This has been a pretty great weekend so far – and since today (Monday) is on the Labor Day holiday, it is still technically my weekend! Four days off in a row is wonderful, and even more wonderful, Hubby had those days off with me, so we were together the whole time. Of course, my work doesn’t pay for this holiday, so I have to make up for the hours this upcoming Friday but having the time with hubby is always a blessing. We did a lot of nothing on Friday, I puttered around the house on Friday while Hubby did things he needed to do, Sunday we went on a marathon grocery shopping trip – and managed to do a little Christmas shopping too – and today we are taking a little ferry ride and take a browse around Hobby Lobby. I love going to Hobby Lobby and we haven’t been in a long time. It should be fun, and they’ll probably have sales!
I’d like to wish my Dad a very happy birthday today! We aren’t going to be able to see him today, but we are planning on meeting up for dinner on Wednesday, which will be fun We all enjoy eating out, and when we do it for a celebration such as birthday, I’m SURE the calories and carbs don’t count, right? Shhh, don’t knock me off of my little fantasy yet. I can enjoy the thought for a moment or two. Happy Birthday Dad!
Monday – September 2
Bison-ten Yell Day – Today honors the bicentennial birth date of a fictional person. Get it? Bison-Ten-Yell. Bicentennial. hahaha seriously? Someone set this day up as a holiday? Supposedly, Bison-Ten-Yell invented a set of ten battle yells. Get it? Bison-Ten-Yell. Ten battle yells. The yells were based on a memory aid system. And that’s all I could find on it. So, do with this information what you will. It’s at least a little funny and will make you wonder what some people are thinking.
Labor Day – Today is a day in honor of the worker – and is also appropriately called “the working man’s holiday” – dedicated to the worker in appreciation for the work we do in or outside of the home, union or non-union, big company, small companies or government. As long as you work somewhere at something, this holiday is for you! Well, unless you work in retail, at a restaurant, an emergency service worker like a police officer, or on duty in the military. Those places are awfully busy today! That’s a lot of folks still working while the rest of us sit on our duffs! The first Labor Day was celebrated in New York City on September 5, 1882 and started by the Central Labor Union in New York City. In 1884, it was moved to the first Monday in September where it is celebrated today. Labor Day became popular very quickly, and one state after another voted it as a holiday. On June 28, 1894 the US Congress voted it a National holiday. Today we have come to view Labor Day as the official end of summer. Though the Fall Equinox is still a couple of weeks away, kids go back to school and summer vacations are over, so this is a good way to mark the end of the season. Many people celebrate this weekend with one last picnic or camping trip, then close up the pools and put away the boats. As for me? I feel like, especially in the Pacific Northwest, we still have a month of summer to go and often around here it’s the best weather of the year! Not too hot, not too cold and still time to camp without a lot of crowds out and about.
V-J Day – There are at least three dates that celebrate VJ Day. Some of the confusion could have been said to be caused by President Truman, but seriously, the war ended, everyone was happy, relieved and ready to start living out from under the shadow of the sadness of war, so what was a little confusion after all of that? I think celebrating all three is a great idea, as all three dates are important to this great event. On August 14th, Japan surrendered. On August 15th the surrender was announced to the world. On September 2nd the ceremony and formal signing of surrender was held, marking the official end of WWII and the cessation of fighting against Japan.
Tuesday – September 3
Another Look Unlimited Day (Day after Labor Day) – The day after Labor Day is designated for taking another look at any load of old junk you may have lying around, and identify things you would like to donate to charity, give to friends or recycle in another way. You can go through your house, garage, barn, attic or shed. Sometimes we even buy things we don’t need just because they are on sale, so they could find a very happy new owner easily. Here are some ways to celebrate Another Look Unlimited Day:
Donate to Schools – Donate new notebooks, pens, paper towels, tissue boxes, crayons, scissors, glue sticks and erasers. Anyone who takes advantage of sales at the store or buys in bulk during back-to-school season may have extras on hand.
