May 24th International Tiara Day

Every woman deserves to feel like a queen or princess. Apparently, Tiara Day is associated with Barbara Bellissimo’s Season of Success back in 2005. I guess the symbol of success for a woman is a Tiara 🙂 Never having worn one (being a guy), that I will own up to, I couldn’t say. But if it makes them feel like a success, then it is well worth it.

200_s

Even in our culture today, as in the photo and clip above from The Big Bang Theory, the Tiara is a symbol of a woman feeling beautiful. Of course in the comedy it’s sort of a geeky thing, but most geeky things have some ring of truth to them. I actually think a woman in a Tiara does stand out, and not in a bad way. Princess Diana nearly always wore a tiara and it looked classy on her.

165039d  Diana Princess of Wales Hong Kong Visit
PRINCESS DIANA AND PRINCE CHARLES TOUR OF HONG KONG – 1989…Mandatory Credit: Photo by David Levenson / Rex Features ( 165039d ) PRINCESS DIANA PRINCESS DIANA AND PRINCE CHARLES TOUR OF HONG KONG – 1989

However, she really was a Princess.

After 2005 the day faded into oblivion until Lynanne White of American Rose Bridal re-launched the day in 2008.  In her effort to re-establish the day it became clear that perhaps this day was meant to be – it is the birthday of Queen Victoria who nearly always wore a tiara.

download (2)

However, she really was a Queen.

But what the heck, if it makes a woman feel prettier then I’m all for it. I would however advise her not to wear it during a thunderstorm, when doing gymnastics or pole vaulting.

If you would like more information, you may contact Lynanne at miss@americanrose.com

How to celebrate: Wear your tiara.  If you don’t have one, get one.  Make your husband, or boy friend, bow before you when he enters or leaves a room (but just for today :))

May 23rd Lucky Penny Day

There is no doubt that the penny is not worth what it use to be. In fact, many countries have parted ways with the penny altogether. Still, here in the US, if you find one on heads it means good luck will follow you. Remember you cannot spend it though, even if you could find something to spend it on. Should you find one on tails, leave it be because it means bad luck.  You could turn in over for the next person to find, but you are probably better off not touching it at all.

coins-912719_960_720

“See a penny, pick it up … all day long you’ll have good luck.”

Pennies have been with us in America since 1793. The originals were made of copper and were worth something!  They were often called a pence. If something cost 5 pence, it was five pennies, or a nickel.

Not only are pennies good luck symbols they also indicate ghosts!  As legend tells it, if a ghost wants you to know they are there they will leave pennies behind for you to find (remember the epic scene from the 1990 movie classic Ghost). If they want you to follow them, they will leave a trail of pennies for you to follow.

There’s another reason to look down for that penny, it could be worth a small fortune.

300x300x1901-indian-head-penny-uncirculated-2.jpg.pagespeed.ic.p9ORemMgdV

Most pennies were made in such volume that they are worth very little. Even the old Indian Head pennies are not worth all that much since millions of them were made. Some uncirculated coins are worth more than others. These coins have not been touched by human hands.  There is little chance you will find one of those laying out in the open on the ground, and if you just picked it up anyway, you’d ruin its value. There is one Indian Head penny worth more than $10,000.00, made in the year 1873.

1951-lincoln-wheat-pennies-value-29-1393643814

“Wheat Back”, Lincoln Head pennies are still found in loose change from time to time. Most are worth a penny but there are a few exceptions. A 1922 plain Lincoln Head, “Wheat Back”, is worth about $650.00, but a 1909S-VDB is worth $750.00 or more. In 1943 due to World War 2, pennies were made of steel to save the copper for use in bullets. A steel penny is worth a little, but in 1944 a few steel pennies were circulated by mistake as the coins were once again made of copper. So a 1944 steel penny can be worth up to $75,000.00. Going back to 1943, a few pennies were made of bronze. These pennies are very rare and look basically like a copper penny but they are lighter in weight and are a little darker in color. The 1943 bronze penny is worth more than $100,000.00.

PH-108009999

The 1943 copper penny is worth more than any other American coin. They were not to be released but some were, perhaps less than 50.  Find one of these and you will really have a lucky day with beginning auction prices starting at $200,000.00.

