Saturday, August 31, 2013

Holidays for August 31st 2013

Cow Chip Tossing Day


It may have started in Wisconsin, but cow chip tossing seems to have caught on - at least, on August 31st. In some parts, cow chip tossing is even more popular than watermelon seed spitting, potato sack races or pie eating contests combined.

The first pioneers that settled in the Plains faced Indians and unfriendly land. The desire to own a home and land to raise a family gave the settlers the determination to brave the difficult conditions. The scarcity of water and timber for fuel and shelter, plus extreme weather conditions, made life hard and lonely. Bitter winters found the settlers desperate for fuel.

Buffalo hunters had found that buffalo chips could be used for fuel. Most of the buffalo were gone by the time the settlers came, so they had to rely on the "cow chip" for furnishing fuel to cook their food and warm their homes.

When dry, the chips were odorless, gave a clean, bright flame and burned with intense heat, without soot. Chips were gathered and stored for the winter as autumn approached. The cow chip was a life-sustaining utility and was often used in trade for food or anything the pioneers needed.

In 1970 tossing cow chips became a sport in the Cimmarron Territory Celebration held each year in Beaver, Oklahoma in remembrance of the rugged courage and individualism of the early pioneer.

Giant Cow Chip In 1975 the Sauk Prairie Jaycees, recognized the Sauk Prairie Area as the Cow Chip Capital of Wisconsin and organized the first State Cow Chip Throw.

In 1989 the Wisconsin State Legislature proclaimed the cow chip the Unofficial State Muffin.

Over the years, this light-hearted tradition continues. The entire Sauk Prairie Community welcomes you to join the fun.

How far can you toss a cow chip, meadow muffin, prairie patty or dried bovine dung by any other name? (Yep, the dried piles are much easier to toss ... and a lot less messy.)

Happy Cow Chip Tossing Day on August 31st. (And watch your step out there in the barnyard.)

National Eat Outside Day


It's National Eat Outside Day! Today is the last day of August, which makes this a very timely celebration. It's the perfect opportunity to take your breakfast, lunch, or dinner into the great outdoors and enjoy the last few days of warm summer weather.

Al-fresco dining first became popular in the 18th century. Patrons who enjoyed eating their meals in the open air could visit tea gardens, seashore resorts, or rooftop restaurants. Eating outside was considered a tourist activity up until the early 1900s. Around that time, the first sidewalk cafés appeared on the streets of Manhattan.

There are many ways that you can participate in National Eat Outside Day. Eat at your favorite outdoor restaurant, enjoy a popsicle on your porch, organize a barbeque in your backyard, or have a picnic at a local park. Whatever you decide to do, just be sure to enjoy some time outside. Have fun!

National Trail Mix Day


August 31st is National Trail Mix Day. While its origins are unknown, this annual “food holiday” celebrates trail mix – a healthy snack usually comprised of dried fruits, nuts, seeds, granola, coconut and a bit of sweet chocolate. Legend has it that some surfer dudes invented trail mix back in the '60s.

Like the name suggests, trail mix is the perfect pick-me-up while hiking on a trail or a great lunchtime or afternoon snack. Trail Mix, also referred to as GORP (an acronym for Good Old Raisins and Peanuts) is available in a wide variety of prepackaged trail mixes found at your local grocery store, but you can also make your own, adding your preferred ingredients.

Princess Diana Memorial Day


August 31st marks the 16th anniversary of the tragic death of one of the world’s most beautiful and admired women. On this day in 1997, Diana, the Princess of Wales, died in a horrific car crash moments after leaving the Ritz Hotel in Paris.

Princess Diana

Lady Diana Frances Spencer was born on July 1, 1961. “Shy Di” went on to marry Prince Charles on July 29, 1981. Millions around the world watched the lavish, fairy-tale wedding as it happened on television on July 29, 1981. The couple would share two children before the marriage began to unravel. In 1992, it was officially announced the couple would separate and in 1996, the couple divorced. Although she officially resigned from her duties in 1993, her charitable work and life in the public eye continued.

The Death of a Princess

Chased by paparazzi after leaving the hotel, the driver of the Mercedes car, Henri Paul, crashed in a Paris tunnel. Paul, along with Diana's boyfriend, Dodi Fayed, were pronounced dead on the scene. Diana’s bodyguard, Trevor Rees-Jones, survived. Diana and Dodi were not wearing seat-belts.

While Diana initially survived the crash, she died hours later in a hospital from injuries sustained in the accident. Despite several controversies surrounding the accident, it was eventually determined that Henri Paul’s high rate of speed and the driver’s level of intoxication were the cause of the crash. The “People’s Princess” was only 36 years old.

The World Mourns

More than 1 million people lined the funeral route as young William and Harry walked behind their mother's coffin on September 6, 1997. It is estimated that over 2 billion people watched the funeral on television.

Diana's final resting place is the magnificent Althorp estate, the Spencer family home for 20 generations. Visitors can view the award-winning exhibition which showcases the life and work of Princess Diana.

But besides being one of the most beautiful and photographed women in the world, she was also known for her warmth, compassion and humanitarian work. Her legacy continues to this day. Diana not only lives on in her children, but in the hearts of all who knew and admired her. After all, she was affectionately called the "Queen of Hearts."

Franchise Appreciation Day


What is Franchise Appreciation Day?

Franchise Appreciation Day is an initiative to help create an awareness to increase customers knowledge of the importance of using social media networks and location-based services to connect with, and continue to support local franchises. It's also a day to celebrate franchises and allow you the consumer to enjoy a day in support of your favorite franchises by receiving Discounts and Giveaways.

When is Franchise Appreciation Day?

Saturday August 31st, 2013 [Labor Day Weekend]. We encourage everyone to support local franchises daily.

Who can participate?

Anyone. We encourage everyone to support local franchises.

Why should I get involve?

To help with building and strengthening the relationships between consumers and franchisees using mobile applications and social media to connect with their local consumers. This would drive more traffic and in-turn would create more revenue for that franchisee to hire more people in your community, and do more community involvement activities.

What is a Franchise?

A franchise is a right granted to an individual or group to market a company's goods or services within a certain territory or location. Some examples of today's popular franchises are McDonald's, Subway, Domino's Pizza, Golden Krust Bakery and the UPS Store.

There are many different types of franchises. There are over 120 different types of franchise businesses available today, including automotive, cleaning & maintenance, health & fitness, financial services, and pet-related franchises, just to name a few.

Who are Franchisees?

A franchisee is an individual who purchases the rights to use a company's trademarked name and business model to do business. The franchisee purchases a franchise from the franchisor. The franchisee must follow certain rules and guidelines already established by the franchisor, and in most cases the franchisee must pay an ongoing franchise royalty fee to the franchisor.

What are the Franchises Facts?

The number of jobs filled within and because of franchised businesses (17,430,700)
The number of franchise establishments (over 828,138)
Direct and indirect economic impact of franchised businesses; ($2.1 trillion)
Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of franchised businesses ($1.2 trillion)
Franchised businesses account for nearly 50% of all retail sales in the United States.
Franchised businesses supplied an annual payroll of $304.4 billion, or 4.2 percent of all private nonfarm payrolls in the United States in 2007!

