What better way to start off the year than jumping into freezing cold water! It does help by boosting the immune system, creates a natural high, improves circulation, burns calories (from all that shivering), reduces stress, and you might just make a new friend or two while doing it (maybe not friends you’d want to keep but still friends). It also makes your butt smaller as you tend to freeze your a** off! Oh, and it is recommended that you wear shoes… Lord knows why!
How to celebrate – Take a Polar Bear Plunge. Turn on your shower to cold to get a general idea of what it will feel like. Chicken out at the last moment and lose all those friends you thought you’d made.
If you want to have birds visit you in your backyard you need to feed them. This is particularly true if you live in colder climates where birds find hunting for food very difficult on the snow covered ground. The day was created by Bob Matthews of Holiday Insights and The Gardener’s Network in order to ensure our feathered friends have enough food to survive the winter.
How to celebrate – Feed the birds. Learn what birds eat. Take pictures of the wildlife that makes your backyard a home.
Here is an animal we tend not to think a lot about until they run out in front of our cars causing us to slam on the brakes. Yes, they are a rodent but they are a cute rodent so I don’t think that counts. We should show our appreciation for them today, in the middle of winter, because it’s hard for them to find food…. we can provide that and make them happy. Today was created by Christy Hargrove in 2001 as a part of the Western North Carolina Nature Center.
How to celebrate – Let a squirrel entertain you today. Leave some food out for the squirrels. Enjoy nature, even if it is covered in snow.
Snowflakes, no two are alike… unless you cut them out of paper and make them yourself! When I worked for a school this use to be a favorite activity to keep kids quiet but as we never had kids on December 27th, we never celebrated this day. So maybe this is a day for parents to find something to do with their kids after the newness has worn off the gifts they got for Christmas. In the south they can remind us of what snow looks like and in the north… well, they may not need any more snowflakes but who cares, it keeps the kids busy! If you didn’t get snow for Christmas this year maybe you can cover your yard in these kinds of snowflakes! Probably not a real good idea.
How to celebrate – Cut out some snowflakes. Figure out what you are going to do with all those snowflakes. Come up with other winter symbols you can cut out just for something different.
Today is the first day of Autumn in 2021. The date does vary so you have to be on the watch for it. The Equinox means that we have exactly 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours night. There have been many, many festivals to celebrate this over the years, most are pagan, and most have something to do the harvest. We can look to cooler weather coming in the northern countries, the approach of winter and shorter daylight hours. Naturally this brings the changes in colors in nature and some of the most breathtaking views on earth.
How to celebrate – Throw an Equinox party. Check out all the celebrations held today. Get ready for winter.
Punxsutawney Phil is probably the best known ground hog in the world. He has served Punxsutawney, PA since 1887. The general idea is that if the ground hog comes out of his hole and sees his shadow there will be six more weeks of winter, if he does not see his shadow, and stays out for a while, then spring is just around the corner. None of this is scientific of course. February 2nd is traditionally halfway through winter so there will be six more weeks of winter, though they may be milder than those that preceded it.
How to celebrate – Visit Punxsutawney (Either the town or the ground hog) Watch for ground hogs living in your area. Go outside and look for your own shadow, it will do practically the same thing.
Well if you live in a warmer climate then this day may be very important to you, its Make Cut Out Snowflakes Day. If you are in a region where it snows a lot you may want to ignore today, you probably have a lot of snow already. But if you need to create that look of snow this could be an important day for you. Naturally I do not propose you put these snowflakes in your yard, it doesn’t really look like snow as it resembles more of a garbage dump site than a field covered in snow.
How to celebrate – Make some paper snowflakes. Go outside and play in the snow if you have any. Go back to bed and wait for winter to end.
Snowman Burning Day – March 20th
This holiday is celebrated in both the United States and Switzerland as the changing of the seasons, from Winter into Spring. Now you can’t really burn a Snowman, it’s way to wet. You can melt it, but you don’t need a fire to do that, so it is a symbolic day where no one is actually proposing you burn a snowman. Unless you have had a very long Winter, you probably won’t be able to find, or build, a snowman to burn! It has been suggested that you can explode a snowman instead… but I wouldn’t suggest this.
How to celebrate – Find, or save, a snowman from Winter. Enjoy
the warmer weather. Watch Frosty the Snowman re-runs!
With winter, at least in the colder climates, very few birds stick around. Even in the southern regions birds will continue to fly as far south as they need to in order to find a warm climate. It is not that they do not like where they have been living, it simply is with the snow covered trees, shrubs and grass there is very little for them to eat. Feed them and they might not leave at all! They don’t really eat all that much and with all the seeds they drop (One way or the other) it’s sort of like planting a garden! Besides, look at those little faces, how can you deny them! Give them a break and feed them so that tomorrow morning, you’ll have something singing just outside your window.
How to celebrate – Buy some bird feed. Make sure the birds can find your feeder. Look around and see if you have any hungry birds around you.
“The soup that won the war!” Now you might wonder what war and how a soup saved that war!?! Good questions. You might call it the most American soup, or stew, ever created and it was created because there was nothing else left to create!
Well, it seems that during the American Revolution the rebels, that would be the Continental Army, were starving to death. Farmers were selling their crops to the British Army because, well, they could pay for the food but that left the American’s without much food.
The recipe came from Philadelphia. Well, sort of anyway… there wasn’t a recipe really. It basically included nearly anything one had around them, thrown into a pot and cooked until tender. The flavors varied depending on what you put in it… the key was adding pepper! Black pepper, red pepper, any kind of pepper one could find.
As stated, one of the original ingredients included tripe… the stomach of cattle. No one probably would have eaten it had they known what tripe was but since they didn’t, they enjoyed it as much as any starving person could. And in the harsh winter weather, the pepper kept them warm!
I did not say warm and happy, but warm. There is a difference. Anyway, Washington won the war, with the help of the French who surprisingly didn’t eat a lot of Pepper Pot Soup. Here’s a Pepper Pot recipe for you. Oh, and you don’t have to use tripe… unless you want to.
How to celebrate – Dress your family up like the Continental Army and feed them Pepper Pot Soup. Visit Philadelphia. Go to Valley Forge.