Hollerin, Summer Solstice and Mmmmm . . . Peaches and Cream . . . Celebrate Saturday!

Jun 21st

It’s a sunshine filled Saturday . . . and I will be in the kitchen filling an order for Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes – non-boozy for the kids, and boozy for the grown-ups.  It’s always fun to create something lovely for people . . . especially since I can’t enjoy any on my healthy eating plan, so I’m living vicariously through OTHER people’s sugar intake.  hahahaha I know, sad, right?  Oh well, it is still fun.  I am always happiest in the kitchen creating something pretty.    (I’d like to introduce you to the Twins.  These little guys are less than half the size of the squirrels we usually get on our back deck, so I’m wondering if they are this springs young ones.  They are SO precious!)

Before I start in on the celebrations for the day, I’d like to address something that really ticks me off – people’s unbridled stupidity towards blue-collar work and the people who perform the vital services that we ALL use each day.  The reason for this?  The ignorant woman who was walking past my husband’s shop with her son.  Here was his Facebook post from yesterday: 

“To the lady out walking with her son; I would just like to say that was pretty rude and you haven’t the slightest idea about what spills out of your pie hole. Let me educate you some. I make a very good living, almost twice the national average for my career field. I make more than the median average for a mechanical engineer. I do not have an education that costs $250,000 plus nor have college loans to prove it. I have never had issues finding work and always have been able to get work wherever I want. For the last 10 years, I have had people search me out and offer me jobs, I have not gone looking for them. I have done the corporate thing, I have owned my own company. I no longer desire the stress or hours involved. I know mechanical systems, computer systems, heating and air conditioning systems, hydraulic systems, electrical and diagnostic systems, I can weld and fabricate. I am not helpless when something breaks. So next time you want to open your mouth and tell your son you need to go to college so you don’t end up like that, maybe you should open your eyes a bit and expand your knowledge base. It is guys like me that keep the world moving.”

Well said Hubby.  What is WRONG with people?  Seriously?  The world could survive without more lawyers, more politicians (We could use far fewer of those!), and for goodness sakes we could live without ANY liberal arts graduates.  What we cannot live without are the people who create, repair and maintain our cars. We need our plumbers and electricians. We NEED the people who work at the jobs that snobs like that woman won’t lower themselves to do.  Sadly, these days the folks with the degrees are in great part sitting on their ample backsides looking for work, sucking at the government teat, and whining about how their self-entitled butts aren’t being treated fairly.  Many of them are working fast food jobs, the ones that our children should be able to fill to learn the ropes of actually working.  It’s kids like this woman’s son who have grown up with the sense of entitlement that makes me utterly sick.  The ones that have their hand out for something earned by the sweat of someone else’s brow.  Here’s a clue, you worthless witch, next time your car needs an oil change, a repair on your highly technical vehicle, or some other such work, let’s see how smart you are, and fix it yourself.  And grow an iota of respect for other people – in the end, it’s the people you are looking down upon that you will need in this world to make sure you survive.  By the way, my husband is worth 1,000 of your worthless son – and how do I know he’s worthless?  He was raised by you.

Now on to more pleasant things. . . . the celebrations of the day!  I have to have SOMETHING fun to focus on so I don’t stay angry at someone who doesn’t deserve a moment’s notice.

Alzheimer’s Awareness Day – The first thing many people ask, what IS Alzheimers?  We hear the word all the time, and we know it is a horrible thing for someone to have, but what IS it?  Well, Alzheimer’s is characterized by dementia, which is an impairment in memory, in another areas of thinking such as the ability to organize thoughts and reason, the ability to use language, or the ability to see accurately the visual world – not because of eye disease – and these impairments are severe enough to cause a decline in the patient’s usual level of functioning.  Truth is that some kinds of memory loss are a normal part of aging, but the changes to the usual aging process are not severe enough to interfere with the level of normal function.  There are many different diseases that can cause dementia, but Alzheimer’s disease is by far the most common cause in the United States and in most countries in the world.  Following are a few Alzheimer’s Disease facts that you may find to be helpful if you are seeking information:

*  Alzheimer’s is a disease of the brain that progresses slowly, and is characterized by impairment of memory, and eventually be difficulty in reasoning, planning, language and perception.