What is Sociallybuzz?

Sociallybuzz is a social media management, marketing and advertising company, working with businesses and franchises to help them understand the importance of having a local social web presence and the values of having a great relationship with their consumers.

Love Litigating Lawyers Day


Because every profession deserves to be dutifully celebrated, August 31st has been named "Love Litigating Lawyers Day." Today's the perfect opportunity to go up to your favorite litigator and give him or her a big 'ol hug.

Where would we be without these folks? Goodness knows. I shudder to even think.

If you're looking for a good gift for your favorite lawyer, check out these awesome gavel stress balls, to ensure that even if they leave the court, the court doesn't have to leave them.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Holidays for August 30th 2013

National Frankenstein Day


Mary Wollenstone Shelly who gave us the epic novel, "Frankenstein" in 1818 was born on this day in 1797.
In her honor, let's resurrect something. Reanimating a dead romance is very popular. Your ex has been looking a bit forlorn lately. Or how about that old Irish tradition, resurrecting a good old fashioned grudge? You know what they say, Irish Alzheimer's is when you forget everything except your grudges! There's a reason that the Hatfields and McCoys came from the Emerald Isle.

Maybe making a few extra bucks is your style. Slam together some bits and pieces that never were part of the original vintage jewelry or bakelite radio and you too can create your own Frankenstein. Look out for the angry antiques dealers though-they're the ones converging on you with the lit torches.

Then there's always the ever popular Mel Brooks movie, "Young Frankenstein". Who can forget such deathless quotes as:

Igor: You know, I'll never forget my old dad. When these things would happen to him... the things he'd say to me.
Dr. Frederick Frankenstein: What did he say?
Igor: "What the hell are you doing in the bathroom day and night? Why don't you get out of there and give someone else a chance?"

or this gem:

Dr. Frederick Frankenstein: You know, I'm a rather brilliant surgeon. Perhaps I can help you with that hump.
Igor: What hump?

Or what about stopping by a theater for a midnight showing of "The Rocky Horror Picture Show?" Dr. Frankenfurter still turns my crank. I wouldn't mind meeting a sweet transvestite from transsexual Transylvania right now. Yes, it has been a long dry year. At least he can sing. And dance.

You might even go with the classics and rent the real thing: 1931's horror classic: Frankenstein. I wouldn't though. The banking meltdown is frightening enough. I'm still trying to recover from that Foreclosure debacle.

Who says that old broad Mary Wollenstone Shelly knew what she was talking about? Her novel was subtitled, the Modern Prometheus, and it was about science run amok. She certainly didn't know what she was talking about. Science run amok? Technology becoming our masters? Certainly not, and I hope that that damn technician in India picks up soon. I've been on hold for nearly an hour over this godforsaken computer and my cell phone battery is dying.

So let's raise a toast to Shelly, who certainly seemed to be a lady ahead of her time. And if Frankenstein's drink hasn't been invented yet, have a zombie instead. Close enough.

National Toasted Marshmallow Day


August 30 is National Toasted Marshmallow Day. The history of marshmallows dates all the way back to ancient Egypt. Pharaohs used to eat the sweet extract that comes from squeezing mallow plants. However, it wasn't until the 19th century that marshmallows evolved to become the delicious treats we eat today.

What are toasted marshmallows?

A marshmallow is a confection that consists of sugar, corn syrup, water, and gelatin that has been softened in hot water, dextrose, vanilla flavorings, and sometimes coloring, whipped to a spongy consistency.

Marshmallows are popular during camping trips. A marshmallow is placed on the end of a stick or skewer and held over the fire. This method creates a caramelized outer skin with a liquid, molten layer underneath.

According to individual preferences, the marshmallows are heated to various degrees from slightly toasted to a burnt outer layer. The toasted marshmallow can either be eaten whole or the outer layer can be removed and eaten separately and the rest of the marshmallow toasted again.

You do not have to wait until you go camping to eat a toasted marshmallow. When you have a taste for a toasted marshmallow, simply stick a fork in a large marshmallow and hold it over a hot stove or over a candle. Just be extra careful.

Celebrate National Marshmallow Day by toasting them and sharing with family and friends.

Slinky Day


Spring into action on August 30! It's Slinky Day.

Who remembers this popular coiled spring toy, which clinks and clanks and steps downstairs all by itself? The Slinky first appeared in the 1940s, created by American naval engineer Richard James. Apparently James invented the classic plaything by accident. He was working on a set of metal springs for shipboard instruments. Suddenly, a section of spring fell off his laboratory shelf and stepped down several stacks of books, papers and counter before landing in a neat upright stack.

A legend was born.
 Celebrating this auspicious occasion, August 30 th is Slinky Day. Grab a metal Slinky (or even one of the newer rainbow-colored plastic varieties), and let it run your staircase. Fan the coiled spring back and forth between your hands for a super stress-buster.
Or simply sit back and wax nostalgic by watching this old Slinky television commercial. Just try not to sing along. See? You can't help yourself!

National Holistic Pet Day


On the “heels” of National Dog Day, August 30 is also dedicated to those beloved furry friends. It’s National Holistic Pet Day, an annual “howliday” that raises awareness about the importance of providing a healthy diet, lifestyle and environment for pets of all shapes and sizes.

National Holistic Pet Day

The annual holiday was created by Animal Miracle Foundation & Network founder, author, animal lover and pet lifestyle expert, Colleen Paige. While many Americans are making healthier choices, it’s important our pets live healthy lifestyles as well.

The Scoop on Keeping Fido & Fluffy Healthy
  • Have you ever read the label on Fido’s or Fluffy’s food? Why not try an all-natural pet food and tasty treat instead?
  • Did you know some foods, like grapes, raisins and chocolate, are toxic to pets?
  • Some plants and flowers are also toxic to pets. Make sure your plants are safe for pets.
  • Keep human medication away from animals. Some can be lethal.
  • Many products around the home are loaded with all sorts of chemicals. Purchase all-natural products like shampoo, treats and supplements instead.
  • Purchase non-toxic household products.
  • Get the scoop! Consider switching clay-based cat litter to something more natural.
  • Be sure to take your pet in for regular checkups. Are they up-to-date on their immunizations? And don't forget the teeth!
  • Don't let them roam away from home. Keep your felines inside and dogs on a leash when outside.
  • Don’t forget to spay and neuter!
  • Someone left the door open and Fido flew the coop. According to the American Humane Association, less than 20 percent of dogs and only 2 percent of kitties ever find their way back home. While collars with nametags are good, microchipping is an affordable option to help your pet find his way back home.
  • Just like humans, pets need regular exercise to keep them in tip-top shape.
  • While diet and exercise are important, keeping a pet mentally stimulated is also important to a pet’s quality of life.
  • Oh what to do with all that doo?
  • Finally, please don’t forget the millions of unwanted, unloved, abused and neglected animals dumped in shelters across America. Please consider donating food or money, becoming a foster pet parent and/or opening your heart and home to an animal in need – before it is too late.
Pets add so much to our lives; it’s up to us to keep them healthy, happy and safe.

