of reconciliation.

Stay tuned for Part 2!

Writing Makes Me Happy

April 19th, 2013 by Christina | 1 Comment

The other day, a friend stayed at my house, and when she was preparing for a nap, I said “I’m going to go write.”

Later, my friend approached me and said I sounded positively energized when I said I would go write. This had shocked her. (I am writing a new book about the Constitution.) She asked me where my love of writing came from.

I have many answers to this question, because it’s been years in the making. So I’ll start with one. 

AN APPRECIATION PRACTICE AND MY HAPPY LEFT HAND

In 2001, I was choir director at my church, and on one Sunday, I felt like choir had not gone well. At all. Tons of mistakes, people flaking out, the audience looking bored, you name it. 

I left the church frustrated and discouraged.

Then something made me sit down in a cafe, and write down what had gone well. What had worked?  As I wrote the answers, I filled 2 pages. I couldn’t believe it. So much good juju, just by remembering to appreciate.

This made me realize that if I only choose to appreciate, there was ALWAYS something to appreciate.

Since then, I’ve done a “Weekly Review” of “what worked” over the past week. Each week, I write 2-4 pages of appreciations, sometimes more.  It’s been 12 years and I’ve only missed a handful of weeks. Each year, I even do a “Yearly Review,” where I look at my Weeklies and distill them down into the juiciest of the juicy.

The side effect of this? I find it’s almost impossible to write negative stuff with my left hand (I’m a leftie) for any period of time. It’s like it’s been trained out of me. My left hand wants to find something to appreciate. It just does.

That is the one reason why I writing makes me happy.

 

 

Christina Frei is a youth motivational speaker, presenting leadership programs about the Founding Fathers to schools, historical societies, and libraries all over CT. Her latest book, 5 Rockstars of the American Revolution, was recently endorsed by 2 Pulitzer Prize winning authors and the top youth speaker in America. See her in action at www.christinafrei.com.