Dispose of Electronics Properly — Some community groups host electronic recycling days. For a nominal fee ($10 to $25) you can dispose of old TVs, computer monitors and other broken electronics. Not all towns have dumps and your regular garbage collection company does not want this stuff in the trash.
Cell Phones — Keep or Donate — If your cell phone functions and has a charger, you may want to hold onto it. If you still have a collection of brick phones, it’s time to let go. Delete all information from a SIM card on a newer phone before e-cycling it, advises the EPA.
Junk Drawer — Clean out the junk drawers and properly dispose of the items you haven’t used in six months. Dead batteries should not be thrown in the trash. Instead, drop them off at a retailer accepting dead batteries. Some communities also have drop-off boxes in the town hall.
Old Eyeglasses — If you’re holding onto an old pair of glasses, don’t. Unless the prescription is the same it does you no good to keep them since you shouldn’t wear them anyway. Donate old prescription eyeglasses to the Lions Club.
Lots of great ideas for junk we don’t need anyway.
Skyscraper Day – I live near Seattle, and I can honestly say that it’s the prettiest skyline I’ve ever seen. That isn’t saying much though. Since I’m not a fan of big cities, I haven’t seen all that many skylines, but I’ve seen them in movies, and have seen a few in person. Seattle’s is stunning. I know a lot of people who really enjoy cities, they love everything about them, so I have to assume they love the skyscrapers too. It stands to reason. These same people very likely enjoy high places . . . another thing I’m not a fan of . . . heights aren’t that much fun. I can, however, appreciate the amazing feats of engineering that skyscrapers are – and the people who create them. In crowded cities, where space is in short supply, building UP is logical, and as technical capabilities improve, the buildings have gotten taller and taller. There is also the fact that there is a bit of prestige to having one of the tallest structures in the world in your city. Is your city o this list? There are only 2 US cities on the list, so it makes me curious if any of my readers are in those cities!?
|World’s Tallest Buildings|
|Building||Country||Height (Feet)||Year Built|
|1.||Taipei 101||Taipei, Taiwan||1,671||2004|
|2.||Petronas Tower 1||Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia||1,483||1998|
|3.||Petronas Tower 2||Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia||1,483||1998|
|4.||Sears Tower||Chicago, Il||1,451||1974|
|5.||Jin Mao Building||Shanghai, China||1,381||1999|
|6.||Two International Finance||Hong Kong, China||1,362||2003|
|7.||CITIC Plaza||Guangzhou, China||1,283||1996|
|8.||Shun Hing Square||Shenzhen, China||1,260||1996|
|9.||Empire State Building||New York, New York||1,250||1931|
|10.||Central Plaza||Hong Kong, China||1,227||1992|
Wednesday – September 4
Newspaper Carrier Day – is celebrated on September 4th
International Newspaper Carrier Day is observed on varying dates and is established by the Newspaper Association of America. This year it is on October 19, 2013 and next year on October 18, 2014. Newspaper carriers date back to the early 1800s, and today’s celebration commemorates the very first paper boy! On September 10, 1833, 10-year-old Barney Flaherty became the first newspaper carrier. Benjamin Day, the publisher of The New York Sun, hired Barney to sell papers for his penny press. The only job requirement was to show that he could throw a newspaper into the bushes. Today, few kids deliver papers anymore, except in small towns, but the “Carrier Day” tradition still lives on. This is a job that is done mostly by adults now, many delivering the paper from their cars. For anyone who thinks this is an easy job, it isn’t. Paper carriers are up in the wee hours of the morning to pick up the papers from the warehouse and get them to their destinations before the residents wake up, so they can have their papers with their morning coffee. By the time we are getting out of bed, they are finishing up their work and many are going down for a rest! I know I would! To everyone who has a paper route, today is for you!
Thursday – September 5
Be Late for Something Day – Ah, finally a day for procrastinators. There are millions of people who never seem to be able to stay on schedule, and they need a day too! I admit, I am one of those people who isn’t necessarily late for everything, but I do sort of run at the edge of it most of the time. There’s always one last little detail to attend to before I race out the door. Being late occasionally is a common occurrence. We all have something come up from time to time that keeps us from being punctual. Honestly, as long as it’s not perpetual, nor intentional, it’s forgivable. ONCE IN AWHILE. Enjoy today though – it’s sort of your pass. It doesn’t translate into days after today. (I can’t be late though – I have to get to work!)
