The winter solstice is considered the shortest day and the longest night of the year and this year it takes place on December 22 for the Northern Hemisphere.
Because Earth doesn’t orbit upright, but is instead tilted on its axis by 23-and-a-half degrees, Earth’s Northern and Southern Hemispheres trade places in receiving the sun’s light and warmth most directly. The tilt of the Earth is what causes winter and summer. At the December solstice, the Northern Hemisphere is leaning most away from the sun for the year.
Wright Brothers Day is celebrated in the United States on December 17 each year. The date commemorates the Wright brothers’ first successful flight accomplished on December 17, 1903, near Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.
Orville and his brother Wilbur are credited for building the world’s first successful airplane with aircraft controls that enabled them to steer the plane. The Wright brothers’ first aircraft, named Flyer, made its maiden flight for 12 seconds and 120 feet around the site of Wright Brothers National Memorial in North Carolina.
December 17th is National Maple Syrup Day! Maple syrup comes from the sap of the maple tree. The maple tree is tapped by boring a hole into its trunk and collecting the running sap. Canada, the largest supplier of maple syrup, produces over 5 million gallons of it each year!
Native Americans were the first to harvest and boil the sap of the maple tree into a thick syrup—a process that was documented and adopted by early settlers in the 1600s. Tapping a maple tree does no permanent damage to the tree and only 10% of the sap that is produced in a year is actually collected. Unbelievably, it takes approximately 30-50 gallons of sap to make one gallon of maple syrup!!
Whether you like your maple syrup as a topping on pancakes, waffles, or french toast, enjoy some today in honor of National Maple Syrup Day!
National Violin Day is annually celebrated on December 13th. This holiday honors the instrument known as the violin. The violin is a string instrument, usually with four strings tuned in perfect fifths. It is the smallest, highest-pitched member of the violin family of string instruments, which includes the viola and cello. It is played by drawing a bow across one or more strings, by plucking the strings or by a variety of other techniques. To celebrate National Violin Day, listen to some violinists on Youtube!
National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day is observed annually in the United States on December 7. This day is to remember and honor the 2,403 victims who were killed in the Japanese surprise attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. It is a tradition to fly the United States Flag at half-staff until sunset on that day.
Apples are an extremely healthy snack with extremely high nutritional value. That’s why doctor’s say “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”! The peel alone contains antioxidants that help reduce damaged cells and fight diseases.
There are 7,500 varieties of apples grown throughout the world. They can come in a variety of shapes, flavors, and colors including all shades of red, green, and yellow. Snack on your favorite variety of apple and celebrate Eat a Red Apple Day!
National Dog Day is celebrated August 26th annually and was founded in 2004 by Pet & Family Lifestyle Expert and Animal Advocate, Colleen Paige.
National Dog Day serves to help the public to recognize the number of dogs that need to be rescued each year, and acknowledges family dogs and dogs that work selflessly each day to save lives, keep us safe and bring comfort. Dogs put their lives on the line every day – for their law enforcement partner, for their blind companion, for a child who is disabled, for our freedom and safety by detecting bombs and drugs and pulling victims of tragedy from wreckage.
Here are some FUN Dog Facts:
– Dogs are capable of understanding up to 250 words and gestures, can count up to five and can perform simple mathematical calculations. The average dog is as intelligent as a two-year-old child.
-In total there is said to be around 400 million dogs in the world.
-Dog have superior hearing than humans, capable of hearing sounds at four times the distance.
-Dogs have a remarkable sense of smell, they are capable of differentiating odors in concentrations nearly 100 million times lower than humans can.
-According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the smallest dog on record was a Yorkshire Terrier in Great Britain who, at the age of 2, weighed just 4 ounces.
-The only sweat glands a dog has are between the paw pads.
-Chocolate contains a substance known as theobromine (similar to caffeine) which can kill dogs or at the very least make them violently ill.
Honey’s versatility is not the only thing that makes it unique. There are more than 300 varietals of honey in the United States alone, each with a distinct flavor profile and color based on the floral source where the bees collect the nectar. As a general rule, light-colored honey is milder in taste and dark-colored honey is stronger.
Fun fact: to make one pound of honey, a honeybee needs to tap 2 million flowers. No wonder they’re called worker bees.
Veterans Day is an official United States holiday that honors people who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces, also known as veterans. It is a federal holiday that is observed on November 11. It also marks the anniversary of the end of World War I (major hostilities of World War I were formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918. The United States also originally observed Armistice Day; it then evolved into the current Veterans Day holiday in 1954.
Veterans Day is not to be confused with Memorial Day; Veterans Day celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans, while Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving.
Most sources spell Veterans as a simple plural without a possessive apostrophe (Veteran’s or Veterans’). 
The chocolate chip cookie was invented by Ruth Graves Wakefield in the 1930s.
Legend has it that Wakefield was making chocolate cookies and ran out of regular baker’s chocolate. So she substituted broken pieces of semi-sweet chocolate thinking that they would melt and mix into the batter. However, they did not (thankfully!) and the chocolate chip cookie was born!
It’s debatable if we need a holiday to celebrate the treat that makes up a quarter of all cookies baked in America today, but we’re happy to indulge nonetheless.
Celebrate today’s holiday with some sweet science! If you are wanting to experiment with chocolate chips that is a little less traditional than chocolate chip cookies, how about using them in the bath to wash away the dirt & grime from your day. Yep, that’s right…you can use chocolate chips as a moisturizing soap! The Chocolate is full of oils that will moisturize your body and leave you smelling yummy too.
LEARN HOW TO SWEETEN UP BATH TIME WITH THIS FUN AT-HOME EXPERIMENT!
Chocolate Chip Bath Cookies!
What You’ll Need:
1/2 cup Baking soda 2 cups of Sea salt or rock salt
1/2 cup Cornstarch
2 tbs of Almond oil
1 tsp Vitamin E oil
6 drops of Vanilla essence
How To Do It:
Mix it all together and then cut out with cookie cutters or flatten balls to form a cookie shape. Add the chocolate sprinkles into the mix or simply sprinkle on top.
– Bake at 350′F (180′C) for 10-12 minutes.
– Allow to cool.
– Use 1-2 per bath.
Wrap these in airtight packaging or seal them in an airtight container as with time these cookies do go moldy. The picture above is of chocolate chip bath cookies.
What’s your favorite kind of chocolate chip cookie? Leave a comment below & let us know!