Bulldogs, Frogs and Telling Stories! It’s a Busy Day for Celebrating!

Apr 27th

Humor Month – Joke of the Day

(There are jokes that are knee slapping funny, then there are tongue in cheek jokes that give you a sad  smile.  This is one of them.)

A dog had followed his owner to school. His owner was a fourth grader at a public elementary school. When the bell rang, the dog sidled inside the building and made it all the way to the child’s classroom with him before a teacher noticed him and shooed him back outside, closing the door behind him. The dog sat down outside the door, whimpering and staring at the closed doors and not understanding in the least as to why he was refused entry. Then God appeared beside the dog, patted him on the head to comfort him and said, “Don’t feel bad fella’…they won’t let ME in there either.”

Babe Ruth Day – today we honor one of the greatest baseball players ever.  On April 27, 1947, Babe Ruth attended Yankee Stadium for Babe Ruth Day.  It was the second LAST time he was at the stadium.  In 1946 he was diagnosed with throat cancer.  There weren’t the treatment options then that there are today, so on this day in 1947 he returned to the stadium to be honored. 

Tell A Story Day – United States: Always April 27th; Scotland and England: National Tell a Story Day is October 27th

I remember when my kids were young, at bed time they would always beg for a story.  It was part procrastination of bed time, and part love of a tale spun from the vivid world of imaginary wonder.  Today is Tell A Story Day, and we celebrate all story telling  It doesn’t matter if it is fiction or non fiction, a tall tale or folk lore. It’s just a day to tell them all – stories from a book, or off the cuff.  There are two distinct holidays for this one, one in the U.S. today, and the other in Scotland and the UK on October 27th.  They are exactly 6 months apart.  Make Tell A Story Day an important and wondrous experience.  Enhance the enjoyment of the story by setting the atmosphere. If it is a scary story turn down the lights.  Bring decorations and props that connect to the theme.  If it is about a person, bring a picture of the person. A good place to start is always . . . “Once Upon a Time . . .”  My kids always loved stories about things that happened in our family somewhere throughout our history, and in true sibling fashion, they especially loved stories that made the other one look silly.  We have our fair share of those, but the ones about my Grandparents were always my favorite.

Bulldogs Are Beautiful Day – I admit, I don’t know much about Bulldogs.  I’ve always thought they were cute as puppies, but then again, I’ve never really seen a puppy that WASN’T cute.  Here are some  some fun facts about the Bulldog that I didn’t know, and maybe you didn’t either:

*  Bulldogs are descended from the ancient Asiatic Mastiff.  The first written record of the breed appeared in Mesopotamia in 4000 BC!  This Mastiff was very intelligent and strong jawed to help man defend himself and his livestock.

*  Many dogs fall under the “Bulldog” label.  There’s the English Bulldog, Bull Mastiff, Bull Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, American Bulldog, American Pit Bull Terrier and the Old English Bulldog. Boxers and French Bulldogs also fall into this family.

*  In the British Isles, the ancestor of the English Bulldog was used for for bull baiting.  In this cruel “sport” many dogs were let loose on a bull, their strong jaws hung onto a bull’s muzzle or ears until it was exhausted and collapsed.  (I will never understand the mentality of the people who come up with certain sports)

*  When bull baiting became illegal (as it SHOULD have!), the Bulldog was bred with a terrier to create a strong-jawed, athletic, tenacious breed to participate in the next in a line of cruel new sports:  dog fighting.

*  When these dogs (the American Pit Bull Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers) came to America, they became loyal, loving family guardians and farm workers.

*  Franklin Roosevelt and Helen Keller both owned Pit Bulls.

*  A Pit Bull named Sergeant Stubby was a decorated WWI hero.  This intrigued me so I looked it up – you can find the story here! It’s AWESOME!

*  All the dogs under the Bulldog umbrella are people-loving, loyal, friendly dogs.  As with any dog, they must be socialized with all types of people and other animals.