Jury Rights Day – Today we celebrate Jury Rights Day. So, where did this day get its start? From what I found, on this day in 1670 Quaker William Penn of London was arrested, pled not guilty and subsequently argued against England’s Conventicle Acts, which outlawed the practice of religions other than the Church of England. The judge told the jurors to find Penn guilty, and their refusal to enforce a bad law led to the court jailing, withholding food and water from the jurors. Some of the jurors appealed their fines and imprisonment. The higher court confirmed the right of the jurors to base their verdict on their best judgment and conscience. Even though there was a law against freedom of religion, the high court said that juries could not be required to enforce any law that they thought was wrong. The higher court ruling also established that jurors cannot be punished for their verdict, which set a foundation for our rights of freedom of religion, freedom of speech and freedom of assembly. This ruling established protection for the jury, and firmly established the right of the jurors to refuse to accept bad government laws. This refusal of bad laws is called jury nullification or jury veto. Through jury nullification, people can control their government by refusing to allow bad laws to be enforced. Jurors are also not required to give a reason for the verdict they give. The fundamental right of jurors to render their verdict based on conscience is basic to the preservation of justice in a free society. And as for William Penn? He later came to Colonial America and founded Pennsylvania. Jurors continue to have the authority to nullify bad laws, which is our protection to stop corrupt government servants from violating our rights. (lately I don’t see this as working all that well as more and more of our rights are being stepped on – but that’s my personal opinion)
Friday – September 6
Bring Your Manners to Work Day (First Friday) – How many hours a week do we spend at work? I venture to say that it’s far more than we spend at home. This makes it very important to have a good relationship with both our colleagues and our customers. This celebration was created by the “Protocol School of Washington” to remind people of how important it is to treat others with courtesy and respect in the workplace (though I venture to say that it’s important EVERYWHERE!) Everyone should use good manners, no matter where they are, don’t you think? Some common bad manners at work include things like having loud ringtones, not cleaning up after yourself, being polite in conversation, and other such things. Now, even though this is a celebration for one day of the year, you should not limit being polite to just the one day. It is just a reminder of how important it is to be courteous and use manners EVERY day. So be nice!
National Dog Walker Appreciation Day (Friday after Labor Day) – Did you know that there is a National Dog Walking Association? I didn’t until last yer. I admit it, they do work hard. If I knew someone that I trusted enough with a key to my house who did this job, I would definitely have them go and take Moose out for a long walk during the day. There are people out there who have walkers that they trust enough to call if they have an emergency and can’t get home to their pets, who have gone above and beyond the call of duty and watered plans, taken in the mail and kept the furkids company while they waited for the family to get home. Now THAT’S a great service!
National Food Bank Day (First Friday) – Food banks help people all year long, not just near the holidays, however most people do not really give that a great deal of thought until we get closer to Thanksgiving and Christmas. Sadly, I’d be one of those people most of the time. The sad truth is that many people go to bed hungry. This makes me sad for adults, but it absolutely breaks my heart to think of children going to bed with their tummies growling. Hunger may affect someone as close to you as your neighbor, or even a co-worker. People may look like they are doing fine on the surface, but at home their cupboards are bare. The circumstances that bring people to the point of needing a food bank vary from losing their jobs, to getting into heavy debt from medical bills, to the breaking up of a home. For a parent who is struggling to make ends meet, tucking their children in bed with food in their stomachs is a priority, and going to the food bank to fill the gaps in the budget may just help that happen. Please celebrate this one today by bagging up some non-perishable foods from your pantry (make sure they are within the expiration date – giving someone out of date food isn’t generous, it’s hateful and mean spirited.) or stopping at the grocery store to fill up some bags of food to drop by for the pantry shelves. It’s a great thing to do, it’s tax deductible and most of all, you can be the reason a child has dinner tonight, or breakfast in the morning.
