Thursday, May 31, 2012

World No Tobacco Day, Macaroon Day, more

May 31st, 2012, is World No Tobacco Day, Save Your Hearing Day, and National Macaroon Day.

This year, the focus of World No Tobacco Day is "tobacco industry interference." Does the tobacco industry influence your decision-making?

Turn your music down, especially when you're wearing headphones. Have a serious talk with the young people in your life about their one and only set of eardrums. May 31st is Save Your Hearing Day.

Enjoy a delicious cookie, made without flour, on National Macaroon Day.

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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Hole in my Bucket Day, Water a Flower Day, Mint Julep Day, more

May 30th, 2012, is  Hole in my Bucket Day, Water a Flower Day, Loomis Day, Indian Arrival Day, World MS Day, National Senior Health and Fitness Day, and National Mint Julep Day.

Hole In My Bucket Day doesn't require a trip to the hardware store. Instead, search your memory banks for a children's song that goes on and on, ending up right where it started. Want lyrics?

Today is Water a Flower Day. Unless it's raining where you are, your flowers need a drink. Oh, and don't forget your indoor beauties.

May 30th is Loomis Day, honoring Mahlon Loomis. He  conducted experiments in the 1800s that helped lead to the wireless technology we enjoy today.

Indian Arrival Day is celebrated in Trinidad and Tobago, as the anniversary of the first indentured servants from India arriving in Trinidad in 1845. The culture of India - including music, food, clothing, and religion - forever changed Trinidad.

World MS Day is observed on the last Wednesday in May. This year, the event is built around "the 1000 Faces of MS."

National Senior Health and Fitness Day is "The Nation's Largest Older Adult Health Promotion Event."

On National Mint Julep Day try this refreshing drink made with bourbon whiskey, water, sugar, and - of course - mint.

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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Day of UN Peacekeepers and Ascension of Baha'u'llah

May 29th, 2012, is  International Day of UN Peacekeepers and Ascension of Baha'u'llah.

The United Nations states: "Since its beginning in 1948, United Nations peacekeeping has evolved into one of the main tools used by the international community to manage complex crises that threaten international peace and security." Take a moment to support the International Day of UN Peacekeepers.

Followers of the Baha'i faith celebrate the Ascension of Baha'u'llah on May 29th, the anniversary of the death of the founder of Baha'i in 1892.

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Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day, World Hunger Day, Derg Downfall Day, more

May 28th, 2012, is Memorial Day, Slugs Return from Capistrano Day, World Hunger Day, National Multiple Births Awareness Day, Gone-ta-Pott Day, Spring Bank Holiday, Ratu Sir Lala Sukuna Day, Derg Downfall Day, Republic Day (Armenia), and Republic Day (Azerbaijan).

Memorial Day, originally known as Decoration Day, was intended to honor Union soldiers who died during the Civil War. After World War I the holiday expanded to honor U.S. soldiers who died during any war. Take time today to reflect on the sacrifice made by others for our sake and for our country. President Barack Obama has declared 3:00 p.m., your local time, as a National Moment of Remembrance.

For some crazy reason, today is Slugs Return from Capistrano Day. Not as glamorous as the swallows' return to Capistrano - sorry!. If you're actually in San Juan Capistrano, California, maybe you want to get rid of the slimy creatures.
World Hunger Day

Today is National Multiple Births Awareness Day, established by Multiple Births Canada in 2005. May 28th is the birth date of the Dionne quintuplets - Annette, Emilie, Yvonne, Cecile, and Marie - born in Quebec in 1934.

The 28th of every month is Gone-ta-Pott Day, as proclaimed by the gang at the website by the same name. They say this day is meant for "seeing the humor in a bad day." Nice sentiment.

Have fun, everybody in the UK! The last Monday of May is the Spring Bank Holiday. No work for you!

Ratu Sir Lala Sukuna Day, celebrated in Fiji on the last Monday in May, honors the Father of the Nation.

Derg Downfall Day is celebrated in Ethiopia as the end of the Derg regime, a junta that ruled the country from 1974 to 1987.

Armenians celebrate Republic Day today by decorating their streets in the national colors of red, blue, and orange. People enjoy khash, a dish made from the hooves, shin bone, and stomach of a cow. Armenia declared its independence in 1918.

May 28th is also Republic Day in Azerbaijan. The country declared its independence most recently in 1991. Their national flag features blue for "Turkic," red for "modern, progressive," and green for "Islam."

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Sunday, May 27, 2012

Cellophane Tape Day, Old-Time Player Piano Day, more

May 27th, 2012, is Cellophane Tape Day, Old-Time Player Piano Day, and Grape Popsicle Day.  Today used to be National Wig Out Day as well.

Why should duct tape get all the attention? Tape together a gift, a collage, or a hem with good old cellophane tape today, in honor of Cellophane Tape Day.

Many readers of The Holiday Whiz are too young to remember player pianos, which used paper music rolls to tell the piano which notes to play. They're the mp3 players of 100 years ago! Enjoy this video  in honor of Old-Time Player Piano Day:

Don't bother with lipstick today, ladies. Just grab a grape popsicle and rock that purple smile! May 27th is National Grape Popsicle Day.

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Saturday, May 26, 2012

Sally Ride Day, Dzien Matki, Blueberry Cheesecake Day, more

May 26th, 2012, is Sally Ride Day, Dzien Matki, Independence Day (Georgia), Independence Day (Guyana), and National Blueberry Cheesecake Day.