*The chances of developing Alzheimer’s disease increases greatly after the age of 70, and may affect around 50% of people over the age of 85.

*  The main risk factor of developing Alzheimer’s is increased age, though there are also genetic risk factors.

*  The 10 classic warning signs of Alzheimer’s disease are memory loss, difficulty performing familiar tasks, problems with language, being disoriented as to time and place, poor or decreased judgment, difficulty with abstract thinking, misplacing things, mood and behavior changes, changes in personality and loss of initiative.  (this can also describe most teenagers between ages 14 and 18 – just a thought!)

*  The cause, or causes, of Alzheimer’s disease is, or are, unknown.  The accumulation of the protein amyloid is thought to perhaps play a role in this.

 *  The diagnosis for Alzheimer’s is reached when a person has had enough cognitive decline to meet the criteria for dementia, when the symptoms are consistent with Alzheimer’s, and when there aren’t any other brain diseases that are a better explanation for the symptoms.  (To me that just seems a bit broad – and I wonder how many people have been improperly diagnosed with this when they could have been treated for something else?)  

*  Even though there is no cure, Alzheimer’s is managed by medication, and non-medication, treatments.

The good news is that there are some dementia prevention exercises you can do!  In a study taken over about 5.4 years (I always wonder why they split it up – why not 5, or 6 years?), dementia developed in 124 of 465 subjects.  Researchers found that the people who DIDN’T get dementia were active with reading, playing board games, playing musical instruments and dancing!  So basically, keeping the brain and body active!  Good to know!

 

  
Ann & Samantha Day – Twice each year, on the winter and summer solstices, the lives of two young girls are celebrated.  These two girls made a difference in their worlds.  Anne Frank was a young Jewish girl who had to into hiding to escape the Nazis during WWII and is best known for the book “The Diary of Anne Frank”.  Samantha Smith was 10 years old when she wrote a letter to Soviet President Yuri Andropov in December of 1982 to ask if he was going to wage a nuclear war against the United States.  He invited her to tour the USSR the following  July, and as a result became a media celebrity, then a television actress.  Samantha died on a rainy August night in 1985 when the commercial plane she was in crashed, killing all who were on board.  This holiday is promoting the girls as being worthy of appearing on U.S. postage stamps.  I say yes!  There are far less worthy people who have their faces on our stamps – so why not these courageous young ladies? 


Cuckoo Warning Day – I am cracking up over this one and I cannot believe I somehow missed it last year!   According to superstition – which nobody seems to know where it started – if you hear the call of a cuckoo bird on June 21st, there is a wet summer ahead.  In Europe – where cuckoos spend their spring and summer – the call of the cuckoo says that spring is here and summer is coming soon.  Now I live in Western Washington, so regardless of whether we hear a cuckoo or not, it’s never surprising to have a wet summer . . . it’s just where we live!

Go Skate Day (GSD) – This day was started in 2004 by the International Association of Skateboard Companies (IASC) and is a day for anyone, and everyone – except me – I’m a klutz – to take a break and get together with family and friends and go skateboarding.  Apparently it doesn’t matter what kind of skateboarding you like best – though I didn’t know there was a choice – whether it’s street, park, freestyle, racing downhill, or just in your driveway – it’s all good today.  As long as you are on a board that has wheels and are having fun, you are celebrating this one the correct way.  Many skateboard shops, clubs and organizations choose this day to have events, competitions and anything else you can think of that has to do with skateboards.  I’ve never personally stepped onto a skateboard – it just isn’t something I choose to risk my  neck over, but I remember when my dog Tibbi was about a year old, she was so strong and loved to pull.  She’d pull on the leash, she’d tussle with my son, she had all of this energy all bundled up inside of her, so my son decided to put her harness on her and have her pull him up the road on his skateboard.  She loved it, and so did he.  There was something so cute about watching the two of them go racing down the road at top Rottweiler speed . . . I wish I had a picture of it, but I somehow managed to never take one. 


