If you're new to From Grammie's Kitchen, I hope you'll read all the way to the bottom of this long page. It has a lot of fun and helpful information that relates to holidays!

MAY 2014  

Monthly Observances -

Arthritis Awareness Month
Better Hearing & Speech Month
Brain Tumor Awareness Month
Building Safety Month
Celiac Awareness Month
Clean Air Month
Cystic Fibrosis Awareness Month
Drum Month
Family Wellness Month
Fibromyalgia Education & Awareness Month
Freedom Shrine Month
Gardening For Wildlife Month
Get Caught Reading Month
Gifts From The Garden Month
Global Civility Awareness Month
Global Health & Fitness Month
Heal The Children Month
Healthy Vision Month
Home Schooling Awareness Month
Huntington's Disease Awareness Month
Lupus Awareness Month
Melanoma/Skin Cancer Detection & Prevention Month
National Allergy/Asthma Awareness Month
National Barbecue Month
National Better Hearing Month
National Bike Month
National Egg Month
National Hamburger Month
National High Blood Pressure Education Month
National Mental Health Month
National Military Appreciation Month
National Pet Month
National Osteoporosis Prevention Month
National Salad Month
National Salsa Month (the food)
National Smile Month
National Stoke Awareness Month
National Sweet Vidalia Onions Month
National Vinegar Month
Older Americans Month
Women's Health Care Month
National Family Month (5/12 to 6/16)

Weekly Observances -

1-7:  Choose Privacy Week
3-11: National Tourism Week
4-10: Be Kind To Animals Week, Children's Mental Health Week, Goodwill Industries Week, National Anxiety & Depression Awareness Week, National Family Week, National Post Card Week, National Raisin Week, PTA Teacher Appreciation Week and Public Service Recognition Week
5-11: *National Wildflower Week
6-12: National Nurses Day and Week
10-16: Universal Family Week
11-17: Food Allergy Awareness Week, National Nursing Home Week, National Hospital Week, National Police Week,  National Women's Health Week and Reading Is Fun Week
12-16: National Etiquette Week
12-18: *Work At Home Moms Week
13-19: Salvation Army Week
23-25: National Polka Weekend and Old-Time Player Piano Weekend
25-31: Hurricane Preparedness Week

Daily Observances -

1 - *May Day, *Mother Goose Day, *National Bubba Day, National Day of Prayer, National Day of Reason and *Stepmother's Day
2 - International Space Day and No Pants Day
3 - Kentucky Derby Day, National Scrapbooking Day, *National Two Different Colored Shoes Day, *Public Radio Day and Space Day
4 - Lemonade Day, *Petite and Proud Day and World Laughter Day
5 - *Cinco de Mayo
6 - *No Diet Day, *No Homework Day and National Teacher Day
7 - Great American Grump Out and School Nurse Day
8 - *No Socks Day, *Time of Remembrance & Reconciliation for Those Who Lost Their Lives During the Second World War (8th & 9th) and *VE Day
9 - Child Care Provider Day and Military Spouse Appreciation Day
10 - Letter Carrier's Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive Day and Stay Up All Night
11 - *Eat What You Want Day, *Hostess Cupcake Day and Mother's Day
12 - *National Nutty Fudge Day and National Women's Check-Up Day
14 - *National Chicken Dance Day and Receptionist's Day
15 - *National Chocolate Chip Day, *Peace Officer Memorial Day and *Straw Hat Day
16 - National Pizza Party Day
17 - Armed Forces Day and *World Telecommunications Day
18 - *I Love Reese's Day, *International Museum Day, Neighbor Day and *Visit Your Relatives Day
23 - *National Taffy Day and National Polka Day
24 - *Brother's Day and International Jazz Day
25 - Indianapolis 500, *National Missing Children's Day, *National Tap Dance Day and *Towel Day
26 - Memorial Day
27 - *Cellophane Tape Day
28 - National Senior Health & Fitness Day

There you have it - a whole list of weird, strange, funny, and sometimes very good - holidays to celebrate this month. Let's see how many we can observe!

* indicates observance on same day/week every year.

For 2014 I wish health, happiness, peace and prosperity for all!

