Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Holidays and Observances for January 8th 2014

Bubble Bath Day

And we thought Cuddle Up day was great! Today is Bubble Bath Day, a chance to get away from life’s hustle and bustle in order to relax. Bubble baths became popular in the early 1900′s and, due to their favor among children and their calming effects, are still commonly enjoyed today. Even while I was grocery shopping this morning, I inadvertently came across a whole slew of bubble bath products. And really, why shouldn’t there be a large market for bubble baths? Did you know that the foam on top of the water in a bubble bath actually insulates the water, keeping it hot longer? How awesome is that?

After crossing a few items off our endless list of chores, Damion and I headed upstairs and drew a hot bath in our big tub. We added three different kinds of bubble bath products (there’s no such thing as too much!) and watched the bubbles grow! After completing the mood with a few lit candles and some soft music, this was the perfect way to take a break from all of life’s stresses and forget about that to-do list once and for all. If it weren’t for the dogs barking and puzzling over the mounds of foam, I might have been able to stay in the tub forever.

In fact, my main problem with bubble baths is that I never want to get out. That, and I can never figure out how women on TV and in the movies make the bubbles so thick that they’re able to cover all of their naughty parts.

We hope you enjoyed Bubble Bath Day and were able to partake in the relaxation. I know I’m going to sleep well tonight!

National English Toffee Day

English toffee is a candy made from a sugar syrup, usually lightly caramelized, enriched with a generous amount of butter. Toasted almonds or raisins are often added. January 8 is National English Toffee Day.

The process of making toffee involves boiling the ingredients until the mix is stiff enough to be pulled into a shape which holds and has a glossy surface. The resulting mixture will typically be poured into a shallow tray and allowed to cool to form a sheet.

There is some debate as to which is the traditional English style and which is an Americanized version. English toffee is a little different from regular toffee. It is a very buttery toffee available in both chewy and hard versions. A popular version of English toffee is covered in chocolate and almond pieces.

Different mixes, processes, and temperatures of toffee making will result in different textures and hardnesses, from soft and often sticky to a hard brittle material.

You can pick up a bag of English toffee from your grocery store or try making some yourself. It's actually not that hard at all to make a batch of toffee. Just be sure that you boil it long enough so that everything caramelizes. Otherwise, it won't have the exact texture that you want.

Enjoy National English Toffee Day!

National Joygerm Day

January 8 is National Joygerm Day. Men, women and children on fire with the desire to conspire and inspire, who elect to collect, infect and direct those “down in the dumpsters” to develop resilience to rally round the rigors of reality by hugging, smiling, laughing, grinning and winning victoriously over regression and depression. Motto: The only things Joygerms allow to get depressed is their tongues!

National Man Watcher's Day

Ok ladies – If your significant tends to drool or constantly gawks every time a good looking gal walks by, today is your kind of day! January 8th is National Man Watcher’s Day!

While this special day comes but once a year, this annual "holiday" provides the perfect opportunity to finally turn the tables on our male counterparts! Yep, it’s finally our turn to publicly and proudly admire the male species in all their magnificent glory! And unlike some of our less tactful male friends, there is no need to be rude or crude about it either. Just profess your admiration either verbally or silently for men and sit back and enjoy the view!

Although the origins of this holiday are unknown, chances are pretty good a woman came up with the idea. On second thought, perhaps it was man in a heap load of trouble trying to make amends? While “Men Watcher’s Day” would be way more fun than the singular “Man Watcher’s Day”, – hey, it’s a start!

How to Celebrate National Man Watcher’s Day
In order to get the biggest bang for your “buck” today, don’t tell your significant other it’s National Man Watcher’s Day. To him, today is just another ordinary day. Be sure to fess up after you celebrate.
  • Get out of the house and enjoy the “scenery!” Whether you go for a leisurely stroll, a ride in the car or a nice long lunch, chances are pretty good you’ll run into a man or two along the way. And when one comes along, go ahead and gawk. Heck, feel free to drool! Just make sure you aren’t as discreet as you normally are!
  • Take (drag) your significant other (SO) to the mall for some much needed “shopping.” When you’ve picked up everything you need, park yourself in the seating area of the mall and just wait and watch. Just be sure to share all of your keen observations with your SO. “He looks like he really works out, doesn’t he, honey?” or “Wow, I love those tight-fitting jeans he is wearing, don’t you?” or how about “I wonder what he does to keep those guns in such fine form at his age?” Get the picture?
  • Offer to take your man out for lunch or dinner. Be sure to comment on the waiters or chef’s fine physical attributes and/or God-given talents!
  • Call up your BFF’s and tell them you are going hunting! Meet at a public place and enjoy!
  • Know of any busy construction sites? Don't forget your hard hats and whistles!
  • If your New Year’s resolution included a membership to a fitness club or gym – ‘nuff said!
  • Read aloud “Is it Normal for Men to Ogle Women?”
  • Crank up Halls & Oates popular single, “Maneater.”

