August 31st National Trail Mix Day

Wow, it seems like everything this summer is about food. Sort of lets you know what people are thinking! However, this one is at least healthy, or at least most of it. We should be eating healthier over the summer as we burn more calories in the heat so you need to replenish what you’ve lost but you don;t do that with soda and ice cream. Water is a must and if you are going to snack, it ought to be something like trail mix.

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The original trail mix was really nothing more than peanuts and raisins.  The credit for this invention is given to 2 surfer dudes in California in 1968. But hold on! A novel, “The Dharma Bums” by Jack Kerovac written in 1958 has 2 main characters that eat the exact same thing as they hike across America (I think, I am not sure). Either way, it started out simple and provided the protein to keep either hikers or surfers full and moving. (Perhaps in more ways than one!)

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Since then we have learned we can add in all sorts of other flavors. A variety of nuts can be included, sunflower seeds (Which technically are nuts), dried fruits of all kinds, cranberries (Which may or may not be considered a fruit depending on who you talk to), M&M’s, Skittles, mini-marshmallows, chocolate drops… well you get the idea, just about anything you want to add to it can be added. (Though I don’t recommend honey, it makes it really sticky).

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Some have even turned the mixture into a breakfast cereal. Sort of like Grape Nuts but with a flair! Which also adds items that you can put in your mix. Rice cereals and wheat cereals work really well whether they are used in cereal or regular trail mix.  The point to trail mix is exactly what it says, something you can munch on while on the trail.  Meaning on the move!

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Now I am not sure exactly what the mixture above is. It sort of looks good, but I am a bit hesitant about the prunes. I am not sure prunes are a good thing while on the trail.  It conjures up some rather ugly images.

How to celebrate – Make up your own sort of trail mix. Maybe you can find something no one else as ever thought of! (Though I think that could be difficult) Make sure you use the snack for which it is intended, munching while on the move doing something.

August 30th Toasted Marshmallow Day

What beats a toasted marshmallow on a warm summer evening? Well, if you are in Florida maybe anything since it is like 100 degrees outside, even at night!  However, I still enjoy a toasted marshmallow, although I do like them nearly burnt.

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It is possible, if you have a gas stove, to toast your marshmallow over the burner inside where it’s air conditioned.  It’s not all that safe and not quite the same but it works if you are desperate.

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And of course you can add chocolate and graham crackers, but that’s making a s’more and we already covered that earlier this month.

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And you can bake the marshmallow in the oven adding a brownie underneath it just because (Which was also a holiday day earlier this month.). This works out well if you are moving and don’t have the time to toast your own marshmallow, like I am so this posting will be brief!

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Or if your even in more of a hurry you can drink your toasted marshmallow meaning you don’t need a fire, a stove or an oven.  You just go to your local coffee shop and nearly everyone of them has a toasted marshmallow drink. However, in closing, there is nothing like roasting that marshmallow over an open fire. Just don’t burn your neighbors house down doing it!

How to celebrate – Build a safe fire tonight and buy a bag of marshmallows and have some fun! Try a toasted marshmallow drink if you haven’t had one yet. Make up your own new recipe for a toasted marshmallow.  Maybe adding fruit… though getting that piece of fruit on a stick could be a good trick!

August 29th National Chop Suey Day

The term ‘Chop Suey’ actually means “Assorted Pieces”. Your first question should be, what’s assorted pieces? It is supposed to be made with chicken or beef, fish, prawns, or pork. Mixed in are eggs, cabbage, celery, and sprouts. It is normally served over rice and considered a complete meal. Of course, it always has those little ears of corn that must come from some sort of Bonsai plant.

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The problem with chop suey is that no one knows exactly where it came from. Though it is believed to actually be an American dish, made by Chinese in America, there is some mention of it in the Taishan Guangdong province in China, according to E.D. Anderson, an anthropologist. It was in Taishan that the first of the Chinese immigrants to America came over from.

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Chop Suey may have come about because of the Chinese helping build the railroad across America in the mid 1800’s. It would make sense since supplies were generally hard to come by and a creative improvisation for something that tasted good was a must. Bits and pieces from this and that would go a long way all mixed together.

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Another legend says that chop suey came from San Fransico when a Chinese chef had to come up with a dish to feed some hungry miners in the 1860’s who had been drinking a bit too much. It had to be good or else! Since we heard nothing “else” the miners must have enjoyed their meal.

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And then there was Premier Li Hangzhang’s, of the Qing Dynasty, visit to the U.S. in 1896 and the chef who could find nothing to serve him worth his status. In order to show the Premier that relations between America and China were good, the chef decided to prepare a meal that offered the best of both worlds. It must have worked since we did not hear anything about heads rolling during the Premier’s trip.

