August 21st National Spumoni Day

If you are Canadian, stop reading here… your Spumoni Day isn’t until November 13th. Here in American we celebrate on August 21st. Though it’s an Italian dish, I am not sure that they celebrate it.


The dessert was brought to the US in the 1870’s and has remained popular ever since. Normally layers of vanilla ice cream mixed with fruit, cherries and nuts, sometimes topped off with whipped cream. The nuts are supposed to be pistachios but I suppose in a pinch, any nut will do.

spumoni ice cream cake

Now some have gotten fancy and turned it into an ice cream cake. Others use chocolate instead of vanilla ice cream, some use both… but that doesn’t explain the green and pink ice cream! (Food coloring probably.) In all honesty, why couldn’t you use any flavor ice cream you wanted to though!?!


Particularly since they called themselves Neapolitans! But then what else is someone from Naples supposed to call themselves? Well, no matter how you look at it if you ever go to an Italian restaurant you will probably find it on the menu.

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Seems to me, the Italians have spent a lot of time inventing ice cream dishes. Guess they weren’t satisfied with spaghetti, at least after they found out it originally came from China.

How to celebrate – Have a bowl of spumoni today. You can melt it and pretend to eat it as soup! Visit Naples and ask someone there what they were thinking!

August 20th National Radio Day

The idea of the radio has been around longer than you might think. It was discovered years and years ago that sound traveled through water, the ground and even railroad rails. This discovery was made back in  the early 1800’s and began experiments by men who felt it could be used to expand the human experience.


In 1864 The theory for the modern day radio was put into motion by James Maxwell as he studied the transmission of sound. The telegraph and telephone advanced the idea of a radio as it was found that sound could be transmitted through wires.


In 1894 Guglielmo Marconi developed the first practical radio, in 1898 Heinrich Hertz began to define sound waves in the atmosphere. By the 1940’s the radio had become an important part of life. People depended on it to keep them up to date with the latest news, providing hope behind occupied boundaries, entertained and moved armies to where they needed to be.

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Over the years the radio has evolved, who will ever forget the boombox! Sadly, about the only radio experience we have anymore is when we get in our cars. The radio launched all sorts of new things into life and really started the idea of mass entertainment across the world.


How to celebrate – Spend a day listening to the radio. Find some old copies of radios shows and enjoy the presentations. Study all the different products introduced on radio programs.

August 19th National Aviation Day

Today we celebrate flight and the men, and women, who made it all happen. Though there have been many claims as to who was the first to fly it is generally accepted that the Wright Brothers were the first to successfully pilot an airplane on Dec. 17th, 1903 at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.


As such it is only fitting that we celebrate this day in the honor or Orville Wright, who was born on August 19th, 1871. The day became a National holiday when President Franklin D. Roosevelt declared it in 1939.


If you think about the world of flight it is amazing when you consider the first recorded successful flight came in 1903 and only 66 years later we were landing on the moon, in 1969. It is possible a young child in 1903 could have witnessed the moon landing in their lifetime.


Originally called Wright Brother’s Day this date eventually became Aviation Day because many others added to the history of flight in a relatively short time. (Also because others have laid claim to being the first in flight.)  Today, airplanes are hardly even noticed as they soar across the sky. A little over a hundred years ago it was considered a miracle.

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Who knows where flight may end up. The American government seemed to give up on space and flight advancement but now private groups are picking up the slack.  Just like with the Wright Brothers, life waits for no one.


August 17th National Thrift Shop Day

One man’s garbage is another man’s treasure. Keep that in mind while shopping at a thrift shop. Nearly every thrift shop has a charity connected to it, I think maybe it’s even a rule, so they do serve a purpose beyond just allowing you to find a bargain.


It really doesn’t matter what you are looking for, there is a very good chance you’ll find it at a thrift shop. True, somebody has probably used it before you get the chance and you don’t have the history of that person, but it’s sort of the same as a garage sale so… deal with it.


The fashions are probably not going to be the latest fad and I draw the line at underwear!


And while you might find good deals, don’t expect to find that very valuable antique because the staff gets to see everything first. But there may be something of value to you that would be considered priceless.


