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Sue Spitulnik

Flash Fiction and personal thoughts

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Outdoors

National S’mores Day

The origin of this tasty snack is credited to the entrepreneur Alec Barnum. However, the first recorded version of the recipe can be found in the 1927 publication of Tramping and Trailing with the Girl Scouts.   Even though the Girl Scouts were not the first ones to make s’mores, Girl Scout groups describe them in their reports as early as 1925.  Earlier recipes used the name “Some Mores”.  It is unclear when the name was shortened to “S’mores”.

What ever the name, I hope everyone on earth has had a form of this treat at least once.  Maybe even once a summer.

I know the most common place to have s’mores is around a campfire.  That’s great if you like mosquitos and camp fires.  When my kids were in their early teens we got all the ingredients and cooked the marshmallows over candles in the living room.  I thought too late about what the black smoke would do to the ceiling.  Not a good idea in a hotel either.  It sets off the smoke alarm!  Not telling where I tried that one.

A couple years ago we were visiting my husband’s niece in Cleveland.  Her husband made her a s’more by cooking one of those new huge marshmallows over the flame on their gas stove; after their boys had been pronounced fully asleep.  She proved to us, no matter how old you are, dessert is a good thing, and there is no lady like way to eat s’mores.  She ended up with marshmallow on her nose and fingers.  If it hadn’t been bedtime we would have joined her.

I never went to Girl Scout camp, but we had s’mores at 4-H camp and at church camp.  In those days there were only three true ingredients: graham crackers, chocolate bars and marshmallows.  Today substitutions are encouraged, most of which have to do with peanuts.  Use a peanut butter cup, or add peanut butter or Nutella.

Which ever way you choose to enjoy this delicious, messy treat, make sure summer doesn’t get by you without having one.

 

 

 

National Root Beer Float Day

This is another one of those days that there were too many subjects I could write about.   So we’ll start with a couple of sentences enveloping the topics.

After playing disc golf, wiggle your toes through a lunch of a Jamaican Patty with mustard on it while drinking a root beer float.  Then, freshen your breath so you can enjoy a glass of mead later.

It’s interesting when I look at the National Day of ………calendar.  Many of these days have been designated for less than twenty years.  They were created to bring awareness to a specific thing by a specific group; often times for advertising purposes.  Fresh breath is about keeping your teeth/mouth clean.  Mustard Day is an annual festival in Middleton, Wisconsin, where the mustard museum is.  The profits from the festival help organizations in that town.  And just so you know, a Jamaican would probably never put mustard on a meat pastry, but it sounded good in the sentence.  We have a Jamaican friend that owns a roofing business near us.  When he stops into the office my husband works at, he often brings patties.  We enjoy them as a treat for supper.

Disc golf is new on the scene.  One of our cousin’s adult sons is very into this type of fun exercise.  During the seven feet of snow in Boston a couple of years ago, he posted pictures on Facebook of himself and friends throwing Frisbees into garbage cans, from a good distance of course.  They could see no reason to stay indoors when there was a game to be played outdoors.  I hope they had a warm fireplace to wiggle their toes in front of afterwards.  And knowing them there was a little alcohol to celebrate with.  That’s where the mead fits in.  “Mead has been known to be called the “ancestor of all fermented drinks.”

So what happened to the root beer float?  If you are as old as I am, you remember the car hop days when servers on roller skates brought your burger (with mustard), fries, and root beer float to you on a tray that hooked onto your car when the window was rolled down.  Yes, we rolled the window down with a crank handle.  I’m not sure why the root beer float is more common, than say, a coke float, but it is in my neck of the woods.  I find it refreshing, especially on a hot summer day.

National Hammock Day

I wonder if everyone has had the pleasure of laying in a hammock.  On TV they make it look so inviting in the advertisements, especially with a cold drink in hand, under a shady palm tree without an apparent care in the world.  Maybe it’s the cold drink that takes the cares away!

We had a hammock on our side porch when I was in grade school.  It didn’t look like the flat ones of today.  It looked like an accordian and was made of very heavy canvas.  You pulled apart the folds and sat in the middle.  Sometimes your butt hit the floor is you flopped into with too much force.  Then you held the far side out and lay down.  It wasn’t really comfortable for a little kid, because it tended to fold back around you.  It was more fun if there were at least two of us in it, and another to push it with all their might.  When it stopped moving we would thrust our arms into the air, pretending we were butterflies emerging from a cacoon.  We didn’t have a lot of cares or responsibilities at that age.

This summer I am keeping  my grandson company on Thursdays, I look out the window and see a hammock.  I never have been much of a sun person, and it doesn’t even tempt me considering the hot temperature.  Besides, I sure wold hate to try to sit on it and end up flipped over onto the ground.

 

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