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April 1, 2016

Today we celebrate:

Boomer Bonus Day - This is a day when Baby Boomers (who are people that were born right after World War II) get a special discount on things that they purchase from participating establishments.

Edible Book Day - If you have never seen an edible book, you don’t know what you are missing.  I have made one myself in my amateurish way.  Some people can make some pretty spectacular and realistic looking books.  The best part is that you can then eat your creation.  Although I always have trouble being the one to cut into it.  So I let my husband do that.

Fossil Fools Day - Combining the names April Fools and Fossil Fuels, this is a day for educating the world about the benefits of alternative sources of energy as opposed to using fossil fuels, and to encourage lawmakers to do everything they can to ensure that corporations become responsible and use clean renewable energy.

Lupus Alert Day - We celebrate Lupus Awareness today because Lupus is an autoimmune disease that is very difficult to diagnose because its’ symptoms can “Fool” doctors by mimicking the other diseases.  It can also go into long periods of remission before rearing its’ ugly head again and again in entirely different ways.

National Love For Our Children Day - Another day I can’t find much information on, other than the fact that it exists.  So do something different on this day that you don’t do on every other day, and love your children. Oh?  What’s that?  You love your children every day?  Well, you must be doing something wrong then, because this is the only day that has been set aside for that purpose.

National One Cent Day - First minted in 1909, the one cent coin is worth one hundredth of a dollar.  But interestingly, it costs more than one cent to make one cent.  So the government is losing money with this coin.  There was a movement a while ago to try to get rid of the penny, but since we are still using it, I don’t think that is going to happen any time soon.

Reading is Funny Day - This is a day to focus on teaching children that reading can be funny by getting out some joke books, books that make you laugh, or have your kids write some funny stories.  When I was young, my sister and I spent hours in hysterical laughter over our Mad Libs books.

Student Government Day - Celebrated on the first Friday of April, this is a Massachusetts holiday that is designed to give students an opportunity to participate in and learn about the state legislature. Students from school districts all over the state are selected to come together to become the state government for a day.  They hold hearings on topics that are pertinent to student life and reenact court hearings.

US Air Force Academy Day - I’ve seen this day referenced on numerous websites but I haven’t found out yet why it exists. When I find out more, I’ll let you know.  In the meantime, give those Air Force men and women some appreciation today.  No matter what the day is about, it would never be wrong to honor our men and women in uniform.

National Walk To Work Day – Always celebrated on the first Friday in April, get those sneakers laced up and let's hope it doesn't rain today or snow for that matter considering the winter we experienced this year in the Northeast.

Hospital Admitting Clerks Day – Celebrated on the first Friday in April, this is a day to recognize the contributions of Hospital Admitting Clerks.  The admitting clerks are vital members of the hospital staff. It's not just about the doctors and nurses, without people to handle the paperwork and administrative details, the hospital would not be able to function.

National Sourdough Bread Day – You needed to plan ahead to make a loaf of this because it requires a starter, so I recommend you find a really good bread store and buy a fresh loaf.

April Fools' Day – A day for practical jokes and tricks all over the world. Different countries may have some different traditions such as the “April Fish” in France, the Pigasus Award in Canada, and “April Gowk” in Scotland.

National Fun Day – This goes hand in hand with April Fool's Day because today is a day to reminisce about past fun that you have had with April Fool's jokes.  Once, when I was a kid, a local radio station had many people wrapping their telephones in plastic bags for the day because the DJ said the telephone company was going to be cleaning the lines by blow air into them which would cause dust to come out the telephone receivers.

International Fun At Work Day – Back in January we had National Fun at Work Day, well today we get to do it again but this time we can share it with the rest of the world. Just make sure you don't have so much fun that you get fired. We celebrate this day on April 1st as long as it falls on a weekday, otherwise we will celebrate on the First Thursday in April. This day was created in 1996 by the people at Playfair and they stress that humor should be fun for all, so please avoid put-downs or pranks that make someone look foolish.

International Tatting Day – For those of you who are like me, and do not know, tatting is the making of intricate lace for doilies or trim using needles or a special shuttle. If you want to learn how to do this and you have the patience, I recommend taking a class so you have someone to help you get started with this complicated craft.

Atheist Day – I don't think this is a real day but I’m not sure so I put it in here. It seems to have started as a joke – something like an atheist sued someone to get a special day and the judge told him he had a special day, April Fool's Day because anyone who doesn't believe in God is a fool. From there, it spread that Atheist Day is on this day.

