August 2017 Original Holiday Box

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August 31st National Eat Outside Day

When was the last time you went on a picnic? Well if you are planning on dining under the trees while it’s still warm you’d better jump on this as time is running out. It’s National Eat Outside Day.

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Take in the sunshine, although it will probably be raining, enjoy the wildlife, until the ants show up and soak in the calm and quiet atmosphere, unless you live in a big city where you will hear cars, airplanes and probably construction going on. And if you don’t have time to pack an entire picnic basket you can eat something simple, like an apple!


Or if all else fails, there are always food trucks out there somewhere! Some of them are pretty good too! They come in a variety of foods available for you to choose from and while they are generally a little expensive, what the heck… you are outside eating in nature and being one with the universe.


Unless you are a cowboy or a marauding viking you probably normally eat inside most days. Looking at the same four walls, over and over again and talking about work and the people you work with. Why not do something different for a change. Walk out the door, find a tree and park yourself, enjoying the world around you. (Just make sure the tree isn’t filled with birds) Enjoy the sunshine while you can… and you can brush that little bit of dirt off your sandwich anyway.


How to celebrate – Pack a lunch and go outside today. Remember to clean up after yourself, your plastic bag is not a part of nature. Invite some friends to go with you, make it a party!


August 2017 Shake it Up Box

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August 30th National Frankenstein Day

It’s hard to imagine the world without Frankenstein. For those of us born after 1818, the day Frankenstein was published, he has been there for us, creeping around every corner, hiding in the woods or knocking on our door for some candy.


Written by Mary Wollenstone Shelly this character has become a classic. You could say there’s a little of all of us in Frankenstein. An arm here, a leg there a brain or two from anywhere, he is the ultimate man-made monster brought to life by Doctor Frankenstein in his laboratory before the invention of electricity, cars or M & M’s.


Of course he has been pitted against nearly every other European monster… the Wolfman, Dracula, Charlie Chaplin. Well, at least he had more lines in his films than Charlie Chaplin. He normally won proving brawn stands for something but he loses in the end to man. Of course he is a man, many men, so I guess you could say he loses to himself.


One of my all time favorite movies is Young Frankenstein, a spoof about the monster and his creator. I still break up when Dr. Frankenstein finds out that Igor got him the brain of a guy named Abby Normal for his monster.


We celebrate today because it is Mary Shelley’s birthday, August 30th, though she was born in 1797. You have to wonder what nightmare she had before writing this one down. However, it became a classic she will be remembered forever for.

How to celebrate – Read the original Frankenstein. Watch Young Frankenstein. Set up a Frankenstein movie marathon. (You might want to set aside several days)

August 28th Race Your Mouse Day

Well, the people at created today. I am not exactly sure what they meant but I assume it has something to do with your computer and playing a game of some sort where you use your mouse. Like we don’t have enough to do!?!


However, if you finish your work early you might be able to play a game or two, or if you are really, really bored at home. I suppose it is better than watching a pot of water ready to boil. But maybe, just maybe they mean something else by it.


Perhaps they meant that you should watch your cat chase a mouse today. See who wins the race. Cats seem to be one of the creatures on earth that love to make the kill just for the fun of it. I’m not sure it really would make it as a spectators game, but then there are people who like to watch that sort of thing I suppose.


Or maybe they mean to go to Disneyland or Disney World and race Mickey Mouse around the park! That sort of makes sense and could be a lot of fun. The only real issue here is not getting arrested as you chase Mickey, or Minnie around. I would bet you could win this race… it gets awfully hot inside those costumes and the character actors could not last long if running at full speed.


Well, however you interpret Wellcat’s meaning, today is your day to race your mouse. Just remember, make it sporting, maybe a little more challenging than the Mayweather McGregor fight Saturday night.  Or better yet maybe make your day even more productive and take a nap!

How to celebrate – Find a computer game that allows you to use your mouse in a race. Find a mouse, and a cat if you don;t already have one, and let the races begin! Find another hobby.

August 27th Just Because Day

Today is the day to do whatever you want, just because you can. You don’t need a reason, you don’t have to ask anyone, just dot it! (Making sure yo are doing something that others will not find offense or end up with you in jail) You feel like going fishing, well then, go fishing.


Who knows, maybe this time you will catch something more than a cold. Now if you are going to eat the fish, that’s fine, but if you aren’t, then set it free. There is no need in killing something just for the sport of it.

6362642026569824171072850175_the giftIf you feel like giving someone a gift you don’t need a reason, just give it to them. Hopefully you’ll give them something they want, or hopefully they will accept it in the spirit it is given whether they like it or not. It doesn’t have to be a birthday or Christmas, not an anniversary or valentines day. Just give it because you want to expecting nothing in return.

Old friends, two senior african american men meeting and hugging
Active retired old men and leisure, two senior black brothers hugging outdoors

Or give someone a hug! Like a brother or a sister. You can try to hug a total stranger but you might not get the results you hoped for! Everyone likes a hug, even Howie Mandel! But make sure they will accept it before knocking you out for trying it.


Or maybe you could sneak someone a kiss. Again, the key here is making sure that they will accept before you give it, otherwise it might end up with you getting  a black eye! The day was originally created by Father Joseph J. Goodwin from Los Gatos, CA..  He created it as a movable holiday, probably hoping that every day could be a just because day.