Sally Ride Day, celebrated on her birth date, honors the first American woman to go into space. Her historic feat took place in 1983, aboard the Space Shuttle Challenger.

Dzien Matki, otherwise known as Mother's Day, is celebrated today in Poland.

The Republic of Georgia observes Independence Day on May 26th, celebrating 21 years of freedom.

Guyana observes Independence Day on May 26th, celebrating independence since 1966.

Enjoy a decadent dessert with the natural health benefits of blueberries on National Blueberry Cheesecake Day.

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Friday, May 25, 2012

Don't Fry Day, Brown-Bag-It Day, Geek Pride Day, Towel Day, more

May 25th, 2012, is Don't Fry Day, National Brown-Bag-It Day, Geek Pride Day, Towel Day, National Tap Dance Day, Global Planking Day, National Missing Children's Day, African Liberation Day, Independence Day (Jordan), and National Day (Argentina).

The Friday before Memorial Day in the United States is Don't Fry Day. Yes, wearing sunscreen can be a sticky hassle - but your alternative could be skin cancer.

National Brown-Bag-It Day is an opportunity to save a few dollars and cut calories. Unless, of course, your brown bag holds yesterday's pizza, greasy chips, and double-fudge brownies.

Since you're reading this, there's at least a fifty-fifty chance you're a geek. Not that there's anything wrong with that! Check out some geek jewelry in honor of Geek Pride Day.

Towel Day will only make sense if you've read The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams. "A about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have," according to the guide. Do you know where your towel is? Check the tweets at #towelday.

National Tap Dance Day is celebrated on the agreed-upon birth date of Bill "Bojangles" Robinson - he had no birth certificate. National Tap Dance Day earned official recognition in 1989.

On this date in 2011 the world celebrated the first - and apparently last - Global Planking Day. Another fad bites the dust.

President Ronald Reagan proclaimed May 25th as National Missing Children's Day in 1983. Always keep a recent, high-quality photo of your children close at hand. Also study photos of missing children - you could be the hero who reunites a family.

African Liberation Day commemorates the liberation of many African countries from European colonial powers.

Jordan achieved independence from Britain on this date in 1946. Today is Jordan's Independence Day.

Argentina's National Day or First Government Day commemorates that country's independence from Spanish rule. Argentinians dress in white and blue to celebrate.

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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Tiara Day, European Day of Parks, more

May 24th, 2012, is International Tiara Day, National Scavenger Hunt Day, European Day of Parks, Labor Day (Jamaica), Labor Day (Bermuda), Independence Day (Eritrea), Battle of Pichincha, National Coffee Day, and National Escargot Day.

Today is your chance to emulate Kate Middleton without the trouble of a Royal Wedding, paparazzi, or constant scrutiny. Just put on a tiara, stand proud, and celebrate International Tiara Day.

In honor of National Scavenger Hunt Day, here's a fresh idea for you: Create a list of clues, then turn them into QR codes that can be scanned with a smartphone. My daughter invented this idea when she was only eleven! (Proud Mom here.)

European Day of Parks was founded in 1999 by the EUROPARC Federation, to raise awareness and support for Europe's protected areas. The theme for 2012 is "See the sky. Touch a tree. Feel the air. Find yourself."

Labor Day in Jamaica includes emphasis on volunteer service. Prior to 1961 the date was known as Empire Day, honoring the birth of Queen Elizabeth.

Labor Day is celebrated in Bermuda to draw attention to racial disparity in the workplace.

The people of Eritrea celebrate Independence Day on May 24th, although they have yet to achieve democracy or adopt a constitution.

The Battle of Pichincha festival commemorates a victory in 1822 which ultimately led to Ecuador's independence from Spain. Festivities include parades and air shows.

National Coffee Day is observed in Brazil on May 24th. I'm ready to celebrate!

Even though I'm an adventurous eater who gave snails a chance, I'm not a fan. You're welcome to my share of the goodies on National Escargot Day. Go crazy!

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Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Lucky Penny Day, Turtle Day, Taffy Day, more

May 23rd, 2012, is Lucky Penny Day, World Turtle Day, World Crohn's and Colitis Day, Emergency Medical Services for Children Day, Declaration of the Bab, and National Taffy Day.

In these iffy economic times, who among us can afford to reject the luck and value of a stray penny? "A penny saved is a penny earned," as Ben Franklin used to say. But wait - a fact check shows that Ben Franklin is falsely credited for the saying! The original quote, "A penny spar'd is twice got," comes from George Herbert's Outlandish Proverbs, ca. 1633. Happy Lucky Penny Day.

Today is World Turtle Day! Take a moment to admire these creatures that carry their homes wherever they go. Nice lifestyle.

World Crohn's and Colitis Day is meant to raise awareness about Crohn's and Colitis, in the hope of finding a cure. The day was founded in 2007 by Josh Golder.

Emergency Medical Services for Children Day is observed on Wednesday of National EMS Week. This year's theme is, "More than a Job, a Calling."

Declaration of the Bab celebrates the inception of the Baha'i Faith.

National Taffy Day is always celebrated on May 23rd. Amazingly, the salt water version of this candy was invented by accident in Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA, when ocean water swamped a candy stand during a storm! Salt water taffy, a delicious combination of sweet and savory, was born.

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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Buy a Musical Instrument Day, Vanilla Pudding Day, more

May 22nd, 2012, is Buy a Musical Instrument Day, National Maritime Day, National Heroes Day, International Day for Biological Diversity, and National Vanilla Pudding Day.