Here are a few quotes relating to the new year:

"What the new year brings to you will depend a great deal on what you bring to the new year" - Vern McLellan

"Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow" - Albert Einstein

"One resolution I have made, and try always to keep, is this: to rise above the little things" - John Burroughs

"Here's to the bright new year, and a fond farewell to the old; here's to the things that are yet to come, and to the memories that we hold" - Anonymous

"Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let each New Year find you a better man" - Benjamin Franklin


Here's a treat for everyone. This letter was first published in New York's The Sun newspaper on September 21, 1897. Through the years it has been reprinted and copied and published often. I hope you all enjoy the work of newsman Francis Church!


What's your favorite Christmas movie or TV special? Even though our children are grown we watch the old traditional programs just as we always have. Here are a few of our favorites:

Rudolph, The Red-Nosed Reindeer
Frosty the Snowman
A Charlie Brown Christmas
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
The Little Drummer Boy

White Christmas
It's A Wonderful Life
Miracle on 34th Street
A Christmas Story
A Christmas Carol

There are a couple of old movies in black and white that I enjoy watching every year.

Holiday Inn
Christmas in Connecticut

And if you've never seen Emmitt Otter's Jug Band Christmas, look for it. The kids will love the puppets and the music. And it has a sweet message.


Homemade food gifts seem to be the "in" thing this year, and there are recipes everywhere for mixes in jars and in other sorts of containers. Here are a few from the many I've collected over the years:


1 cup non-dairy creamer
1 cup nonfat dry milk
3/4 to 1 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa

Mix well. Store in airtight container. To prepare: mix 3 heaping tablespoons with 3/4 cup boiling water and stir well.

Makes about 3 cups.


1 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups M & M candies
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

Layer ingredients in 1-quart wide-mouth jar, starting with sugar, then candies, then flour mixture. Be sure to pack each layer firmly.

To prepare: Empty contents of jar into large bowl and mix well. Add 1/2 cup butter, softened to room temperature. Do not use diet margarine or butter. Mix in 1 egg, slightly beaten, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Mix well. You may need to use your hands at this point, as mixture will be stiff. Shape into walnut-sized balls and place on parchment-lined cookie sheet 2 inches apart. Bake at 375 degrees for 12 to 14 minutes or until edges are slightly browned. Cool on cookie sheet for about 5 minutes then cool on racks. Makes 2 1/2 dozen.

A nice gift would be to place a jar of cookie mix, a jar of cocoa mix and a couple of mugs in a basket. You could also add cloth napkins or a package of holiday napkins.

Part of the fun of buying stocking stuffers is trying to find new and unique things to surprise someone with. I scour the dollar stores. Target and Michael's stores have $1 bins full of treats. And you can find lots of things under $5 or $10 that will fit in that stocking!

In our house we have stockings from a couple of inches to one that's about 3 feet long. I sewed it from a preprinted fabric panel several years ago and think I'll use that one this year - I've been a really good girl!

Here are some ideas for stocking stuffers:

For Kids:

crayons, colored pencils, markers                                     
sketch books, tablets, coloring/activity books                  
puzzles, puzzle books                                                      
cookies, candy, small bags of pretzels                              
handheld games                                                                 
miniature snow globes                                                         
CDs or DVDs
small toys (dolls, tea sets, cars, small figures, etc.)
gloves or mittens
card games
Christmas ornaments
gift cards

(Remember the "oldies but goodies" - Slinky, checkers, jacks, pickup sticks, marbles, etc.)

For Adults:

scarves and gloves                                                            
bath salts and soaps                                                            
puzzles, puzzle books                                                        
stationery, note cards                                                         
CDs or DVDs
card games
Christmas ornaments
gift cards
small hobby or craft supplies
manicure sets                                                    

(Jewelry is always nice!)


A car emergency kit is a good gift idea for those automobile travelers out there. Here are a few ideas:

jumper cables                                                                  
cat litter or sand(for traction in snow)                               
auto fire extinguisher                                                         
ice scraper                                                                     
paper towels                                                                   
tool kit                                                                             
tin cans with candles and matches                                  
lock de-icer                                                                   
first aid kit
jug of water
snow brush
small shovel
windshield washer fluid
"Call Police" signs
work gloves


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