Friday, April 14, 2017

Dolphin Day April 14, 2017

DIANE'S CORNER ... Celebrate Dolphin Day
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This holiday is celebrated throughout the world and in the grand scheme of things, Dolphin Day is perhaps one of the most well-known unofficial holidays of the world. Having gained steam in the 1990s and continuing into the present day, this holiday focuses on the worldwide plight of the dolphins. Considering how similar dolphins appear to be to ourselves, we may even call Dolphin Day one of the more “human” holidays that are celebrated.
Gatherings and awareness meetings take place in major cities across the globe. Some of largest venues include San Francisco, New York City and Tokyo. Traditionally, Dolphin Day places a particular emphasis on curtailing Japanese dolphin hunts, as these have received much publicity during the last decade. Each year, this worldwide event continues to gain a growing number of supporters. Hopefully, the near future will see a complete ban of dolphin hunting and while this holiday may no longer be needed, it will indeed be a happy ending for both the dolphins and their human advocates!
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Word of the Day


Definition:(adjective) Extremely desirous.
Usage:The young, enthusiastic student was athirst for knowledge.

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Idiom of the Day

in a pig's ear

 — An exclamation of emphatic denial, dissent, or disbelief of something. Likely a variant of "in a pig's eye," meaning the same. Primarily heard in UK, Australia.

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Volvo Car Company Founded (1927)

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In 1924, Assar Gabrielsson, sales manager at the Swedish ball-bearing manufacturer SKF, and engineer Gustaf Larson decided to build an automobile that could withstand Sweden's rough roads and harsh climate. Their first car—nicknamed "Jakob"—rolled off the line on April 14, 1927, which Volvo considers its founding date. The following year, they created a truck that was immediately popular and contributed to the company's early success. 

Julie Frances Christie (1941)

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Christie is a British actress who became an icon of the 1960s "Swinging London" era. Just four years after she made her film debut, she won an Academy Award for her performance in Darling (1965). Throughout the course of her long career, she has been notoriously selective about the roles she accepts and has appeared in such notable films as Dr. Zhivago and Hamlet

Bisket Jatra

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The festival of the new year in Nepal is celebrated with exchanges of greetings and in some areas with ritual bathing. The most important celebration is Bisket Jatra, which means the "festival after the death of the serpent." In Bhaktapur, the new year is celebrated by parading images of gods in chariots. The main attraction of the festival is the erection of a ceremonial pole—a lingam or phallic symbol. This is a peeled tree trunk as much as 80 feet in length that is erected using bamboo and heavy ropes while crowds watch. 

Whale Cams Reveal Secret Antarctic Feeding Habits

Whale cams have revealed the secret feeding habits of the giant mammals in frozen Antarctica, details on their social lives, and even how they must blow hard to clear sea ice to breathe. 
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Image result for 1759 - George Frideric Handel died.
1759 - George Frideric Handel died. 

Image result for 1828 - The first edition of Noah Webster's dictionary was published under the name "American Dictionary of the English Language."
1828 - The first edition of Noah Webster's dictionary was published under the name "American Dictionary of the English Language." 

Image result for 1860 - The first Pony Express rider arrived in San Francisco with mail originating in St. Joseph, MO.

1860 - The first Pony Express rider arrived in San Francisco with mail originating in St. Joseph, MO

Image result for 1865 - U.S. President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in Ford's Theater by John Wilkes Booth. He actually died early the next morning.

1865 - U.S. President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in Ford's Theater by John Wilkes Booth. He actually died early the next morning. 

Image result for 1902 - James Cash (J.C.) Penney opened his first retail store in Kemmerer, WY. It was called the Golden Rule Store.

1902 - James Cash (J.C.) Penney opened his first retail store in Kemmerer, WY. It was called the Golden Rule Store. 

Image result for 1910 - U.S. President William Howard Taft threw out the first ball for the Washington Senators and the Philadelphia Athletics.

