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Ancestor Appreciation Day

Today, September 27th is the unofficial holiday of Ancestor Appreciation Day. How much information do you know about your mother or father’s ancestors? Do you know where your family originated? Are you curious about the stories passed down over the years? Ancestor Appreciation Day is about honoring those who came before you. Celebrating and learning about your heritage is a great way to celebrate the day.

Hang Up Photographs

Do you have older photos of your grandparents or great grandparents? Are they in a drawer or on the computer? Find a space to hang up pictures of your ancestors.

Start a Family Tree

Make a commitment to yourself to learn more about your family. Starting a family tree is the perfect place to begin. Many websites will allow you to start a tree for free. If you do not want to use a website, go old school. Grab some poster boards and markers.

  • Always begin with the information that you already know to be factual.
  • Add photos.
  • Include stories about your family.
  • Backup your findings with proven resources.

Creating a family tree is a beautiful way to learn about your heritage. Once you get started, you may be surprised where the information takes you. Enjoy the journey.

Flossie Haynes working on hospital rotation in Detroit around 1917.

Visit an Elderly Relative

Older relatives are a wealth of information. Visting a relative for an afternoon may result in lots of information about your family. Take a notebook along or a recorder to save the stories.

Food 

Believe it or not, food is a great way to connect to your heritage. Consider making a favorite family dish. If you do not have a family recipe, try a dish associated with your culture. Trying something new is an exciting way to share your heritage with your family or friends.

Finding small ways to honor your ancestors is perfect for celebrating Ancestor Appreciation Day.

Love Note Day

Did you know today, September 26th is Love Note Day? The fun, unofficial holiday is about leaving a note for your loved one to find. The only condition of Love Note, the note must be handwritten. The day is about putting pen to paper.

What to Write?

A love note can be a simple, “I love you.” Or you can write a long letter to explain why your significant other makes you happy. The choice is entirely up to you.

Get Creative

When creating your love note, get creative.

  • Use markers.
  • Add a poem or write one of your own.
  • Draw a picture.
  • Use calligraphy.
  • Use colorful paper.
  • Cut out a design, a heart is always a good choice for a love note.

Write More Than One

Have fun with the love notes. Write more than one. Hide them all over the house. Do you need some hiding place ideas? Try any of the following.

  • Tape a note to the coffee maker.
  • Tape a note to the cupboard door.
  • Hang one on the bathroom mirror.
  • Hang on the car steering wheel.
  • Slide one in the lunch bag.
  • Slip one into the briefcase.

The possibilities of hiding places are endless. Make a game out of finding them. Include the love notes as part of a romantic evening. Simply let your significant other know how much you care.

50 Date Ideas for Autumn

Whether you just started dating or have been married for 30 years, going on fall dates is the perfect way to enjoy the season. 

50 Ideas for the Perfect Fall Date

  1. Visit an apple orchard, cider mill, or local farm. 
  2. Pick your own apples to bake a pie or just eating.
  3. Watch apple cider pressing. Drink fresh apple cider. 
  4. Try apple cider donuts or apple bread.
  5. Eat caramel apples on your way to a canopy walk.
  6. Drink apple cider slushies while walking around your local park. 
  7. Go on a wagon ride through the orchard.
  8. Attend a fall outdoor concert.
  9. Go for a hike.
  10. Visit a pumpkin patch. Bring home the perfect pumpkin for your front porch.
  11. Carve pumpkins together.
  12. Attend a pumpkin weigh-off or other type of pumpkin event. 
  13. Go on a hayride. 
  14. Go on a nature walk. Go on several at different times and dates to see the changing fall view. 
  15. Take the scenic route to view the changing fall leaves. 
  16. Ride horses on a nature trail.
  17. Go to a football game.
  18. Attend a homecoming parade.
  19. Participate in tailgating.
  20. Host a backyard football game and BBQ. 
  21. Go stargazing. Dress warmly and drink hot apple cider under the stars. 
  22. Attend a fall festival. 
  23. Sit at your favorite cafe or find a new one to try.. Drink lattes or hot cocoa out on the patio area. 
  24. Host a couples’ night. Have a chili cook-off. 
  25. Host a bonfire night. Don’t forget the S’mores. 
  26. Have a picnic indoors on a rainy fall day.
  27. Have a spooky movie night. 
  28. Buy fresh vegetables and fruit at a local farmer’s market. 
  29. Make a fall-themed meal together. 
  30. Dress up in costumes and attend a Rennaissance Fair. 
  31. Unplug from your electronic devices. Spend the day together at home without any interruptions. 
  32. Go for a Sunday drive to a local tourist spot. 
  33. Host a movie marathon with friends. 
  34. Visit your local brewery to try pumpkin beer. 
  35. Go on a wine tour to try new fall flavors.
  36. Participate in a fall fun run. 
  37. Go day-tripping to somewhere new. 
  38. Try a new eatery or restaurant. 
  39. Watch a sunrise or sunset together. 
  40. Attend a fall art show, poetry reading, or museum event. 
  41. Spend a day visiting family or friends. 
  42. Attend a fall craft show or church bazaar. 
  43. Attend a fall-themed painting class. 
  44. Go birdwatching to view the migrating birds. 
  45. Build a backyard birding area for the winter birds. 
  46. Take your dog on a nature walk. Don’t have a dog? Volunteer to dog walk at a local shelter or rescue. 
  47. Decorate your home or yard for fall. 
  48. Ride a train or boat for a color tour. 
  49. Sit by the lake and enjoy the cool breeze. 
  50. Get outdoors before the cold winter months keep you indoors for long periods. 

