Archive | April, 2011

Happy Arbor Day!

Tree logoWhat is Arbor Day?

Arbor Day is a day dedicated to appreciating, planting and caring for trees. The holiday was proposed by J. Sterling Morton when he moved to the area that is now Nebraska only to find virtually no trees. Morton planted trees around his home but wanted to encourage others to do the same. Prizes were even awarded to counties and individuals who planted the most trees on Arbor Day – a tradition that continues today with the Arbor Day Foundation’s Arbor Day Awards.

When is Arbor Day?

Arbor Day is celebrated on the last Friday in April in Nebraska and many surrounding states, but in other states, Arbor Day is observed on different dates according to their beset tree-planting times. Find out when your state observes Arbor Day by clicking here.

In Nebraska, Arbor Day falls on April 29 in 2011.

How do people celebrate Arbor Day?

Arbor Day is only a state holiday with state government office, school and some store and business closures in Nebraska. People celebrate Arbor Day by planting trees, but that’s not the only way you can celebrate trees and nature. Go on a hike, read a book about trees or dedicate a forest with your community. Find more ways to celebrate Arbor Day by clicking here.

Sources: timeanddate.com, arborday.org
Photo Source: Monobi via Wikimedia Commons
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Hoppy Easter!

Easter Bunny Postcard 1900What is Easter?

Easter is a Christian holiday that celebrates Jesus Christ’s resurrection from the dead three days after his crucifixion, or Good Friday. Easter also marks the end of the 40-day fasting season of Lent. Like Christmas, Easter has been commercialized with non-religious Easter traditions and symbols, such as the Easter Bunny, eggs, baskets and chocolate eggs and bunnies.

When is Easter?

Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday following the full moon after the vernal equinox in March. Easter can fall anywhere between March 22 and April 25.

How do people celebrate Easter?

People celebrate Easter by going to church to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection. Children may wake up to Easter baskets full of chocolate and other candies left by the Easter Bunny. They then use the basket to collect hidden, candy-filled Easter eggs left by the Easter Bunny.

Sources: history.com, holidayinsights.com

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Happy Earth Day!

What is Earth Day?

Founded in 1970 by Gaylord Nelson, a U.S. Senator at the time, Earth Day began as a “teach-in” to encourage both Congress and Americans to clean up and protect the environment by raising awareness of environmental issues and deterioration. Now a global movement, Earth Day continues to serve as a day for individuals and organizations to demonstrate their commitment to protecting the environment through action. This year, the Earth Day Network will organize Earth Day events around the A Billion Acts of Green® campaign launched for the 40th anniversary of Earth Day in 2010.

Learn more about Earth Day’s history and purpose.

When is Earth Day?

April 22 of each year.

How do I celebrate Earth Day?

Learn how to protect the environment and put your commitment to maintaining a healthy, sustainable environment into action. Visit earthday.org for ideas on how you can take action or the A Billion Acts of Green® website to pledge your “act of green.”

Sources: earthday.org

Photo Source: earth911.com
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Passover Begins

SedertableWhat is Passover?

One of the most celebrated holidays in the Jewish religious calendar, Passover commemorates the liberation and exodus of the Jewish people out of slavery in Egypt. Passover also marks a simultaneous momentous event in Jewish history: The firstborn of the Israelites were spared from the last of the 10 plagues God inflicted on Egypt by marking their doors with the blood of a spring lamb so that they plague would “pass over” them.

Learn more about the history of Passover by clicking here.

When is Passover?

Passover begins on the 15th day of the month of Nisan on the Hebrew calendar and lasts for seven to eight days. This year, Passover begins on April 19.

How do people celebrate Passover?

The first night of Passover is the most important and most celebrated. Jewish families and friends gather for a special meal called a seder. The seder includes a number of symbolic and kosher foods served on the Sedar plate. The most symbolic food is matzah, or unleavened bread, which symbolizes and commemorates the haste with which the Israelites had to leave Egypt – so quickly that they didn’t have enough time to let their bread rise. Leavened bread is restricted during Passover.

Learn more about how to celebrate Passover at home by clicking here.