Poetry & The Creative Mind Day – Writing poetry requires a creative mind. There are many different forms of poetry and many different rules for writing poems, but beyond that, you need to be able to come up with just the right words to say what you want to say.

St. Stupid Day – This day was founded by Ed Holmes in the 1970's. It is celebrated in San Francisco by a parade. It's a celebration of stupidity and anyone can join in dressed in whatever silly costume they wish.

March 31, 2016

Today we celebrate:

Cesar Chavez Day - Born on this day in 1927, Cesar Chavez was a civil rights and labor movement activist.  He and Dolores Huerta created the National Farm Workers Association. He dedicated his life to working to make sure that farm workers, particularly Hispanic farm workers, were treated fairly.

National Crayola Crayon Day - Who doesn’t love crayons?  All those colors that we put into the hands of children who would be happy with just a couple of primary colors.  But Crayola has a multitude of different colors sure to please even the most particular artist.  So don’t be shy, go get yourself a coloring book and have some fun, children or no children.

World Backup Day - Backing up our information is so important and yet is something that so many of us, including myself, tend to not do.  But what would you do if you lost everything because your computer crashes?  Or your phone is stolen? Where do you store your digital pictures?  Your financial information?  Take the time today to back it all up onto more than one system (because sometimes backups fail to).

Eiffel Tower Day – On this day in 1889, the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France, was dedicated. It took two years, two months and five days to complete. It was built by Gustave Eiffel for the International Exhibition of Paris in that year. The tower had the distinction of being the tallest structure in the world until 1930.

National Bunsen Burner Day – On this day in 1811, Robert Wilhelm Eberhard von Bunsen was born in Germany. He was a professor of chemistry and created the Bunsen burner which has made life so much easier for chemists and chemistry students. I'm not sure how they conducted their classroom experiments before then.

National “She's Funny That Way” Day – Today is a day to celebrate women and all the ways we make everyone laugh. Some women make a living out of being funny, such as Ellen Degeneres, one of my favorite comedians  For others it's a pleasant hobby, and for the rest, like me, it's a happy accident.

National Clams On The Half Shell Day – These are clams that are served on an open shell. They are usually raw but I think if you look hard enough, and you better believe that I will, you just might be able to find a recipe for cooked clams on a half shell.

International Day Of Prayer And Remembrance For Terri Schindler Schiavo, And All Our Vulnerable Brothers And Sisters – Also known simply as “Terri’s Day”. You probably remember the big controversy regarding Terri Schiavo. I'm not going into details and taking sides here, I'll just say that today is a day to remember her and everyone else who is or has been in her and her family's heartbreaking position. It was on this day in 2005 that she died.

National Tater Day - Today we celebrate potatoes and the vitamins, minerals and fiber they provide us.  They have been a staple of Americans ever since the early 1600’s.  Of course, back then potatoes were shipped in from Europe because Idaho hadn’t been discovered yet.

March 30, 2016

Today we celebrate:

Pencil Day – The pencil has been around for hundreds of years, but on this day in 1858, the first patent was granted for a pencil with an eraser at the end of it. I guess they didn’t make mistakes before then.  Did you know that 75% of all pencils are yellow?

Manatee Appreciation Day – Celebrated on the last Wednesday in March, this is a day to promote, appreciate and protect manatees. These are large mammals that live in saltwater bays, rivers, canals and along the coasts. They live in Florida in the winter, because who doesn't? Then they migrate to different areas as far away as Virginia and Texas during the summer months. They are very calm creatures that live on plant-life but their numbers are dwindling due to poaching and coastal development.

Turkey Neck Soup Day – This is a soup made from stock which is made with turkey necks. Fun facts about turkeys can be found here.

National I Am In Control Day – You decide what you are going to do today. Be in control of your own destiny, at least for today. It is possible that whoever created this chose the 30th for the celebration because on this day in 1981, Secretary of State Alexander Haig was interviewed and said, “I am in control here.”

Grass Is Always Browner On The Other Side Of The Fence Day – All too often we go through life looking at what other people have that we do not. Then we're not happy because we think we need to have what they have, or we think that their lives are better than ours. Well today, focus on the good things about your life and think about how fortunate you are to have whatever it is that you have. Your neighbors aren't nearly as happy as you think they are anyway because they're looking at you and wishing they had what you have.