Enjoy the fall season.

Preparing Your Chicken Coop for Winter

The winter season is just around the corner. Preparing your coop for the winter months is essential for the well-being of your chickens. A poorly maintained coop causes health issues for your chickens.  Consider the following tips to keep your chickens safe, happy, and healthy.

Tips for Winterizing Your Chicken Coop

During the winter months, keeping your chicken coop dry should be your primary focus. A wet, poorly maintained coop may lead to health issues or death of your chickens.

A Fresh Coop

Before the colder weather starts, clean your entire chicken coop. A thorough cleaning shows any potential problem areas inside the coop. After the cleaning, analyze your coop’s current condition.

Fix Any Potential Problem Areas

When inspecting your chicken coop, did you notice any holes or other issues? Fix holes immediately. Immediately caulk and seal any areas creating drafts. Patch all holes to prevent unwanted predators from entering your chicken coop. Even the smallest hole can create numerous problems for your chickens.

Sunlight

Install windows in your chicken coop. The windows allow the sun to shine into your coop. The added warmth from the sun helps keep the interior of the coop comfortable for your chickens.

Provide Sufficient Bedding/Nesting Material

During the winter months, add extra bedding and nesting materials to keep your chickens warm. Chickens will huddle together for heat.

Try other methods to insulate the interior of your chicken coop.

  • Add extra layers of straw on the floor help insulate the interior of your chicken coop.
  • Add 6 inches of litter to the coop’s floor for added warmth.
  • Stack strawbales around the coop for added protection.

Make Plans for Food and Water

When temperatures drop, water freezes quickly. Food has the potential to draw unwanted moisture creating ice build-up. Without sufficient water or food, your chickens will not survive the winter. Heated watering containers and extra feeding times are a necessity.

Increase Check Times

Check on your chickens more often in the winter. Going out to the coop a couple extra times a day ensures your chickens are well. Collect eggs immediately to prevent freezing. By increasing check times, the chances for problems decrease.

Chickens and other fowl are a fun addition to farm life. Preparing your coop for the winter helps decrease the possibility of any problems. Plan ahead to help get your chickens through the cold months.

 

 

30 Fall Activities

Autumn brings cooler nights, changing leaves, and new opportunities for family fun. Gather your family, friends or even your fur baby and enjoy everything fall has to offer.

30 Fall Activities 

  1. Go to a cider mill to watch apple pressing
  2. Drink cider
  3. Pick apples at a local orchard
  4. Go to a local pumpkin patch
  5. Attend a football game
  6. Host a tailgate
  7. Attend your local highschool homecoming parade
  8. Go for a nature walk
  9. Collect fall fallen leaves
  10. Make homemade hot cocoa
  11. Make a scarecrow
  12. Host a bonfire night
  13. Carve pumpkins
  14. Roast pumpkin seeds
  15. Go through a corn maze
  16. Eat caramel apples
  17. Attend a fall concert
  18. Go on a hayride
  19. Collect and paint acorns
  20. Go to a fall fair or craft show
  21. Go to a local farmer’s market
  22. Take fall family photos
  23. Rake and jump in a pile of leaves
  24. Have a fall BBQ
  25. Go hiking at a local state park
  26. Go on a fall color tour
  27. Host a fall-themed craft day
  28. Do leaf rubbings or other leaf art
  29. Make birdfeeders
  30. Host a fall-themed dinner with finds from the farmer’s market

 

Tips for Safe Tailgating

Today, September 7th is National Tailgating Day. Serving a meal around your vehicle at a sporting event is the primary purpose of tailgating. The fall season means football at every level. Attending a football game is a perfect chance to engage in tailgating. Remember, safety is a priority when tailgating with friends and family. 