There are other coins to watch for as well. Coins that were run by mistake or had errors that no one caught before they were released to the public. Coins that were double struck, or minted with the wrong materials, or with the wrong size. Wrong Planchet pennies vary in value. Some pennies have actually be minted in silver as are obviously worth more than a plain copper penny.

How to celebrate: Keep your eyes down, looking at whatever is just waiting for you to pick up – at the very least, you’ll be a penny richer. Buy a book about coins; the book will probably cost you more than any value you ever find on the ground but it makes it more fun. Try leaving a trail of pennies on your own and see if anyone follows them. Look through your old pennies tucked away in that dresser drawer and see if you might be lucky!

May 22nd National Buy A Musical Instrument Day

Just listening to music can change your day, your attitude and your life.  It brings us joy, makes us sad, helps us remember and gives us something to look forward to.  Most people can associate something in their lives where music was playing, it could be a song on the radio, a concert, a school band or just somebody humming a tune in an elevator.

But instead of standing by while someone else creates the music why not become one of them?  Of all the instruments available there should be at least one that you can find some ability at.  The rewards it will bring you will amaze you.

vintage

I started out on guitar.  For much of my life I made my living playing guitar.  I was never that great, but I was more than adequate, and I made lots of friends, a living, and enjoyed nearly every minute I performed, rehearsed, or just sat by a bon fire playing for fun.  The one piece of advice I would give everyone is, buy something of quality. For years I taught people to play guitar and they would come in with a $50.00 special that only Superman could press the strings down on. It was defeating the students before they could ever get started. On a quality guitar the strings nearly lay on the fretboard giving no resistance, allowing the player to move quickly and freely, not leaving your fingers bloody and bruised. It makes all the difference in the world, and it sounds better too!

Piano-psd71475

I also played keyboards. (Piano, organ, etc.) and found the exact same thing.  The better the piano, the better it played. Believe it or not, there are less notes on a piano than a guitar but oh what you can do with it if you learn to play well enough. Even if you just learn a little you can still entertain yourself and friends. The most popular songs are the simplest. It’s done that way on purpose.  It takes a more advanced ear to appreciate jazz and all the changes that take place, but pop songs are normal pretty easy, hence why they are generally more popular.

images (1)

I also played trumpet, but very badly.  I learned to play before I learned my rule about quality. The trumpet I learned on was cheap (though none of them are really cheap), and it was hard to blow, it didn’t sound very clean (probably because it was hard to blow), and the values stuck a lot. Later on I tried a much higher quality trumpet and I found I could actually make it sound decent!  What a surprise! By then I had moved on to other instruments and never really went back to it.

images (3)

And of course there is the violin. It can sound so good in the right hands but when played wrong, it’s really, really bad. Once again, the strings need to rest close to the neck, the bow needs to be a decent quality for the rosin to work properly, and the tuning pegs need to work, not constantly slip.

Not all musical instruments have to be expensive to be good, a harmonica is a cheap instrument to play. You can carry it with you where ever you go and it sounds good whether it’s played alone or in a group.

Just remember to purchase something worth while. Even if you don’t stick with it, many instruments increase in value as time goes along. My main guitar is a 1958 Gibson ES 345. When it was brand new it sold for about $200.00, the last offer I got for it was above $7,000.00 and I turned it down.

How to celebrate: Buy some sort of a musical instrument and give it a try. Encourage others who are just learning.  Learn what makes one instrument better than another, and which one is for you.

May 21st National Red Cross Founder’s Day

This really could be called the Clara Barton Day as she nearly single-handedly founded the American chapter of the Red Cross. Born in 1821, Clara Barton traveled to Europe (1869) during the Franco-Prussian War (1870-71) and served with the International Red Cross/Red Crescent Society.

red-cross-1

The International Red Cross was founded by Henry Dunant in 1863 to provide aid to military personnel through their services in Geneva, Switzerland. Clara Barton, working with Dunant’s team believed it could be useful in America as well. She returned to the US and formed her own Red Cross in 1881.

FWWredcrossT

She ran the American Red Cross for the next 23 years, building it into one of the most useful and respected volunteer organizations ever to be created. The Red Cross serves the needy, serves as communication and comfort to family members of military personnel, provides education for preparedness, health and safety, and leads the way during international relief and development efforts.

