Tag Archives: cats

Fun Fall Holidays

Thomas cat denies summer is over

Thomas can’t believe summer is over

Well, here we are at the “unofficial” end of summer. Labor Day weekend always leave me feeling rather melancholy.  Kind of like Thomas here. This association goes all the way back to when I was in school and Labor Day meant the end of carefree summer days. But it was more than just no more sunshine and days spent outside riding my bike around the neighborhood or inside reading or doing jigsaw puzzles for hours on end. For me, as a quiet and shy child, it meant reluctantly returning to a place where I felt out of place and socially awkward; confined. So perhaps it’s not surprising that even though I’ve been out of school for quite some time now, vague twinges of my Labor Day blues still reappear each year.

So this year, I decided to look ahead and see what was on the calendar for the fall. Turns out, that in addition to the traditional trio of Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas there are innumerable other holidays, special days and other minor causes for celebration just waiting to be recognized.

Thomas ready to celebrate

Thomas ready to celebrate

Here is a list of some of my favorites for the next four months. Some are silly, some are serious. Pretty much all have some meaning to me for one reason or another. I don’t know that I’ll be making cards for any of them, or even marking their passage, but you never know. At least Thomas has perked up and dressed for the occasion.

 

To find more silly or serious days to celebrate, check out the links at the end of this post.

S E P T E M B E R

September National Library Card Sign-up Month
September National Happy Cat Month
September 4 Newspaper Carrier Day
September 5 Cheese Pizza Day
September 7 (first Sunday after Labor Day) Grandparents Day
September 9 Teddy Bear Day
September 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance
September 12 Chocolate Milkshake Day
September 17 Citizenship Day / Constitution Day
September 18 Hug a Greeting Card Writer Day
September 20 Responsible Dog Owners Day
September 21 (third Sunday) National Women’s Friendship Day
September 21 World Alzheimer’s Day
September 22 Elephant Appreciation Day
September 26 Love Note Day
September 27 Ancestor Appreciation Day
September 28 National Good Neighbor Day
September 29 National Coffee Day

 O C T O B E R

October Adopt a Shelter Dog Month
October Breast Cancer Awareness Month
October Lupus Awareness Month
October Cookie Month
October 3 Boyfriend Appreciation Day
October 4 World Card Making Day
October 5 Do Something Nice Day
October 10 National Angel Food Cake Day
October 11 National Take Your Teddy Bear to Work Day
October 15 Information Overload Day
October 16 Bosses Day
October 17 Wear Something Gaudy Day
October 18 (third Saturday) Sweetest Day
October 21 Count Your Buttons Day
October 25 Make a Difference Day
October 25 World Pasta Day
October 26 (fourth Sunday) Mother-in-Law Day
October 27 Cranky Coworkers Day
October 29 Cat Day
October 30 Candy Corn Day
 

N O V E M B E R

November National Novel Writing Month
November Peanut Butter Lovers Month
3rd week Game and Puzzle Week
November 1 Book Lovers Day
November 2 Look for Circles Day
November 7 Bittersweet Chocolate with Almonds Day
November 9 Chaos Never Dies Day
November 13 World Kindness Day
November 14 Pickle Day
November 16 Have a Party with your Bear Day
November 17 Homemade Bread Day
November 17 Electronic Greeting Card Day
November 21 World Hello Day
November 24 Celebrate Your Unique Talents Day
 

D E C E M B E R

December Write a Friend Month
December 2 National Fritter Day
December 4 Wear Brown Shoes Day
December 5 International Volunteer Day
December 6 Miner’s Day
December 7 Letter Writing Day
December 8 National Brownie Day
December 9 Christmas Card Day
December 13 Ice Cream Day
December 15 Cat Herders Day
December 16 National Chocolate Covered Anything Day
December 18 Re-Gifting Day
December26 Thank You Note Day
December 27 Make Cut Out Snowflakes Day
December 28 Card Playing Day

 

These sites were very useful in collecting my list of days:

http://www.holidayinsights.com/moreholidays/
Provides detailed information on each day, its origins if known, and even provides information on how to create a special day of your own!

http://bugsandbunnies.blogspot.com/p/little-known-holidays.html
Blog musings on a select collection of odd holidays.

https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/2014/09/
Laid out in calendar format which means you sometimes need to do extra clicks to find the info you need, but there is a wealth of information on this site.

 http://www.holidayscalendar.com/holidays/weird/?year=2014
A basic list of odd holidays; a good starting place.

http://www.checkiday.com/
Have to scroll through day by day. Good if you just want to check for a specific date.