Today is Buy a Musical Instrument Day. What will you have - an electric guitar or a harp, a drum kit or a harmonica?

National Maritime Day commemorates the departure in 1819 of the S.S. Savannah from Savannah, Georgia, USA, beginning its voyage to become the first steamship to cross the Atlantic Ocean. From 1933 to the present, the current U.S. President has issued a proclamation regarding this holiday.

National Heroes Day commemorates Sri Lanka's independence, since 1971, from colonial rule.

The United Nations has declared May 22nd to be the International Day for Biological Diversity "to increase understanding and awareness of biodiversity issues."

Vanilla pudding is not the most glamorous member of the pudding family, but its flavor is tried and true, either on its own or in recipes. Celebrate National Vanilla Pudding Day.

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Monday, May 21, 2012

Gemini, Sign of the Twins, May 21 to June 20

Gemini. Image: Salvatore Vuono,

Everyone born between May 21st and June 20th is a Gemini, the sign of the Twins.

For more information about Gemini:

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Memo Day, "I Need a Patch for That" Day, Victoria Day, more

May 21st, 2012, is National Memo Day, "I Need a Patch for That" Day, National Waitstaff Day, Victoria Day, World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, and Naval Day.

In honor of National Memo Day, please take a memo: Use less paper. Write your memos electronically!

"I Need a Patch for That" Day is here. You may have a patch to help you quit smoking, to administer pain meds, or to provide birth control. I'd like to have a patch to increase my net worth. Oh, and my daughter would like to have a supermodel patch.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, more than 2 million Americans work as waiters and waitresses. (Remember when the politically correct crowd wanted us to call them waitrons?) Celebrate National Waitstaff Day by leaving a big tip for a deserving waiter or waitress.

Victoria Day, usually observed in Canada on the third Monday in May, celebrates the birthday of Queen Victoria.

The United Nations established the World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development in 2001. The day is "an opportunity to deepen our understanding of the values of cultural diversity and to learn to 'live together' better."

Chileans celebrate Navy Day today, to honor the memory of those who fought in the Iquique Naval Combat of 1879.

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Sunday, May 20, 2012

Sweet Tooth Fairy Day, Stepmother's Day, Be a Millionaire Day, more

May 20th, 2012, is International Sweet Tooth Fairy Day, Stepmother's Day, Be a Millionaire Day, Eliza Doolittle Day, Independence Day (Cuba), Independence Day (Camaroon), Watercress Festival, Pick Strawberries Day, and National Quiche Lorraine Day.

Unrequited love handles! Magnetic personality disorder! Pop-up ad nauseum! No, I haven't gone crazy - I'm just celebrating International Sweet Tooth Fairy Day. Sweet Tooth Fairies are a sweet kind of word play, invented by Graham Hidderley/Burgess. Take a common two-word expression, such as "remote control," then make another two-word expression starting with the second word in that expression, as in "control freak." Mash it together - "remote control freak" - and there you have it. I really wish I had a poetic license plate.
Here's to all of you wonderful stepmothers out there, who aren't evil like in the fairy tales of old. Happy Stepmother's Day to you!

Gather your play money or dust off your Monopoly board in honor of Be a Millionaire Day. Buy a lottery ticket. Follow a lucky stock tip - Facebook, perhaps? Of course, if you're fortunate enough to be a millionaire every day, for real, feel free to disregard this holiday.

Eliza Doolittle Day is celebrated on May 20th each year, as set forth in lyrics from the musical, My Fair Lady: "Next week on the 20th of May, I proclaim Eliza Doolittle Day." My Fair Lady is based on George Bernard Shaw's play, Pygmalion.

Cuba's Independence Day is celebrated by the exiled Cuban community.

Cameroon celebrates Independence Day today. The Republic of Cameroon, home to approximately 250 ethnic groups, gained its independence in 1972.

Today brings the Watercress Festival in New Alresford, Hampshire, England. I'd sure like to try the champion watercress soup.

Even though today is Pick Strawberries Day, ours aren't ready yet. Perhaps I'll step outside and explain the facts to our lazy, disrespectful strawberry plants. I hope you're having better luck!

Today is National Quiche Lorraine Day. This classic French dish features eggs, bacon and Swiss cheese, combined and baked in a pie crust. The French know their cuisine, but plain old scrambled eggs and bacon would hit the spot right about now.

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Saturday, May 19, 2012

Plant Something Day, Devil's Food Cake Day, more

May 19th, 2012, is Do Dah Day, Plant Something Day, Armed Forces Day, National Asian and Pacific Islander HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, Ho Chi Minh's Birthday, Youth Day (Turkey), and National Devil's Food Cake Day.

Do Dah Day is Birmingham, Alabama's, oldest event. Money is raised for many animal-related charities.

Plant a seedling, bulb or sprout in honor of Plant Something Day. When you're finished, send e-cards to your friends, bragging about your accomplishments.

Armed Forces Day was conceived by U.S. President Harry S Truman, to honor the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines under one department - the Department of Defense.

May 19th is National Asian and Pacific Islander HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. This day was created by the Banyan Tree Project in 2005, in an effort to remove the stigma of HIV/AIDS in the API community.

Ho Chi Minh's Birthday is a national holiday in Vietnam. Saigon was renamed Ho Chi Minh City in honor of the former Prime Minister and President. "Ho Chi Minh" means "he who enlightens."

