October 26th National Pumpkin Day

Oct. 26th National Pumpkin Day

The pumpkin has become the symbol of fall, Halloween and is now put into every kind of food or drink imaginable. Pumpkin is actually a squash, okay… a really big squash and is believed to be native to North America, perhaps as old as 9,000 years. Seeds have been found in Mexico that date back to 7,000 B.C. Today is celebrated by carving pumpkins, building machines that throw pumpkins and in chunking pumpkins (If that is such a thing). Now they have made pumpkins into everything but my favorite is still pumpkin pie. It has become a huge part of Thanksgiving, Halloween and fall in general.

How to celebrate – Visit a pumpkin patch. Make some sort of pumpkin dish for your family. Plant pumpkin seeds.

September 23rd Fall Equinox

Sept 23rd Fall Equinox (Autumn)

Today fall begins, well halfway through the day anyway, or in Florida’s case at 3:50 AM. I won’t be up to welcome it in. Supposedly today is nearly equal in the amount of daylight and the length of the night. I again am not planning on proving this myself. Fall brings the most holidays we celebrate and so it is normally welcomed by nearly everyone. 

How to celebrate – Welcome fall and the change in the color of the trees (they don’t change much in Florida). Get ready for the coming holidays. Visit a pumpkin patch!

November 17th National Take A Hike Day

Today is a great day to take a hike. What’s the difference between a hike and a walk? Well I guess it depends on how fast, far and the terrain you hike on. You can hike around a block, but generally that is considered a walk. You can walk up a mountain, but generally that is called a hike.

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I think generally speaking a hike is a little more adventuresome than a walk. It’s probably a little more strenuous and often involves exploring things you don’t normally see everyday. It’ a chance to commune with nature, animals and enjoy the weather.

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Most hikes have a destination as well. They may involve a picnic lunch or even a sleep over at the destination you chosen. The objective of taking a hike is get out and spend sometime with nature, get a little exercise and enjoy life. Take you cell phone for an emergency but forget you have it unless you need it.

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And don’t forget to take your dog. They love hikes, probably even more than their people do! And November is perfect for it. The leaves are changing colors, the air is a little crisper and besides, you need to make room for that Thanksgiving feast coming up.

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But don’t ask a soldier to go on a little hike with you… you might get shot!

How to celebrate – Go on a hike. Form a hiking party. Join the army and go hiking every day.

September 23rd Autumn Equinox

Autumn Equinox, or the first day of fall, comes on a different date every year. This year it happens to fall, pun intended, on September 23rd. So get ready for the leaves to change, for there to be a nip in the air and for all the celebration to come.

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Officially, it marks the most balanced day of the year. 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of night. It became a day of celebration, set by the pagans who marked it as the birthday of Mabon, the daughter of Mordon, the Goddess of Earth.

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Well, if you are tired of summer, the heat… and down here in Florida the rain, today is your best friend! Some like the darkness coming early, others hate it, most of us enjoy the cooler temperatures but nearly every one enjoys the rich colors. The reds, oranges, tans still mixed with some green and the deep blue sky.

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Every season has it’s ups and downs, those things we love about them, and those things we hate. They are going to come whether we want them to or not. So might as well find something you enjoy!

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How to celebrate – See how many festivals you can attended during he fall season. Go for a walk and look at all the color changes. Plant your winter garden.

September 22nd Autumnal Equinox Day

When you woke up this morning did you realize it was the first day of fall? Well it is! This is the season where everything seems to start happening, holidays, celebrations and a world filled with colors.

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It is also the only day of  the year where daylight and night share a 12 hours of the day on the equator.  So plan your day accordingly, if you live on the equator, elsewhere you probably won’t notice the change as much.

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But you should notice all the colors in nature. Plants begin to go through their yearly changes bringing out an array of colors seen no other time of the year. We only see it subtly here in the south, but in the north, the changes the trees go through are stunning. The funny thing about beauty also warns of the things to come, mainly the winter. (Though the winter has it’s own kind of beauty as well.)

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By legend, this is also Mabon’s birthday, the son of Mordon, the Roman Goddess of Earth. Most of us are not to familiar with Mabon or Mordon but we should celebrate their birthday as well, just because it’s nice to do that. They weren’t real but that doesn’t matter.

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The fact is, today is the first day of fall, the beginning of all the most celebrated holidays here in America and just a good day to be alive. Enjoy it.

How to celebrate – Take a moment to enjoy nature. Make plans for the coming holidays. Celebrate life.

October 30th National Candy Corn Day

The perfect candy for fall and Halloween, candy corn. It has been around since the late 1800’s, created by George Renninger in Wunderle, Germany. It is made from corn syrup, sugar, water, marshmallows, fondant, and originally carnauba wax (which comes from the leaves of palm trees). Where they came up with palm trees in Germany one can venture to guess, but today candy corn is made on machines not requiring the wax.

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Over the years candy makers have learned how to add shapes, colors, and non-traditional flavors to come up with different combinations for the candy corn lover. The original candy corn taste however has not changed since the very beginning, in fact the exact same ingredients are used (except for the palm leaves).

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They have even added little pumpkins to the mix. They obviously go for as much realism as they can in both shape and color. While the shape does not change the taste it does add to the flavor of the season.

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And I’m not exactly sure what these things are but they at least have the right colors! Back to the original yellow, orange and white, and they look a little fluffy too!

How to celebrate – Make some candy corn of your own. Make it whatever shape you like. Buy some candy corn for Halloween, it’s great for trick-or-treaters but make sure you get the prepackaged individuals sizes. Why not try for the world’s largest candy corn kernel!