June 20, 2012 is the summer solstice in the northern hemisphere. Various celebrations have been held the world over for centuries, many including bonfires, dances, and, of course, feasts..
For your midsummer celebration, you can join in local parties or research special traditions from your heritage. Or you can simply hold a barbecue and bonfire. As a former English major, I’d also recommend reading William Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” (or at least watching the movie!).
“The day is yours, and yours also the night;
you established the sun and moon.
It was you who set all the boundaries of the earth;
you made both summer and winter.”
June 19 is World Sauntering Day, so go ahead and get relaxed. According to Merriam Webster, to saunter means to “walk about in an idle or leisurely manner.” In other words, when you saunter, you walk but you’re not really trying to get somewhere. Instead, you’re just enjoying where you are with a nice, luxurious stroll.
Apparently World Sauntering Day (and the World Sauntering Society) was started in 1970 by a man named W. T. Rabe. In a time when people were encouraging each other to go jogging for exercise and recreation, Rabe suggested the much slower and more relaxed saunter at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island in Michigan.
Mackinac Island is a fancy vacation spot situated in Lake Huron between Michigan’s upper and lower peninsulas. Visitors ride carriages from the dock since no cars are allowed on the island. The Grand Hotel is a luxurious resort with a long history of special guests and an even longer porch and 660 feet long. In a spot like that, I guess it’s no surprise that guests choose to saunter rather than jog!
“Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim you,
who walk in the light of your presence, O Lord.
They rejoice in your name all day long;
they exult in your righteousness.”
Go ahead. You know you want. I mean, why not? It is National Splurge Day after all, isn’t it?
Wow. I sound like I’m on someone’s shoulder in an old cartoon, dressed in red tights with horns and a pitchfork. In a minute, somebody in a white nightgown on the other shoulder will start arguing with me.
Anyway, if it’s June 18, it is National Splurge Day. This holiday was created by Adrienne Koopersmith in 1994, to support splurging of all sorts. So whether you’re a terrible shopaholic, aching for that brownie a la mode, ready for a day at the spa, or something else entirely, go ahead and splurge (You can blame it on the holiday).
“I denied myself nothing my eyes desired;
I refused my heart no pleasure.
My heart took delight in all my work,
and this was the reward for all my labor.”
*third Sunday of June
Happy Father’s Day! Although lots of different people tried to start a holiday for fathers in lots of different places, today’s American celebration is largely owing to a woman named Sonora Smart Dodd. In 1898, when Sonora was 16 years old, her mother died in childbirth. Her father set about raising his six children (aged 0-16) alone, in a time when single parents were very rare, and single fathers even more so.
Sonora (very rightfully) respected and honored her father greatly, and, in 1910, she petitioned the Spokane Ministerial Alliance to create a day for fathers, similar to the already celebrated Mother’s Day. In 1972, the holiday became official under President Nixon.
People celebrate Father’s Day in many different ways, hopefully depending on what their father enjoys. However you celebrate, I suggest spending some time with your father, even if it has to be over the phone.
Happy Father’s Day!
Today’s verse is from the dedication of the temple, for all of us with faithful fathers, grandfathers, and others (whether biological or “adopted” father figures):
“May the Lord our God be with us as he was with our fathers; may he never leave us nor forsake us. “
1 Kings 8: 57
*third Saturday in June
Hollerin‘ is one of the oldest methods of long distance communication. In today’s environment of cell phones, internet, and other long distance technology, National Hollerin’ Day encourages everyone to rediscover the ability to holler.
The day is named after the National Hollerin’ Contest, held every year in the small town of Spivey’s Corner, North Carolina, where several thousand people meet every year to participate in one of five hollerin’ contests.
The three companies blew the trumpets and smashed the jars. Grasping the torches in their left hands and holding in their right hands the trumpets they were to blow, they shouted, “A swordfor the Lord and for Gideon!”
Today, you are powerful. Today, you can change the world. Today, you can . . . smile.
Yep, it’s time to use that most powerful weapon and celebrate Smile Power Day with a great smile. Smiling (even when you’re not happy) can help lift your mood and it helps everyone around you feel better. If you don’t believe it, try it. Next time you’re at the grocery store, smile at everyone you see, and see if you don’t get a decent number of smiles back. (Warning: don’t be creepy! Sadly, you do have to be careful not to be misunderstood.)
“A happy heart makes the face cheerful,
but heartache crushes the spirit.”
In the United States, June 14 is celebrated every year as Flag Day, because, on this day in 1777, the Second Continental Congress adopted the flag. Of course this flag only had thirteen stars, one for each state that existed at the time.
Supposedly Betsy Ross sewed this first flag from a small sketch given to her by George Washington (sadly, this story can’t be proven).
You can celebrate today by raising the flag, learning about flag history and etiquette, host a party, or making (and eating!) a flag cake.
“First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.”
1 Timothy 2:1-4
June 13 is Kitchen Klutzes Day, or, if you’re in the U.S., National Kitchen Klutzes of America Day. I’m pretty sure this day was made just for me, but I suppose there might be other kitchen klutzes out there. So, this is the day for all those who have ever gotten cuts, burns, and greasy messes, exploded powdered sugar across the whole house, dropped pans on your toes (bonus points if their full of fresh, hot food), spilled stuff all over the clean dishes in the drying rack, or soaked your nice clothes in a dishwater tidal wave just before a party, or just made a terrific kitchen mess.
You can celebrate Kitchen Klutzes Day in one of two ways. First, you could have a cooking extravaganza and simply revel in the mess or mild first aid emergencies (keep ice packs and band aids handy!). You can clean it up tomorrow.
If that’s not your style, celebrate your klutziness by going out to dinner. Why get messy on your day?
Whichever you choose, have fun, and be sure to wish everyone you see a happy Kitchen Klutzes Day!
“He upholds the cause of the oppressed
and gives food to the hungry.”
June 12 is Red Rose Day, and there’s only one way to celebrate: find yourself a beautiful red rose, and enjoy it. Look at it, smell it, touch it, give it to that special someone, give one to everyone you see (just don’t be too creepy!), and celebrate with red roses.
Some quotes to get you through the day:
“Stop and smell the roses.”
“Oh, my luve is like a red, red rose,
That’s newly sprung in June.”
~”A Red, Red Rose” by Robert Burns
“I see trees of green,
Red roses too,
I see them bloom
For me and you,
And I think to myself
What a wonderful world.”
~as sung by Louis Armstrong
“A single flow’r he sent me, since we met.
All tenderly his messenger he chose;
Deep-hearted, pure, with scented dew still wet -
One perfect rose.”
~“One Perfect Rose” by Dorothy (read the whole poem, it’s amazing!)
“See! The winter is past;
the rains are over and gone.
Flowers appear on the earth;
the season of singing has come,
the cooing of doves
is heard in our land.”
~ Song of Songs 2:11-12
King Kamehameha I (also known as Kamehameha the Great) was the man who united the Hawaiian Islands and created the Kingdom of Hawaii in 1810. Although his conquest and reign was not without controversy, he is known today as the originator of the Law of the Splintered Paddle (also called Mamalahoe Kanawai), which stated that women, children, and the elderly should be considered noncombatants and not harmed during any battle.
His full name is:
Kalani Paiʻea Wohi o Kaleikini Kealiʻikui
Kamehameha o ʻIolani
i Kaiwikapu kaui Ka Liholiho Kūnuiākea
Try saying that three times fast!
“Flowers appear on the earth;
the season of singing has come.”
Song of Songs 2:12a