And remember that at least a part of every dollar you spend will go to support some good cause. You get something, and you give something. It’s a win-win for all.

How  to celebrate – Spend part of your day today thrift shopping. If you don’t need anything, donate to a thrift shop today (it will probably be tax deductible). If you don’t need anything, shop for someone else who does… that makes it a win-win-win.

Got a good joke!?!! Probably not, most jokes are only semi-humor.  It is up to the individual to find the humor in them and sometimes it takes a bit of a search.


But at least someone has tried to brighten your day a little, or maybe a lot. The jokes I love the most are the ones that you get an hour after they’ve been told. You are walking along, with that frown on your face and suddenly you get the joke someone told you and you light up like a Christmas Tree.


Of course if you are like most people, when you go to retell the joke you can remember everything except the set up for the punch line.  Of course that can be funny too! Or how about those people that go back, saying… “Wait a minute! I forgot the best part!


Like there ever really was a best part! But that’s okay, the effort was made. And even a failed joke brightens up your day and once that is accomplished, it spreads brightening up other people’s days.


So go ahead and ell that joke that maybe no one else found funny, once you find someone else to laugh, you will make a life long friend!

How to celebrate – Tell the best joke you’ve ever heard today. If you don’t have a best joke, buy a book of jokes and memorize at least one. Don’t worry if you are a good joke teller or not, sometimes the performance is better than the joke itself!

August 15th National Relaxation Day

Why do these days always seem to fall during the work week? Clearly someone who is either retired, or not working created them. Seeing as how no one has claimed it, it makes me think it may be the latter.

However, that being said, today is a day to sleep in, and let your mind, and muscles, take a break (or serve in Congress which is about the same thing). We do need to relax though, it builds us back up, and makes us actually more productive when it is time to work.


In some ways, wouldn’t it be nice if we could sleep walk through our day. Get our work done while we sleep so we can accomplish two things at once! Or how about doing one of those 5k runs!?! If we could sleep through it we could get in shape while catching up on our sleep! Most work an 8 hour day and they say, whoever they are, that we should get 8 hours of sleep too, perfect! Get them both done at the same time!


Then when we are awake we can spend more time… you got it… relaxing! We could be the most relaxed creatures on earth! The same “they” also say we are most creative when we are relaxed. I assume that’s because we don’t have to think about what we have to do. I know a lot of people that I have worked with don’t ever seem to be thinking about work when they are working.


So today is your day to relax. Sit back and let your mind wander, your muscles unwind and your nerves settle. You deserve it because… well because… just because.

How to celebrate – Spend your day relaxing. Figure out your own relaxation schedule, so long as it doesn’t require any effort. Don’t worry, be happy.

August 14th V-J Day

For America nearly 4 long years of war were finally over on August 14th, 1945. Many think World War 2 ended with the surrender of Germany, it did not. Japan fought on, through August 6th when the first atomic bomb was dropped, through August 9th after the second atomic bomb was dropped.


V-J stands for Victory in Japan, or Victory over Japan. It actually has three dates. August 14th when Emperor Hirohito cabled the US and told them he agreed with the Potsdam Declaration and surrendered. August 15th is when the news broke that the war was over and September 2nd, when President Truman declared the war was over. The Peace Treaty was signed aboard the U.S.S. Missouri.

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Of course for many the war wasn’t really over. Troops in the field had to get word, and accept it. Many of the Japanese refused to surrender. One soldier was still found to be hiding, and fighting, as late as 1971.


Naturally, was like this never really come to a stop. In many places today the results of the war are still in effect. There are still Nazis and Japanese who felt they should have won. There are still allies who feel the world will never be justified for the insults against mankind.


But for most of us, the war is over and the healing is still going on. In fact Germany and Japan have some of the mist robust economies of the world and it’s because America rebuilt them. (Their people also had something to do with it.) It was the kind of war that you never get over but you can celebrate that we have agreed to be friendly again. Or at least until the next time war breaks out.

How to celebrate – Celebrate with one of the few veterans from World War 2 that are still living. Remember how horrible the war was so we do not repeat it. Stop the extremes on either side because they are both wrong and we all know, two wrongs don’t make a right.