We made it! It’s not only Friday, it is the beginning to a three day weekend! I know that this is a weekend when many people focus on barbecues, the first camping trip of the year, family gatherings, etc., but please do not lose focus of what this weekend is all about. I’ll be doing a special post about Memorial Day tomorrow. In the meantime, let’s see what celebrations that today brings for us to enjoy.
Lucky Penny Day – I remember my Grandma always called single pieces of candy “penny candy”. I always wondered why since candy never cost a penny at any point in my memory, but I remember she always called it that. Apparently before I was born my Mom could take a penny down to the “5 and Dime” and get penny candy for a treat. I sometimes wish I had been alive during that time, especially since there’s so much about that time period that agrees with my life views besides their candy prices. Lucky Penny Day is the day to find a penny – heads up of course – for good luck. An upside down penny won’t bring you luck, it just gives you a penny. Due to inflation they say the penny may be on the production line chopping block, but it still is worth something in my mind. They still add up to $1.00 if you get 100 of them, and they work really well for scratching off lottery tickets. As far as I’m concerned, pick up any penny you find, hang onto it, put it with all the other pennies you find and eventually you’ll have a bunch of lucky money to spend on something fun.
Here are some other uses for pennies:
- A penny for your thoughts.
- To put your “two cents” in.
- A necessity for penny pinchers
- A handy screwdriver when nothing else is available.
Heat Awareness Safety Day – As we get into the hot weather, and we’ve already experienced a few pretty warm days around here where I live, we get into the time of year where the interior of vehicles can reach life-threatening temperatures very rapidly. In just ten minutes, a vehicle’s interior temperature can rise 19 degrees. In one to two hours it can rise 45-50 degrees. That means that it can reach deadly temperatures in minutes. Children’s small bodies heat up 3 to 5 times faster than an adults. It is NEVER safe to leave a child or a pet unattended in a car, not even for a minute. A total of 560 kids have died from heat in cars in the United States since 1988. An examination of media reports about 559 child vehicular heatstroke deaths 1998 through 2012 shows the following circumstances:
52% – child forgotten by caregiver
29% – child playing in unattended vehicle
18% – child left intentionally in vehicle by adult
1% – circumstances unknown
Some parents have reported that they were outside of their regular routine, put a sleeping baby into its car seat and went to work and just forgot to take it to daycare. I know that this must be heartbreaking, but I just cannot fathom forgetting my child in the car. That could be because my children were never actually QUIET while riding in the car . . . but still! To prevent this from happening though, it has been recommended for that parent to put something in the backseat near the child that is absolutely needed at the office – cell phone, briefcase, etc., so they have to reach into the backseat. Same issues with pets – if it is hot, and you aren’t taking your pet outside of the car with you, then just don’t take the pet with you! It might be sad to be left at home, but it is better for it to be sad for a little while, and alive, than with you and dead of heat. I cannot imagine what a horrible death that would be. If you see a child or a pet left unattended in a vehicle in the heat, call 911. Emergency personnel want you to call, they are trained to respond to these situations. I have actually observed both children and pets, left in the car during horrible heat, with the window barely cracked. I did call 911, and stayed with the car, prepared to bash out a window if need be to save that child or pet’s life. The response time in both instances has been astonishingly fast. It was probably a good thing that the police were present to confront the mother or pet owner, because I’m fairly certain if I had given a piece of my mind things would have gotten ugly.
National Wig Out Day (Always Fri. before Memorial Day)- This is a fun celebration! In 2006, two sisters – Kate & Alice Clark declared this to be National Wig Out Day. They inspired the residents of Bellingham, WA to go to work wearing all types of crazy wigs, and after work they gathered downtown for a big party. What a spontaneously wonderful thing to do! I don’t have any wigs, but this one may actually be fun enough to buy a few wigs!
