Tag Archives: December Holidays

Bake Cookies Day

cookieDecember 18 is Bake Cookies Day!

In the midst of the holiday season, today is the perfect day to escape from your holiday stress and that winter weather, and spend your day in a warm kitchen baking sweet treats!

Though the origin of this day remains unknown, the origin of the cookie dates back to Persia in 7th century AD after the use of sugar became more prevalent. The cookie quickly spread through Europe and then to America because of the popularity of global travel, and the treat’s easy traveling capabilities.

Spend the day baking cookies and trying new recipes. Better yet, host a cookie exchange with your friends. A cookie exchange is a great way to find new recipes (and indulge in even more new delicious sweets).

Looking for new cookie recipes? Browse through the recipes below!

Or, be healthy and make over your cookies!

Sources: holidayinsights.com, Wikipedia, Examiner.com

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First Airplane Flies

On December 17, 1903, the Wright Brothers, Orville and Wilbur, made the first successful flight of a gas-powered, self-propelled airplane. Although the plane only stayed aloft for 12 seconds and flew only 120 feet, it was still considered a successful first flight.

However, on the last of the three flight tests made that day, the plane flew 852 feet in 59 seconds. This historic flight in airplane history was even captured on film. Check it out!

If you happen to be traveling by plane today, take a moment to appreciate how quickly that plane gets you from point A to point B and to thank the Wright Brothers for making it happen.

 

Sources: History.com, Wikipedia, About.com

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Boston Tea Party Day

Boston Tea Party-1973 issue-3cHappy Boston Tea Party Day!

On December 16, 1773, colonists in Massachusetts protested against the East India Company’s monopolization on American tea importation, as granted by Parliament, by boarding three British tea ships in Boston Harbor and dumping 342 chests of tea into the harbor.

Click here to find out why!

Did You Know…that the Boston Tea Party was one of several tension-building events that lead to the American Revolutionary War between the North American colonies  and Great Britain? The Boston Tea Party was the turning point in which colonists started to consider forming a united resistance against British rule.

 

Sources: punchbowl.com, osmh.org, wikipedia.org, history.com
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Bill of Rights Day

On December 15, 1791, the United States adopted the Bill of Rights, enshrining in our Constitution the protection of our inalienable freedoms, from the right to speak our minds and worship as we please to the guarantee of equal justice under the law.”

- President Barack Obama, Presidential Proclamation, Bill of Rights Day 2011

On this day in 1791, the United States adopted the Bill of Rights, or the first ten amendments of the U.S. constitution.

Written and introduced to the first U.S. Congress by James Madison, who later became the 4th U.S. President, the Bill of Rights protect the individual rights of U.S. citizens by limiting the federal government’s power and granting some power to the states and the public.

Bill of Rights Day was created not only to commemorate the establishment of this significant symbol of freedom but to remind us of that freedom, which we sometimes take for granted.

Celebrate Bill of Rights Day by reading, understanding, and appreciating the Bill of Rights. If you’ve got a little more time, read the U.S. constitution while you’re at it.

Having trouble understanding the Bill of Rights or looking for fun yet effective ways to teach kids about the Bill of Rights? You’ll find plenty of educational resources at the Bill of Rights Institute.

 

Sources: Holiday Insights, Wikipedia, Bill of Rights Institute

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National Bouillabaisse Day

Flickr - cyclonebill - Bouillabaisse med rouilleHappy National Bouillabaisse Day!

Celebrating Bouillabaisse Day, Part I: Learn about bouillabaisse

1. Bouillabaisse = fish stew/seafood soup/fish soup.

2.  Bouillabaisse contains various types of cooked fish and shellfish (at least five kinds) and vegetables, such as leeks, onions, tomatoes, celery and potatoes. It’s flavored with a variety of herbs and spices, such as garlic, orange peel, basil, bay leaf, fennel and saffron.

3. Bouillabaisse originated in Marseilles, France around 600 B.C. but was referred to as “kakavia,” which is Greek because the people living in Marseilles at the time were Phoceans (aka Ancient Greek people), not French people. The Phoceans founded Marseilles in 600 B.C.

4. Bouillabaisse is rarely made for less than 10 people. More people = more fish = yummier bouillabaisse.

Celebrating National Bouillabaisse Day, Part II: Now that you know a little more about bouillabaisse, make enough bouillabaisse for at least 10 people…

Summer Tomato Bouillabaisse with Basil Rouille (by Bon Appetit)
Bouillabaisse (by Food & Wine)
Bouillabaisse (by Simply Recipes)

Celebrating National Bouillabaisse Day, Part III: Find 10 people to eat it…

 

Sources: holidayinsights.com, punchbowl.com, wikipedia.org
Photo Source: cyclonebill, CC-BY-SA-2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
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Frank Sinatra’s Birthday

“Whatever else has been said about me personally is unimportant. When I sing, I believe. I’m honest.”

Frank Sinatra

December 12 is Frank Sinatra’s Birthday!

Francis Albert “Frank” Sinatra, aka Ol’ Blue Eyes, was born on December 12, 1915 in Hoboken, New Jersey to Sicilian immigrants. Upon seeing Bing Crosby perform, Sinatra dropped out of high school and decided to become a singer. He had jobs singing in local nightclubs until he caught the attention of bandleader Harry James. The two began working together with much success, and with the help of James, Sinatra recorded his first album, “From the Bottom of My Heart.”

In 1939, Sinatra joined forces with bandleader Tommy Dorsey, whose group was one of the hottest at the time. This union further exposed Sinatra to the American public, and more specifically, to teenaged bobby soxers. By the time Frank was out as a solo artist in the early 1940s, Sinatramania had already begun.

Frank Sinatra’s career and personal life had many ups and downs, but he will always be remembered as one of the greatest voices of all time. Throughout his career, Sinatra had a whopping 209 hits on the Billboards pop singles chart, 55 top 20 albums, and earned multiple film awards for his roles in various feature films.

Fun Fact: Every year on December 12, the Empire State Building lights up blue in honor of “Ol’ Blue Eyes”, Frank Sinatra.

Sources: Biography.com, The Biography Channel, Wikipedia

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National Pastry Day

bakingDecember 9 is National Pastry Day! Pastries are delicious fluffy baked products usually made with the following ingredients: flour, sugar, milk, butter, shortening, baking powder, and eggs. Pastries include anything making use of flaky pastry bread from pies to cream puffs to more savory dishes like quiche. Pastries are different from regular bread due to their higher fat content which allows them to have a more crumbly and flaky texture.

Pastries can be traced all the way back to ancient Mediterranean times with the making of thin-doughed filo and multi-layer baklava. Several centuries ago, Crusaders brought the practice of pastry making back to Northern Europe. European Renaissance chefs in Italy and France created the magnificent choux pastries and puff pastries we still indulge in today, and the 17th and 18th saw the creation of eclairs, brioche, and other perfect pastry treats. French chef Antonin Carême is credited with turning pastry making into an art form.

You can celebrate pastry day by visiting your favorite local bakery, or trying out one of these delectable pastry recipes!

Happy Pastry Day!

Sources: Wikipedia, World’s Special Days

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National Cotton Candy Day

Rosa Zuckerwatte pink Cotton candyHappy National Cotton Candy Day!

National Cotton Candy Day celebrates the sweet, fluffy, melt-in-your-mouth treat you’ll always find at amusement parks, carnivals, fairs, circuses and sports venues.

Although machine-spun cotton candy was invented in1897 by William Morrison and John C. Warton, the two men did not introduce the treat to a wide audience until 1904 at St. Louis World’s Fair, where it was introduced as “fairy floss.” The inventors sold their “fairy floss” for 25 cents per box, selling 68,000 boxes during the fair’s six-month run.

In the 1920s, “fairy floss” was renamed as cotton candy.

Read more about the history of cotton candy by clicking here.

Celebrate National Cotton Candy Day by making your own cotton candy!

 

Sources: holidayinsights, punchbowl.comfoodservicewarehouse.com, wikipedia.org
Photo Source:  By Usien (Own work),  CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0, via Wikimedia Commons
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Mitten Tree Day

December 6 is Mitten Tree Day!

The exact origin of this day is unknown, but many have concluded that it came into existence due to the heartwarming story, The Mitten Tree, by Candace Christiansen. The story follows a woman named Sarah who misses her grown children and therefore watches young children board the school bus near a large evergreen tree every day. One day, she notices that some of the children cannot play in the snow because they don’t have mittens. She knits a basket full of mittens and hangs them in the evergreen tree for the children. Although no one knows that Sarah is the person knitting the mittens for the children, she receives a basket of yarn on her doorstep. In return, she knits more mittens for the children. Every time she runs out of yarn, more magically appears at her door and the cycle of giving continues.

To celebrate Mitten Tree Day, you can share this story with your loved ones and make your own mitten tree by decorating a small tree with mittens you have knitted or some mittens you already have and donating it to those who are less fortunate. If you’ve never knit mittens before, here is a detailed how-to video:

Happy Mitten Tree Day!

Sources: Holiday Insights, National Whatever Day

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Santa’s List Day

santas-listDecember 4 is Santa’s List Day! Everyone has deadlines – even Santa Claus.

Today is the day that Santa is finalizing his list and checking it twice. His helpers have been diligently keeping tabs on you and everyone you know and are now reporting back so the man in the red suit himself can make his final revisions. The question now is – have you been naughty or nice?

If you have not been on your best behavior this year, don’t expect much to pop up under the tree for you, aside from maybe some sad looking sticks or a box full of coal. As for all you good kiddos out there, the moment you have been waiting for is fast approaching, so we hope you have been dropping the proper hints about that perfect present you’ve been dreaming of. Hope may not be completely lost for you if you haven’t been the nicest. You’ve still got 21 days until the most anticipated day of the year, so go out there and do as many good deeds as you can! Perhaps you’ll redeem yourself… you never know who is watching!

Sources: Holiday Insights, Fat Wallet, Examiner.com, gone-ta-pott.com

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