Red_Cross-1024x643

How to celebrate: Join your local Red Cross as a volunteer. Attend a benefit being given for the American Red Cross.  Donate to the American Red Cross.

May 20th National Be A Millionaire Day

It’s something we all dream of, something we all hope for, but few of us ever obtain – to be a millionaire – free from scrambling to pay the bills, free to do the work we want to do instead of what we have to do, and free to turn our lives into what we want them to be.

may millionaire

No, money does not ensure happiness, or that you’ll have a wonderful life. But let’s face it, it does make things easier. Before the Industrial Revolution, the only real millionaires were those born into royalty where money was kept in the family.  As industry grew across the world, the number of self-made millionaires grew as well. In 1816, Lord Byron actually coined the term, “millionaire”, as more and more businessmen became wealthy beyond even their own dreams. Today there are over 12 million millionaires in the world making it fairly common place these days. Of course, a million dollars today is not what it was back in 1816. In fact, if you only have one million dollars to your name, you will probably be considered just upper middle class. There are over 1,800 billionaires today making it the new goal for those entrepreneurs to reach.

eb8119fcc6d08d1d3905d9b5275f174a

No one knows who created the day or when it was created. Probably somebody who was dreaming about what could have been. If you live in the US you have the best chance of becoming a millionaire, followed by Japan, Germany, U.K., and then France to round out the top 5 countries that produce millionaires. So if that’s your goal in life, you have a better chance living in one of those countries.

How to celebrate: Play Monopoly but you’ll have to increase the money you can get, even if you take it all you still won’t have enough. Paint the town by pretending you are a millionaire – just make sure you don’t run into somebody that knows you. Watch Gilligan’s Island.

May 19th May Ray Day

Now that the winter has passed, the earth has started to turn green again and flowers are beginning to bloom. It’s time to get outside and enjoy the sun. There are all sorts of things you can do now that you couldn’t while there was snow on the ground. You could go fishing…

fishing-clipart-14

play baseball…

ycopbzgcE

go swimming …

jcxoqMARi

have a picnic …

picnicblog

or just stay home and swing in a hammock.

hammock_01

Whatever you choose, just enjoy the sunshine.  Remember to wear sunblock!

May 18th National Golf Day

May 18th is National Golf Day, or, “We are Golf” is held on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C.. Golf was first invented in Scotland in the 15th Century, perhaps by Roman noblemen.

The_MacDonald_boys_playing_golf

The first written record of golf came when James II banned the game because it distracted men from practicing archery in 1457.  James IV lifted the ban in 1502 leading to the first course at St. Andrews in 1574.  By 1764, the 18 hole game we know today was introduced as a standard for the sport.

A man playing golf
A man playing golf on sunset

Golf was oficially introduced to the US in 1888.

Suggested ways to celebrate: Play a round of golf, wear some sporty socks, take a golf cart for a spin.

May 17th Pack Rat Day

First, I know I have something of value in all my stuff. I am not sure what it is and I’m not sure what it’s worth but I know it’s there and I know it’s valuable.  Someday someone will come into my place and offer me a small fortune for something I have.

Second, I know I will need something I have someday to complete some project I have. I need to keep all these small pieces and parts because just as soon as I throw it out, I will need it.

Third, all these things are memories for me. They take me back in time to when there was a special moment or remind me of some special person. I started my collection when I was ten and now I am seventy, that’s a whole lot of memories.

These are the three main reasons someone becomes a pack rat… and I ought to know because I admit it, I am one!  What’s worse, I use all three excuses for my “collection”.

confessions_of_a_pack_rat_by_zipple-d2yv6dr

What doesn’t have some sort of history to it? Letters and notes from old acquaintances and more. If you are a collector you have to have everything you can find that goes with your collection. When you no longer have a use for something but it may still have a value in your mind you save it for a garage sale. You find out quickly when you hold that garage sale that apparently, though what you thought had value, really didn’t. Seems no one else wants it either.

I think there’s a little pack rat in all of us. We may not want to admit it but do you really need to keep all that stuff you have?  Try just listing everything you have in one room of your house without going there to look at it. Chances are, if you can’t remember it on your list, you really didn’t need it in the first place. I know I have items that I’ve had for twenty years or more and I haven’t touched them in nineteen years.

packrat

No one knows who started Pack Rat Day. That’s probably a good thing because we’d be saving stuff to commemorate that!  All I know is that when I go to my refrigerator and see that picture my two year old son drew I’m just as proud of it now, seventeen years later, as I was the day he did it.