1910 - U.S. President William Howard Taft threw out the first ball for the Washington Senators and the Philadelphia Athletics. 

Image result for 1912 - The Atlantic passenger liner Titanic, on its maiden voyage hit an iceberg and began to sink. 1,517 people lost their lives and more than 700 survived.

1912 - The Atlantic passenger liner Titanic, on its maiden voyage hit an iceberg and began to sink. 1,517 people lost their lives and more than 700 survived. 

Image result for 1939 - The John Steinbeck novel "The Grapes of Wrath" was first published.

1939 - The John Steinbeck novel "The Grapes of Wrath" was first published. 

Image result for 1955 - Fats Domino's "Ain't That A Shame" was released.

1955 - Fats Domino's "Ain't That A Shame" was released. 

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1959 - The Taft Memorial Bell Tower was dedicated in Washington, DC

Image result for 1960 - The musical "Bye Bye Birdie" opened in New York City.

1960 - The musical "Bye Bye Birdie" opened in New York City. 

Image result for 1980 - A New Jersey state assemblyman introduced a resolution to make Bruce Springsteen's "Born to Run" the official state song.

1980 - A New Jersey state assemblyman introduced a resolution to make Bruce Springsteen's "Born to Run" the official state song. 

Image result for 1981 - America's first space shuttle, Columbia, returned to Earth after a three-day test flight. The shuttle orbited the Earth 36 times during the mission.

1981 - America's first space shuttle, Columbia, returned to Earth after a three-day test flight. The shuttle orbited the Earth 36 times during the mission. 


If You Were Born Today, April 14
You are spunky and vivacious, with a personal presence that is powerful indeed. Although you are assertive, you are also very gracious and poised. There is a restlessness to your nature that keeps you on the move. There is also a distinct spiritual side. Your love nature is playful, and you are capable of making big sacrifices for those you love. Famous people born today: Pete Rose, Loretta Lynn, Anthony Michael Hall, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Robert Carlyle.
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Art + Flea 2017

Apr 14, 2017

Honolulu Market, 1170 Auahi St 

Honolulu, HI 

Art + Flea in Honolulu, Hawaii, is a one-of-a-kind urban shopping experience that takes place once a month and showcases Hawaii’s talented homegrown artists and crafters. The one-day extravaganza rotates themes every month and features over 60 local independent fashion designers, visual artists, buzzworthy musical acts, popular food trucks, DJs and an assortment of contests.

further information: ART + FLEA - Hawaii's favorite urban market


Blazing Swan 2017

Apr 12-18, 2017 | Kulin, WA

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Blazing Swan is a regional burn event touting an ethos based on a set of values allowing for self-expression and respect for others with a crew of Burning Man veterans.

further information: Home - Blazing Swan


Essex County Cherry Blossom Festival 2017

Apr 8-23, 2017  

Branch Brook Park, Lake St & Park Ave

Newark, NJ

Branch Brook Park sports the largest number of cherry blossom trees in the country, so there’s no doubt that springtime is stunning. Bloomfest awakens with shades of pink peppering the park, giving guests many reasons to keep their eyes open while they enjoy family-friendly activities. They can expect the traditional bike race, a 10k run, live music and a relaxing picnic while taking in the gorgeous scenery.

further information: Branch Brook Park | Parks | Essex County Parks


Bastrop Yesterfest 2017

Apr 7-30, 2017* | Bastrop, TX

Yesterfest celebrates the history of Bastrop with a weekend full of activities that contribute to the cultures of the city. The El Camino Real Music Festival goes throughout the weekend and offers Tejano, blues, folk, country and rock performances. Attendees can also explore the Juried Arts, Crafts and Antiques Fair or head over to Bastrop Family Rodeo Club Arena for some barrel racing and calf wrestling. With an array of activities, Yesterfest offers something for the whole family.