*  The Pit Bull, American Staffordshire Terrier and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier are dogs that have received a really bad rap.  Studies show that other breeds of dog are far more likely to bite than these terriers, but because of their owners, poor training, abuse, and the fact that they have a history as fighting dogs, they are reviled.  (My son-in-laws dog is a Pit Bull mix – sweet, sweet dog.  Even though he isn’t a trained service dog, he seems to be able to sense when my son-in-law, who is a medically retired soldier, is going to have a seizure, and warns him to get down. SMART dog!)

*  All the Bulldogs need daily exercise, especially those crossed with the terrier breeds.

*  The flatter faced Bulldog relatives (English Bulldog, French Bulldog, Boston Terrier) need to have their face folds cleaned to prevent skin problems.

*  All the Bulldog relatives are easy to groom.  Weekly once-over with a brush, nails trimmed every other week, ears cleaned once a month, and a bath once a month if needed.  They are the original wash-and-go dogs!

All of God’s creatures are beautiful in their own way, and honestly, after reading about these dogs, I have a whole new affection and respect for them and their long history.

Mantanzas Mule Day –   When I read the title of this one I laughed.  What could this possibly mean?  So I started researching it and I won’t go into a long and drawn out history lesson, this is pretty interesting.  The story surrounding Mantanzas Mule goes back to the Spanish-American War.  The U.S. Navy targeted the small Cuban village of Mantanza.  After hailing down on the village with their full artillery, the only casualty was a Mule! The Mule became instantly famous and has become a classic footnote in the annals of the Spanish-American War.  A newspaper article from 1898 describes the funeral of the Mule, where he was apparently buried with full military honors, to the sound of a marching band, while 200 people watched.  They even wrote him a song! 

They marshaled men of every rank,
They summoned muffled guns to roll,
They called the merchant from the bank,
They caused the Church’s bell to toll.

And slowly to his grave they passed,
Obeying every martial rule,
And there with tears they took a last,
Long look at that bombarded mule

Wrapped in the flag he served so well.
Amid a cloud of smoke he sank;
“The Slain” – by tons of shot and shell –
Went under with a round of blank.

There you have it!  Happy Mantanzas Mule Day!

National Go Birding Day – Birding is a hobby that my hubby and I recently took up in a casual way. There are people that actually go all out and spend their lives chasing birds, trying to track as many breeds as they can.  Until I saw the movie The Big Year, I never gave birding a 2nd thought.  Oh sure, I saw movies and cartoons where bird watchers are made fun of, and I admit to giggling at them myself.  So what IS birding exactly?  Birding is a hobby where you pay attention to birds, learn about their species and appreciate their beauty. Simple as that.   We recently put up 3 different types of bird feeders at our deck and have seen over 20 different species in our back yard alone!  You can keep birding as simple as just watching them in your backyard, or traveling all over the world to see as many different birds as you can.  There are 100s and 100s of species to enjoy.  Once you start paying attention it can be surprising how many birds there are that you never even noticed.   I tried for a couple of hours to get a  picture my husband took of a little guy that hit our window and stunned himself.  I was able to pick him up and stroke his feathers until he regained his equilibrium and fly away.  It was incredible how light he was!  It was a pretty amazing few minutes for me.  I think it was too big for the blog to allow. 

Save The Frogs Day– It has been four decades since Kermit the Frog first sang “It’s Not Easy Being Green”, and amphibians all over the planet now how he felt!  It’s not just difficult being green any more – it’s a hard time to be a frog of any color!   Frogs and toads today face many environmental threats, which have been called an “amphibian extinction crisis” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.  Nearly 1/3 of the Earth’s 6,485 species of amphibians are on the brink of extinction, according to the California based conservation group, Save the Frogs.  One of the biggest factors in the demise of the amphibians has been the deadly chytrid fungus, which is blamed for the declines or extinction of more than 200 species worldwide.  There are also many other dangers though – deforestation, wetland loss, pollution and pesticides, invasive species stealing their food, and others.  Not sure how to tell you to celebrate this day – just appreciate frogs for their wonderful bug eating abilities, the songs they sing at night, and their bulging-eyed expressive faces.  I was able to rescue a couple of tree frogs this week while I was mowing the lawn and carry them to safety away from where I was working – cute little guys.  I certainly wouldn’t like it if they ceased to exist, so raising awareness of the problems they face is a good thing.