National Doctors Day – Created in 1991 by President George Bush, this is a day to recognize the contributions of doctors to society. We all depend upon our doctors whenever we get sick or hurt because they have dedicated their lives to helping people.  They have saved countless lives over the years and are the primary reason why our life expectancy is as high as it is.

Take A Walk In The Park Day – I don't think that you necessarily HAVE to walk in a park today. This day seems to be about focusing on your physical and mental health, which would be improved with some exercise like walking. If you have a park handy, go walk in it. If not, walk somewhere else. Just get some exercise. Walking is one of the best activities you can do because it is both exercise and relaxation at the same time.

March 29, 2016

Today we celebrate:

Declaw Awareness Day - This is a day to raise awareness of the issue of declawing cats. Many places ban the practice because it is like amputating a part of the cat. They would like it to be illegal everywhere. If your cat is destroying your furniture, and you are thinking about declawing it, look into this issue before you make up your mind.

National Lemon Chiffon Cake Day – Cleanse your palate from yesterday's chocolate with this delectable lemon cake which I actually prefer over chocolate, as crazy as that sounds.

National Mom And Pop Business Owners Day – This day celebrates small business owners. This country was built by small businesses and although it looks like it has been taken over by the larger businesses, there is still a place for the little Mom and Pop stores especially if we all make it our mission to ensure they get enough business to stay in business.

Vietnam Veterans Day - On this day in 1973, the last of our troops left South Vietnam. Several states now celebrate this day every year to remember the men who fought so hard and came home to so much disdain. In the past, returning military were greeted with parades and festivals and admiration. Not so with the Vietnam Veterans, and they sacrificed just as much as any other war time military person. 

Smoke And Mirrors Day – This is a day for hiding things you do not want to be seen by using illusion and distraction just like Magicians do. Be very sneaky today. But don’t tell your kids about it ahead of time. Otherwise, they will be watching very carefully and it will be very difficult to fool them. Especially if they are jaded pre-teens.  

Knights Of Columbus Founders Day – On this day in 1882, Connecticut approved the charter of the first Knights Of Columbus. The Knights are dedicated to a variety of volunteer projects that help their communities all over the country.

Niagara Falls Runs Dry Day – On this day in 1848, people were shocked when Niagara Falls stopped flowing. The reason? Too much ice. I’m a little surprised it didn’t happen this year as well considering that it was the coldest, snowiest winter the Northeast has seen in quite a while.  But maybe it was was worse in 1848.  Back then, the ice in Lake Erie blocked the water at the start of the river leading to this great landmark for more than a day. People walked out onto the river bottom to pick up treasures that had been at the bottom of the river for years. In my opinion they were pretty darn lucky the water didn't suddenly come back while they were out there.

Texas Loves The Children Day – Every child needs to be loved, although to be loved by a whole state is a little different. Talk about pressure. Fortunately, Texas only loves the children today, the rest of the year it could care less.

March 28, 2016

Today we celebrate:

Dyngus Day – This is the Polish term for Easter Monday. Each country has a different way of celebrating. I was surprised to read that traditionally boys wake girls up by pouring water on their heads and hitting them on the legs with long, thin twigs or switches made from willow or birch tree branches. The website I reference here says the water is “sprinkled” and the legs are “tapped” but I think we all know what would really happen if you're talking about brothers and sisters. It says at the website below that ladies would retaliate by throwing dishes and crockery.  That seems like a rather violent custom to me but I don’t judge.  It also said that traditionally girls would then return the favor on Tuesday.  I don’t think I would bother to wait that long.

Easter Monday - The day after Easter is a holiday in some countries. It can be known as “Bright Monday” or “Renewal Monday”. In Australia, this is a public holiday with lots of people getting the day off from work. Egyptians celebrate it as a national holiday as opposed to a religious one.  And in Ireland, it is a day of remembrance of the people who died in the Easter Rising in 1916.

Eat An Eskimo Pie Day - This day is pretty self-explanatory.  I have no idea who created it or why….well I can figure out the why.  Clearly it is because the creator of the day loves Eskimo Pies.  I personally have never had one.  Anyone have a gluten free recipe I could try?

White House Easter Egg Roll – This has been going on for more than 130 years and this year is no exception. But don't plan on dropping by to participate, they have a lottery system in place to pick the people who will get to go.