National Lazy Mom’s Day (First Friday) – This one has me scratching my head because the words “lazy” and “Mom” don’t generally fit well into the same sentence. Sure, there must be some lazy moms out there, but most just have too much going on for that to happen! However, from what I can tell this is not a day celebrating lazy mothers, but a day during which mothers are able to take what is usually a busy day and be lazy. One single day of doing absolutely nothing. No laundry, no dishes, no cooking . . . just channel surfing, chatting with friends, reading a book, lazing in the tub . . . whatever do-nothing thing strikes our fancy. If you have a family that is on board with this holiday, maybe they’ll do all of those things for you . . . if not, well, you’ll have to crack the whip tomorrow to make them help you catch up. For right now though? Just be lazy!
Saturday – September 7
Grandma Moses Day – This is one that is going to be quite difficult to put into a short paragraph. Trying to figure out where to begin with telling you about this incredible American artist is difficult and keeping it short will be even MORE difficult. Grandma Moses was born Anna May Robertson on September 7, 1860 in Greenwich, NY. She and her husband were farmers first in Virginia, then settled in Eagle Bridge, New York. She was the mother of ten children and did not begin her painting career until she was well into her 70s when arthritis was making it difficult for her to sew. Liking to keep busy, she began painting realistic country scenes, some of which she painted on dried tree mushrooms. She also made ceramic tiles and decorated them with patterns and landscapes. She was so absolutely remarkable in so many ways! At the age of 99 years old she began illustrating Clement C. Moore’s poem “The Night Before Christmas”. She continued working until the summer before her death, December 13, 1961. She was 101 years old. She never took an art class but produced around 1600 pieces of art throughout her time as a folk artist. This date may mark the anniversary of her birth, and we may be celebrating her amazing accomplishments, but it is also an opportunity to follow in her example . . . “Painting’s not important,” she used to say. “The Important thing is keeping busy.” She always stressed how important hard work was, and respect for our surroundings. For more information about this incredible woman, check out Grandma Moses’ “My Life’s History”, published in 1952.
National Tailgating Day (First Saturday) – This one was started just a couple of years ago, and I missed it. Sorry. Tailgating is the practice of gathering together in around the tailgate of pick-up trucks, having a BBQ, snacks, drinks and a good visit with friends before a big game, usually football. I personally am not a huge football fan, and have never participated in one of these parties, but it does sound like fun if you have the right group of people. Apparently, it’s time for the tailgating season to begin, so have fun!
“Neither Snow nor Rain” Day – This celebration honors the opening of the New York Post Office building on this day in 1914. The following inscription was inscribed on the building: “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night, stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.” This has come to be assumed to be the motto of the US Postal Service as a whole, and that is incorrect. No, this inscription was very close to the old Pony Express rider’s motto, which leads to another misconception. People often think that the Pony Express was the predecessor to the Post Office, but it wasn’t. It was a privately owned, funded and operated message delivery service. Their motto though was so good that the New York Post Office made their similar! No, today is just about appreciating our postal service, struggling though it may be. Appreciate your delivery person. They do work hard to be accurate and timely with the delivery of the mail.
Sunday – September 8
Bowling League Day (First Sunday) – This celebration was first noticed on this day in 2015. There is also a National Bowling Day, so I’m not really sure, and can’t find any further information, what the difference is, except that this one celebrates bowling as part of a league. Perhaps this is the day that leagues start taking sign-ups for their upcoming season? IS there a specific league season? I have no idea, but if you do, please let me know in the comments!