Today Turkey celebrates both Youth Day and the anniversary of founder Ataturk's escape from Instanbul, on the Turkish path to independence.

Enjoy some sinfully rich chocolate cake today in honor of National Devil's Food Cake Day. Then tomorrow, confess your sins and promise to stick to your diet.

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Friday, May 18, 2012

No Dirty Dishes Day, Cheese Souffle Day, more

May 18th, 2012, is Mike the Headless Chicken Festival, National No Dirty Dishes Day, National Bike to Work Day, Visit Your Relatives Day, Send an Electronic Greeting Card Day, International Museum Day, NASCAR Day, National Defense Transportation Day, Dayton Hamvention, Endangered Species Day, HIV Vaccine Awareness Day, Maglumguly, Battle of Las Piedras Day, Haitian Flag Day, and National Cheese Souffle Day. 

The Mike the Headless Chicken Festival runs from May 18th to May 19th, much like the brave chicken who ran around after his head was cut off in 1945. Visit Fruita, Colorado, USA to participate in the 5k "Run like a Headless Chicken," the Chicken Dance Contest, lots of chicken, eating contests and more.

To celebrate National No Dirty Dishes Day, simply do the dishes! If you're more ambitious, visit FlyLady and learn how to keep a shiny sink. Best option of all, go out for dinner tonight - someone else will have to do the dishes.

Today is National Bike to Work Day. Look at me - I didn't even break a sweat. (Of course, I work from home.)

Take time out of your usual routine to celebrate Visit Your Relatives Day. If you can't visit in person, at least call or send an e-card.

Speaking of e-cards, today is Send an Electronic Greeting Card Day. Sorry, mail carriers! Visit 123 Greetings, Blue Mountain and Egreetings for traditional and gently funny cards. Or try Someecards, Rattlebox and Wrongcards for something more extreme.

Would you rather visit an art museum or a children's museum? A history museum or a science center? Visit your favorite museum on International Museum Day or send a generous donation.

NASCAR Day is sponsored by the NASCAR Foundation and Victory Junction. Victory Junction, built in honor of Adam Petty, serves children with 24 chronic medical conditions and serious illnesses. Funds raised during various activities are used to help Victory Junction children discover what they can do, rather than focus on what they can't do.

National Defense Transportation Day is observed today, as part of National Transportation Week. President Barack Obama calls upon all Americans "to recognize the importance of our Nation's transportation infrastructure and to acknowledge the contributions of those who build, operate, and maintain it."

Dayton Hamvention 2012, organized by volunteers around the world, begins today and continues through May 20th. During times of crisis when even the Internet is shut down, Amateur Radio keeps the lines of communication open.

Endangered Species Day is meant to raise awareness about the alarming number of endangered species on our planet. We must act now to preserve these creatures for our children and grandchildren.

HIV Vaccine Awareness Day honors the medical professionals, scientists and volunteers who are working to find an effective HIV vaccine.

On Magtymguly (Revival and Unity Day), the citizens of Turkmenistan celebrate the adoption of their Constitution and the poetry of Magtymguly.

Uruguay celebrates the Battle of Las Piedras Day today, commemorating a victory against Spain. The battle was fought in 1811 as Uruguay fought for independence.

On this date in 1803 the first Haitian flag was created, following Haiti's independence from France. The design has been modified several times since 1803, but Haitians the world over celebrate May 18th as Haitian Flag Day.

Ooo la la - today is National Cheese Souffle Day. C'est magnifique!

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Thursday, May 17, 2012

Cyber Safety Awareness Day, Pack Rat Day, more

May 17th, 2012, is National Cyber Safety Awareness Day, Pack Rat Day, Rubber Band Day, World Telecommunication and Information Society Day, World Hypertension Day, International Day Against Homophobia, Ascension Day, Constitution Day (Norway), and National Cherry Cobbler Day.

National Cyber Safety Awareness Day is meant to draw attention to the issue of cyberbullying and other online dangers faced by children. An aside from me: in June 2011 Consumer Reports found that more than one-third of Facebook users are under the age of thirteen - the minimum age required - and a large percentage of those young users are not properly supervised by their parents. Parents need to wake up to the real danger that lurks online!

Pack Rat Day is a time to celebrate or condemn hoarding, depending on your point of view. The expression "pack rat" is inspired by an actual rodent, the pack rat.

Happy Rubber Band Day! Celebrate an indispensible item that has yet to be complicated by modern technology. Make a rubber band sculpture or some rubber band jewelry.

The theme of the 2012 World Telecommunication and Information Society Day, sponsored by the United Nations, is "Women and Girls in ICT." ICT is information and communication technology.

On World Hypertension Day everyone is urged to prevent and control high blood pressure, a silent killer. Do you know your numbers?

The International Day Against Homophobia is always observed on May 17th, the date on which the World Health Organization removed homosexuality from its list of mental illnesses.

Ascension Day commemorates the ascension of Jesus into heaven. The holiday is observed 39 days after Easter.

Today is Constitution Day in Norway, commemorating the signing of their constitution in 1814.

National Cherry Cobbler Day means two servings of dessert, right? Amazingly, early American settlers ate cobblers as their main meal, according to What's Cooking America.

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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Wear Purple for Peace Day, Biographer's Day, more

May 16th, 2012, is Wear Purple for Peace Day, Love a Tree Day, and Biographer's Day.