How to celebrate: Revisit those items you have kept over the years they will take you down a trip on memory lane but look for those items you can live without and donate to a museum or collector. Make a note in the calendar to go through one space every 6 months, whether that is a closet, room, garage, etc. and think about truly getting rid of the items you have not used in those 6 months. Just get rid of some of the junk. Everytime you buy or get something new, donate something you already had. Go through mail when you get it and throw away immediately what you do not need. Before buying something to add to your collection, make notes of the pros and cons of owning it, you may be better off just not bringing it home in the first place and your wallet might thank you too. Eliminate storage space. Don’t buy a bunch of extra dressers, drawers, cubbies, foot lockers, etc. If you put it in storage, you are most likely never going to use it again!

May 16th Love A Tree Day

Sounds a lot like hug a tree but you don’t have to love someone to hug them so this should be a little more intense. Actually, we owe a lot to trees, like oxygen, food, holding the earth together, shade, and really cool things to climb just to name a few.

It is believed that trees have been on earth for more than 370 million years including the, Wattieza, which has been found in fossils dating back to the Triassic Period. It is estimated that there are more than three trillion trees on the earth, of which we cut down nearly 15 billion a year while replacing them with only 5 billion variations.

Of course the highest number, and widest variety, come in the Rain Forests across the face of the earth. Trees come in many shapes, forms and colors, just like the people who use them, abuse them, and love them.

Trees are responsible for many of the foods we eat today. Apples, pears, peaches, plums, cherries, citrus (oranges, lemons, limes), coconut, dates, figs, olives, palm oil, cocoa, coffee, bananas, Brazil nuts, pecans, hazelnuts, almonds, walnuts, pistachios, nut oils, curry, maple syrup, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, cloves and sassafras, plus probably a lot more stuff I have missed.

Trees are beautiful, functional, and useful, and should be treated as one of our most precious commodities. Whether they are huge like the Redwoods in California or the miniature bonsai trees that can be hundreds of years old, perhaps they do need a hug now and then. Some have been here since long before we ever came into the picture and should be treasured.

Joyce Kilmer put it best in her poem:

I think that I shall never see

A poem lovely as a tree

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest

Against the earth’s sweet flowing breast.

A tree that looks at God all day

And lifts her leafy arms to pray

A tree that may in summer wear

A nest of robin in her hair

Upon whose bosom snow has lain

Who intimately lives with rain

Poems are made by fools like me

But only God can make a tree.

So Love a Tree today and DO NOT do what young George Washington did (or maybe didn’t :)):

How to celebrate: Go on, go hug a tree!  Plant a tree so you can watch it grow. Take a virtual field trip to the Redwood Forest. Or, just take a walk in the woods and enjoy what has been provided for you.

May 15th Peace Officers Memorial Day

Imagine getting up every morning knowing that today might be your last day on the earth. Imagine always having to place someone else ahead of your own safety and security.  Imagine saving someone’s family not knowing yours is okay. Imagine that anyone you run into might have a bullet with your name on it, and imagine that something so simple as stopping to help someone with a flat tire might be the last act of kindness you ever perform.

Well, that’s what it’s like being a law enforcement officer, and there are over 19,000 names of fallen heroes on a wall in Washington, D.C. that prove it. That is why Congress asked the President to set aside this day in 1961 to recognize these fallen brave individuals. John F. Kennedy did just that putting the bill into law in 1962. The bill was amended in 1992 by President Bill Clinton adding that the flag be lowered to half-staff on this memorial day, a part of police week.

fallen-heroes

Whether they are Police Officers, Troopers, Sheriffs, Constables, Rangers, FBI, or Secret Service they all have a job to do. It is a job many are not capable of doing, don’t want to do, or are afraid of doing. We need to hold these men and women in the highest regard and honor those that have fallen in the line of duty. Peace Officers are always there doing their best and willing to serve and protect us.

download (4)

How to celebrate: Thank a police officer for the work they do. Visit the Memorial in Washington. Make a card for a Law Enforcement Officer you may know and their family.