National College Colors Day


National College Colors Day is an annual celebration dedicated to promoting the traditions and spirit that make the college experience great by encouraging people across America to wear apparel of their favorite college or university throughout the day.

Additionally, National College Colors Day, which coincides with “back to school” and the kick-off of intercollegiate athletics, strives to advocate higher education through increased public awareness, and celebrates the achievements of colleges and universities, acknowledging their fundamental importance.

Since its inception in 2005, National College Colors Day has grown rapidly across the country. Thousands of organizations and millions of individuals participate annually by donning their team colors and sharing in the college spirit with friends and colleagues.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Holidays for August 29th 2013

National Chop Suey Day


Get your chop sticks ready!  National Chop Suey Day is celebrated each year on August 29.

Chop suey, which literally means, “assorted pieces” is a dish in American Chinese cuisine, consisting of meat (chicken, fish, beef, prawns or pork) and eggs that are cooked quickly with vegetables (usually bean sprouts, cabbage and celery) and bound in a starch-thickened sauce. Rice normally accompanies this delicious dish.

“A prime example of culinary mythology” and typical with popular foods, there is a long list of colorful and conflicting stories of the origin of chop suey, according to food historian Alan Davidson.

It is believed, by some, that chop suey was invented in America by Chinese Americans however, anthropologist E.N. Anderson concludes that it is based on tsap seui (“miscellaneous leftovers“) which is common in Taishan, a district of Guangdong Province.  Taishan is the home of many early Chinese immigrants to the United States.

Another account claims that chop suey was invented by Chinese American cooks that were working on the transcontinental railroad in the 19th century.

A tale is told of chop suey’s creation steaming from the Qing Dynasty premier Li Hongzhang’s visit to the United States in 1896 by his chef who wanted to created a meal that was suitable for both the Chinese and the American palates.  It has also been told that Li wandered to a local Chinese restaurant after the hotel kitchen closed, where the chef, embarrassed that he had nothing ready to offer, came up with the new “chop suey” dish using scraps of leftovers.

Another myth tells of an 1860′s Chinese restaurant cook in San Francisco that was forced to serve something to the drunken miners after hours.  To avoid a beating, having no fresh food, he threw leftovers in a wok and served the miners.  The miners loved the dish, asking him what it was called to which he replied, Chopped Sui. 

Traveling to the United States in 1903, Liang Oichao, a Guangdong native, wrote that there existed a food item called chop suey which was popularly served by Chinese restaurateurs, but which local Chinese people did not eat.


Have A Wonderful, National Chop Suey Day!

Happy Housewives Holiday


Who's a happy housewife? Maybe the moniker is outdated, but August 29th honors the homemaker, the domestic goddess and the most contented nester. No desperate housewives are needed on Happy Housewives Holiday.

On this traditional occasion, family members celebrate those who keep the home fires burning without setting their homes ablaze. If you know a homemaker who excels with enthusiasm at her daily endeavors, August 29th is the day to show your appreciation.

This homey holiday has its roots in Catholic history. St. Sabina's Day is celebrated on August 29th. (St. Sabina was the patron saint of housewives.)

National Lemon Juice Day


August 29 is National Lemon Juice Day. Acknowledging Lemon juice and its uses.

The juice of the lemon is about 5% to 6% citric acid, which gives lemons a sour taste. The distinctive sour taste of lemon juice makes it a key ingredient in drinks and foods such as lemonade.

Almost all foods taste even better with a little lemon juice squeezed on top of it. Such foods include fish, chicken, and gravy. Of course, almost everyone knows lemon juice is good in iced tea. It is even good in just plain water.

Unlike salt, butter, or other seasonings that can make good foods bad for you, lemon juice won't do you any harm. In fact, it might even help you lose weight.

A lot of people have lemon juice in a hot cup of water as soon as they get out of bed in the morning. The benefits of the lemon juice last throughout the day.

National More Herbs Less Salt Day


Today's a great day for all of us intending to live a healthier lifestyle. We can start by celebrating "More Herbs, Less Salt Day" and swapping out our salt shakers for herbs like thyme, basil and oregano. The consumption of salt has been linked to heart disease and high blood pressure, and as little as two teaspoons a day may increase a person's risk of stroke.

You can make your own herbal blend to use as a salt substitute by combining specific herbs and seasonings that you prefer. Some that work well are cayenne pepper, garlic powder, sage, thyme, oregano, basil, onion powder and black pepper. Experiment with different combinations in varying amounts until you find one that works well for you. Keep in mind that many herbs are also believed to be helpful in fighting cancer.

Mary Poppins' Anniversary


On Aug. 29, 1964, Walt Disney released the timeless classic "Mary Poppins." Starring Dick Van Dyke and Julie Andrews, it still remains a favorite of parents and children the world over. Here are some interesting mistakes and anachronisms from the movie:

* When Mary is trying out for Mr. Bank's nanny job, her gloves are white. When they move in to show the tears in her newspaper clipping, her gloves are black.

* When Mary and Bert are in the chalk pavement picture, just after Bert hits himself over the head and kneels on the ground, you can see where the back scenery meets the floor.

* When Mary is doing her magic to clean up the kids' room, the little girl snaps her fingers and her hats float to the racks in the closet. Just a few seconds later in a new scene, they are on top of a shelf in the closet.

According to Hoyle Day


In the 1740′s Englishman Edmond Hoyle earned extra income by tutoring high society at the game of whist, a precursor to modern bridge. When he discovered that there was no published set of rules for the game, he authored A Short Treatise on the Game of Whist. Hoyle’s book quickly became a best-seller and he went on to publish other works like A Short Treatise on the Game of Backgammon, An Artificial Memory for Whist, and Short Treatises on the games of Piquet (which included sections about Chess and Quadrille). Eventually, Hoyle’s work overcame the leading standard, The Compleat Gamester, and became the authority for play according to the rules. The phrase “according to Hoyle” became synonymous for the final authority on a subject, or any set of official rules. Even today, many modern card game rule books reference Hoyle in their title. August 29th, the anniversary of Hoyle’s Death in 1769, is observed as “According to Hoyle” Day, offering game-players everywhere a chance to remember Endmond Hoyle and have some fun playing according to the rules.

When I was a kid I used to love playing card games, and even chess, but I hated learning all of the seemingly endless rules. Once I learned a game I was a fair to decent player. But like so many things in life, since I didn’t play the games on a regular basis, I’ve long forgotten how. And when I consider the sad fact that I can’t remember the basics of Chess (or even Go Fish), it’s almost comical to think that my parents tried to teach me Bridge on several occasions! Sorry, Mom and Dad — I guess I’m not cut out for the kind of “fun” that requires so much concentration! A few uncomplicated rounds of Poker are about as far as I’ve gotten with a stack of cards over the past couple of years.