The inspiration behind Wear Purple for Peace Day is promoting peace between us and any space aliens who might be lurking about. Are aliens partial to purple? Purple clothing or jewelry may not help if the UFOs do land, but since purple's my favorite color anyway, I'm in.

Love a Tree Day is a lesser-known relative of Arbor Day, apparently, but trees deserve more than one day of adulation. The National Wildlife Federation invites you to "release your inner 'tree hugger.'"

Biographer's Day commemorates the date when Samuel Johnson and James Boswell first met. Boswell's work, The Life of Samuel Johnson is widely considered to be the greatest biography ever written. Samuel Johnson was a famous author and lexicographer, famous for his pithy quotes, such as: "Do not accustom yourself to use big words for little matters."

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Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Aoi Matsuri, Sea Monkeys Day, Chocolate Chip Day, more

May 15th, 2012, is Hollyhock Leaf Crest Festival, Aoi Matsuri, National Sea Monkeys Day, Nylon Stockings Day, Straw Hat Day, Over the Rainbow Day, International Day of Families, Peace Officers Memorial Day, San Isidro's Feast Day (Madrid), Independence Day (Paraguay), 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).

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

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

The theme of the 2012 United Nations International Day of Families is "Ensuring Work Family Balance."

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

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.

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

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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Monday, May 14, 2012

Underground America Day, Dance Like a Chicken Day, more

May 14th, 2012, is Underground America Day, Dance Like a Chicken Day, National Women's Check-Up Day, Independence Day (Paraguay), and National Buttermilk Biscuit Day.

Underground America Day honors North Americans who live under the ground rather than on it. Architect Malcolm Wells conjured up (conjured down?) this holiday in 1974. Wells states, "I woke up one day to the fact that the Earth's surface was made for living plants, not industrial plants."

Are you behind the times, still living above ground? Oh well. Make the best of things and do the Chicken Dance on terra firma. Happy Dance like a Chicken Day!

National Women's Check-Up Day, during National Women's Health Week, is a friendly reminder for us all. Schedule that check-up you've been procrastinating about (even if you're not a woman).

Paraguay observes Independence Day on May 14th.

Today is National Buttermilk Biscuit Day. Can't beat 'em with sausage gravy.

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Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mother's Day, Frog Jumping Day, Apple Pie Day, more

May 13th, 2012, is Mother's Day, Frog Jumping Day, Tulip Day, Rogation Sunday, and National Apple Pie Day.

Mother's Day is here! If your Mom is no longer around, take a moment to reflect on everything she did for you: caring for you when you were sick, kissing away tears, chauffeuring you to your many activities, shaping you into the wonderful person you are today. If your Mom is with you, give her a hug and thank her for being your Mom. If you're panicking right now, consider these ideas to honor your Mom.

Frog Jumping Day is inspired by Mark Twain's short story, "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County." The story is also known as "The Notorious Jumping Frog of Calaveras County" or "Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog" (original title).

Tulip Day is a lovely way to celebrate spring. Send ecards to your friends, then gather a tulip bouquet for your table. Tulip Day marks the end of the Tulip Time Festival in Holland, Michigan.

The Sunday before Ascension Day, May 17th this year, is Rogation Sunday. The Roman Catholic Church stopped observing this day of fasting in 1970, but some churches are renewing the custom.

In the United States we like to talk about baseball, hot dogs and apple pie, but apple pie originated in Europe. Oh well. Celebrate National Apple Pie Day.

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Saturday, May 12, 2012

Birth Mother's Day, Hug Your Cat Day, more

May 12th, 2012, is Birth Mother's Day, International Migratory Bird Day, Hug Your Cat Day, Limerick Day, National Mills Day, National Train Day, Stamp Out Hunger, Animal Disaster Preparedness Day, National Babysitters Day, World Fair Trade Day, Canada Health Day, Fibromyalgia Awareness Day, and National Nutty Fudge Day.

Birth Mother's Day occurs on the second Saturday in May, to honor women who placed their children in adoption. The day was founded by a group of Seattle mothers, out of recognition that "Mother's Day is one of the most painful days of the year - second only to the birthday of our missing children."

International Migratory Bird Day recognizes the beauty, strength and mystery of migratory birds around the world. How do they find their way year after year with no GPS? The date for this holiday varies around the world, according to local migratory patterns. In the U.S. and Canada, the date is the second Saturday in May.

If your cat is the snuggly type, enjoy Hug Your Cat Day. Otherwise, celebrate at your own risk.

There once was a girl in St. Louis
Who wondered when Limerick Day is
She Googled and found
Crazy holidays abound
Now she writes a blog called "Holiday Whiz."
Celebrate Limerick Day in your own special way.

Celebrate National Mills Day today, if you're in Holland. I wish I were there! More than half of the Dutch windmills are open to the public on National Mills Day, with food and activities for all.

Celebrate a romantic, retro mode of travel on National Train Day. Nothing matches a train ride through beautiful hills and valleys.

The Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive, sponsored by the National Association of Letter Carriers, is the largest single-day food drive in the United States. According to their website, 49,033,784 Americans are hungry today.

On Animal Disaster Preparedness Day, consider what happens to pets in times of disaster. Come up with a plan of action for your family. Most importantly, have your cat or dog microchipped for easy identification.

The Saturday before Mother's Day is National Babysitters Day. Hmmmm. Maybe a babysitter could come to the house and give Mom a break!