Summer Solstice  – Today is the longest day of the year, and the official start of summer.  The amount of daylight time we have for the next six months will decrease daily.  We don’t have to think about that part of it right now though.  There’s too much to do for the summer to think ahead to it being over!  It’s time to enjoy vacations, beautiful weather, playing at the beach, hiking in the mountains, camping . . . so many things to do, not enough summer months!  We need to get busy!   Did you know that the sun does not set at the North Pole today?  There will be 24 hours of sunlight there.  Not sure that makes up for that cold day in December when the sun does not rise above the horizon, but right now the thought of that is very far away.


National Daylight Appreciation Day – today, and every June 21st, is a day devoted to the sun and the benefits of “daylighting”.  What is daylighting?  This term refers to the use of natural light to brighten an indoor space, instead of only using electric lighting.  Not only will it reduce your energy bills, but studies show that daylighting can enhance mental and physical well-being, as well as boosting concentration and energy levels.  I know that when we’ve had power outages I’ve sometimes wished that our skylight was closer to the kitchen, instead of over the living room.  I tend to be busier in kitchen even without electricity, so the extra lighting would be nice. 

National Hollerin’ Day – Have you ever felt like just letting loose and screaming at the top of your lungs?  Today’s your day then!  Today is the day of the National Hollerin’ Contest.  Spivey’s Corner, NC, which has a population of about 50 people, hosts the annual contest today, which brings the population to between 5,000 and 10,000 people for the day.  Not sure what all of it was about though, I had to dig a little deeper.  This is actually quite interesting!  Hollerin’ is considered, by some at least, to be the earliest form of communication between humans.  In rural areas it was the way to convey long-distance messages, since this was back before modern telecommunication.  Evidence of hollerin’ in one form or another, can be found worldwide, among many early people, in Europe, Africa, Asia and the United States.  Each culture used, or even still uses, hollers differently, though almost all of them have specific hollers meant  for warning or distress.  It’s also used for greeting, general information, fun, work, etc.  The hollers for the National Hollerin’ Contest fall into one of four categories:  Distress, Functional, Communicative and Pleasure.
I did find this link from news coverage from 2011 competition – sounds like it would be a noisy spot to be, and not somewhere to go if you have a headache! My goodness – watch the video here!   I had to giggle while I was reading this one though, because even though we have telephones with interoffice lines, somehow hollerin seems to happen amongst my office mates at the other end of the hall from me.  It’s a bit of a distance down that hall, but doggone it if we can’t hear entire conversations had between two separate offices between the two who “live” down there. 


World Handshake Day – Now, don’t mix this up with National Handshake Day – that’s on June 28th.  We’ll talk about that one then.  No, this WORLD Handshake Day and is the brain child of Ivan Zupa, who heard the following words from an old man:  “My son, place your hand here in the sea and you are united with the whole world.”  Zupa came up with the idea that we should all take the time to put our hands into the sea and shake hands with the rest of the world, and as such, feel united.  If you don’t live close to the sea, you could put your hand into any body of water that runs to the sea to still be a part of it.  If you don’t live near one of those either, well, there must be a dry land option as well, but I have no idea what that would be at the moment.  Interesting concept though, don’t you think? 

 

This Day In History

1834  – Cyrus McCormick patents the reaping machine.

Food Celebration of the Day

National Peaches and Cream Day – China is the world’s largest producer of peaches, followed by Italy. But we’re no slouches in the U.S. — peaches are grown in at least 38 states.

 

 

 

Give a holler, go for a skateboard ride, or have some decadent peaches and cream . . . you can enjoy all of these in the extra sunlight we have today!  I have some cupcakes to bake! God Bless You and I’ll see you tomorrow!

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