Whatever the source, in 1903, Liang Oichao, from Guangdong, traveled across the U.S. finding chop suey being served nearly everywhere he went. It was the only Chinese dish being served that he had never heard of in China.

How to celebrate – Have some chop suey for supper tonight. Create your own chop suey dish. Check your family recipes and see if you can find a recipe for chop suey that might precede 1860.

August 28th National Cherry Turnover Day

One of my favorite fruits is the cherry and now I find out they are related to plums, peaches, and nectarines. They are drupes (whatever that is), or possibly better known as stone fruit. I always thought they were just cherries! They are not native to North America however. The cherry was brought over by English colonist in the 1600’s.

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Cherries are good for you too! Well, when eaten in proper portions. You may, or may not, have known that cherries may have led to General Lee’s defeat at Gettysburg. His troops had been denied fresh fruit for so long when they arrived in Pennsylvania they found cherry orchards and ate their fill, and more. When they arrived at Gettysburg, many of the troops were ill from eating too many cherries (any fruit would have done the same thing). Perhaps they did not fight as well as a result, or maybe not, but that’s one of the excuses offered anyway.

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Cherries are great just by themselves, or made into a pie, or cake, or cut up in ice cream. But today is cherry turnover day so that’s what we are celebrating! Cherry Turnovers can come in many flavors. Obviously they are all cherry, but the filling can be mixed with other fruits, creams, and flavorings so you can have them your way. Oh, and there are over 1,000 varieties of cherries so they can even taste different depending on which cherry you use.

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They are even good if you just pour the cherries into some dough and either fry or bake them with nothing added to it at all.

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How to celebrate – Make your family some cherry turnovers. Some fast food restaurants serve cherry turnovers if nothing else works. Make up your own type of cherry turnover after you have investigated the different types of cherries you can use.

August 27th National Just Because Day

August 27th is Just Because Day. It was created by Joseph J. Goodwin from Los Gatos, CA in the late 1950’s, just because he could. It’s a great day for doing those things you never seem to get around to, or always wanted to do, but have never done. This year, since it’s a Saturday, you have a good chance of actually getting it done! Nothing is excluded, so long as it’s not illegal.

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You could make your own mini-movie! It doesn’t have to be good, after all you, and your family and friends, are probably the only ones that will ever see it. The funnier the better! You can even launch it to YouTube for others to share. You don’t have to have fancy equipment or even a plot, after all most of the movies don’t have much thought to them anymore anyway!

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You could pay it forward. Buy someone you don’t know breakfast or lunch, leave someone a card just because, or even help a neighbor with a project they have been meaning to get done. You certainly will surprise anyone by going out of your way to do something for them without expecting anything in return.

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You could go into a recording studio and record a song, your own, or one already made into a hit. So long as you don’t try to release it, it doesn’t matter. Who knows, maybe you will create the next big hit, or a new style of music no one has ever thought of before (good luck with that). Again, it doesn’t matter if it’s good or not, it’s just something you don’t normally do, which is the whole point of Just Because Day!

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Or instead of talking today, why not sing everything!?! You certainly will surprise everyone.

It’s all up to you because this is Just Because Day! Be inventive, creative and most of all, have fun doing it! You might not only make your day, but that of everyone you come in contact with.

How to celebrate – Well, I’ve already given you a few things to ponder but here are three more. Go bungee jumping. Splurge on a loved one. Pay a total stranger a compliment.

September 2016 Original Holiday Box Review by Diana Marko

A huge thank you to Diana Marko for the review!

Make every day a holiday with this bizzare box from @unboxbizarre ! I had so much fun opening this one up. Some of the holidays that are in September (according to @unboxbizarre ) Sep3 – skyscraper day; Sep7 – neither snow nor rain day; Sep9 – teddy bear day; Sep17 – #batman day! #lol My fave from this box would be the #giant #teddybear soap. The watch was really #cool also , it even came with authenticity #👍 . The United stamps puzzle is going to be fun to do, (I already have the presidents hanging on my wall and now I'll have the stamps also) . And last but not least , the Batman kitty shirt , I like it but it's two sizes up from my size – I guess I'll use it as a sleeping shirt! Check them out for monthly holidays that you never knew about ! #unboxbizarre #bizzarre #soap

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August 26th National Dog Day

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Dogs truly are man’s best friend. They live for their people and love them unconditionally.

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Sure, cats make good pets but they aren’t like a dog. They miss you when you are away, and welcome you home like you’ve been gone for a year when it’s only been five minutes.

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They don’t care if you are dirty, have a defect, or if no one else likes you. They will love you to the end of their days, which far too often comes way too soon. National Dog Day was founded by Collen Paige, August 26th, 2004.

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How to celebrate: Take your dog to a dog park and let them make new friends.  Take your dog to the beach. Take your dog out to dinner with you. Adopt a dog!