Grandparent’s Day (First Sunday after Labor Day) – Today we honor our Grandparents, for their influential role in our families, for the love that they showed to us growing up. Two summers ago, my last living Grandma went to heaven to hang out with Jesus, spend eternity with Grandpa and wait for the rest of us to someday join them. I can almost hear her laughing her special laugh as she cracks up about something. She may even be spending time with my Grandma K. That thought puts a smile in my heart. For anyone who still has Grandparents around, please give them a little extra love today. Give them a call, stop by for a visit of they are near. There is rarely a day that I don’t think of my Grandmas and the rich memories and experiences I had with them that flood over into my adult life and have given me a perspective I wouldn’t otherwise have had. As I smell breakfast cooking, I recall the aromas in the kitchen at Grandma K’s house, the sounds of Grandpa puttering upstairs with his fishing stuff, Grandma’s laugh, the soothing sweetness of her voice . . . Gosh I miss them. So, when did this special day start? It was an initiative of Marian McQuade, a homemaker in Fayette County, WV. She started a campaign in 1973 to dedicate a special day for Grandparents, so people would spend time honoring them and promoting an intergenerational appreciation for them. Because of her efforts, in 1978 President Jimmy Carter proclaimed September 8 to be Grandparents day. Definitely a worthwhile day to celebrate! If you are fortunate enough to have Grandparents, give them some love today – after all, they’ve given their love to you all of your life. If you are fortunate enough to BE a Grandparent, bask in the glow of the loving the special littles who are in your life. I can honestly say it is the most beautiful feeling in the world to hug a Grandchild close and love them with everything in you.
National Ampersand Day – Do you know what an ampersand is? Surprisingly, some people don’t know. It’s a cute little symbol that is used as shorthand for the word “and”. It’s very artistic – don’t you think? Here is something I read that I didn’t know – that the ampersand used to be the last letter of the alphabet. Huh – I’d never heard that before. You can celebrate this one by using lots of ampersands today and substituting “&” for “and” in everything you write.
National Hug Your Hound Day (Second Sunday) -Those of us who are dog owners have probably already celebrated this one, but just in case you needed another excuse to hug your dog, this is it. The 2nd Sunday in September is National Hug Your Hound Day. This day serves as a reminder – as if the GOOD pet owners needed one – to keep our four-legged friends happy, healthy and safe. Another focus of this one is for the dogs who live in urban areas. Wide open spaces and outdoors areas aren’t always available for city-dwelling dogs, but if you live in the city you can still enjoy parks, lakes and other areas where dogs are allowed, whether on or off leash. Get them out into the fresh air and enjoying as much of nature as is available to you. They deserve it, and so do you. (This is an old picture – obviously, since now Tibbi is in heaven and Moose was a puppy, but it’s still cute enough to share again.)
National Pet Memorial Day (Second Sunday) – We love our pets. If we are decent, NORMAL people, we treat our pets as family. There are those individuals masquerading as human who treat pets badly, but for the most part I’d like to say that people treat their pets well and love them. We grow attached to our pets and we dread the day we have to say good-bye to them. Even though we know when we get a new pet that someday we will have to let them go, since they have a much shorter lifespan, it still comes as a shock and fills us with sadness when get to that time. I know that when my Tibbi Dog crossed the Rainbow Bridge it filled me with such sadness and grief. I still tear up just thinking about her, even though it has been close to three years. Reality is that she was 17 years old, and a big dog. We were truly blessed by her long life and good health. Her face was grey, her step was slower, she had old lady aches and pains, but her tail always wagged when she saw us, and she was always ready for hugs, loves and treat. Obviously, there are cats too, but there are also rabbits, fish, turtles, ferrets, crabs, snakes, hamsters, gerbils, birds and a huge assortment of other animals. All have different life spans, and as their people we will have to deal with their losses as they reach their time to go. Today was intended to spend time cherishing the memory of our lost pets and moving on. We gave them a happy, safe and comfortable life and should take peace from that. There are various ways to celebrate this one. Spend a few minutes thinking over good memories of your pet while looking at pictures of them; if your pet is buried somewhere, go visit their burial site; contribute to an animal protection group; volunteer at an animal shelter; create a small memorial in a flower garden in your yard; or plant a tree or shrub as a living memorial. We have a corner of our house that has Tibbi’s portrait, painted by a good friend, and below it is the urn with her ashes, her favorite toys, and next to her is the urn with our Pepsi Cat, who followed Tibbi over the Rainbow Bridge over a year ago. No matter how you celebrate, or how much you miss them, know that their lives were blessed because you loved them, just as yours were blessed because they loved you.