This evening Chris and I celebrated “According to Hoyle” Day by brushing up on our game skills. I installed an app on my iPhone named “Learn Chess” to re-familiarize myself with all the rules. I’d forgotten all the little caveats and, to be honest, it was a little overwhelming. I don’t know if I’ll ever have the patience needed to be any good, especially considering the fact that I dislike most strategy games that require players to think so many steps ahead. And, unfortunately, I’m not very good at the few think-ahead strategy games that I actually do like (like Scrabble an Monopoly). But that’s not going to stop me from trying — Chris and I both installed the Chess.com app so we can practice our moves against each other. But first, I spent most of the evening playing against “the computer” and using the built-in hints to pick up on useful strategies. Still, I doubt I’ve done enough homework to beat Chris. I guess there’s no time like the present to find out.

International Day Against Nuclear Tests


The International Day against Nuclear Tests is observed on August 29. It was established on December 2, 2009 at the 64th session of the United Nations General Assembly by the resolution 64/35, which was adopted unanimously.

The resolution in particular calls for increasing awareness "about the effects of nuclear weapon test explosions or any other nuclear explosions and the need for their cessation as one of the means of achieving the goal of a nuclear-weapon-free world". The resolution was initiated by Kazakhstan together with several sponsors and cosponsors to commemorate the closure of the Semipalatinsk Nuclear Test Site on August 29, 1991.

Following the establishment of the International Day against Nuclear Tests, in May 2010 all state parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons committed themselves to "achieve the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons".

National Sarcoidosis Awareness Day


Sarcoidosis, a disease that affects many of our fellow citizens and people around the world, remains shrouded in mystery. Skin-related symptoms of this chronic, multi-system disease were first recognized more than 100 years ago; however, the effects of sarcoidosis on other bodily organs were not observed until the first quarter of this century. Today researchers are still trying to learn more about the cause and the nature of this affliction.

Sarcoidosis can strike people of all races and of all ages, but, according to the United States Department of Health and Human Services, it is most common among black Americans who are between the ages of 20 and 40. While no cause has yet been identified, it is thought that heredity predisposes some individuals to the disease. Intensive research during the past decade has not only supported this belief but also enabled physicians to diagnose and to manage sarcoidosis more effectively.

Today researchers at both the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute are leading studies on the etiology, diagnosis, and treatment of sarcoidosis. On this occasion, we recognize their work and that of other concerned physicians and scientists throughout the United States. We also salute the victims of sarcoidosis who demonstrate great courage and determination in their efforts to cope with the disease; and we pay tribute to their family members and to other concerned Americans who are engaged in grass-roots efforts to promote awareness of sarcoidosis, as well as improved treatment and support for its victims.

To focus national attention on sarcoidosis, the Congress, by House Joint Resolution 309, has designated August 29, 1991, as "National Sarcoidosis Awareness Day" and has authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation in observance of this day.

Now, Therefore, I, George Bush, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim August 29, 1991, as National Sarcoidosis Awareness Day. I invite all Americans to join in observing this day with appropriate programs and activities.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this fifteenth day of August, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and ninety-one, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and sixteenth.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Holidays for August 28th 2013

National Bow Tie Day


Dapper Dans unite. August 28th is Bow Tie Day.

Bow ties are back, at least for this high-fashion occasion. Clip on a pre-fastened bow tie, or tie it yourself.

As an alternative, more casual folks may opt to celebrate Bow Tie Day on August 28th by cooking farfalle, which is otherwise known as bow tie pasta.

National Cherry Turnover Day


It’s National Cherry Turnover Day! Turnovers are a delicious pastry that can be enjoyed for breakfast or dessert. They originated in ancient times and are classified as "portable pies." Other dishes in this culinary family include pasties, empanadas, and spring rolls.

A traditional cherry turnover recipe calls for puff pastry, which is stuffed with a gooey cherry filling and then baked until golden brown. There are many variations on this classic treat though. Some recipes call for cream cheese, extra lemon juice, or even ice cream.

To celebrate National Cherry Turnover Day, bake your own homemade cherry turnovers to share with friends and family! Bon appétit!

Dream Day


 " I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."
Dream Day honors the memory of Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., who delivered his famous "I Have a Dream" speech on August 28, 1963, on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.

On August 28th thousands will commemorate the 50th anniversary of King's famous speech, dreamers and others are encouraged to wear black and white apparel to demonstrate reverence for unity among the races.

Race Your Mouse Around the Icons Day


Race Your Mouse Around the Icons Day is another zany holiday brought to us by our friends at Wellcat.com. On August 28th computer owners are encouraged to race our mouse around our desktop icons while waiting for our computers to do whatever it is they’re doing. The idea is that this silly way to pass the time will make us feel “peppy.”
Chris and I both spend a lot of time in front of computers during our work week. I usually like to take a break from computers during the weekend (I write all our posts from our iPad instead of my Mac), but Chris always seems to be toting around one laptop or another, getting in time for a little extra work or play. Since I’m rarely on my home computer I don’t spend a lot of time running updates or archiving old files so, over the past year or so, my desktop has become a complete mess. ironically, even though Chris spends so much time on the computer, his is clean and organized. Now if only I could get him to use those same skills to tidy the kitchen. (Just kidding — I love you, Chris!)

Chris and I celebrated Race Your Mouse Around the Icons Day together this evening, using his MacBook Pro. He found a nifty program named IOGraph; it records and times your movements around the screen. I had a bit of fun tracing Chris’s “snow leopard” background, producing a sort of drunk looking Etch-A-Sketch style cat. And of course we also used it to time ourselves as we took turns racing our cursor through the items on his desktop. I think he beat me on time, but if there were points given away for artistry I’m sure I would have won. He didn’t have very many icons so our tracings were pretty simple, but I think it would be interesting to keep the program running sometime and see what the trail looks like by the end of the day. Who knows — we might even end up with a work of art!

But enough playing around with the computer for now — tomorrow we’ll be breaking out our board games for “According to Hoyle” Day!

Crackers Over The Keyboard Day


Of all the wacky holiday's this one is up there in the top ten I'm sure.  The entire point of this day is to eat cookies or crackers, or anything that would produce crumbs, over your keyboard.  I suppose this is to make sure your mouse has something to nibble on while you sleep.  You should also celebrate your fellow employees who make it a habit of eating crackers over their keyboard and reward them with a can of air.  For those of you that take this day all too seriously, your keyboard may be beyond the help of canned air and it might just be time for a new one.