  • Know the Rules: Before heading out to your local football field, research the rules and restrictions for tailgating. Check out the team’s website for proper protocol on tailgating. Some items may not be permitted.
  • Pack Cooler Correctly: When packing your cooler, remember to use lots of ice or cooling packs. Uncooked meat and other perishable food items need to be kept cold to avoid illness. Keeping things cold is a must. Do not leave food items out in the hot sun. 
  • Grill Responsibly: Watch your charcoal or gas grill at all times. Follow the directions. Pack the grill after cooling down. Grilling responsibly helps protect you, your friends, family, and others in the area. 
  • Know Your Limits: Tailgating is a fun, fall activity. Just remember staying out in the sun while drinking alcoholic beverages can be a bad mix. Use a highly rated sunscreen, drink plenty of water, and limit your alcoholic drinks to avoid sickness. 
  • Designate a Driver: Ask a member of your tailgating party to be the designated driver for a safe return home. 
  • Take Your Time: Allow yourself extra time to leave the parking lot. Leave early or late to avoid mass exit times. Watch for others in the parking, especially children or people who may have been drinking all day. 

With a few precautions, tailgating can be a fun-filled day at your sports stadium. 

 

Personal Review: Geek Gear Wizardry Box

I do not write too many personal reviews. In my opinion, everyone has the right to decide if a product is right for you or not.  With that being said, I am a fan of subscription boxes. The monthly or bi-monthly crates are filled with various items. Depending on your personal tastes, a crate may contain beauty items, food from around the globe, movie memorabilia, and much more. The best aspect of these crates, you never know what is inside. The crates are a pleasant monthly surprise.

Today’s crate just made me smile from first glance to viewing the final product. So I just had to share my excitement with all of you.

 

First, sneak peek…I admit I opened this one slowly. I took pictures as I pulled out each item.

T-shirts are always part of these Wizardy Geek Gear boxes. I absolutely love getting a new t-shirt every month. Of course, my t-shirt collection is growing more than I could ever wear in a year. The August box contains an exclusive beasts t-shirt.

Love this shirt!

Other items in this box include:

Cornish Pixies Tea

I love loose tea. I was so happy when Geek Gear started putting teas in the monthly boxes.
Living in Michigan, I can never have too many socks. Michigan winters can get really cold.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A new mug…

So exciting, this is my first Gringotts Mug. I cannot wait to add this to my collection.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A bright new print…

Licensed and exclusive, the print will look great on my bedroom wall.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was so happy to see a wand in this month’s box. I love the Geek Gear wands. Each is uniquely made and durable.

The wand’s specifications.
I love the skeleton wand. Reminds me of my favorite holiday, Halloween.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Saving the best for last, the signed owl art poster was my favorite in the August Wizardry Geek Gear Box. I just love this print. I am actually going to hang the poster in my living room.

So my overall review of the August Geek Gear Wizardry Box is 4-stars, my highest rating. I felt like my birthday or Christmas came early today.

Do you subscribe to any monthly crates? What is your favorite?

 

Read A Book Day

Did you know September 6th is an unofficial holiday called Read A Book Day? For avid book enthusiasts, reading a book may be part of a daily routine. Celebrating Read A Book Day provides an extra chance to indulge. Books give readers a chance to escape into a different realm, attend a magical school, go back in time, and much more. Use Read A Book Day as an excuse to get lost in a new novel (or reread an old favorite). 

Visit the Library

Visit your local library for a new book selection. Libraries often display new releases. Ask the librarian for an idea of a newly released book to read. Librarians are valuable resources. Do not be afraid to ask the librarian questions.

Go to Your Local Book Store

Stop by your local book store to pick up a new book or two to read. Browse the aisles of your favorite book store. Often display or book covers will catch your eye. Providing you a chance to learn about a new series of books. Independently owned book stores often display or host local authors. You may find a book by local artists that interest you. 

Read in a Different Location

Do you usually read on your couch under a blanket? Yes, the same location to read for Read A Book Day is excellent. But consider reading somewhere else. 

  • Go outdoors to lounge in a lawn chair. 
  • Head to your local cafe. Enjoy a latte while you read your recent book find. 
  • Read on your lunch hour.
  • Spread out a blanket and read while sitting under a tree. 
  • Make a special snack to enjoy while reading. (Yes, you may go back to your comfy couch).

