Posts Tagged weird holidays
I cannot believe it’s already been a year since I’ve last posted. Holy jeepers.
But yes, it has been a year, and even though many things have changed, some haven’t. I’m still in Wisconsin, I still can’t cook, G still is my daily hero and Koda still eats, well, everything.
And on that note, it’s time to get at it.
Eat a Red Apple Day seemed like a straightforward way to jump back into holidaying. An apple a day, a holiday a day–seemed like a nice symmetry. Today the first snow of the season fell here in Madison, and though it was light, it was noticeable, and I remembered how utterly cranky winter makes me. It doesn’t help that I’m surrounded by folks at work who have either recently survived the stomach flu or are on the brink of it. So an excuse to ingest some extra antioxidants wasn’t something I was going to complain about. (Random factoid of the day: In the average apple, there’s only about 8 mg of vitamin C. A medium orange has 70 mg.)
After scheming briefly about whipping up some apple burgers or apple pasta, I decided to keep it simple. Tucked in the back of my cupboard were a couple of packages of Kari Lee’s caramel apple mix. My mom gave them to me forever ago, but I’m generally not a big apple eater, so I just never got around to picking up some fruit and making the bars. Tonight was the perfect occasion, so I braved the ridiculous cold and went to the grocery store for some McIntosh apples. After a careful reading of the five directions and a little help from G with the mixer, I produced some genuinely decent bars! I keep picking at the pan, and after a little Googling, I found out I better savor them: It doesn’t look like Ms. Lee is selling this particular mix anymore.
Even though I made dessert first, I also wanted to incorporate apples into an actual dish tonight. Again, I considered the burgers, but again, I chickened out. I could probably handle making a breadcrumb coating, but a breadcrumb and oatmeal coating? That could get way too tricky for this gal.
Rachael Ray came to the rescue on this one. After searching for “weird apple recipes” for awhile, I just went to the Food Network and found Ray’s recipe for apple hash. Sounded unique enough for a holiday dish, so I went for it.
Perhaps I’m smarter than I was last year. Simple recipes seemed to work out really well tonight. For the hash, I baked some potatoes, cooked some apples and onions in olive oil, threw it all together and there it was. Apple hash. It’s an interesting mix of textures, with crispy apples and soft potatoes. The big surprise to me was how well the apples and onions went together. It’s a combination worth remembering, actually.
So overall, a simple fruit gave me a simple start to my holiday season. Can’t complain, but I’m still cold.
The Holidaze is a blog dedicated to celebrating life’s less obvious occasions. As colder weather and darker days set in (The Holidaze is based in Madison, WI), what better way to stave off winter blues than to have a party, even a small one, every single day. Yup. Every day.
Why? Well, conveniently, there is a reason to celebrate every day because November, like most months, is full of holidays, both official and unofficial, traditional and decidedly wacky.
Official holidays are the ones we’ve been able to recite since childhood: New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Washington’s Birthday, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veteran’s Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas. Most of these mean no school or work for public (and many private) employees. Okay, fine.
Unofficial holidays are where things get interesting. These occasions, which are celebrated by either many people or a few, have not been sanctioned by Congress as an official holiday, meaning schools don’t close and people still trudge to their cubicles. Halloween, St. Patrick’s Day, Valentine’s Day–these are a few of the big ones that are heavily commercialized and celebrated.
But there are literally hundreds more unofficial holidays that most people are unaware of or choose to ignore. These holidays, like Cookie Monster Day and National Chicken Lady Day, are created by random people, organizations or even corporations. They are marketed to a niche audience, usually to build awareness for a particular cause, like National Diabetes Awareness Month, or just for the helluva it, like Plan Your Epitaph Day.
Some of these obscure unofficial holidays have a solid following, like National Novel Writing Month, and others likely have few or no celebrants on any given year (though as a woman, I am heavily interested in the expansion of the National Men Make Dinner Day). So I’ve decided to highlight lesser-known holidays, and some pretty well-known ones too, in a crusade to find daily happiness. If nothing else, these holidays will give me something to look forward to, and I don’t mind the cheesiness or kitzshy-ness—-after all, what is a holiday but an excuse to do something and feel something for a particular reason on a particular day?
I won’t claim that this blog will be comprehensive; there are far too many unofficial holidays for me to write about each of them. But I will post every day through November (and we’ll see beyond that) and I’ll post multiple times a day to cover as many holidays as possible.
So what exactly will I post? I will try to include some background to the days I highlight, but info won’t always be available, and what I’m more interested in highlighting are my personal experiences celebrating these holidays. I’m going to tell you how I celebrated Vegan Awareness Month (I am a very carnivorous person usually, I’m afraid) and what Married to a Scorpion Support Day has meant to me.
I’ll admit, most of my “research” on these holidays has come from random websites, since I haven’t yet come across an official text about unofficial holidays. But I’ll link to sources and you can determine for yourself whether I’ve chosen legit holidays or not. Either way, I hope to have a blast, and feel free to leave comments suggesting holidays or sharing your own experiences.