Buon giorno people! Hola, god dag, helo, sholem aleikhem, konnichi ha, shalom, tansi, and in Potowatomie (My American Indian heritage) bozho. They all mean simply, hello! So hello people!
Christmas may be over but there are still some days left in the month, so I will be continuing to celebrate the days of December. Hope you’ll join me!
Are you glad Christmas is over? Or are you all ready looking forward to next Christmas? What are your plans for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s? Staying in? Going out? Come on people give up your plans!
Well I for one am staying in as usual. I’ll have me a nice Chinese dinner with some good tea or coffee. It’s kind of tradition with me, to have Chinese food on New Year’s eve. Either I cook it or I order it in. We’ll see what happens this year.
So after all that rambling, let’s get to the celebrations!
Fruitcake Day ~~ Well the much despised Fruitcake gets its day! Yes, it’s Fruitcake day! (Via Wikipedia) The earliest recipe from ancient Rome lists pomegranate seeds, pine nuts, and raisins that were mixed into barley mash. In the Middle Ages, honey, spices, and preserved fruits were added.
Fruit cakes soon proliferated all over Europe. Recipes varied greatly in different countries throughout the ages, depending on the available ingredients as well as (in some instances) church regulations forbidding the use of butter, regarding the observance of fast. Pope Innocent VIII (1432–1492) finally granted the use of butter, in a written permission known as the ‘Butter Letter’ or Butterbrief in 1490, giving permission to Saxony to use milk and butter in the North German Stollen fruit cakes. Starting in the 16th century, Sugar from the American Colonies (and the discovery that high concentrations of sugar could preserve fruits) created an excess of candied fruit, thus making fruit cakes more affordable and popular.
If a fruit cake contains alcohol, it could remain edible for many years. For example, a fruit cake baked in 1878 is kept as an heirloom by a family (Morgan L. Ford) in Tecumseh, Michigan. In 2003 it was sampled by Jay Leno on The Tonight Show. Wrapping the cake in an alcohol-soaked linen before storing is one method of lengthening its shelf life.
Celebrate Fruitcake Day by either eating some of the fruitcake you received for Christmas or by giving someone a fruitcake.
Make Cut Out Snowflakes Day ~~ If you have kids, Make Cut Out Snowflake Day comes at the perfect time. Likely they’ve been on holiday break for a few days now and if they are starting to have nothing to do or getting rambunctious, having them make 50-100 snowflakes to decorate the house could be a fun activity for them and a sanity saver for you. If you don’t have kids, why not regress to your childhood for a couple of hours?
Now doesn’t this take you back to your school days? Remember cutting out those snowflakes and taking them home to hang? I do. Sounds like fun! I will even give a link to a snowflake cutting guide to get you started!
Or go make virtual snowflakes, here!
Visit the Zoo Day ~~ The first zoo dates back to 1500 BC in ancient Egypt! The tradition was passed down, all the way to the 1400s AD, when Columbus discovered “The New World.” A new world meant new creatures, and his discoveries renewed interest in zoos all across Europe. Today, there are over 2,800 zoos in the world, and over 6 million people visit them each year! So what if it’s too cold to go out to the zoo? Well, why not stay in with a good book about the zoo?
The oldest running zoo in the world is Vienna Zoo in Schonbrunn which dates from 1752.
The largest zoo in the US is Red McCombs Wildlife with over 5.000 hectares (12.500 acres).
The World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) has over 200 members. Its strategy “provides a common philosophy for zoos and aquariums across the globe and defines the standards and policies that are necessary to achieve their goals in conservation.” WAZA’s mission is “to guide, encourage and support the zoos, aquariums, and like-minded organizations of the world in animal care and welfare, environmental education and global conservation”. They are at the forefront of environmental campaigning and ran a petition in the run up to the Copenhagen Climate Change Summit (December 2009) calling on governments to set targets of atmospheric carbon dioxide levels below 350 parts per million in order to prevent a mass extinction of animals.
That’s all for now people. See you tomorrow!