How to celebrate – Start your day out by doing something unexpected for someone. (Make it something nice though.)  Do something you have always wanted to do but have never gotten around to. Spend some time with someone you haven’t had the time to give lately.

August 26th National Dog Day

Yes, there’s no denying it, I am a dog person. I have nothing against any other animal, I love them and get along with them just fine, but a dog is by far my favorite. Apparently George W. Bush likes dogs as well, sending a letter of support to the National Dog Day Foundation, the founders of National Dog Day.


Dogs are friends, protectors and sometime sole mates. They learn who we are, how we react to things and then try and place themselves in that routine somehow, someway.  “Man’s Best Friend” has earned it’s place because of what it does and how much it cares.  Yes, they may chew on shoes, pee in the house and bark in the middle of the night but just one cuddle or smile can make yo for get all that.


To me, the biggest thing is, they want to please us. They want our respect, our attention and our love but they give back all the same and more. Sadly people are often to selfish to take care of the dog they have, or abuse them since they feel they are the master and do as they please. Normally the dog will take it, much like a battered wife, they don’t know any better. But it is a shame since they are born to be our friends, make us smile and keep us company.

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Generally speaking, if someone can’t be a good friend to a dog, they can’t be a good friend to a human. National Dog Day Foundation tries to find homes for 10,000 dogs a year. That means that more than 10,000 go hungry, unloved and are afraid every day… something we can do something about.

How to celebrate – If you have a dog, give them a hug today. If you don;t have a dog consider adopting one. Take your best buddy everywhere you go today.

August 25th National Kiss and Make Up Day

Isn’t it funny how a kiss can make all the bad things go away. A boo-boo, an argument, an annoying Italian with Mafia ties. There are so many emotions involved with a kiss, sometimes even a kiss can be misleading. However when it comes after an argument, disagreement or something stupid someone did the intent often leads to something more.


It’s hard to say when humans first decided to end their fights with a kiss. I guarantee it was sometime shortly after words either had their effect, or didn’t mean anything anymore. Maybe that was a way to get someone to shut up! If I put my lips on yours you can’t talk anymore. Well, I guess you can but no one is going to understand you.


And to think humans are the only ones to kiss is just wrong. Of course most animals kiss  to find out what the other had for lunch but they do have emotions. My dog is full of kisses when I get ready to take her for a walk.


I thought “Love means you never have to say you’re sorry”. I know that’s bs! We are people, we more often than not do, and then think about what we do. Not very good when you feel hurt, lonely or misunderstood. It’s not that a kiss can solve everything, but it’s a start. It really does mean, I am willing to listen, another kiss means I am ready to forgive.


How to celebrate – Give someone you know a kiss today whether you are mad at them or not. Start an argument just so you can make up. (Not suggested) You must remember this, a kiss is just a kiss, a sigh is just a sigh…


August 24th Vesuvius Day

“Hey honey, there are some great buys in Pompeii! I think we should move there!”

“Ah, there’s smoke coming out of the top of that mountain.”

“Oh, don’t worry about that. Its just somebody bar-b-queing.”

Mount Vesuvius showed everybody who was boss on August 24th, 79 AD. It destroyed Pompeii (As we all know) but also Herculaneum and Stabiae. Amazingly it only killed 3,360. I am sure that was a lot for the day but considering how large we have been lead to believe Pompeii was (And that two other towns were also destroyed) I am surprised it wasn’t more.


There were no photos of the original explosion. The artist drawing it had to work really quick. I am not trying to make light of the disaster but come on, wasn’t the smoke and fire a little bit of a give away that something wasn’t right?


As bad as the original was (There was probably at least one other explosion before man came around) the idea that people would move back into the area and start over amazes me. Tempting fate is not a very good idea. So when it happened again in 1631 another 3,500 people were killed.


Now I know they did not have the materials and tools available that we have today but still, that smoke and fire leaping out of the top of the volcano should have told them something wasn’t right. Trust me, if you get caught in a volcanic eruption it’s gonna spoil your day.


How to celebrate – I am not sure you can really celebrate the eruption of a volcano. Plan a vacation anywhere but Mount Vesuvius. If you live near Mount Vesuvius, or any volcano, move!


August 23rd Ride The Wind Day

We don’t often think of the wind unless we are in a storm or a hurricane (Which actually is a storm anyway). We think of it as blowing our roof away, bending trees until they break or taking the hat off our head and sending it to someplace like China where we will never get it back.

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But the wind can be our friend too! When it is a breeze we can go fly kites with our children (Or on our own). You can feel a friendly breeze at the beach or when you ride a motorcycle. And you can forget going anywhere if there is no wind and you are sailing! You’ll just sit there like a bump on a log. (What does that really mean anyway?)

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You can para-sail, fly balloons, blow out candles on a birthday cake… you can try to capture it, dry off in it or break it. (Think about it) It helps you when you drive, if it’s behind you, you can pick up lost time if you are flying


You can glide, free style, have a bad hair day parachute (If you are into that) pretend you are a bird.  If it wasn’t for the wind, we would never have been discovered in America, or brought here anyway. We would have probably never called Chicago the Windy City or see a cloud float by overhead.


We owe a lot to the wind. Even those gentle summer breezes we are enjoying right now are the wind. So use it to your advantage, we are able to harness things like the wind today that they could only dream of long ago. It is just another gift given us that we can use to our benefit.

How to celebrate – Go fly a kite! Try hang-gliding. Have some broccoli and create your own wind.