Radio Commercial Day



In February 1922, AT&T announced they would begin selling "toll broadcasting" to advertisers, in which businesses would underwrite or finance a broadcast, in exchange for being mentioned on the radio. WEAF of New York is credited with airing the first paid radio commercial, on August 28, 1922, for the Queensboro Corporation, advertising an apartment complex. However, it appears other radio stations may actually have sold advertising before WEAF. As early as May 1920, an amateur radio broadcaster leased out his "station" in exchange for $35 per week for twice-weekly broadcasts. And, in Seattle, Washington, Remick's Music Store purchased a large ad in the local newspaper advertising radio station KFC, in exchange for sponsorship of a weekly program, in March 1922. Additionally, on April 4, 1922, a car dealer, Alvin T. Fuller, purchased time on WGI of Medford Hillside, Massachusetts, in exchanges for mentions.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Holidays for August 27th 2013

National Banana Lovers Day


On the heels of National Banana Split Day, August 27th is Banana Lover’s Day! Native to Malaysia, people have been enjoying bananas for centuries. Globally, more than 100 billion bananas are consumed each year. Americans eat more bananas than any other fruit – consuming close to 30 pounds of bananas annually. Did you know bananas do not grow on trees? They are actually the world’s largest perennial herb and can grow up to 25 feet tall. A cluster of bananas is called a “hand” consisting of 10 to 20 bananas, or “fingers. “

The Many Health Benefits of Bananas

High in fiber and potassium, bananas not only taste good, but are good for you. Bananas contain 15 percent of your daily recommended requirement of Vitamin C and are high in B6 and manganese too. At about 100 calories each, bananas have no fat and no cholesterol. Besides helping prevent bone loss and alleviating high blood pressure, bananas also help with heartburn, morning sickness, ulcers, menstrual cramps and anemia. They have also been shown to help protect against kidney cancer.

First Kiss Day


August 27th is First Kiss Day, a prime opportunity for affectionate pecking.

Popeye the Sailor, the spinach-munching cartoon power-puncher, and his lady love Olive Oyl, shared their first kiss on August 27, 1929. "My hero," the slender sweetie said, as she fell into a swoon.

Who is your hero, or who is your sweetheart? August 27th is the day to buss, canoodle, peck or smooch the one you love. If your beloved is away, why not write a romantic old-fashioned letter and seal it with a kiss (SWAK)?

Motorist Consideration Day


Road rage is out on August 27th. Today is Motorist Consideration Day, a high-powered occasion for expressing courtesy on the highways and byways. Commuters and joy riders alike may find ways to be more polite than ever.

Who knows? Maybe some drivers will actually stop texting behind the wheel long enough to nod kindly and allow others to go first at intersections or to merge easily into their traffic lanes. Perhaps others will behave civilly when interacting with law enforcement officers during unexpected pull-overs.

Here are a few ideas for igniting enthusiasm for Motorist Consideration Day on August 27th, to steer folks in the right direction "Can You Talk with Both Hands on the Wheel," "Copping an Excuse," "Driving Lessons," "Gas Station No-No's," "How to Clean Your Own Car," "How to Tell Your Parents You Crashed the Family Car," "Licensed to Drive" and "Ragtop."

Let's put the pedal to the medal and rev up gentility on August 27th to celebrate Motorist Consideration Day.

National Pots de Crème Day


It's National Pots de Crème Day! What is pots de crème, you ask? Well, Pots de Crème is a baked custard dessert and translates from French to English as "pot of cream." Because it is a very rich dish, it is typically baked and served in small pots, or ramekins, maybe with a little shortbread cookie on the side or a dollop of whipped cream on top. Although chocolate is certainly popular, vanilla is the traditional pots de crème.

"The Duchess" Who Wasn't Day


“The Duchess” Who Wasn’t Day celebrates the life of Margaret Wolfe Hungerford, an irish novelist who was always published under the pen name “The Duchess” in the United States – also the name of her most popular novel, published in 1887. Margaret is responsible for the popular phrase “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”, in her book Molly Bawn, so try and slip it into conversation!

In total, The Duchess had at least 57 works attributed to her name but could have written many, many more as a lot of her early work was published as Anonymous, and later as Mrs Hungerford, before “The Duchess” became popular in the States. She also wrote many newspaper articles and had a large family – four daughters and two sons.

Born on the 27th April 1855 in County Cork, she won prizes in school for writing stories. After the death of her first husband in 1876 The Duchess took to writing more seriously to support her three daughters, and it was shortly after this that her first book “Phyllis” was written, and a little later on “Molly Bawn”.

She remarried in 1882, had two sons and a daughter with her second husband and eventually died of typhoid fever in 1897.

Just Because Day


Today is Just Because Day. Finally, you have a chance to do something without a rhyme or reason. Most often in life, we do things because we have to, or we want to, or it's expected of us. None of those reasons apply today. 

Is there something you'd like to do, but there isn't a reason or logic for doing it? Well, today is the day to go out and do something "just because". It is most enjoyable if it is an uncommon, or unexpected activity or action. Perhaps, you have something in mind. If not, just go with the first thing that comes to your mind.  "Just because" activities often come from a "whim" or a "what if I" type of thought. We know you will quickly get the hang of this day, and have a lot of fun with it.

To get you started, here are some of our suggestions for Just Because Day :
  • Take an unplanned day of vacation
  • Visit someone you haven't seen in a while
  • Knock on someone's door and compliment them for their great lawn
  • Skip, don't walk
  • Spin a wheel, and bicycle in the opposite direction of where the arrow points.
  • Buy something you don't need.
  • Jump in a puddle
  • Walk backwards
Here is a great idea- send someone some flowers- - "just because"

National Petroleum Day


It’s National Petroleum Day, also referred to as Oil and Gas Industry Appreciation Day. This annual “holiday” raises awareness on the impact petroleum has on our lives and our environment.

Petroleum

Petroleum, a fossil fuel, takes millions of years to form and is considered a non-renewable energy source. While petroleum is used in many products including gasoline, asphalt, tires, candles, perfume and plastics, its supply is limited. Some predict this natural resource will be completely depleted in a few decades.

According to the United States Energy Information Administration (EIA), America is the largest consumer of petroleum products. In 2011, Americans consumed over 18 million barrels of petroleum products per day. While Canada, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Nigeria and Mexico are top sources of net crude oil and petroleum product imports, crude oil is also produced in 31 states and U.S. coastal waters. But it is difficult to determine where the petroleum products we use actually come from once they are refined.

Alternative Energy

As the cost of gasoline continues to go up, our reliance on oil has many Americans taking a serious look at alternative energy. Because of improvements in efficiency, consumer behavior and our current economic conditions, American's dependence on oil has actually declined over the years while our use of domestic biofuels and domestic production of natural gas plant liquids and crude oil has increased.


While petroleum is a substance used in a wide variety of products, this nonrenewable resource poses significant environmental issues including pollution, contaminated soil and oil spills. Decreasing society’s reliance on petroleum and increasing our use of renewable resources, is an affordable and environmentally-friendly alternative to reduce our dependency on our dwindling supply of fossil fuels.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Holidays for August 26th 2013

National Cherry Popsicle Day


If you want something to celebrate today, now you have reason to do just that. Why? August 26 is National Cherry Popsicle Day.

Eat a cherry popsicle today in honor of National Cherry Popsicle Day. It has to be cherry in order to be true to the day. Any other popsicle won't work.

A cherry popsicle is a frozen treat that is a refreshing way to cool off on a hot August day.