further information: YESTERFEST Pied Piper of Hamelin - Apr 21, 2017 - Bastrop Chamber of Commerce, TX

5. Easter History - April 16
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Easter commemorates Jesus' resurrection three days after his crucifixion and death. Following his death, he was removed from the cross and hastily buried in a tomb. On Sunday, it was discovered that Jesus' tomb was empty and angels informed onlookers that Jesus had risen. Throughout the next 40 days, Jesus appears to his apostles and disciples before finally ascending to heaven. Easter is the highest and holiest of holidays in the Christian faith. Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday following the first full moon after the spring equinox, usually occurring between March 22 and April 25.

Easter Facts

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  • For many Christian congregations, the first Easter service for the year is the Service of Light.  The worship typically starts in darkness on the preceding Saturday night or early Sunday morning.    Light is brought into the church with candles to signify hope based on the resurrection.  The service culminates with the lighting of a paschal candle, signifying Christ.
  • Easter eggs represent new life and also symbolize the shape of Jesus' tomb.
  • The colors for Easter are white and gold.  Easter lilies are popular decorations in American churches.  These white blooms are one of the earliest flowers to bloom in the spring and symbolize beauty, purity, and holiness.
  • Easter also signifies the end of Lent, the 40-day period of fasting, preparation, and penitence observed by the faithful.
  • Easter season starts on Easter Sunday and lasts 40 days until Pentecost.  The date for Easter is determined by the moon.  Easter is the Sunday after the first full moon of spring.

Easter Top Events and Things to Do

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  • Go to a children's Easter egg hunt, or hold one of your own.  Many churches have them the Saturday before Easter, too.
  • Wear some new clothes to church.  This is an ancient tradition that goes back to the early church when newly baptized persons were given a white gown to wear on Easter.
  • Attend an Easter parade.  The 5th Avenue Easter Parade in Manhattan (New York) is one of the most lavish and famous for extravagant hats worn.
  • Cook an Easter dinner for family and friends.  Traditional entrees include lamb or ham.  During Lent (period leading up to Easter), many Roman Catholics exclude meat from their diet, so Easter is often indulgent on meat.


Dark and starry night sky with shooting star.

April 22/23: Lyrid Meteor Shower

The Lyrid meteor shower is expected to peak between April 22 and 23, 2017. A Waning Crescent Moon will make it dark enough to see the shooting stars, as long as the weather is good.

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Pictures of the day

The Flageolet Player on the Cliff
The Flageolet Player on the Cliff is an 1889 oil painting by the French artist Paul Gauguin. Using a patchwork of colors, it depicts a Breton couple on a narrow path precipitously overlooking the Atlantic, with the man playing a flageolet. It is held by the Indianapolis Museum of Art in IndianapolisIndiana.

'Visible Distance Second Sight' is an art installation by Jennifer Bolande for DesertX. The temporary work can be found along the Gene Autry Trail near Vista Chino, CA

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knit - EASTER
Easter Bunnies


thanks, Sally


thanks, Connie

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crochet - EASTER

thanks, Doris




thanks, Clara


thanks, Rosa

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Matzah Recipe

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thanks, Sara

Crockpot Parmesan Potato Wedges

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CHILDREN'S CORNER ... find games (answers below)

answers to all five:

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Bell Clear Jigsaw Puzzle

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Major Walter Summerford was struck by lightning three times in his life, and after his death, his gravestone was also struck!-------------------- Your brain takes in about 11 million bits of information every second, but is aware of only about 40.-------------------- Maeve Graham of Chicago, Illinois, has a goldfish named Percy with a see-through-eye! (My Believe It or Not! Contest winner Maeve Graham, Chicago, Illinois)

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thanks, Shelley
How to Make Easter Egg Dye from Food

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ALK3RAs holidays go, Easter is a strange one. We’re here today to look at Easter’s origins, and how it’s celebrated around the world. Just make sure to keep some chocolate on standby in case of cravings.