National Sense of Smell Day –  I wonder how many of us take our sense of smell for granted?  We probably don’t think about what it would be like NOT to be able to smell, but take a moment and think of all the things you smell on a daily basis, and imagine life without that ability.  It would be so sad and make other facets of our lives less pleasurable.  Scent plays a powerful role without our lives and impacts us greatly every day.  Our sense of smell is highly linked to memory and perceptions.  Scents can give us a pleasurable response, or an incredibly negative one – depending on what it is we are smelling!  Meeting someone new, our impressions are made in part by how they smell.  If they have a fresh, clean scent we are left with a positive feeling. If they have bad breath, body odor, or are saturated with perfume or cologne, we are left with a negative one.  For me personally if they have cologne or perfume, I immediately begin to be ill, and often end up with a horrible headache and sometimes nausea.  That definitely doesn’t leave a positive impression in my mind.

Here are a few interesting odor facts:

1. Everyone has a unique odor identity similar to a fingerprint–no two people smell the same way except identical twins.

2. The human brain can process roughly 10,000 different smells in an area the size of a postage stamp.

3. A woman’s sense of smell is much stronger than a man’s.

4. A person’s sense of smell is weakest in the morning and the ability to perceive odor increases throughout the day.

5. Approximately 80 percent of what we taste is actually qualified by our sense of smell. This is why our taste is diminished during a cold or flu.

6. Prolonged exposure to unpleasant smells can actually impair your ability to smell. Wearing a mask over the nose and mouth can help lessen the effects of bad odors.

7. Smell has a very powerful link to memory and links to the emotional regions of the brain more directly than other senses.

8. Our sense of smell is strongest in the spring and summer because of the added moisture in the air. It is also stronger after exercising because of the additional moisture in the nasal cavity.

9. Scent works in the opposite direction of other senses. With sight, sound and taste, we identify the information first and then react emotionally. With scents, we have an emotional reaction first and then identify the scent shortly after.

10. People can remember smells with 65 percent accuracy after a year, while visual recall is about 50 percent after three months.

After reading these things I started to wonder what would be the most memorable scents in people’s minds.  I ran across the top 20 most recognizable ones, and have to agree with most of them.  A couple probably wouldn’t have made my list.

1. Coffee
2. Peanut butter
3. Vicks VapoRub
4. Chocolate
5. Wintergreen oil
6. Baby powder
7. Cigarette butts
8. Mothballs
9. Dry cat food
10. Beer
11. Ivory bar soap
12. Juicy Fruit gum
13. Orange
14. Cinnamon
15. Lemon
16. Tuna
17. Banana
18. Crayons
19. Cheese
20. Bleach

For me, the dry cat food wouldn’t have made my list, and since cheese has so many different varieties, I’m sure it wouldn’t have made the list either.  The rest though, are definitely very distinct.  What would be on YOUR top 20?

Food Celebration of the Day –

National Prime Rib Day – if you enjoy one of America’s favorite steaks, Prime Rib, then today should get your mouth watering, and start you drooling.  Many people decide that calories and fat don’t count today, and look forward to it. There’s only one way to celebrate Prime Rib Day. And, that is with a big, thick, juicy cut of prime rib, cooked perfectly to your liking. Don’t forget the au jus and the fully loaded baked potato.

The name “prime rib” stems from the quality grading the USDA started giving beef in the 1920s. These days, most rib roasts are dubbed “prime” whether they’re marbled with 10 to 13% fat or not.  Here are a few ideas from www.food.com to get you started!






Today has been a big day!  Get out and enjoy nature – inhale all the wonderful scents of cut grass, a salty breeze if you live near the beach, or breathe in the lovely aromas of a fresh peach or baking bread.  Observe some birds frolicking in the trees, or appreciate the uniquely cute face of a baby bulldog.  No matter how you enjoy this day, do it with happiness – after all! It’s SATURDAY!  God Bless You – I’ll see you tomorrow!

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