National Hot Tub Day - Those of you lucky enough to have access to a hot tub really need to try to celebrate this day.  Have a nice long, soothing, relaxing soak for me, would you?

Children’s Picture Book Day - Kids love picture books.  My kids used to sit with a stack and just look at picture after picture.  We would read them together over and over again until they used to “read” them back to me.  I was amazed until I realized they had memorized the stories and weren’t actually reading the words.  But learning the words happened soon after and now they love to read.

Seward's Day – Always on the last Monday in March, this day celebrates the purchase of Alaska from Russia by Secretary of State William Henry Seward on March 30, 1867 for $7.2 million. Most people at the time thought that was a ridiculous thing to do and called it “Seward's Folly”. Mr. Seward suffered a great deal of criticism until they discovered gold in Alaska in 1897. Sadly, Mr. Seward died before that happened so he never knew the full extent of what he did for the United States.

National Black Forest Cake Day – Layers of chocolate cake, whipped cream and cherries. What could be more delicious? This cake can have a surprising number of calories, but I know that if you look carefully, you'll find a delicious low-cal recipe.

National Something On A Stick Day – Corn dogs and popsicles are not the only things that can be put on a stick and eaten. Kebobs are probably a little healthier, but you could take quite a few foods and put them on a stick so you don't need to use utensils today.

Barnum And Bailey Day – On this day in 1881, P.T. Barnum and James A. Bailey merged their circuses and created the “Greatest Show On Earth”. The Ringling Brothers purchased it in 1907 and in 1919 added their name to the title.

Weed Appreciation Day – Weeds are just not given enough credit. People are always pulling them up and throwing them aside but did you know that you can eat some weeds? Young dandelion greens are good in a salad, I hear. Even weeds serve a purpose in the circle of life.

March 27, 2016

Today we celebrate:

Easter – A very important Christian holiday celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

World Theatre Day - Created in 1961 by the International Theatre Institute, this is a day that the ITI shares a World Theatre Day International Message by an important person who shares his or her reflections on the theme of “Theatre and a Culture of Peace.”  In 2016, the author of this message is Anatoli Vassiliev.  Mr. Vassiliev is the founder of the Moscow Theatre School of Dramatic Arts.  You can see the whole list of message authors here.

National Baked Ham with Pineapple Day - This is one of the few “floating” food holidays.  It might even be the only one.  I’d have to look that up.  It is celebrated on Easter every year, hence the reason for the floating since Easter is on a different day every year.

National Spanish Paella Day – There are an amazing number of very different recipes out there for this traditional dish from Spain, so you should have no trouble finding one that fits the ingredients you already have at home.

National “Joe” Day – This is just a silly and fun day. If your name is Joe, you're golden and you don't have to change a thing. If your name is anything else, today it's going to be “Joe”. And you don't have to worry about remembering anyone else's name either because everyone is “Joe” today.

Quirky Country Music Song Titles Day – There are some country songs that have some very odd titles to say the least. I find it interesting that there are enough of them that someone felt the need to make a day for the subject.  I’ll give you a quick example: ‘Dixie Rose Deluxe’s Honky-Tonk, Feed Store, Gun Shop, Used Car, Beer, Bait, BBQ, Barber Shop, Laundromat’.  Yes, that is the name of a song.  Here are some more.

Celebrate Exchange Day – Created by The National Exchange Club which was founded on this day in 1911 by businessmen who wanted to exchange ideas. The members advised each other and shared information and arranged activities to benefit their communities such as supporting the youth, preventing crime and helping senior citizens, members of the military and more.

Neighbor Day - Always on the last Sunday in March, this is a day to celebrate communities in Australia. So today, gather with your neighbors and build relationships that will last a lifetime. You will all benefit in many ways.

March 26, 2016

Today we celebrate:

Holy Saturday - The Saturday before Easter is also called “Joyous Saturday” or “the Saturday of Light” by Christians.  It is the day after Good Friday and commemorates the day that Jesus’ body lay in the tomb.

Purple Day - This is an Epilepsy Awareness day.  People around the world are to wear purple to show their support for people who suffer from epilepsy and their families that support them.

Solitude Day - This is a day for Wiccans and Neo-Pagans.  I’m not sure what a Neo-Pagan is but if you are one, I’m sure you are aware of it.  So today you should meditate in solitude in order to reconnect with your inner self.