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We know that Christmas is a combination of Christ” and “Mass,” and we also know that Halloween comes from “Allhallow-even.” But where does Easter come from?
By far the most prolific explanation comes from the Anglo-Saxon goddess of fertility known as Eostre. The goddess had 10 variants of her name, including Ostara, Eostur and Austron which made adding her as a contact on your phone a nightmare but it’s agreed that the root of her name comes from “eastre,” meaning “spring.” This was adopted and used as a Christian celebration. Despite the fact that this is one of the top explanations, there’s a lot of debate over whether Eostre was even anactual goddess worshipped by people. You know, just to confuse you further.


Out of all the animals to be designated as the one who delivers chocolate eggs, why a rabbit? The tradition definitely has a back story, but which story you get depends on who you ask. There have been several claims for the origin of the iconic rabbit, and they span different religions and traditions.
One theory states that the Easter Bunny originated from our friend Eostre. The story goes that, once upon a time, Eostre stumbled upon a bird dying from the cold in the snow. She turned the bird into a hare, so that its fluffy coat kept it warm and safe. Because it was once a bird, it still laid eggs, so the rabbit decorated them and left them as gifts to Eostre for saving its life. This is also an explanation for the Easter egg hunt looking for the eggs that the bird-rabbit hid. Although stealing gifts from a goddess is probably not the best idea.
Another story states that the Easter Bunny came about because, once upon a time, people believed that rabbits were hermaphrodites, making them able to give birth without losing their virginity. This has strong ties to the virgin birth of Jesus from Mary, so people began to relate rabbits to them. Some churches even sport a three hare motif, consisting of three hares connected by their ears running in a circle, a potential symbol of the Holy Trinity. However, these have been found all over the world, and their true meaning is unknown.
A third story points a finger to the first record of the Easter Rabbit in De ovis paschalibus, a German book that translates to About the Easter Egg. It states that the tradition had existed in the Christian-dominated Alsace, carried over to America with German immigrants in the 1700s, and sparked the annual chocolate gluttony ever since. There’s been no historic record yet that says people waited a day later to get eggs much cheaper, though.


Now that we’ve tackled the myths and legends behind Easter, we can look at the events that take place around the world leading up to, and on, the holy day. One is Semana Santa, held within cities across Spain.
Semana Santa means Holy Week, the period leading up to Easter Sunday. In it, all shops and stores except restaurants close, and the entire city is transformed. 55 different churches take part in the festival, parading large floats that resemble Jesus in some way. The floats make their way from their church of origin to the cathedral, and then back again. While a sombre celebration, it’s one that draws tourists from all over the world to see its magnificence.


The Epitáphios Threnos is a tradition in Greek Orthodox religions that’s held on Good Friday. It means Lamentation at the Tomb, and is in essence a funeral service to respect the death of Jesus by re-enacting the way he was buried after his crucifixion. The Epitáphios Threnos takes place in churches, where an epitaphios is placed atop something representing the tomb of Christ. The epitaphios is a highly-adorned piece of cloth that represents the shroud Jesus was wrapped in. The tomb is decorated with flower petals and rosewater before hymns are spoken. Interactions with this tomb vary depending on tradition some will hold it over the church entrance so that believers pass under it, a symbol of entering the grave alongside Christ.


A prolific theory behind the Easter ham resides in Christianity. The story states that a wicked queen named Ishtar gave birth to a son called TammuzThis son would become a hunter, but his career was cut short when he was killed by a wild pig. Presumably out of spite, and maybe with a love for bacon mixed in, Ishtar designated a Sunday on which people consumed pig.
Another theory states that, while lamb was usually the go-to dish for its symbolism with Passover, ham would be used because pigs were considered a symbol of good luck. Killing and eating symbols of good luck seems to be a bad idea, but at least it got ham on the table.
Another source gives a more practical approach. Before the invention of refrigeration, pigs were slaughtered in the fall and preserved during winter. Should some of the meat not be consumed during the winter months, it would be cured so it could be eaten during springtime. When did the curing finish? Around Easter, making it an ideal dish for the season. It’s a less exciting origin, but it makes good sense.