Sources: history.com, holidays.kaboose.com, timeanddate.com
Photo Source: Gilabrand at en.wikipedia from Wikimedia Commons
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International Moment of Laughter Day – April 14th!

Theodore Roosevelt laughingWhat is International Moment of Laughter Day?

Humorologist Izzy Gesell created International Moment of Laughter Day to encourage people to laugh – not just to lift their spirits but to boost their overall mood and self-esteem. Learn more about Izzy’s self-esteem boosting programs and methods and thoughts on humor at izzyg.com.

When is International Moment of Laughter Day?

April 14th of each year.

How do I celebrate International Moment of Laughter Day?

Make sure you have at least one good, whole-hearted, abs-burning laugh by the end of the day. Read a funny book, tell jokes with your co-workers, watch crazy cats and dancing babies on Youtube, check out your local comedy club or end a long day with a comedy movie.

You know that laughing boosts your mood and benefits your mental and emotional health. But did you know laughing comes with physical health benefits, too? Learn more by clicking on the links below:

Laughter is the Best Medicine (Helpguide.org)
Give Your Body a Boost – With Laughter (Web MD)

Source: izzyg.com

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National Cheese Fondue Day

Full cheese fondue set - in SwitzerlandApril 11 is National Cheese Fondue Day, so celebrate the fun and interactive dining experience of easy-to-make cheese fondue by making a warm batch for friends and family or by going out to eat at a fondue restaurant like The Melting Pot. Last year, The Melting Pot celebrated National Cheese Fondue Day with “Cheese for Charity” – for every cheese fondue purchase made on April 11, 2010, The Melting Pot donated $10 to local charities across North America. Go to nationalcheesefondueday.com to see how The Melting Pot is celebrating National Cheese Fondue Day this year.

Want to try making cheese fondue at home? Here’s a traditional cheese fondue recipe with cooking and serving tips and ideas on what to dip into your fondue. Once you’ve mastered this basic recipe, try out some of the more complex recipes at fonduebits.com.

Sources: theultimateholidaysite.com, nationalcheesefondueday.com
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World Health Day – April 7th

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What is World Health Day?

World Health Day was created by the World Health Organization (WHO) at the First World Health Assembly in 1948. First celebrated in 1950, each World Health Day focuses on a specific health theme to draw attention to a top-priority global health issue. The theme for World Health Day 2011 is antimicrobial resistance and its global spread. Learn about this year’s theme as well as past World Health Day themes at WHO’s website.

When is World Health Day?

World Health Day falls on April 7 of each year. The holiday marks the anniversary of the First World Health Assembly, held April 7, 1948.

How does WHO create awareness of specific health issues on World Health Day?

Each year, WHO launches an awareness campaign related to that year’s theme. Local, national and international events and activities are also held to educate the public and policy makers on the health issue of concern. To find or register a World Health Day event in your hometown, click here.

Source: who.int, wpro.who.int

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National No Housework Day – April 7th

For all who spend most of their days doing housework, there’s no such thing as a day off. Dirty dishes and laundry don’t stop piling up, beds won’t make themselves and trash doesn’t walk itself to the curb just because it’s Christmas, Thanksgiving or even Columbus Day. But there’s good news for full-time students, stay-at-home parents and those who spend long days at work only to come home to housework left behind by the kids or messy roommates: April 7 is National No Housework Day! Ignore the dirty dishes and piles of laundry, put away the cleaning supplies and relax!

Better yet, pass the work on to someone else for the day. Or if your spouse, significant other or roommate is usually the one sweating through never-ending household chores, show your appreciation for all that they do by taking over the housework for the day.

Sources: holidayinsights.com
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April Fool’s Day – April 1st

April Fool’s Day falls on April 1 of each year and is a day dedicated to playing jokes and pulling pranks on one another -  all in good fun…hopefully. Try to pull your pranks as early as possible, before your targets catch on to what day it is! For a little inspiration, check out the Museum of Hoaxes’ Top 100 April Fool’s Day Hoaxes of All Time.

The origin of this humorous holiday remains a mystery but experts have come up with a few theories. Check them out at history.com and nationalgeopraphic.com and see what you think.

Source: holidayinsights.com

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