 

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What to Say in a Sympathy Card After a Pet Dies

“… what we have enjoyed, we can never lose … all that we love deeply becomes a part of us.” ~Helen Keller

Jaworksi and Virginia around 2008

Jaworski and Virginia, ca. 2008

The last month has been a little bit rough for me because my cat Virginia has been having some health problems. She will be 18 in August, so it’s not that it’s surprising that she’s in failing health, but she’s experiencing pretty much the same symptoms (and same condition) that my other elderly cat, Jaworski, succumbed to last year. As Yogi Berra would say, “It’s déjà vu all over again.”

So I pretty much know what the eventual outcome of all this will be. The only question is when. I don’t mean to be morbid here, just realistic. I’d rather write this now, while I still have her company to enjoy – and she still is the sweetest little cat I know. OK, I must confess, when she jumps on my head at 3 a.m. and starts chewing on my hair because she wants breakfast, I do have other feelings towards her. But aside from that, I am so thankful that, when I naïvely went to a rescue group on a New Year’s Day so long ago, not really knowing what to look for in a cat, that they handed me Virginia and Jaworski and said, “here, they’re ready to be adopted.”

Virginia, June 2014

Virginia, June 2014

So what do you do when someone you know loses a pet? I know some people, particularly those who have never owned pets, may not really “get” how very important these companions can be in the lives of their pet parents. They may think or say things like, “they’re just animals, it’s not like they’re humans.” (I know, I’ve had someone say this to me.) And maybe that’s true for some owners. Maybe for them, the pet / person bond isn’t as strong as that between people. I think that may be true particularly in busy households where the pet, unfortunately, almost becomes an afterthought.

But for me, and most other pet owners I know, the connection is very strong. Call them what you will, fur babies, four-footed children, or simply faithful companions, but there is no denying that their passing always leaves a big hole in their owners’ hearts. Sending a card to let your family member or friend know you sympathize with their loss will acknowledge their grief – a grief some in our society will scoff at – and help them with the healing process.

Ah, now the tough part……what to say……. Here are some ideas:

  1. Just let them know they are in your thoughts at this time and that you understand their need to grieve: “Keeping you close to my heart at this difficult time”, “I know how much you’ll miss having [Fluffy] as part of your life”
  2. Being a pet parent is a big responsibility – and in many ways thankless. Particularly if the pet was an adopted rescue or stray, remind them what a difference they made in the life of their friend: “[Spot] couldn’t have asked for a better forever home.”
  3. If you knew the pet personally, make reference to a good memory about them: “I smile every time I think of how loudly [Patches] snored. He was such a content kitty.”
  4. If you’re totally at a loss for words, you can add a quote to the card (like the one I used at the start of this post) or a Bible passage, such as Psalms 22:24 (For he has not despised or disdained the suffering of the afflicted one; he has not hidden his face from him but has listened to his cry for help).   And, while your pet parent friend has probably already heard it, the Rainbow Bridge poem may be appropriate to share with them as well.

If you are reading this post in anticipation of sending a sympathy card to someone who has just lost a pet, I’m hoping this paragraph is unnecessary, but I’ll add it just in case.  As for what not to say, just use some common sense.  For example, don’t suggest that getting a replacement will help them heal.  You certainly wouldn’t say that to someone who had just lost their spouse!  Besides, there is no “replacement” for a pet.  There may be other pets, but one can never take the place of another.

OK, enough on this sad subject.  I promise, next post will be cheery!

 

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