Sponsored by the World Fair Trade Organization, World Fair Trade Day is meant to help producers "improve their livelihoods and communities through Fair Trade."

Canada Health Day is celebrated on the birth date of Florence Nightingale, a pioneer in modern nursing. Canada Health Day is sponsored by the Canadian Healthcare Association and the Canadian Public Health Association.

Fibromyalgia Day is a time to bring awareness to a disease that causes pain and fatigue.

Barring food allergies, you can't go wrong with National Nutty Fudge Day. Nuts and fudge are such a classic combo.

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Friday, May 11, 2012

Twilight Zone Day, Military Spouse Day, more

May 11th, 2012, is Twilight Zone Day, Military Spouse Day, Childcare Providers Appreciation Day, and Eat What You Want Day.

Twilight Zone Day is here! Rod Serling's hit sci-fi series ran from 1959 to 1964. Guest stars included Jack Klugman, Burgess Meredith, Cliff Robertson, Anne Francis, Dick York, and Martin Landau.

Especially in the wake of recent events, we owe a debt of gratitude to our military and their families. Honor Military Spouse Day, always the Friday before Mother's Day.

On Childcare Providers Appreciation Day, thank the dedicated people who take care of our littlest treasures. A homemade gift or a gift card would be nice!

What will you have? Toasted ravioli and garlic bread. Chips and dip. Pad thai and chicken satay. Corn dogs and funnel cake. Steak and shrimp. Burgers and fries. Fries and caramel sauce. Celebrate Eat What You Want Day today, but remember to eat what's good for you tomorrow.

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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Monty Python Status Day, Move for Health Day, more

May 10th, 2012, is International Monty Python Status Day, National Bike to Work Day, Clean Up Your Room Day, Move for Health Day, and World Lupus Day.

On International Monty Python Status Day, play with your social media statuses (stati?) to show your love for Monty Python. Know what I mean? Nudge, nudge. Wink, wink!

Cleaning your room may not sound like fun, but the right attitude and some great tunes can speed the job along. Oh, and there's nothing like the satisfaction you'll feel when you're done. Today is Clean Up Your Room Day!

The World Health Organization created Move for Health Day in 2002, to encourage healthy living and physical activity.

World Lupus Day is meant to raise awareness of a debilitating autoimmune disease. Musician Julian Lennon is the Lupus Foundation of America Global Ambassador.

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Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Lost Sock Memorial Day, School Nurse Day, more

May 9th, 2012, is Lost Sock Memorial Day, Tear the Tags off the Mattresses Day, Donate a Day's Wages to Charity Day, National Receptionist Day, National Night Shift or Third Shift Workers Day, National School Nurse Day, Occupational Safety and Health Professionals Day, Anniversary of Czechoslovakian Liberation, and National Butterscotch Brownie Day. (And also National Bike to School Day.)

Lost Sock Memorial Day is a time to seek out your missing socks, match up as many as possible, and - if you're really brave - toss out the orphans once and for all. Ensure yourself against future losses by investing in Throx!

If you were brave enough to toss out those orphan socks, maybe you're ready to be really, truly daring - celebrate Tear the Tags off the Mattresses Day!

Donate a Day's Wages to Charity Day is a wonderfully generous notion. At least consider participating.

On this day, show appreciation for the receptionist in your office. National Receptionist Day honors the so-called "Directors of First Impressions."

National Night Shift or Third Shift Workers Day is always celebrated on the second Wednesday in May. Kudos to the people who keep the world running while the rest of us sleep.

National School Nurse Day was established "to foster a better understanding of the role of school nurses in the educational setting." National School Nurse Day is always celebrated on the Wednesday during National Nurse Week.

Occupational Safety and Health Professionals Day honors the professionals who work diligently to ensure the safety of others in the workplace.

The Anniversary of Czechoslovakian Liberation commemorates the day in 1945 when American and Soviet troops liberated Czechoslovakia.

Got a sweet tooth? Been humming Debbie Harry tunes lately? Then have a blondie, otherwise known as a butterscotch brownie, on National Butterscotch Brownie Day.

UPDATE: An anonymous reader notes that today is also the inaugural Bike to School Day!

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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

No Socks Day, Teacher Day, Have a Coke Day, more

May 8th, 2012, is No Socks Day, National Teacher Day, Victory in Europe Day, Time of Remembrance and Reconciliation for Those Who Lost Their Lives During the Second World War, World Red Cross Crescent Day, Have a Coke Day, and National Coconut Cream Pie Day.

Go bare or wear sandals on No Socks Day. Oh, and get ready - tomorrow is Lost Sock Memorial Day.

National Teacher Day is always observed on Tuesday of the first full week in May. Thank a teacher who made a difference in your life or in the life of your child.

Victory in Europe Day, also known as VE Day, commemorates the end of Hitler's Germany. The final document of surrender was signed on May 7th, 1945. Some countries celebrate this event on May 7th; others on May 8th.

Time of Remembrance and Reconciliation for Those Who Lost their Lives during the Second World War - the title says it all. This event runs from May 8th to May 9th, although our gratitude should continue throughout the year.

World Red Cross Red Crescent Day is a time to thank the many volunteers who do good work around the globe, easing suffering caused by natural disasters, disease, war, poverty, hunger, and climate change.

The date is a bit sketchy - sometime during early May - but many sites report that May 8th is Have a Coke Day. Celebrating is easy and delicious, so why not?

Share some pie with the one you love on National Coconut Cream Pie Day.