In the United Kingdom, a select few people are given money the day before Good Friday. These coins, known as Maundy Money, have a long history. It began when Jesus gave the command “that ye love one another” after he washed the feet of his disciples, who probably felt they could get used to that sort of treatment. This became a fourth century tradition where the poor have their feet washed and are given clothes. This stopped around the eighteenth century, and was replaced by an allowance to give the poor the chance to buy food and clothing. Thus was born the Maundy Money.
Today, a selection of elders receive a red and white purse. The red one contains legal currency, while the white one contains special symbolic Maundy coins. These people are selected by the amount of Christian service they have performed, so if you see some senior citizens suddenly taking a great interest in the church and goodwill approaching Easter, now you know why.


Painting eggs on Easter is always fun. But it doesn’t have to be child’s play the Ukrainian Easter tradition of Pysanka eggs are a craft all by themselves. These highly-decorated eggs have been made during Holy Week for generations. Even when Easter is nowhere near, people can’t resist making them. While people once made eggs to ensure fertility and avoid fires and nasty spirits, today they take to the art form for the aesthetic allure.
How do Pysanka eggs differ from regular ones? The preparation, mostly. After designing a pattern on an uncooked or empty egg, it’s then dipped in a colored dye. Between the dyeing stages, the craftsman draws patterns on the egg with wax, so as to seal the color currently on the egg and create the intricate patterns you see on the final product. In short, if the rabbits you paint on Easter eggs end up looking like the one out of Monty Python and the Holy Grail, perhaps consider purchasing Pysanka eggs instead.


After a busy Easter, it’s easy to imagine that people are sick to death of anything based around eggs. It would be a good idea for them to stay away from Haux in France, whose Easter traditions are just dying to have egg-based puns written about them. Every year on Easter Monday, the residents create a large omelet. This isn’t the kind of large omelet you get when you drop a box of eggs on the floor it’s not unheard of for the final result to come in at three yards wide to feed 1,000 people. One year’s omelet saw 5,211 eggs, 21 quarts of oil, and 110 pounds of bacon, onion and garlic, which sure beats what you get at Denny’s. You could even call it eggstreme, if you wanted us to come over there and smack you.


If you’re discussing what you do on Easter with a friend, and they reveal that what they love most about it is the part where people with blackened faces perform a folk dance down the streets, you may have just met someone from Bacup, England. Every Easter, The Britannia Coco-Nut Dancers, or Nutters, perform a folk dance from one town boundary to the other. What makes these dancers unique is their blackened faces, but no one is sure of their origins. It might be from medieval times to hide the faces of those who participated to stop evil spirits from getting their revenge, or it may have ties to the mining industry. Either way, the custom has come under fire for its potential racist nature, with the Nutters swearing that the blackened faces have no racial aspect whatsoever. Like every dispute around Easter, we hope this one can be solved with chocolate.


One of the longest running traditions of Easter is the Passion Play. Because a lot of people in medieval times couldn’t read, plays were a great way to educate the masses about the story of Jesus’ death and resurrection. There are passion plays held all over the world, but one of the most famous is the Oberammergau Passion Play. Its roots began during the black plague, when the residents of Oberammergau were on high alert to keep the disease out. A farmer coming home from a nearby village brought the plague back with him, which killed one-fifth of the town. With the disease ravaging the town, the elders declared that the church would hold a passion play every 10 years in exchange for God’s blessing and protection (you’d think they’d try every 10 days considering the circumstances, but whatever). The play has been performed every 10 years since 1633, with only a ban in 1770, World War I, and World War IIstopping three shows. Thankfully, no outbreaks of plague happened on those years.

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