Though sweet, popsicles may not be as sugary as you think. After all, the main ingredients are fruit and water! This makes them a healthy alternative for those moments you crave something sweet and icy.

Today, make your own cherry popsicles with fresh cherries or head to your local grocery store to pick up a box. Look at the ingredients and make sure to choose popsicles that are made from real fruit juice and have little added sugar.

Enjoy your cherry popsicle on National Cherry Popsicle Day.

National Dog Day


Most people have heard, and they also believe that: "A dog is man's best friend."

Dogs have been “man’s best friend” for over 15,000 years. These wonderful canine companions keep their owners safe, bring comfort, and love to them unconditionally. There is nothing greater than for a dog to greet his master at the door after a hard day's work.

Almost everyone loves dogs; kids and adults. The average household has a dog and some households have more than one. There are many different kinds of dogs, so if you don't like one kind, you are more than likely to fall in love with another breed.

Since August 26 is National Dog Day, it is a great opportunity to show your deep appreciation for these remarkable canines by helping to find homes for all of the dogs in need of a loving family.

Celebrate National Dog Day by adopting a dog from your local shelter, organizing a play date for all the dogs in your neighborhood, or treating your dog to a new toy.

National Toilet Paper Day


The first written documentation of toilet paper dates back to 6th century China, but Joseph Gayetty is widely credited as having invented modern toilet paper in the United States. Introduced in 1857, Gayetty’s Medicated Paper was the first commercially available paper and was sold in flat sheets. Toilet paper has evolved a lot over the past 150+ years, appearing in various plies, colors, textures, scents, and patterns. But one thing hasn't changed: we all consider toilet paper a necessity. According to the Toilet Paper Encyclopedia, 49% of people choose toilet paper as their number one necessity if stranded on a deserted island (ahead of food!), and 69% agree that that toilet paper is the 20th Century “convenience” most taken for granted. Perhaps this is why toilet paper deserves its own holiday, observed every August 26th. This year’s National Toilet Paper Day celebration marked a new world record for the largest toilet roll. Manufactured by Charmin, the roll contains over 1,000,000 square feet of paper, and measures more than nine feet in diameter!

Although I've done some “lite” camping, I refuse to pitch my tent anywhere not within walking distance of a toilet. Call me prissy, but I enjoy luxuriating in today’s modern conveniences, including toilet paper. I can't imagine having to use pebbles, furs, leaves, or shards of broken pottery for personal hygiene, but according to Wikipedia that’s exactly what people used to do! Luckily, we live in a place and time where toilet paper is readily available. And with my recently acquired couponing skills, we always have a hefty supply on-hand; last time I checked I believe we had over 100 rolls! It might sound excessive but when it comes to toilet paper, I’d rather have too much than too little — there’s nothing worse than a late-night dash to the store because you're running low on TP.

Women's Equality Day


On Monday, we observe Women's Equality Day, commemorating the passage of the 19th Amendment and the culmination of over 70 years of advocacy fighting for the right to vote for women. Over the decades, advocates conducted countless petition drives, campaigns and marches on behalf of the belief in women's equality and the right to vote following the first formal demand for women's suffrage in 1848. "The vote is the emblem of your equality, women of America, the guarantee of your liberty," said suffragist Carrie Chapman Catt, who founded the League of Women Voters just six months prior, at the August 26, 1920, White House reception celebrating the 19th Amendment.

This week also marks the 50th anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington. Considered to be one of the largest political rallies in U.S. history, the March on Washington - which was also the setting of Dr. Martin Luther King's iconic "I Have a Dream'' speech - is credited with having helped encourage Congress to pass the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Much of the country's progress in creating equal access to the polls can be attributed to the Voting Rights Act. The VRA not only outlawed poll taxes and literacy tests, but also helped block over 700 racially discriminatory voting measures from 1982 through 2006 alone, including thwarting voter discrimination efforts as recently as this past election cycle. "Without that act, we wouldn't be where we are today," said Rep. John Lewis, a civil rights leader who spoke at the 1963 march.

Yet as we celebrate Women's Equality Day and the anniversary of MLK's "I Have a Dream" speech, many Americans - women and men, young and old, rich and poor alike - still face barriers to voting. In June, the U.S. Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act (VRA) of 1965, a move that weakened critical protections to voting rights and put our nation's democratic system at great risk. Within just 24 hours of the Supreme Court's ruling against the VRA, five states moved forward with discriminatory voting measures, including states in which the League of Women Voters had previously succeeded in blocking voter restrictions. As a result of the ruling, thousands of eligible voters are now facing heightened restrictions to access to the polls, including strict voter photo ID laws and cuts to early voting hours and same day voter registration, all of which disproportionately affect the voting rights of seniors and people of color.

Much like the brave suffragists who fought for the vote 93 years ago, today's members of the League of Women Voters refuse to remain silent in the face of attempts to block access to the polls. Rooted in the women's suffrage movement, the League of Women Voters has always been committed to registering, educating and turning out voters, and we're not stopping now. The Supreme Court's decision has opened the floodgates to anti-voter laws that curtail citizens' voting rights, mobilizing League members and voting rights advocates across the country and inspiring a plethora of mass protests and advocacy efforts to protect the right to vote. When North Carolina passed the most suppressive voting law the country has seen in decades, the League of Women Voters of North Carolina (LWVNC) went straight to action, filing a federal lawsuit to challenge the voting restrictions as racially discriminatory. We've also been encouraged by action to protect voting rights taken by the U.S. Justice Department, as well as bipartisan support for the VRA expressed by members of the House and Senate.

Ultimately, however, Congress holds the key to fixing the Supreme Court's mistake and repairing the Voting Rights Act. That's why this Saturday, August 24, the League will join with thousands of Americans in commemorating the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington by calling on Congress to protect voting rights. The League joins fellow voting and civil rights groups as an official partner of the 50th anniversary celebration of the 1963 March on Washington. This weekend won't be the first time that women have gathered in the nation's capital to march for democracy: In 1913, 5,000 suffragists from across the country gathered in Washington, DC, to demand the right to vote, and millions of women have marched for equal rights since.

As we celebrate Women's Equality Day and the anniversary of Dr. King's impassioned plea for equal rights, we seek to galvanize Americans everywhere to voice their support for democracy and join those marching in Washington by urging Congress to work quickly to repair and restore the Voting Rights Act. "Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood," said Martin Luther King Jr. in his historic speech at the nation's capital. Ninety-three years after women won the vote and 50 years after the March on Washington, we must continue the fight to ensure that all eligible voters have equal access to the polls.


We need your help in telling Congress that we must act swiftly to stop the damage and repair and restore the Voting Rights Act." Progress is calling to you to make no pause," said Carrie Chapman Catt upon the passage of the 19th Amendment 93 years ago. "Act!"

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Holidays for August 25th 2013

National Kiss and Make-Up Day


August 25th is Kiss and Make Up Day. This holiday is similar to Reconciliation Day, celebrated on April 2.