World Crohn’s and Colitis Day – Inflammatory Bowel Disease, consisting of ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s Disease, are two severe chronic digestive diseases that are said to affect millions of people across the globe. They cause the intestinal tissue and digestive system to form sores, can easily bleed and become inflamed. There is no cure so far, nor even a known cause, and there is little public understanding of the pain and suffering of the people coping with them. During this day it is hoped that the challenges and needs of IBD patients can become better known, and as there is more help and support, the burden of these people who suffer can be lightened.
World Turtle Day – Turtles and tortoises are the world’s oldest creatures. They are reptiles, characterised by a special bony shell developed from their ribs that acts as a shield. These gentle animals have been around for 200 million years, yet they are rapidly disappearing due to habitat destruction, the cruel pet trade, and the exotic food industry. You can do a few things to help save turtles and tortoises for the next generation. Never buy them from a pet shop, since it increases the demand from the wild. Never take them from the wild unless they are sick or injured. If one is crossing a busy street (if you happen to live somewhere that one is likely to do that), pick it up, move it across the street and let it continue on its way, in the same direction it was already going. Report cruelty or illegal sales of turtles and tortoises to your local animal shelter. I haven’t spent much time around turtles, but I know someone who has one as a pet. What surprised me about it was how FAST that little guy can get across the room! Maybe turtles are slow by comparison to us, but they are no means as slow as they are made out to be.
Don’t Fry Day – The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention has declared the Friday before Memorial Day, May 24, 2013 to be “Don’t Fry Day” to encourage Sun Safety Awareness. This is an important reminder to protect your skin while enjoying the outdoors. There is no single step that can fully protect you from overexposure to UV radiation, so try to follow as many of these tips as possible:
* Do Not Burn or Tan
* Seek Shade
* Wear Sun-Protective Clothing
* Generously Apply Sunscreen
* Use Extra Caution Near Water, Snow, and Sand
* Get Vitamin D Safely
This weekend is usually the first truly warm weekend when so many are outside doing sun related activities, and the risk for ultraviolet (UV) damage of the skin increases. Skin cancer is on thee rise in the United States, and the American Cancer Society estimates that one American dies every hour from skin cancer. This is so sobering! I had no idea the numbers were that high! This year alone the American Cancer Society estimates that there will be more than 76,250 new cases of malignant melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer, and more than two million new cases of basal cell and squamous cell skin cancers in the U.S. Fortunately, if it is found early, skin cancer is highly curable, and is preventable.
This Day In History –
1934 – Legendary bank robbers Bonnie and Clyde Barrow are shot to death in a police ambush in Louisiana.
Food Celebration of the Day –
National Taffy Day – One thing I have always loved when going to the ocean is going into those waterfront stores and getting a big variety of different flavors of saltwater taffy. I love the stuff! I can eat it until I nearly make myself sick on it, and still want more. So, who created saltwater taffy? Regrettably, that fact is unknown, but the sale of saltwater taffy has been recorded, specifically in Atlantic City business districts as early as 1889. Joseph Fralinger is widely considered to be the first salesman of salt water taffy, selling his delicious candy at fairs and along the Jersey Shore. Another mystery is the origins of the name “salt water taffy.” In fact, there is no salt water in the (though there is a slight amount of salt). According to stories, the Atlantic City boardwalk was damaged during a storm in the summer of 1883, which included David Bradley’s store. The next day, children asked him for taffy, but he changed the name to “salt water taffy” because his confection had been soaked by sea water, and the name stuck! The popularity of salt water taffy peaked in the 1920s, when more than 450 manufacturers were making it. Although several people have tried to claim salt water taffy as their own, the U.S. Supreme Court determined in 1923 that the product has no legal attachment to one company or individual.
As you head out for your long weekend, please remember to take some time and really appreciate the meaning behind Memorial Day. The ones who died so we can have a long weekend and celebrate with our families are the reason for the day, and the one we should never forget. More about Memorial Day tomorrow. God Bless You and I’ll see you in the morning!