Brother & Sister Day - Always on the last Saturday in March, this is a day to celebrate the bond between siblings.  Most of us grow up hating or at least barely tolerating our siblings. There are a few who love each other from day one, but they are pretty rare.  However, something almost magical happens as we grow and mature and see our siblings as people instead of rivals for the last scoop of ice cream, our love for each other grows as well.  My sister and I fought constantly when we were very young, then as teenagers we began to really get to know each other and now I love her like crazy and can’t imagine life without her.

National Make Up Your Own Holiday Day – Well, someone needs to create all these crazy days that we celebrate, they don't make up themselves and apparently whoever is doing it is running out of ideas. So today you'll just have to make up your own. Make it a good one.

National Nougat Day – Nougat, a part of many of our favorite candy bars, is thought to be thousands of years old and possibly originated in Rome. There are many different recipes for it used by many different candy makers. So pick the one you like the best or make up your own and stick with it.

National Spinach Day – Spinach is an excellent source of iron, calcium and folic acid and scientists are investigating reports that it is useful in preventing a few different kinds of cancer. Now, aren't you sorry you have turned up your nose at it for so long? Spinach is actually quite delicious if you cook it correctly. If you don't like it, perhaps you just haven't tried the right recipe.

Legal Assistants Day – This is a day to recognize the hard work of legal assistants everywhere who do everything they can to make the lawyers look good.  Lawyers would have a tough time helping as many clients as they do if they had to do their work and the work that they assign to their legal assistants as well.  There just aren’t enough hours in the day and the libraries full of law books are tedious to wade through.

March 25, 2016

Today we celebrate:

Good Friday – Celebrated on the Friday before Easter, today is the day Christians remember the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. This is a day celebrated by many countries all over the world and each one has their own unique customs, traditions and beliefs.  One such tradition is the kite flying that happens on Bermuda every Good Friday, serving as symbolism for Jesus ascending into heaven.

Tolkien Reading Day – Created by the Tolkien Society in 2003 for the purpose of encouraging people to read J. R. R. Tolkien's works. This day was chosen because it was on this day in the Lord of the Rings that Sauron fell in defeat.

Maryland Day – This is a legal holiday in Maryland commemorating the landing of the first European settlers on this day in 1634. Approximately one hundred and fifty settlers from “The Ark” and “The Dove” landed at St. Clement's Island in the Potomac river.

International Waffle Day – Not to be confused with National Waffle Day on August 24th, this day originated in Sweden and is supposed to commemorate the day the Archangel Gabriel told the Virgin Mary that she was pregnant. I am not sure how waffles connect to that momentous occasion, but I'm sure someone in Sweden could answer that question.

Old New Year's Day – Until 1752, when the Gregorian calendar was adopted, this day was celebrated as the beginning of the New Year in England because of Archangel Gabriel's message to Mary. I think this was before the whole waffle craze started.

National Medal Of Honor Day – This is a day dedicated to Medal of Honor recipients. Medals of Honor are given to citizens who have displayed courage and heroism beyond what you normally see. This day was chosen for the celebration because on this day in 1863, the first Medals of Honor were awarded to 6 brave men.

International Day Of Remembrance Of The Victims Of Slavery And The Transatlantic Slave Trade – This day honors the lives of all those who suffered and/or died as a result of slavery and those who endured the horrors of being transported across an ocean in slave ships. The transatlantic slave trade lasted for four hundred years and is a serious blight on the history of mankind.  While this was not the first time that the forced slavery of almost an entire race has happened, it is the most recent episode that I can think of.  

Greek Independence Day: A National Day Of Celebration Of Greek And American Democracy – Every year on this day we celebrate Greek Independence Day because democracy was born in Greece and it is the world's oldest republic. The President of the United States issues a proclamation to that effect every year.

National Lobster Newburg Day – In 1876, Sea Captain Ben Wenburg, showed Chef Charles Ranhofer and Charles Delmonico, of Delmonico's restaurant, a new dish that they altered a little then named after the Captain, “Lobster a la Wenburg”. Alas for the Captain, Mr. Delmonico and Captain Wenburg had an argument and Wenburg was kicked out of the restaurant and never allowed to return. Delmonico then renamed the lobster dish to Lobster Newburg.

Pecan Day – Native Americans used pecan trees as a major source of food in the fall. They are also said to be the first to have purposefully cultivated this particular tree. Not very surprising, they were very good at cultivating lots of different sources of food.