June 2nd National Rocky Road Day

Our path in life is not always smooth, we will hit a few bumps here and there, and maybe it will get a little rocky from time to time. So celebrate that by having some rocky road ice cream… you owe it to yourself, your family and your country!

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The blend of chocolate, marshmallow and nuts (Primarily almonds or pecans and sometimes both!) and semi-sweet chocolate chunks. Now you can make your own rocky road ice cream but, why? It’s available in nearly every grocery store you go in to.

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Now most ice creams are good enough for the every day affair. Vanilla goes great with cake, strawberry makes a wonderful shake, and chocolate is really sweet and tempting. But when you take pecans, or almonds, marshmallows and even more chocolate it’s… it’s… it’s Rocky Road!

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No one who knows who created Rocky Road Day and it isn’t really National, or an official holiday designated by Congress.  In fact, it probably isn’t even a real holiday but that’s okay, we can celebrate it anyway… and honestly, any day. But, if you like celebrating with others, then you will have to celebrate National Rocky Road Day today!

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How to celebrate – Have a bowl of Rocky Road ice cream. Make your own Rocky Road ice cream. Make a Rocky Road flag to fly outside your house.

March 28th National Something On A Stick Day

Why is something good to eat so much better when you put it on a stick? Is it because you can walk around with it? Because you don’t need a fork? Because it seems like you are breaking some etiquette rule? Who knows, who cares?

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For some reason it is just better. Kabobs, corn dogs, pretzels, cotton candy, etc., etc., etc. Maybe it’s because we remember cooking those hotdogs on a stick over a campfire or even better marshmallows! Somehow they just seem better, yes they are normally over cooked or under-cooked but somehow that just doesn’t seem to matter.

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You can put practically anything on a stick, maybe not pudding but even then, if you freeze it you can! All that said though, food is not the only thing that can be on a stick. Walk your neighborhood and keep an eye on the trees. After all, aren’t they really just very big sticks?

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You can find squirrels, birds, iguanas, raccoons, nearly any animal you can think of can be on that sort of stick. Well, maybe not cattle or elephants but nearly any small animal. And why stop there!?! Even people could be up in a tree.

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And not all sticks need to be made of wood! They can be aluminum, steel or practically any material you can thik of. Whatever material you choose today to celebrate, just make sure you stick to it!

How to celebrate – Think of as many things that come on a stick that you can come up with. Build a campfire tonight and cook some hotdogs. Invent your own “On A Stick” item.

August 10th National S’mores Day

Of course one of America’s, and Canada’s, favorite treats has to include chocolate, toasted marshmallows, and graham crackers. While credit is given to Alec Barnum, it appears to have been created before he became involved in 1927. Records go back to an article in a Girl Scout book called “Tramping and Trailing with the Girl Scouts” in 1925. In “Tramping…” they called it “Some Mores” which was way too long and hard to say so it was edited to “S’mores”

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Today we have cup cakes that taste like s’mores, pop tarts that taste like s’mores, and even coffee that tastes like s’mores.

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But there is nothing like cooking s’mores over a roaring campfire. Toasting that marshmallow until it is just crispy enough to melt the chocolate bar, when both placed on the graham cracker. Whether you are in the wilds of the national forest or your own backyard, they are just as good as good can get. Oh, and while we are at it, even though this is known as a Girl Scout treat, apparently the Boy Scouts were enjoying it at exactly the same time. But since girls are sweeter than boys, we’ll give it to them.

You can try a few different creative combinations. Peanut butter replacing the marshmallow is getting very popular. Some are known to cheat with the chocolate as well by coating the graham cracker with fudge before applying the marshmallow or peanut butter.

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Oh, and for Easter… try a s’mores with a Peeps instead of just a plain old common everyday marshmallow. National S’more Day is sponsored by the National Confectioners Association.

How to celebrate – Build a fire in your backyard tonight and cook some s’mores for yourself (it will go better if it’s not raining). Experiment with some of your own creations. Go hunt and see how many items you can find that are s’more flavored or smelling, such as lipgloss, candles, coffee, etc.

June 2nd National Rocky Road Day

What is more refreshing on a lazy summer afternoon than a nice cool bowl of ice cream?  What is more fun than roasting a marshmallow over an open fire on a warm summer evening?  What snack goes better than crunching on walnuts or almonds any time you want?  How about putting them altogether and serving them at the same time!?!

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Well that’s exactly what William Dreyer did in 1929 when he took his wife’s scissors and cut up marshmallows and nuts and mixed them into his ice cream. Some say he used a new candy bar his partner had come up with containing chocolate, marshmallows and walnuts. Either way, Rocky Road ice cream was invented – although it wasn’t called that yet.

Fenton Creamery claims that Dreyer stole the idea from George Farren, one of their employees who had apparently come up with his own candy bar with the same ingredients. They claimed the only difference was that Dreyer and Edy had used almonds instead of walnuts. Perhaps had I been around back then, I would have come up with that candy bar since it wasn’t exactly rocket science.

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Anyway, Dreyer’s Ice Cream caught on, particularly right after Wall Street crashed later in 1929. That was when Dreyer became inspired and called his invention, Rocky Road ice cream. The thing I find odd is that history goes on to show that Dreyer and Edy became two different ice cream companies and both make Rocky Road!  Go figure.

How to celebrate: Go enjoy a bowl of ice cream, guess it better be Rocky Road for the sake of this holiday. Try making your own flavor of ice cream from last night’s left-overs – Say, steamed broccoli and meatloaf ice cream. Start your own ice cream company, seems like everybody else back then did.