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Monday, May 7, 2012

Beaufort Scale Day, Melanoma Monday, Homebrew Day, more

May 7th, 2012, is Beaufort Scale Day, Melanoma Monday, Victory in Europe Day, National Homebrew Day, and National Roast Leg of Lamb Day.

Beaufort Scale Day honors Sir Francis Beaufort, who devised the first scale for measuring the intensity of hurricanes.

The American Academy of Dermatology observes the first Monday in May as Melanoma Monday, to encourage self-examination and early detection of melanoma and other skin cancers.

Victory in Europe Day, also known as VE Day, commemorates the end of Hitler's Germany. The final document of surrender was signed on May 7th, 1945. Some countries celebrate this event on May 7th; others on May 8th.

National Homebrew Day celebrates the hobby of brewing beer at home. If any of you brewmasters need a taste tester, please be in touch!

Enjoy a special feast on National Roast Leg of Lamb Day. No need to wait for a more conventional holiday!

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Sunday, May 6, 2012

Bereaved Mother's Day, No Diet Day, Crepe Suzette Day, more

May 6th, 2012, is World Laughter Day, National No Homework Day, No Diet Day, National Tourist Appreciation Day, International Bereaved Mother's Day, National Infertility Survival Day, National Nurses Day, Joseph Brackett Day, Saviour's Day, Pesach Sheni, and National Crepe Suzette Day.

World Laughter Day, always the first Sunday in May, promotes "peace through laughter" along with good health, joy, and world peace. Besides, laughter makes the hard times a little easier.

It's too bad for the kidlets when National No Homework Day falls on a Sunday!

On No Diet Day, relax and have that cheeseburger and pecan pie. You only live once, and total deprivation is a sad way to live. Tomorrow - veggie wrap and an orange!

National Tourist Appreciation Day is the perfect opportunity to plan your dream vacation, then call a travel agent and ask for special discounts. This is your day to be honored, after all. (If this strategy works, please let me know!)

International Bereaved Mother's Day honors women who have experienced the worst pain imaginable - the loss of a child. National Infertility Survival Day recognizes women who have trouble conceiving. These holidays are meant to offer support to women who find this time of year especially difficult, with so much focus on Mother's Day.

Thank a nurse who cared for you or a loved one on National Nurses Day.

Joseph Brackett Day honors the Shaker religious leader who wrote the song, "Simple Gifts."

Saviour's Day is your opportunity to share not only the Gospel, but also "your story, your testimony of how you became a born again Christian."

Pesach Sheni, the Second Passover in Judiasm, is a second chance for repentance and return.

Celebrate National Crepe Suzette Day by enjoying a crepe topped with orange liqueur, then set on fire. Just keep a fire extinguisher handy.

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Saturday, May 5, 2012

Cinco de Mayo, Iris Day, Cartoonists Day, more

May 5th, 2012, is Cinco de Mayo, AHA Big Brew, Iris Day, Free Comic Book Day, Kentucky Derby, Join Hands Day, Cartoonists Day, International Day of the Midwife, Pilates Day, National Scrapbooking Day, Bonza Bottler Day, Kodomo no hi, Children's Day, Tango no Sekku, Vesak, Patriots' Victory Day (Ethiopia), Liberation Day (Denmark), National Hoagie Day, Oyster Day, and Totally Chipotle Day.

Cinco de Mayo commemorates the victory of the Mexican Militia over the French Army at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. In the United States the date has become a party day, featuring Mexican food, drink, and music.

Join the worldwide toast, scheduled for noon Central Time, to celebrate the AHA Big Brew.

Celebrate a beautiful perennial that comes in a rainbow of colors on Iris Day.

The first Saturday in May is Free Comic Book Day! Participating comic book stores around the world give away a free comic book to anyone who visits.

Today is the Kentucky Derby - place your bets and don your fancy hats! The horses first ran in 1875.

Join Hands Day is an opportunity for fraternal organizations, along with non-fraternals, to join together and be of service in the community.

Cartoonists Day is today, sponsored by the National Cartoonists Society. Celebrate by searching for your old faves online. Ahhhh..... Calvin and Hobbes.... Blondie.... Tiger.... For Better or for Worse.... BC.... Zits.... Ponytail....

International Day of the Midwife is meant to raise awareness of midwifery and issues surrounding maternal mortality.

The first Saturday in May is Pilates Day. Stretch those muscles!

The first Saturday in May is also National Scrapbooking Day. Consider scrapbooking about your pilates experience.

Bonza Bottler Day is here once again, as it is every month, when the month and date are represented by the same number. Today is 5/5, you see.

Kodomo no Hi or Children's Day is celebrated today in Japan, along with Tango no Sekku or Boys' Festival. Parents hang carp streamers and display samurai dolls to improve their sons' chances for success.

Buddhists observe Vesak on the 15th day in the 4th month of the Chinese lunar calendar.

Ethiopia observes Patriots' Victory Day on May 5th.

Denmark celebrates Liberation Day, marking the end of German occupation.

Sandwiches on loaves of bread stacked high with meats, cheeses, veggies, and condiments are known as hoagies, Dagwoods, submarines, subs, poor boys, grinders, rockets, and heroes. Call them what you will - today is National Hoagie Day.

Celebrate Oyster Day by eating oysters or wearing pearls. Or go crazy and do both!

Along with Cinco de Mayo, celebrate Totally Chipotle Day by enjoying some smoky jalapeno peppers.

