October 20th International Sloth Day

October 20th International Sloth Day

Okay, so slow down today and study the sloth. They don’t waste a lot of energy getting anywhere fast but then, why do they need to get anywhere fast anyway? They are cute animals, abused as most animals are and not exactly a house pet. Still, like all creatures in the world they serve a purpose. Today was created in 1996 by AIUNAU, an animal group determined to protect animals all across the world. They can live 20-30 years if not disturbed but are easy prey to hunters. They are primarily found in Tropical Rain Forests in Central and Southern America.

How to celebrate – Visit a Rain Forest. Help protect animals. Protect nature.

June 5th World Environment Day

Our environment is important, it’s our home after all. Now I know there is a great debate about whether all the threats are real or not but we still need to be aware of the environment no matter what side you are on.

The day was created by the United Nations General Assembly in 1972.  I am not sure why it takes the United Nations to tell us to be aware of the world… we should know that!

Whether it’s the wide open plains colored in beds of grass – green, amber, or whatever color, they seem to go on forever, interrupted by the occasional hill. We do have to protect these areas where towns are easily built and factories thrive.

Or the deserts painted in reds and oranges, with the bluest skies you’ve ever seen. They always seem to be where the greatest treasures are found, like oil and precious gems. Another target of mankind.

And then there’s the mountains, great for ski resorts and to “Get away” from it all. Other treasures are also found here, buried under the outer crust of the mountain’s shell. Gold, iron, plutonium, and silver.

And naturally there are the rain forests of the world. They are beautiful, filled with lush plants and wild life and possible cures for the world’s worst diseases.

The point is… governments should not have to protect these natural wonders, businesses should not have to stop doing business, and agencies should not have to protect the world from the things we people demand, want and need. We need to innovate, which we are doing, to find sustainable ways to protect our world but provide too! So children of today, leaders of tomorrow, it’s up to you to press forward and search for great new opportunities!

How to celebrate – Make a list of the things that you think you need that come from these precious resources. Take a trip and visit some of the beautiful areas of the world. Educate yourself on the ecosystems of the world.

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.