Category Archives: Holiday Lore

Dog Days of Summer

Adventure Dogs 2020 wall calendar

Images from our Adventure Dogs 2020 wall calendar: Hiking, Camping, and Traveling with Courageous Canines. Click for more info.

The long, hot days of summer are rising before us and bring many opportunities for adventures with our courageous canine companions. But why do some call this period the dog days of summer? Well, as with many things, we have the Greeks to thank. But let’s look at the timing of the days first.

Various computations of the dog days in the northern hemisphere have placed their start anywhere from July 3 to August 15 and lasting for anywhere from 30 to 61 days depending upon latitude.

To understand more about the origins of the name, here’s an excerpt from a wonderful post by Becky Little from National Geographic:

The “dog days,” I always thought, were those summer days so devastatingly hot that even dogs would lie around panting.

Many people today use the phrase to mean something like that—but originally, the phrase actually had nothing to do with dogs, or even with the lazy days of summer. Instead, it turns out, the dog days refer to the dog star, Sirius, and its position in the heavens.

To the Greeks and Romans, the “dog days” occurred around the day when Sirius appeared to rise just before the sun, in late July. They referred to these days as the hottest time of the year.

So, did the Greeks get it right? Are the dog days, around when Sirius rises, really the hottest days of the year? Continue reading

World Environment Day 2019

TREES planting

World Environment Day (June 5) is the United Nations day for encouraging worldwide awareness and action to protect our environment. Since it began in 1974, the event has grown to become a global platform for public outreach that is widely celebrated in over 100 countries. Each World Environment Day is organized around a theme that draws attention to a particularly pressing environmental concern. The theme for 2019 is “Air pollution”. You can read more on their website. Continue reading

Happy Holi — Festival of Colors

Holi celebration image

Holi is a colorful and boisterous Hindu spring festival celebrated on March 10 in 2020. It is also known as the Festival of Colors. This is a time of shedding inhibitions: people smear each other with red and yellow powder and shower each other with colored water shot from bamboo blowpipes or water pistols. Restrictions of caste, sex, age, and personal differences are ignored. Continue reading

International Women’s Day 2019

She Persisted Greeting Card

Greeting card by Kelly Angelovic. Click for more info.

International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity. Not only is this commemorative day one of the most widely observed holidays of recent origin, but it is unusual in that it began in the United States and was adopted by many other countries, including the former U.S.S.R. and the People’s Republic of China. This holiday has its roots in the March 8, 1857, revolt of American women in New York City, protesting conditions in the textile and garment industries, although it wasn’t proclaimed a holiday until 1910. Continue reading

Universal Children’s Day

Women Who Rock Our World 2019 wall calendar

Image from our Women Who Rock Our World 2019 wall calendar featuring artwork by Rachel Grant. Click for more info.

Celebrated on November 20th each year, Universal Children’s Day was established in 1954 by the United Nations. This special day is an opportunity to promote international togetherness and focus on improving children’s welfare. Since 1990, Universal Children’s Day also marks the anniversary of the date that the UN General Assembly adopted both the declaration and the convention on children’s rights. Continue reading

World Kindness Day — Make Kindness the Norm

Katie Daisy 2019 wall calendar

Image from our Katie Daisy 2019 wall calendar. Click for more info.

World Kindness Day is an international observance on November 13. It was introduced in 1998 by the World Kindness Movement. Today we’re invited to highlight good deeds that focus on the positive power and common thread of kindness that binds us regardless of race, religion, politics, gender, or zip codes. Continue reading

World Vegetarian Day

Super Foods 2019 wall calendar

Photo by Lynn Karlin from our Super Foods 2019 wall calendar.

To celebrate World Vegetarian Day, we’d like to introduce the new 2019 Super Foods wall calendar. Filled with mouthwatering photos by Lynn Karlin, this calendar will serve up a full year’s worth of cooking inspiration. 

World Vegetarian Day is a day of celebration observed annually around the planet on October 1. Established by the North American Vegetarian Society in 1977 and endorsed by the International Vegetarian Union in 1978, its purpose is “To promote the joy, compassion and life-enhancing possibilities of vegetarianism.” This celebration is intended to raise awareness of the ethical, environmental, health, and humanitarian benefits of a vegetarian lifestyle. Continue reading

International Day of Peace 2018

International Day of Peace PosterEach year the International Day of Peace is observed around the world on September 21. The UN General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, both within and among all nations and peoples. The first official observance of the day was in September 1982.

The theme for 2018 is “The Right to Peace: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70.”

The theme celebrates the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is a milestone document in the history of human rights. Drafted by representatives with different legal and cultural backgrounds from all regions of the world, the Declaration was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in Paris on December 10, 1948, as a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations. The Universal Declaration—the most translated document in the world, available in more than 500 languages—is as relevant today as it was on the day that it was adopted. Continue reading