Pardon Day – There are variety of ideas out there on what this one was intended to be, and how it started. The best I can figure is that it was set up after President Ford gave an unconditional pardon to President Nixon of all crimes connected to Watergate. (If only we JUST had something like Watergate to deal these days!) For everyone else, today could be an opportunity to seek forgiveness where needed. It is also a day to remember to say, “Pardon Me” and “Excuse Me” when appropriate. It’s sad to say that there has been a definite decline in today’s society – much to do with etiquette. Please, Thank You and Excuse me seem to be foreign words to many of the generation growing up today. On the flip side, I saw in the news the other day that a high school student was put on in-school suspension for saying “Bless You” to another student who sneezed. Apparently, this was on a no-no list as prohibited language. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I don’t understand why! Crazy, just crazy! Nobody likes it when someone is rude to them, and the way to best put an end to that is if we practice good manners towards others ourselves, and for goodness sake, get over yourselves if you are offended by the very polite, and extremely traditional “Bless You” if you sneeze. I shake my head in disgust at people such as that.
Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Nurses Day – I cannot imagine a job more heart wrenching than that of a doctor or nurse that works with sick children. Today we honor the wonderful, caring people, who each day care for many of our most precious patients: children, adolescents and young adults with cancer and blood disorders. These special nurses dedicate their lives to providing the highest standard of care to their patients and families. This often extends beyond caring for the physical health and extends to include emotional support and long-term follow-up treatment as they grow into adults. These amazing nurses see and feel so much trauma and pain as they battle this horrible disease alongside the patients. They definitely deserve the honor of their own day.
Pet Rock Day – Do you remember when pet rocks were all the rage in the 70s? I laugh when I think about it. The guy who came up with that was a genius! I cannot even imagine WHY it was such a big thing, but it definitely was, and made him quite a bit of money, if the popularity of the concept is anything to go by. The great thing about a Pet Rock is that anyone can have one. Think about it – you couldn’t get an easier pet to care for than a rock! I ran across a pretty funny article about how to give your pet rock the best life he/she could ever have. Here’s a condensed version of the instructions:
- Go outside and choose a pet rock. Try to get one that is at least 1-inch wide, so you don’t lose it in your pocket. Look for one that looks nice to you, one that you will want to keep.
- Decide if your rock is a boy or a girl and choose a unique name for it.
- Paint your pet rock. Let your imagination be your guide! Use fun colors, glue on googly eyes if you want!
- Your rock will need a travel bag. This is very useful so you can take it with you and make sure it isn’t lost in your pocket or purse. Make sure it’s a nice fit, but not too tight so you can get the rock out of the bag without a struggle.
- Now your rock will need a house. We all deserve one of those, right? You could use a doll house or make one of your own out of a shoebox.
It’s also fun to make sure your pet has a friend or two – find it some buddies to decorate and keep him/her company. You can come up with all sorts of fun things to do to be creative with your pet rock, take some pictures of it, and create little scenes. It’s also important to note that pet rocks don’t make a mess, they don’t need to be fed, and they don’t shed! Win win! Remember though, they aren’t big on conversation, and they have a tough time showing affection to you in return for yours to them. I guess nothing is perfect, right?
Virgin Mary Day (birthday) – I’m sure many of us have wondered, when was the Mother of Jesus born? We can’t know for positive, of course, but for nearly 15 centuries the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary has been celebrated on September 8th. For someone who is pretty quick with math (I’m not), it may be clear that September 8th is exactly 9 months after December 8th, which is when the feast of the Immaculate Conception of Mary has been celebrated. In earlier centuries, the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary was celebrated with GREAT fanfare by the Catholic Church – for it was one of only 3 birthdays actually celebrated by the Church. Most people today aren’t likely aware that the church even has a special feast day for this, but like the Immaculate Conception, the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary is an important date in our salvation history. Christ needed a mother, and Mary’s conception and birth are therefore special events, for without them, Christ’s own birth wouldn’t have been possible!
