If you’ve been waiting for a breath of fresh, WARM air, it’s right around the corner, or just a page away on the calendar. I’m referring, of course, to the month of April.
Yes, the first day of spring hits the ground running in March, but this year the ground was still frozen and covered in snow, so most of us look forward to April with great anticipation, hoping for warm breezes, birds singing, trees blooming, and grass growing so fast the lawnmower becomes a temporary extension of your hands. (OK, so there are SOME disadvantages.)
Be that as it may, April still has a lot to offer in the way of celebrating (finally) the end of winter. First there’s April Fool’s Day, which we like to celebrate by trying to make a fool of someone else.
It originated in France in 1582, when the Gregorian calendar was introduced, moving New Year’s Day from March 25 - April 1 (New Year’s Week) to January 1st. News didn’t travel very fast in those days and some people didn’t find out about this change for several years. Plus, a lot of rebellious folks refused to accept the change and continued to celebrate on the last day of the former New Year, April 1st. These people were labeled “fools” and ridiculed by being sent on “fool’s errands” like invitations to nonexistent parties or other events and had all sorts of practical jokes played on them.
As word about this holiday spread around the world, so did the propensity for pulling mean or hurtful stunts on innocent, unsuspecting friends (or enemies) by otherwise sensible and compassionate people, and April Fool’s Day gave them the opportunity to do so without repercussions or accusations of malice. So the moral of this story could be, when someone does you wrong, don’t get mad – wait till April Fool’s Day and get even.
If you’re a bit squeamish about pulling mean tricks on other human beings, no matter how intense the revenge motive, you can always make up for it the very next day.
Why? Because in 1989, Ann Landers promoted April 2nd as Reconciliation Day and would write an annual article dedicated to this day and post readers’ letters on the subject. I don’t know if Ann Landers is still around doing the advice thing, but you are still permitted to make amends on that date because it’s now a legitimately established occasion.
Or you could just console yourself with a PB&J sandwich, because April 2nd is also National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day.
For the ladies, another day to celebrate is April 7, which for some reason has been designated as No Housework Day. So put down the work tools, drop into the nearest lounge chair and take it easy. As for you gents, pick up where she left off and do the work for her. One day of that routine and you just might get an appreciation of how much work it takes to keep up the house! (Dream on, ladies.)
Well, it works for me. Since I’ve retired from working, I’ve also retired from housework. Now I do what I please when I please, and at this point I don’t even care if my dearly beloved pitches in to help or not. He has always run the sweeper since day one of our happy union and has been known to dust the furniture now and then. Sometimes he even makes the bed, but that could be just to roll me out on days when I’m still in it at around nine or ten o’clock.
Another day to welcome in the spring weather is Easter Sunday, which comes late this year on April 20th. A good way to celebrate is with a special Easter Sunday morning breakfast, which you can borrow from another special April day – National Eggs Benedict Day on the 16th. It may be a few days late, but what’s Easter without the eggs? and here’s an easy, no-fuss recipe for that gourmet breakfast.
EASY EGGS BENEDICT
1 stick butter 3 egg yolks
Dash of Tabasco
2 Tbsp. Lemon juice 1/4 tsp. Dijon mustard
4 to 6 Poached Eggs 2 to 4 Buttered English muffins
Combine egg yolks, mustard, lemon juice and Tabasco in a blender. Cover and blend for about 5 seconds. Melt butter in microwave for about one minute or until melted. Set blender on high speed and pour the butter into the egg yolk mixture in a thin stream. It should thicken almost immediately. Place poached eggs on toasted and buttered English muffins, pour sauce over top and serve immediately, with a side of bacon if preferred.