Sunday, May 15, 2011

Hollyhock Leaf Crest Festival, Sea Monkeys Day, Nylon Stockings Day, more

May 15th, 2011 is the Hollyhock Leaf Crest Festival (Aoi Matsuri or Kamo), National Sea Monkeys Day, Nylon Stockings Day, Over the Rainbow Day, Straw Hat Day, Watercress Festival, San Isidro Day, Peace Officers Memorial Day, International Day of Families, Independence Day (Paraguay), Stepmother's Day, and National Chocolate Chip Day. 

Would be wonderful to be in Kyoto today, to see a gorgeous parade - everything is decorated with hollyhocks! The parade, which travels from the Imperial Palace to the Kamo Shrines, is the centerpiece of the  Hollyhock Leaf Crest Festival, otherwise known as Aoi Matsuri.

Today is National Sea Monkeys Day. Did you have sea monkeys - a trademarked brine shrimp - when you were young?

On this date in 1940, nylon stockings were introduced by DuPont. Celebrate Nylon Stockings Day by wearing them or hanging garlic in them (I'd recommend a new pair for that).

Over the Rainbow Day commemorates the birth date of Frank L. Baum, author of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

Embrace a retro headgear trend on Straw Hat Day, considered by some to be the unofficial beginning of summer.

Today in Airesford in Hampshire, the watercress capital of the United Kingdom, celebrate the Watercress Festival.

San Isidro is the patron saint of Madrid and of farmers. Today is San Isidro's Feast Day, when people drink from the spring he miraculously made, eat ring-shaped pastries called listas, and enjoy picnics and concerts.

Peace Officers Memorial Day honors brave individuals who sacrificed their lives for our safety.

The theme of the 2011 United Nations International Day of Families is "Confronting Family Poverty and Social Exclusion."

Independence Day in Paraguay celebrates their independence from Spanish rule. Celebrants eat Sopa Paraguayan and drink mate while watching parades.

Stepmother's Day was founded by a nine-year-old girl named Lizzie, believe it or not. She wanted to honor her stepmother while keeping Mother's Day special for her birth mom. Stepmother's Day is celebrated on the Sunday after Mother's Day.

On National Chocolate Chip Day you could bake a batch of tried-and-true cookies. Or you could enjoy mint chip ice cream, pancakes with chocolate chips, or spicy Mexican chocolate chip cookies.

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