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Friday, May 4, 2012

Eta Aquarids Meteor Shower 2012

The 2012 Eta Aquarids Meteor Shower is expected to be at its peak on May 5th and May 6th in the hours before dawn. The May Supermoon will make viewing difficult, however.

Meteor showers are named for the constellation they appear to be near. The Eta Aquarids Meteor Shower appears near a star in the constellation Aquarius. This meteor shower contains particles from Halley's Comet, which last entered our inner solar system in 1986.

Stargazing bench. Image: suphakit73; FreeDigitalPhotos

Check out these sites for more information about the Eta Aquarids Meteor Shower, including recommended viewing times for your corner of the globe:

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Supermoon: Full moon names for May 2012

Full moon. Image: morgueFile.

May 2012 brings a supermoon - this year's most spectacular full moon. A supermoon, technically perigee-syzygy, occurs when the full moon and the moon's perigee come within twelve hours. Perigee is the point in the moon's orbit when it comes closest to our planet.

The actual moment of full moon takes place on May 5th or 6th, depending on your location. However, the best time to view the supermoon is when it's only partially visible, at the horizon, because an optical illusion makes the moon seem even bigger.

Following is a list of full moon names for May, ranging from common to surprising. (I won't be observing the Algonquin version this month, thank you very much!)

Field Maker Moon - Abenaki
When Women Weed Corn - Algonquin
Blossom Moon - Anishnaabe
Season When the Leaves Are Green - Apache
When the Ponies Shed Their Shaggy Hair - Arapaho
Idle Moon - Assiniboine
Bright Moon - Celtic
Planting Moon - Cherokee
Moon When the Horses Get Fat - Cheyenne
Dragon Moon - Chinese
Panther Moon - Choctaw
Milk Moon - Colonial American
Flower Moon - Comanche
Frog Moon - Cree
Leaves Appear Moon - Cree
Mulberry Moon - Creek
Moon When Leaves Are Green - Dakotah Sioux
Moon to Plant - Dakotah Sioux
Ninth Moon - Dark Janic
Deborean - Flower Moon
Kwurh - Diegueno
Hare Moon - English Medieval
Mothers Moon - Full Janic
Food-Gathering Moon - Haida
Buddha Purnima - Hindu
Vasishakh Poornima - Hindu
Waiting Moon - Hopi
Tigmiyikvik - Inuit
Camas Blooming Time - Kalapuya
Shawiitsishe daawaatra - Keresan
Geese Go North - Kiowa
Summer Tepgan - Kiowa
Little Finger (counting on fingers, beginning with thumb in August) - Klamath
Suckers Dried - Klamath
Halatai - Kumeyaay
Fawns Moon - Maidu
Fish Moon - Maidu
Geese Moon - Maidu
Seeds Moon - Maidu
Time of Big Leaf - Mohawk
Mulberry Month - Muscokee
Little Corn Moon - Natchez
Small Plant Moon - Navajo
Grass Moon - Neo Pagan
Moon When the Little Flowers Die - Osage
Alewive Moon - Passamaquoddy
Ko'ok mashath - Pima
Seeds Ripen - Pomo
Strawberry Moon - Potawatomi
Leaf Tender Moon - San Juan
Strawberry Moon - Shawnee
Budding Moon - Shoshoni
Vesak - Sinhala
Moon When the Ponies Shed - Sioux
Corn Planting Moon - Taos
Month Before Pregnancy - Tlingit
Manukim Muattsi - Tumpisa
Bright Moon - Unknown
Dyad Moon - Unknown
Frogs Return Moon - Unknown
Joy Moon - Unknown
Merry Moon - Unknown
Sproutkale Moon- Unknown
Flower Moon - Wiccan
Hoeing-Corn Moon - Winnebago
The 9th Moon - Wishram
Pahko Meecha - Yaqui
Mulberry Ripening - Yuchi
Yachun kwa'shi'amme - Zuni

Sources for full moon names:

More about the moon:

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No Pants Day, Intergalactic Star Wars Day, more

May 4th, 2012, is No Pants Day, International Space Day, International Tuba Day, Great American Grump Out, Bird Day, International Respect for Chickens Day, Intergalactic Star Wars Day, Midori No Hi, Greenery Day, Youth Day, and National Candied Orange Peel Day.

No Pants Day is always the first Friday in May. Celebrate if you dare, and if you can afford bail.

International Space Day is always the first Friday in May as well. Check back tomorrow for information on the May 5th full moon - a supermoon!

International Tuba Day is yet another holiday observed on the first Friday in May. Oom pa pa!

Great American Grump Out is an opportunity to dial down the displeasure. Navigate your day with no negative comments, no attitude, and no eye rolls. See what happens!

Bird Day has been celebrated since 1894. Grab your binoculars and head outside!

International Respect for Chickens Day isn't a day to grab a bucket of drumsticks, but rather a day to step back and admire the beauty of the birds. Learn about the living conditions of the domestic chicken and consider campaigning for change.

On Intergalactic Star Wars Day, May the Fourth be with you! Bad pun, right?

Midori no Hi or Greenery Day in Japan is dedicated to nature and the environment. Until 2006, this holiday was celebrated on April 29th, the birthday of former Emperor Showa.

Youth Day in China began with youth protests in 1919, due to dissatisfaction with the Treaty of Versailles. The holiday became official in 1949.

I'm not sure I've ever had candied orange peel, but it sounds divine. Today is National Candied Orange Peel Day.

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