Food Celebration of the Day –
Monday – September 2
National Blueberry Popsicle Day – You won’t go to the grocery store, look into the freezer case and see blueberry popsicles. Not the traditional ones anyway. You might see some in the fruit pop section, but it isn’t a flavor you’ll find in the multi-flavor bags that we enjoyed when we were kids. They don’t even include the root beer or banana flavors like they used to. Did you ever wonder who thought to make the very first popsicle though? I hadn’t until I got this information off of www.thenibble.com. I really admire all of the work they’ve put into their site, by the way. They say that in 1905, 11-year old Frank Epperson mixed together a fruit drink (it’s thought that the flavor was orange) from powder and water, but as kids do, wandered off and left it on the porch. It was an unseasonably cold night in the San Francisco suburbs, and when Frank found his drink in the morning, it was frozen. He wriggled the liquid out using his stirrer and ate it. He probably enjoyed this treat many times over the years, but we don’t hear more about this story until 1923. Frank was now 29 years old, a husband and father, and working in the real estate industry. He made what he called Epsicles for a fireman’s ball. Everybody loved them, so he got a patent for a “handled, frozen confection or ice lollipop”. His children called them Popsicles, after their Pop, so Frank started the Popsicle Corporation, collaborated with the Loew’s chain of motion picture theaters for nationwide marketing, and sales of the treat in theaters. By 1928, he had earned royalties on more than 60 million Popsicles! This success ended with the Great Depression, sadly enough. In 1929 he was flat broke and had to liquidate his assets. He sold his patent to, and rights in, the Popsicle Corporation. After 3 more corporate sales over the years, Popsicle and other “sicles” are now part of Unilever’s Good Humor Division. It isn’t clear in the records, but Frank may also have been the inventor of the twin Popsicls, with two sticks. The idea was that it could be broken in half and shared by two children. Over the years the Popsicle Corporation continued to create frozen treats on a stick, including the Fudgsicle, the Creamsicle and the Dreamsicle. Ah, such happy memories of them all! After all of this, someone decided to create National Blueberry Popsicle Day. If you want to celebrate this one, you’ll either have to make some of your own, or get some of those blueberry fruit bars in the freezer section as a substitute.
National Grits for Breakfast Day – I really like grits. I wasn’t raised eating them, but once I met them, I found that I like them – and with such a name it would be easy to assume they wouldn’t be any good. Grits are a food with Native American roots, very common in the southern U.S. and most often eaten for breakfast. They are made of coarsely ground corn or hominy, very similar to thick corn-based porridge-based foods like polenta or farina (which is much thinner). You make them by adding one-part grits to 2-or-3 parts boiling water, seasoned with salt or sugar. You can buy “quick grits” that can be cooked for 5-10 minutes, or 20 or more minutes for whole kernel grits, until the water is all absorbed. If you ask many folks from the south, they will scoff at quick grits. Around here where I live, that’s the only kind that seems to be on the shelves at the store. I like mine fixed with milk, butter and sweetener, but the ex-family in my life always ate them with eggs on top. They make a very comforting meal, satisfying and very delicious.
Tuesday – September 3
National Welsh Rarebit Day – Rabbit, Not Rarebit. This dish has been around for a very long time, though nobody is quite clear on how it got its name. First what it is – it is a sharp cheese, melted into ale or beer, served over toast. It was a substitute for meat when the men had not been successful in their hunt that day. It was left for the women to fix a meal, and some clever woman came up with the name Welsh Rabbit as sort of a joke about not having any meat. I’ve never had it, but I hear that Welsh Rabbit is similar to fondue, except that you don’t dip bread chunks into cheese, you pour the cheese onto the bread.