National Show and Tell Day at Work Day

Remember back in school when it was your turn for Show & Tell? You got to bring in your pet, your baby brother, or a medal you’d won and be the proud centre of attention for a few moments. Such fun should not have to end once you are grown up! Why not make the most of Show & Tell Day At Work Day, and celebrate what areas of life make you unique with the rest of the group?

Whether it’s a hobby, something you’ve made or won, bring it in to work on Show & Tell Day and get to know your colleagues a little better as everyone shares like a child again for a few moments. A bit of fun to break up the normal routine is always appreciated, and you never know what sort of interesting discoveries you might make about your workmates and what they get up to in their spare time!

War on Poverty Day

January 8, 1964: President Lyndon B. Johnson declares war, this time on poverty. During his State of the Union address, Johnson outlined ideas which he claimed would put an end to poverty. The Great Society he envisioned was to have the federal government taking a larger role in social welfare programs. His ideas were an extension of Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal and Four Freedoms from decades earlier.

The Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 included many programs funded at the federal level. Social programs concerning health, education, and welfare were addressed. The Social Security Act of 1965 enacted Medicare and Medicaid. The War on Poverty was declared during a time of economic recovery. The poverty level had fallen from a high of 22.4% in 1959 to 19% by the time of Johnson's speech.

There are economists who claim the overall effect of the War on Poverty and the Great Society has been negative. Milton Friedman, William L. Anderson, and Thomas Sewell have written about the negative economic effects along with the devastating blow dealt to the African-American family unit. The poverty level in the US fell to a low of 11.1% over the next ten years and has remained at the approximate level ever since.

The estimated numbers show the US to have a 12% poverty rate as of 2005. Taiwan has less than 1% of its population living in poverty while Zambia has 86% of its inhabitants living below the poverty level. Chad, the Gaza Strip, Haiti, and Liberia all have an 80% or above poverty rate. These poverty lines are national estimates which are deemed appropriate by local authorities. They vary widely by country. Richer nations tend to have more generous standards than the poorer nations meaning that the poverty levels in these emerging nations are truly devastating. In Zambia, 63.8% of the people must live on less than a single dollar per day (purchasing power parity) and 87.2% of them live on less than $2.
"If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin." - Charles Darwin
"Empty pockets never held anyone back. Only empty heads and empty hearts can do that." - Norman Vincent Peale
"You can't get rid of poverty by giving people money." - P.J. O'Rourke
"Poverty is the mother of crime." - Marcus Aurelius
"Almsgiving tends to perpetuate poverty; aid does away with it once and for all." - Eva Perón

Elvis Presley's Birthday

The incredible Elvis life story began when Elvis Aaron Presley was born to Vernon and Gladys Presley in a two-room house in Tupelo, Mississippi, on January 8, 1935. His twin brother, Jessie Garon, was stillborn, leaving Elvis to grow up as an only child. He and his parents moved to Memphis, Tennessee, in 1948, and Elvis graduated from Humes High School there in 1953.

Elvis’ musical influences were the pop and country music of the time, the gospel music he heard in church and at the all-night gospel sings he frequently attended, and the black R&B he absorbed on historic Beale Street as a Memphis teenager.

In 1954, Elvis began his singing career with the legendary Sun Records label in Memphis. In late 1955, his recording contract was sold to RCA Victor. By 1956, he was an international sensation. With a sound and style that uniquely combined his diverse musical influences and blurred and challenged the social and racial barriers of the time, he ushered in a whole new era of American music and popular culture.

He starred in 33 successful films, made history with his television appearances and specials, and knew great acclaim through his many, often record-breaking, live concert performances on tour and in Las Vegas. Globally, he has sold over one billion records, more than any other artist. His American sales have earned him gold, platinum or multi-platinum awards. Among his many awards and accolades were 14 Grammy nominations (3 wins) from the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award which he received at age 36, and his being named One of the Ten Outstanding Young Men of the Nation for 1970 by the United States Jaycees. Without any of the special privileges, his celebrity status might have afforded him, he honorably served his country in the U.S. Army.

His talent, good looks, sensuality, charisma, and good humor endeared him to millions, as did the humility and human kindness he demonstrated throughout his life. Known the world over by his first name, he is regarded as one of the most important figures of twentieth century popular culture. Elvis died at his Memphis home, Graceland, on August 16, 1977.