Read Out Loud

Read a book out loud to your children, grandchildren, or an elderly family member. (Yes, you may read to your dog if you want). Sharing the experience will make Read A Book Day more memorable. 

Read A Book Day is about reading a book. Unplug from your electronic devices and enjoy the comforts of a good book.

 

 

Benefits of Apple Picking

Noticeable signs of the start of the fall season are all around. Warmer days turn into cool, crisp nights. Leaves are slowly beginning to transform into bright, bursting colors. The official start date of autumn will be here in a couple of weeks. Even though garden harvests are coming to an end, apple season is just beginning. Many orchards allow apple picking. The benefits of apple picking go beyond delicious fruit. 

Get Outdoors

Back to school activities, sports, work, and other commitments quickly take time out of your week. Set aside a day or afternoon to venture out into an apple orchard. Enjoy the sunshine. Walk around the orchard. Being outdoors is good for your physical and mental health. 

Unplug

Going to an apple orchard gives you and your loved ones a chance to step away from electronic devices. Walking through an orchard can provide a nostalgic feeling. Orchards are a connection to the past. Old apple trees, apple picking, and cider pressing give a glimpse of past generations. 

Valuable Lesson

Picking apples is a useful lesson for children. The activity shows how the fruit is grown. The apple picking outing allows the fruit to go from the tree to your table. 

Best Fruit

Picking your own apples provides you with the opportunity to find the best fruit for you and your family. 

Enjoy Other Activities

Apple orchards may offer different activities for you and your family to enjoy. Wagon rides, cider pressing, corn mazes, and other hosted events turn apple picking into a memorable adventure. 

Apple varieties become ripe at different times throughout the fall season. Calling ahead or checking your local orchard’s website is ideal. Make plans for a family outing. The best benefit of apple picking is eating your harvest.

National Wildlife Day: How You Can Help

According to the National Day Calendar, today, September 4th is National Wildlife Day. The news of the Amazon rainforest burning is devastating. As you watch the devastation unfold, you may be wondering how you can help the wildlife in your area. Small steps to help local wildlife have a more significant impact on the community. 

Be an Advocate

Helping wildlife and the planet requires changes. Be aware of any new petitions, proposals, or other policies that could harm the environment. Contact your state’s officials to voice your opinion. Make your voice heard for protecting wildlife and the environment.

Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle

The slogan, reduce, reuse, and recycle is well known. Implementing changes in your daily life helps the environment. 

 

  • Reduce: Plastic bags, bottles, straws, styrofoam, and other single-service plastic items are bad for the environment. Improper disposal of non-biodegradable items harms the local wildlife and planet. Properly disposing of consumer waste is only half of the problem. Reducing waste is the other part. 

 

  • Reuse: Make a pledge to reuse items. Donate unwanted clothing, toys, books, kitchen appliances, and more to local charities. 
  • Recycle: Participate in recycling programs in your area. Set up bins in your home to remind yourself and family members to recycle.

 

 

Be a Mindful Consumer

When purchasing new items, do your research. Learn about the company’s recycling and environmental record. Never buy any type of thing that threatens the welfare of an endangered animal. 

Save Energy

Take the necessary steps to save energy in your home or business. 

  • Turn off lights when leaving a room. 
  • Unplug unused appliances. 
  • Get a maintenance check on your furnace to run at an efficient rate. 
  • Monitor your heat or airconditioning temperatures. 
  • Wash clothing in cold water. 
  • Reduce your shower or bath times. 
  • Hang clothes on the line. Airdrying saves energy. 

Discover Your Green Thumb

If you are a property owner, plant trees, shrubs, and native flowers. The plants provide necessary shelter to local wildlife. Flowers attract bees and other insects to help the environment. Create a habitat to welcome birds and other animals to your yard. Offer watering areas, feed the birds or other animals, and provide shelter areas. 

Avoid Chemicals

Weedkiller, pesticides, rat poison, and other chemicals hurt wildlife and the environment. Using these types of products creates an uninhabitable environment and death to wildlife. 

Volunteer

Communities and other organizations host cleanup programs to help remove unwanted materials from natural resources. Volunteering an afternoon or an entire day has the potential to help reduce harmful items from the environment. 

Donate

Research organizations helping to protect wildlife and the environment. Make a donation. Reputable organizations will put the money to good use. 

Taking steps to help wildlife and the environment should be a daily commitment. Celebrate National Wildlife Day with a pledge to yourself to locally help the wildlife and habitat. 

 

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