If you have been in a little quarrel recently, today is your chance to apologize and make things right! You can’t escape a small spat with a friend, lover or family member, it’s natural. Whether there was something you forgot to do, a disagreement, lie or misunderstanding- don’t wait, admit your mistake. It’s important to keep in mind to never let things escalate too far to the point where you might do or say something you will regret later. Today it’s time to kiss and make up.

Holding a grudge does more harm to you than to the person you are angry at. If you truthfully no longer care about the person or issue then let it go. But if you do care, present the person you love with a sincere apology, make amends and settle your differences. Have flowers and chocolate as back-up, they usually do the trick!

Remember to appreciate the lovely people around you and don’t take them for granted.

National Secondhand Wardrobe Day


National Second-Hand Wardrobe Day falls on August 25 each year, just in time to remind parents that back-to-school clothes do not have to cost a fortune.  Many thrift, resale, second-hand stores have classic, hip, and retro clothes that kids of all ages will love and also won't break the bank.  Not only will money be saved and the kids will get some needed new duds, but in most cases the money spent goes to a worthy cause and the recycling, reusing, repurposing cycle is being taught by example to the next generation.  Don't think great clothes can be found at second-hand or thrift stores?  Check out these examples!

Ruth's Room in Humboldt County is a free clothing ministry run by volunteers at Rio Dell Baptist Church.  They had a fashion show at the beginning of this year and 100% of the items worn were second-hand and so cool!

Etsy is a great place to locate retro/vintage clothes for a great price.  Whether it's a vintage 60s garden party gown, an 80s school girl plaid romper, a 1970s vest reminiscent of That 70s Show, or Brady Bunch-style orange and brown plaid dress, Etsy can supply the savvy shopper.

Crackerjacks in Oakland is a buy, sell, trade shop that specializes in children's clothes. Whether shopping for a classic girl or a rocker boy, Crackerjacks can help.

Also, don't forget about thrift stores like Goodwill, Salvation Army, and Thriftown.

August 25 is National Second-Hand Wardrobe Day so celebrate not only by taking advantage of the bargains out there at second-hand stores, but take the opportunity to pass on items no longer being worn to someone else.  And make second-hand/thrift store shopping a part of life all year round.

National Whiskey Sour Day


When it comes to holidays, Aug. 25 is sure to lift your "spirits!" Not only is it National Banana Split Day and Kiss and Make Up Day, Aug. 25 also celebrates a classic cocktail. Get ready to raise your glass, America. It's National Whiskey Sour Day!

Folks have been sippin' on Whiskey Sours for years. Legend has it this fabulous cocktail first appeared in print back in 1862. This drink was actually the most popular cocktail in the United States for over a century! Not too tart, not too sweet, this simple-to-make drink is the perfect pick-me-up after a hard day at work - or just because. Traditionally made with egg whites, whiskey sours are typically made with bourbon rye or blended whiskey, lemon juice and sugar.

In honor of National Whiskey Sour Day, why not celebrate with one or two of the refreshing cocktail recipes listed below?

Whiskey Sour Cocktail Recipes 
  • Martha's Whiskey Sour - This recipe, from Martha Stewart, looks divine! You'll need bourbon, granulated sugar, fresh lemon and orange juice, Turbinado sugar, lemon wedge, ice cubes and oven-dried orange slices for this cocktail.
  • Mad Men Whiskey Sour - You'll need whiskey, fresh lemon juice, sugar and a cherry and a lemon slice for garnish.
  • Rye Whiskey Sour - This cocktail recipe, from Michael Ruhlman, calls for Rye or whiskey of choice, lemon and lime juice, orange zest, egg white and simple syrup.
  • Fresh Whiskey Sours - This popular 5-star recipe, from Ina Garten, calls for Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey sugar syrup, freshly squeezed lemon and lime juice and Maraschino cherries.
  • Whiskey Sour - This superfine recipe, from Esquire, calls for bourbon, lemon juice and superfine sugar!
  • Imbibe Whiskey Sour - Forget the sweet and sour mix! This recipe, from Imbibe Magazine, is the real deal!
  • Grilled Peach Whiskey Sour - Now we're talking!
  • Forbidden Sour - This pretty cocktail calls for Pama Pomegranate Liqueur, bourbon, simple syrup, fresh lemon juice and an orange and cherry for garnish.
  • Simple Whiskey Sours - You'll need whiskey, lemon and lime juice and powdered sugar for this simple Sour version.
  • New York Sour - This sour recipe, from Bon Appetit, calls for rye or bourbon whiskey, fresh lemon juice, simple syrup and fruity red wine.
  • Bourbon Sour -You'll need bourbon, an egg white, fresh lemon juice, simple syrup and angostura bitters for this one.
  • Ward Eight - This recipe calls for rye or bourbon, fresh lemon and orange juice, grenadine and a maraschino cherry.
  • All-American Whiskey Sour - This drink calls for Maker's Mark Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Sweet and Sour Mix and freshly squeezed orange juice.
  • Whiskey Sour Old Fashioned - You'll need whiskey, sweet and sour mix, cherry juice and bitters for this top-rated drink.
  • Whiskey Sour Slush - Perfect for a hot summer's day!
  • Whiskey Hot and Sour - This cocktail calls for bourbon, fresh lemon juice, simply syrup, egg white, hot sauce and an orange slice and Serrano pepper for garnish.
  • And speaking of spirited holidays, Red Wine Day is almost here! Cheers! 

As always - please drink responsibly.

National Go Topless Day


The annual event, also referred to as Go Topless Day, National Go Topless Day and/or International Go Topless Day, is observed on the Sunday closest to Women's Equality Day, an annual holiday that commemorates the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution, which gave women the right to vote.

Rael, the spiritual leader of the Raelian Movement and founder of GoTopless.org, founded the annual “holiday” back in 2007 to help raise awareness about breast inequality. According to the Rael,

"As long as men are allowed to be topless in public, women should have the same constitutional right. Or else, men should have to wear something to hide their chests."

In honor of Go Topless Day, men and women around the globe will take part in various topless rallies, protests and marches to show their "support" for women's rights to go bare up there in public. Folks in Paris, Vancouver, Toronto, London, Amsterdam, Geneva, Tel Aviv and 30 cities across America are expected to attend this year's event. Please visit the "BoobMap" for information on an event near you.

If you need to get something off your chest, show your "support" for breast equality by participating in Go Topless Day!

National Banana Split Day


Today is a great day to go bananas. August 25th is National Banana Split Day! This creamy dessert or snack has been eaten by young and old alike since the turn of the century. After all, who can resist bananas surrounded by scoops of creamy vanilla, chocolate and strawberry ice cream topped with nuts, whipped cream and a maraschino cherry served in a long dish?

While the origins of this holiday are unknown, David Evans Strickler, an apprentice pharmacist, is credited as the “inventor” of these fabulous desserts when he created them at the Tassel Pharmacy in Pennsylvania in 1904.

In honor of the event, the folks at Dole Bananas are hosting a Twitter Party to find healthy recipes which will be featured in the Dole No-Guilt National Banana Split Day Recipe on Facebook. If you want to participate, just tweet your recipe between 12-1:00 today.