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup beer or ale
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon each cayenne pepper and paprika
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1-1/2 cups sharp Cheddar,* shredded
1 egg yolk
4 slices bread for toast
Optional: sliced tomato
Optional garnishes: fresh snipped chives or thyme
Wednesday – September 4
National Macadamia Nut Day – Peanuts are great and cashews are great, but the rarest nut, the supreme leader of the nut world, is the rich and buttery macadamia nut! I know that the bliss of biting into a chocolate covered macadamia nut is one that I appreciate, and I know many other people do too. But what do we KNOW about the Macadamia nut? I didn’t know much, but now I do, and so will you. There are two main species of Macadamia Nut – the Macadamia integrifolia is a nut native to southeastern Queensland where it grows in the rain forests and close to streams, and the Macadamia tetraphylla is native to southeastern Queensland and northeastern New South Wales, growing in rain forests, in moist places and along stream banks. At the point where these two species meet, there are types that seem to be natural hybrids. In 1881 the macadamia was brought to Hawaii, where it was used as an ornamental plant, and for reforestation. The Hawaii Agricultural Experiment Station named and introduced several of their macadamia selections in 1948, and that led to the modern macadamia industry in Hawaii. In California two seedling macadamias were planted in the early 1880’s and are still standing on the Berkeley campus of the University of California. The importation of improved and named varieties into California from Hawaii began about 1950. Though the trees can deal with the cold down to about 23 degrees, the flower clusters that produce the nuts die off at about 28 degrees. One thing that I found to be interesting was that when grown in a large tub, macadamias make suitable container plants. Hmmmm . . . wonder where I can find one of those? A tree doesn’t produce nuts until it is 7 – 10 years old, and their rich buttery flavor and oil make them incredibly useful in many things from food to skin products. Clinical research has shown that eating 50-100 grams of macadamia nuts each day can reduce blood cholesterol by as much as 7%- 9% in four weeks. They are rich in vitamins A1, B1, B2, B5, B6 and E, as well as niacin and dietary fiber, and antioxidants that include polyphenols, amino acids, selenium and flavanols. One thing I didn’t know, but thought was really interesting, was that the macadamia shell can range from four to twelve inches long! I could go on and on but suffice it to say than this is a pretty incredible nut!
Thursday – September 5
National Cheese Pizza Day – Well, I can honestly say, I love pizza. And I love pizza best when it has LOTS of ooey gooey cheese on it! Whether it’s Chicago-style deep dish, a crispy and thin-crusted pie or a classic doughy Neapolitan slice, cheese pizza is an undeniable favorite. In fact, 94% of Americans eat pizza on a regular basis! Mmmmmmmmmmmmmm . . .
Friday – September 6
National Coffee Ice Cream Day – I LOVE ice cream, and coffee ice cream was just an inspired flavor to create. The person who came up with it was a genius. Seriously! Creamy, sweet ice cream mixed with coffee and if you’re fortunate chocolate! One of my very favorite flavors is Mocha Almond Fudge – oh great – now I’m craving ice cream.
Saturday – September 7
National Acorn Squash Day – Acorn squash’s sweet, orange flesh shines when it’s roasted, but it can also be steamed or sauteed. When I was a kid my Mom used to make acorn squash for us. She’d cut it half, clean it out, and fill them with butter and brown sugar, then bake them. Yum! And don’t throw out the seeds — they’re edible, too!
Salami Day – Today we celebrate Salami . . . Salami is one large and important part of the family of sausages of Italy. The name, which is plural of the Italian word salame, applies to matured raw meat made into sausages with recipes of Italian origin. Within Italy there are many different types of salami, mostly medium to large in size, and those made in Italy are usually dried without smoking. Names indicate the style or place of origin. Salami made in south Italy and Sardinia are distinguished by their spiciness. These include: Napoletano, Cardo, Calabrese, Peperone . . . all of these belong to the class of salame crudo – raw salame. The list of types of salami based on these regions and styles are numerous and worth the taste test when time permits.
Sunday – September 8
National Date Nut Bread Day – I LOVE nut bread . . . and I love dates! Combine the two and you have the PERFECT bread! This is a hearty quick bread that just needs a bit of butter and you have a treat that makes you feel happy. Of course, I’m trying not to eat white flour or sugar, but I’m sure I can find a recipe I like and make some changes to make it work. YUM!
Everyone who happens to have today off, enjoy your holiday, anyone traveling, be safe, and to all of us that have to go back to work tomorrow, Have a wonderful work week! God bless you and I’ll see you on Monday.
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Celebration list sources: