Tag Archives: October Holidays

15 Years! 15 Minutes of Fun!

This October marks the 15th anniversary of Calendars.com. 15 years. Wow.

We’ve decided to celebrate in a big way this month, 15 years after all is nothing to shrug your shoulders at. So, in addition to being thankful for 15 amazing years, we’ll find, and share, ways to have fun every single day.

October 1 – Flip Day

In celebration of Flip Day this month, reread our post about the perfect command center here. Start your month off right and get your house in order!

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Happy Cranky Co-Workers Day!

Grumpy Cat
On October 27th, make sure to have a Snickers bar and a double shot of espresso drink in hand. It’s Cranky Co-Workers Day!

Present these gifts to the office grouch to honor their contributions to the workplace. These contributions include: deliberately creating awkward silences to promote productivity, providing comfort to distraught co-workers by upstaging your troubles with tale of their terrible commute, and building personal character by obsessively terrifying everyone in the office.
So, cheers to the cranky co-worker! Complain and whine your heart out today, because tomorrow we go back to cowering under our desk until you get your first cup of coffee.

Note: Cranky Co-workers Day Day is copyrighted by  Wellcat.

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National Caramel Apple Day

candyapplesrecipe (1)Today might be more widely known as Halloween, but it’s also a day to celebrate a sticky sweet treat that goes hand in hand with Halloween – caramel apples. October 31 is National Caramel Apple Day!

Caramel apples are made by dipping apples-on-a-stick in hot caramel and then rolling them in nuts or other confections and allowing them to cool before consumption. Granny Smith or Fuji apples are usually preferred because of their tart contrast to the caramel. Some recipes also involve dipping the apples in chocolate and other sweets rather than the usual caramel and nut combination.

Though the origin of National Caramel Apple Day is not known, many think the caramel apple was created by Dan Walker, a Kraft Foods sales representative, in the 1950s. In 1960, Vito Raimondi of Chicago, Illinois invented and patented the very first caramel apple machine. To this day, he owns and operates one of the largest mass producing caramel apple companies.

You can celebrate National Caramel Apple by making some caramel apples of your own at home. Here are some great recipe suggestions courtesy of Food.com and Saratoga Food Fanatic!

Sources: gone-ta-pott.com, Wikipedia, LindaSellsMoore.com

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Haunted Refrigerator Night

hauntedfridgeOctober 30 is Haunted Refrigerator Night! As a precursor to one of the spookiest nights of the year, Haunted Refrigerator Night was created by Thomas and Ruth Roy of Wellcat to find, “what evil lurks in the refrigerators of men… and women… and venture unto the realm of the lower shelf, rear.”

When was the last time you gave your fridge a good scrub down? We’re going to venture to guess that it’s been a while. Those Asian leftovers behind your quite possibly curdled milk are probably growing some hauntingly hairy mold. If you’re looking for a way to get into the Halloween mood that doesn’t involve the traditional pumpkin carving or ghost story telling, turn off the lights and gather your friends and family around your fridge and find out what’s been lying dormant inside. The results are sure to be terrifying!

To keep your fridge from becoming the scariest place in your home, it’s good to give it a deep cleaning at least once a week. If you don’t always have time to complete such a task, there are a few things you can do to keep your fridge tidy in the mean time. These include: periodically checking for any spoiled foods and throwing them out, wiping condiment bottles before returning them to the fridge, and cleaning up any leaks or spills immediately.

Happy Haunted Refrigerator Night!

Sources: Wellcat, Bookrix, Giftypedia, About.com

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National Cat Day

Cats Mini Box.inddOctober 29 is National Cat Day – a day created for you to fawn over your feline friends! National Cat Day was created in 2005 by Colleen Paige who is known as America’s #1 Pet & Family Lifestyle Expert.  Paige is an animal behaviorist and animal welfare advocate as well as Editor-in-Chief of Pet Home Magazine. She created this day not just as a day for cat lovers to celebrate these cute and cuddly creatures, but also to bring attention to the number of cats in shelters who are waiting to be rescued.

Cats were first domesticated in the Fertile Crescent around 12,000 years ago. When the first agricultural communities began to pop up, cats became indispensable because of their ability to keep grain stores rodent free. Cats are now the most popular house pets in the United States, found in 34% of American homes. Although they are the most popular domesticated animal, the American Miracle Network estimates that about 4 million cats are put into animal shelters every year. Of those 4 million, around half are euthanized. Because they cannot take on specific jobs like dogs can, most shelter cats are overlooked. The goal of National Cat Day is to help facilitate 10,000 cat adoptions on October 29.

Studies have shown that being a cat owner has several benefits. Here are just a few:

1. Owning a cat has several health benefits including: Reducing blood pressure and stress, a decrease in the risk of cardiovascular disease, heart attacks, and strokes, lowering cholesterol, improving mood and helping with depression,  decreasing allergy development in children, and more! Find out about the other health benefits of owning a cat here.

cats22. A study of British pet owners showed that people who own cats are generally smarter than dog lovers in terms of IQ and education.

3. Cats are environmentally friendly. They have a low carbon footprint equivalent to that of a Volkswagen Golf. A dog‘s carbon footprint is equivalent to that of a Hummer.

4. Having a cat can help your dating life, boys! A poll found that 82% of women are more attracted to men with pets. 90% of women agreed that men who own cats are “nicer” than most other men.

5. There is a stereotypical belief that dogs are more affectionate than cats, but a 2003 Swiss study showed that cats provide the same amount of companionship and love as dogs, especially for women. The study showed that owning a cat is the emotional equivalent of having a romantic partner. Cats often initiate contact with their owners, remember kind acts done by their owners, and reciprocate them.

If you are a cat owner, spoil your kitty today by buying it some special treats, a new toy, and of course showing it lots of attention. If you are not a cat owner, today is the perfect day to pick up a new feline friend or volunteer at your local animal shelter!

You can find cats up for adoption in your area online by using the National Cat Day adoption portal.

Sources: Petcentric, National Cat Day Official Website, Punchbowl, mental_floss

 

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Plush Animal Lover’s Day

Happy Plush Animal Lover’s Day!

For everyone who secretly still falls asleep tightly gripping his or her favorite plush animal, today is for you. It’s Plush Animal Lover’s Day, so love your plush animals all you want and don’t be afraid to claim your love for plush animals to the world!…Ok, so bringing your plush animal to work might get you a few weird looks from your co-workers, but once the word is out about how much you love your plush animals, you may just find yourself with a new plush animal or two every year.

Don’t have a plush animal? Go buy one! Think of it as a new pet that you don’t have to feed, bathe or clean up after. And don’t forget to buy a new plush animal for your plush animal-loving friends!

 

Sources: holidayinsights.com, theultimateholidaysite.com
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Worldwide Howl at the Moon Night

wolf-moonWith Halloween only five days away, it’s only fitting that October 26 is Worldwide Howl at the Moon Night! We’re sure at one point in your life you’ve wanted to let out a giant howl at that celestial orb in the sky, so tonight is the night to release your inner wolf.

Wolves have been connected with howling at the moon for centuries. Images of wolves and moons have been traced back to the Stone Age, while Roman and Greek goddesses of the moon were also known for keeping dogs and wolves in their company. There were even some Native American cultures that believed wolves summoned the moon to rise every night.

Are wolves really howling at the moon though? Experts say this popular belief is not actually true. Wolves are nocturnal creatures, and because they travel in packs, they often howl to communicate with other members of their pack. While the way they hold their heads toward the sky makes it look as though these nighttime creatures are communicating with the moon, they do this because it helps their howls carry a further distance. The incredibly vocal wolf howl can carry up to 6 miles in wooded areas, and up to 10 miles in areas where there are no trees.

This connection between wolves and the moon helped to contribute to the popular mythical creature of the werewolf. Werewolves or “lycanthropes” are humans who have the ability to transform into a wolf or wolf-like being. In most werewolf mythology, this transformation takes place whenever there is a full moon. Werewolves usually have a bad reputation, with several people believing that lycanthropes come to be as some sort of punishment to the person whom the condition is effecting. Werewolf legends were often used to explain the grotesque acts of serial killers. More recent werewolf stories and movies link lycanthropy with puberty because of the onset of hair growth, mood swings, and aggressive impulses. Find more werewolf trivia here.

After you’ve given a proper nighttime howl tonight, you can continue your celebration by watching any of the various werewolf movies or television shows listed here!

Sources: Yahoo, Examiner.com, Wikipedia, Animal Planet

 

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National Greasy Foods Day

Fried bubble gum at the State Fair of Texas.

Fried bubble gum at the State Fair of Texas.

October 25 is National Greasy Foods Day! Even though greasy foods are probably the least healthy foods that you can consume, they deserve a day all to themselves. Today you can to skip the salad and go straight for the tasty fatty goodness you can only get from the greasiest grub. Whether you love the traditional cheeseburger and fries, a sugary sweet glazed doughnut, or some other strange fried concoction, today is a day to let go of all inhibitions and go for the greasy gold.

What is it that makes greasy foods so greasy, you ask? The answer is simple: oil. Cooking oil comes in four different varieties: vegetable, nut, seed, or fruit. Some of these oils are more common like peanut oil and canola oil, while others are less well-known like avocado oil and sesame oil.

Now for some fun greasy food facts! Did you know that fried chicken is the most ordered meal in sit-down restaurants in the United States? Or that the popular greasy side we know as “French fries” was actually invented in Belgium in 1830? How about the fact that in 2011, the winner of “Most Creative” fried food at the State Fair of Texas was fried bubble gum! If you’re going to get gum stuck in your digestive system for a while, it may as well be fried, right? Find other fun historical greasy food facts here.

If you’re looking for some more creative ways to celebrate National Greasy Foods Day than going to your favorite burger joint or fried chicken spot, we’ve got a couple of suggestions:

1. Cook up something from this list of 25 Ultimate Greasy Food Recipes.

2. Take a road trip and try one of America’s most well-known greasy concoctions.

3. Try one of Formula 409′s silly greasy food activities.

Sources: Punchbowl, Examiner.com, Formula 409, CNN’s Eatocracy, Today Food

 

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Jackie Robinson Dies

jackie_robinson0411Jackie Robinson, the first African American to play in Major League Baseball in the modern era, died on October 24, 1972 at the age of 53.

Robinson’s athletic career started when he was in high school. Recognizing his athletic talent and passion, his brothers encouraged him to pursue sports. He played on the varsity team in several sports and lettered in  football, basketball, track, and baseball. He continued with all four of these sports while he attended Pasadena Junior College. He was elected to the All-Southland Junior College Team for baseball in 1938 and was also named the  region’s Most Valuable Player. During his time at PJC, he had a few run-ins with police officers he believed were being racist, and was suspended for two years. This combative attitude toward racism is something that reappeared several times later in his life.  Towards the end of his time at PJC, his brother Frank was killed in a motorcycle crash, and he moved closer to Frank’s family and decided to further pursue his athletic career at nearby University of California, Los Angeles.

At UCLA, Robinson became the first athlete in the school’s history to receive a varsity letter in four sports – football, basketball, track, and baseball once again. In 1939, he was one of only four black football players on the UCLA Bruins team, and out of all the sports he played, baseball was his “worst.” He left UCLA before he graduated, taking a job as the assistant athletic director to the government’s National Youth Administration. Robinson began to play semi-professional football for the Honolulu Bears in 1941 when NYA operations ceased. Following that, he became a running back for the Los Angeles Bulldogs until the United States entered World War II.

While serving in the military, Robinson once again was faced with racial discrimination and was arrested for his opposition. Due to his court proceedings for his insubordination charges, Robinson was never deployed overseas and therefore never participated in combat. He served as an army athletics coach in Kentucky until he was honorably discharged in 1944. He met a former player for the Kansas City Monarchs of the Negro American League while in Kentucky who encouraged Robinson to write a letter to the Monarchs requesting a tryout. He soon after did.

For a brief period after he was discharged, Robinson returned to the Los Angeles Bulldogs and was then offered a job as athletic director at Sam Huston College in Austin, Texas. While Robinson was working at Sam Huston College, he received a formal invitation to play for the Monarchs at a salary of $400 a month, which is now equivalent to a little over $5,000 a month. Robinson played 47 games as a shortstop for the Monarchs, but disliked his experience. The structured playing environment he was used to in college was very different from the disorganization present in the NAL. Robinson also disliked their approval of gambling and the extensive traveling required of him, keeping him from his future wife, Rachel Isam.

During the season, Robinson pursued major league interests and participated in a tryout for African American players for the Boston Red Sox. It turned out this was just a ploy to please a powerful desegregationist Boston city councilman. Other teams, such as the Brooklyn Dodgers, were more interested in signing black players. The general manager of the Dodgers offered Robinson a spot on their International League farm club, the Montreal Royals. In 1945, Robinson signed on with the Royals and became the first black baseball player in the International League since the 1880s.

Though he faced much more racial discrimination during his training and play time with the Royals, Robinson lead the International League with a .349 batting average and .985 fielding percentage. He was also named the league’s Most Valuable Player. Because of his successful season, he was promoted to the Dodgers the next year and began his major league career. Robinson’s place on the Dodgers roster made him the first player to openly break the major league baseball color barrier since 1880. Black fans began to abandon the negro league teams to see Robinson and the Dodgers when they were in town.

His fans and mostly positive reception did not break racial tension, and many of his teammates threatened to sit out if Robinson played. Dodgers manager Leo Durocher back lashed on critical members of the team by telling them he believed Robinson could make them all rich, and if they didn’t need the money, he would see that they were all traded. Robinson received more discrimination from other teams and fans, but was still supported by many, including League President Ford Frick, Baseball Commissioner Happy Chandler, Jewish baseball player Hank Greenberg and Dodgers teammate Pee Wee Reese. A statue was even made depicting a famous gesture between Robinson and Reese in which Reese put his arm around Robinson after receiving boos from the crowd.

Once again, prejudice did not stop Robinson and he hit 12 home runs, led the league in stolen bases, and helped the Dodgers win a National League pennant in his first year. For his amazing feats, he was named Rookie of the Year. He became the highest-paid player in Dodgers history and opened the door for many future African American players. In 1955, he helped the Dodgers win the World Series against the New York Yankees. He was later traded to the New York Giants, and retired soon after in 1957 with a remarkable career batting average of .311.

Throughout the rest of his life, Robinson was an activist for social change and an anti-drug crusader after losing his son, who struggled with drug problems, in an automobile accident. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962, and 10 years later on October 24, 1972, he died of a heart attack in Stamford, Connecticut. His uniform number, 42, was universally retired from baseball in 1997. He was the first pro athlete in any sport to be honored in this way. The day of his induction into the major leagues, April 15, is also known as “Jackie Robinson Day,” and every MLB player on every team wears the number 42 on this day.

Sources: Wikipedia, The Official Website of Jackie Robinson, NY Times, Biography.com

 

 

 

 

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First iPod Released

The original iPod, released October 23, 2001.

The original iPod, released October 23, 2001.

The first line of the groundbreaking Apple iPods were released on October 23, 2001, approximately 8.5 months after iTunes was released. The unexpected announcement of the portable music player was a major turning point for the world of digital music and Apple as a company.

When Steve Jobs, Apple’s now deceased CEO, was given the first prototype of the iPod, he told the engineers who had worked on it that it was too large. He was told that with all of the technology that was packed into it, it could not be made any smaller. Upon hearing these words, as the story goes, Jobs dropped the prototype in a fish tank. As air bubbles rose out of the drowning iPod, Jobs told engineers that if there was air, there was space, and insisted that they make it smaller. This perfectionism started a revolution in digital music technology.

The iPod was not completely embraced by the general public at first because of it’s “Mac only” status (iTunes was not yet available for Windows users) and its high price tag of $399. Since it was also not the only MP3 player on the market at the time, many were skeptical of its effect on the industry. A New York Times article from the day of the iPod launch said, “It’s a nice feature for Macintosh users, but to the rest of the Windows world, it doesn’t make any difference.” Aside from the skepticism, the iPod began to garner attention because it was able to hold 1,000 songs and boasted 10 hours of battery life – something no other MP3 player at the time could do. These factors, along with its ability to transfer songs quickly from your computer and it’s small size made the iPod turn into a mass market product, selling 125,000 units by that Christmas.

In the summer of 2002, the iPod phenomenon began to take off when they made a Windows compatible version of the device which held up to 4,000 songs. Apple launched the iTunes music store with over 200,000 songs for just 99¢ in April of 2003 along with their third generation iPod which was their lightest version yet and capable of holding 7,500 songs. By June 2003, Apple sold it’s one millionth iPod. By the end of 2003, that number doubled. Sales began to skyrocket and by the end of 2004, Apple had sold 10 million iPods. By 2010, a staggering 275 million iPods had been sold. The iPod Touch with built-in Wi-Fi capabilities was introduced in 2007, and the most recent version of the Touch introduced in 2012 has 16, 32, or 64 GB worth of storage space, and has an audio battery life of up to 40 hours.

In recent years, the iPad and iPhone have overtaken sales of the iPod, with iPod sales only making up 8 percent of Apple’s revenue. While the future of the iPod is uncertain, its legacy is something that will go down in history.

Sources: Apple.com, PCMAG.com, The Telegraph, Wikipedia

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