10 Delicious Banana Split Recipes

  • Banana Split Recipe – This recipe, from Rachael Ray, calls for 2 bananas, vanilla ice cream, blackberries and raspberries, chocolate sauce and peanuts.
  • Traditional Banana Split Recipe – You’ll need vanilla, chocolate and strawberry ice cream, 1 banana, chocolate syrup, crushed pineapple, walnut ice cream topping, whipped cream and a cherry for this recipe.
  • All American Banana Split Recipe – Perfect!
  • New Orleans Banana Split – This amazing recipe calls for bananas, whipping cream, toasted pecans, flaked coconut, chocolate syrup, vanilla and chocolate ice cream, chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream, dark brown sugar and a splash of dark rum. Yum!
  • Banana Split in a Cone – You’ll need waffle cones, bananas, different flavored ice cream, whipped cream, pistachio nuts and a maraschino cherry for this banana splity recipe.
  • Banana Split Cheesecake Squares Recipe – If you love cheesecake, and who doesn't, now you can have your cake and eat it too!
  • Banana Split Bars – You’ll need graham cracker crumbs, white sugar, butter, cream cheese, vanilla extract, crushed pineapple, whipped topping, walnuts, cherries and bananas for this one. 

Banana Split Cocktail Recipes 
  • Banana Split Shot – Go ahead - try this cocktail on for size!
  • Banana Split Drink – This cocktail recipe calls for dark rum, Bailey’s Irish Cream, vanilla ice cream, nutmeg, ground or powdered hot chocolate mix, a cherry and whipped cream.
  • Banana Split Cocktail – You’ll need banana liqueur, coffee liqueur, pineapple juice, half and half and cherries for this drink. 

Enjoy! And don’t forget - today is also Kiss and Make Up Day!

English Channel Swim Day


Matthew Webb, a 27-year-old merchant navy captain, becomes the first known person to successfully swim the English Channel. Captain Webb accomplished the grueling 21-mile crossing, which really entailed 39 miles of swimming because of tidal currents, in 21 hours and 45 minutes. During the overnight crossing from Dover, England, to Calais, France, Captain Webb drank brandy, coffee, and beef tea to keep his strength and heat up. He was hailed as a national hero upon his return to England, and a triumphal arch was erected in his honor in his hometown in Shropshire. The Daily Telegraph proclaimed, "At this moment the Captain is probably the best-known and most popular man in the world."

One of 12 children, Webb learned to swim in the Severn River below Ironbridge. At age 12, he joined the mercantile training ship Conway. He was not remembered as a fast swimmer, but his fellow cadets noted his endurance. While traveling the world with the merchant navy, Webb made his mark with several brave and dangerous swims. Endurance swimming was popular in the 1870s, and Webb decided to swim the English Channel after reading in a newspaper about an unsuccessful attempt. He trained along England's south coast, swimming distances of 10 to 20 miles and becoming acclimatized to the cold water. In August 1875, his first attempt to swim the Channel ended in failure, but he decided to give it another try.

On August 24, 1875, smeared in porpoise fat for insulation and wearing a red swimming costume made of silk, he dove off Dover's Admiralty Pier into the chilly waters of the Channel. He began the race in the late evening because of the tides and kept up a slow and steady pace in the dark, using the breaststroke. Accompanying boats handed him beef tea, brandy, and other liquids to sustain him, and Webb braved stinging jellyfish and patches of seaweed as he plodded on. Seven miles from the French coast, the tide changed, and he appeared to be driven backward, but just after 10 a.m. he approached the French shore. The crew of the outgoing mail ship The Maid of Kent serenaded him with "Rule Britannia," and shortly before 11 a.m. Webb waded ashore.

After sleeping 12 hours in France, Webb returned to England by boat, saying, "the sensation in my limbs is similar to that after the first day of the cricket season." He was honored at a welcoming banquet in Dover, where the mayor proclaimed, "In the future history of the world, I don't believe that any such feat will be performed by anyone else." The London Stock Exchange set up a testimonial fund for him. He toured the country, lecturing and swimming.

Within a few years, interest in Captain Webb began to wane. Overexposed on the lecture circuit and having spent or given away most of the money he earned as a result of his Channel swim, he agreed to a series of degrading exhibitions. In March 1880, he floated for 60 hours in the whale tank of the Royal Aquarium in Westminster, and in October he agreed to an extended swim in the freezing waters of Lancashire Lake. He was pulled from the water exhausted and hypothermic, and those close to him said his constitution never recovered. Seeking an alternate form of income, he prided himself on being an inventor, but few ever saw his bicycle, swimming apparatus, or flying machine, which had flapping seagull-like wings. Reportedly, he broke his nose testing the flying machine.

Eventually, Captain Webb traveled to America with his wife and two children and staged swimming exhibitions that attracted varying degrees of attention. Hearing of the exploits of Emile Blondin, a French daredevil who crossed Niagara Falls on a tightrope, Captain Webb came up with a new plan to restore his fame and fortune. He would travel to the Falls and swim a particularly treacherous stretch of the Niagara River that was feared for its lethal rapids and whirlpool.

Upon his arrival in Niagara Falls, he called a press conference to outline what he believed would be his greatest exploit since swimming the English Channel. He would embark in a small boat to a point below the Falls. He would then jump out and float down through the rapids. If it was too difficult to stay on the surface, he would dive down, coming up occasionally to breathe and show off his swimming ability. Then he would make his way around the whirlpool, estimating that it would take him two or three hours to extricate himself from its pull. Once beyond it, he would swim to the shore on the Canadian side.

Locals advised Webb that his plan was suicide, noting that 80 people had died in the rapids in recent memory. Webb ignored them and estimated that he would receive $10,000 from the railroad companies, which he assumed would profit greatly from throngs of spectators traveling to Niagara for the event. Ultimately, the railroads refused to sponsor him, and he was rowed out into the river at 4 p.m. on July 24, 1883, intending to risk his life for what he called the credit of his good name. Clad in the same red swimming suit he wore when he swam the Channel, he dove bravely into the water. A cheer went up from the thousands of spectators gathered along the shore.

At first he was swimming powerfully and looked untroubled, but then the river narrowed, and he was gripped by the rapids. Three times he was pulled under and then came up hundreds of feet from where he was seen last. He was no longer in control and was pulled downstream at a furious pace. As he came upon the whirlpool, he threw up his right arm and then went under. Seconds, minutes, and hours passed, and he didn't come up.

Five days later, his gashed, bruised, and bloated body was found by a fisherman downstream. It had been held by the whirlpool for sometime before being expelled. The body had a huge head wound, exposing the skull, but an autopsy concluded that Webb probably was crushed by the force of the whirlpool and suffered the gash later.

Webb was given a pauper's burial in the Oakwood cemetery at the edge of the Falls, in a small plot known as "The Strangers' Rest." In 1908, in what would have been his 60th year, the Webb Memorial was erected at his birthplace in England. It's simple inscription reads, "Nothing Great Is Easy.".