Happy Birthday, Lewis Carroll (January 27, 1832 – January 14, 1898)

Lewis Carroll

Lewis Carroll (Self-Portrait) circa 1856

Charles Lutwidge Dodgson better known by his pen name, Lewis Carroll, was an English writer, mathematician, logician, Anglican deacon and photographer. His most famous writings are Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, its sequel Through the Looking-Glass, which includes the poem Jabberwocky, and the poem The Hunting of the Snark, all examples of the genre of literary nonsense.

He is noted for his facility at word play, logic, and fantasy.

 

Here are 13 of his quotes:

 

1. “I can’t go back to yesterday — because I was a different person then.”

2. “Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”

3. “Who in the world am I? Ah, that’s the great puzzle.”

4. “You’re entirely bonkers. But I’ll tell you a secret. All the best people are.”

5. “Always speak the truth, think before you speak, and write it down afterwards.”

6. “If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.”

7. “Everything is funny, if you can laugh at it.”

8. “If you set to work to believe everything, you will tire out the believing-muscles of your mind, and then you’ll be so weak you won’t be able to believe the simplest true things.”

9. “You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.”Lewis Carroll - Alice in Wonderland

10. “One of the deep secrets of life is that all that is really worth the doing is what we do for others.”

11. “I’d give all the wealth that years have piled, / the slow result of life’s decay, / To be once more a little child / for one bright summer day.”

12. “If you limit your actions in life to things that nobody can possibly find fault with, you will not do much!”
13. “If you believe in me, I’ll believe in you.”

 

Ah, Nuts! It’s National Peanut Day!

Did You Know?

  • Peanut butter was a big seller at the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis but did not really take off until much later. In the 1920s, the process of stabilization was discovered, allowing it to be stored without refrigeration.
  • The biggest boost may have occurred in World War II. The government fed peanut butter to GIs, who then came home, started the baby boom and fed the stuff to their kids.
  • Peanuts, primarily grown in eight Southern states, are the nation’s 12th largest cash crop. They are a $500-million-a-year crop in Georgia, which produces nearly half of the nation’s supply.
  • It takes 548 peanuts to make a 12-ounce jar of peanut butter, and an acre of peanuts will yield 30,000 peanut butter sandwiches.
  • *About half of the 4-billion-pound annual crop is devoted to the production of peanut butter and the other half is almost equally split among salted nuts, candy and peanut oil.
  •  Ninety percent of a jar of peanut butter must be peanuts, but it also may contain salt, sweeteners and hydrogenated vegetable oil as a stabilizer.
  • George Washington Carver discovered that the peanut plant could also be used in shaving cream, ink, paint, explosives, shampoo, pet litter, fire logs, lipstick and soap.
    george-washington-carver1
    “99% of the failures come from people who have made the habit of making excuses.” – George Washington Carver
  • Americans are expected to eat 800 million pounds of peanut butter this year, more than double the 350 million pounds consumed in 1960, according to the peanut board. That’s an average of 3.3 pounds per person.
  • Although peanut butter is portrayed as a kids’ food, adults consume 55% of it.
  • Not everyone loves peanut butter, of course. In fact, there is even a word for the phobia of getting peanut butter stuck to the roof of the mouth: arachibrityraphobia.

Peanuts Made Famous

How do you like your peanuts?

  • Women and children prefer creamy, while most men opt for chunky. Click here for a creamy peanut butter smoothie recipe.
  • People living on the East Coast prefer creamy peanut butter, while those on the West Coast prefer the crunchy style.
  • Sixty percent of consumers prefer creamy peanut butter over crunchy.
  • Peanut butter is the leading use of peanuts in the USA.
  • “Boiled peanuts” are considered a delicacy in the peanut growing areas of the South. Freshly harvested peanuts are boiled in supersaturated salt water until they are of a soft bean like texture. They are most frequently enjoyed at the end of the day with a favorite beverage.

Nutrition Facts

  • Peanuts have more protein, niacin, folate and phytosterols than any nut.
  • Peanuts and peanut butter contain over 30 essential nutrients and phytonutrients.
  • Peanuts are naturally cholesterol-free.

    Annette Funicello

    Skippy® Peanut Butter gained great consumer recognition with former Mouseketeer Annette Funicello as its spokesperson.

  • Rumor says that there’s enough mental stimulation in one peanut to produce 30 minutes of serious thinking. That may or may not be true, but peanuts are a good source of protein and the B vitamins, nutrients that help prevent “brain fatigue.”
  • Peanut oil is valued as premium cooking oil by cooks and chefs worldwide. Tasteless and odorless, peanut oil doesn’t transfer food flavors, has a very high smoke point (440 to 470† F.) and is high in the desirable mono-unsaturated fatty acids.
  • Specially processed defatted peanuts may be ground into a flour for use in making high protein foods and beverages-, may be granulated and added to breakfast or diet bars to raise the protein levels; or may be flavored to taste like other foods.
  • One of the many great advantages of peanuts and peanut butter is long shelf life. If held at average ambient temperature without great change in heat or humidity, peanuts and peanut butter can be safely stored for several months. Peanuts contain no cholesterol. Recent studies show that the combination of monounsaturates and polyunsaturates such as are found in peanuts may be helpful in reducing cholesterol levels in the body.

In our Language

  • Goober—a nickname for peanuts—comes from “nguba”, the Congo language name for peanut.
  • There are over 700 known phobias. Archibutyrophobia (pronounced A’-ra-kid-bu-ti-ro-pho-bi-a) is the fear of getting peanut butter stuck to the roof of your mouth.
  • “Peanut Gallery” became popular in the late 19th century and referred to the rear or uppermost seats in a theater, which were also the cheapest seats. People seated in such a gallery were able to throw peanuts, a common food at theaters, at those seated below them. It also applied to the first row of seats in a movie theater, for the occupants of those seats could throw peanuts at the stage, stating their displeasure with the performance.
  • Peanuts are sometimes called “ground nuts” or “ground peas” because peanuts are actually formed under the ground.
  • Everybody loves peanuts; so much so, that there’s a saying: “Will power is the ability to eat one peanut!”

Published: September 26, 2014

Happy National Peanut Butter Day!

January 24, 2015 is  National Peanut Butter Day.
Peanut butter is a staple in over 90% of American households and the average person consumes more than six pounds of peanut products each year. Women and children prefer creamy peanut butter, while most men go for the chunky variety.

George Bayle, a St. Louis snack food maker, started making peanut butter in the 1890s. For many years, manufacturers struggled with the oil separating from the grainy solids of the peaut butter. In 1923 Heinz became the first company to homogenize the peanuts into the spreadable butter we know and love today. Before long peanut butter was a classic American food.

Did you know that it takes 540 peanuts to make a 12 ounce jar of peanut butter? Peanuts are cholesterol free and an excellent source of protein. In fact, it’s the high protein content that causes peanut butter to stick to the roof of your mouth.

To celebrate National Peanut Butter Day, bake some peanut butter cookies, spread some tasty peanut butter on toast, or enjoy a spoonful right out of the jar!

 

From the National Peanut Board

Cottage Cookie Recipe

 

Cottage Cookies - Peanut Butter Cookies

Celebrate National Peanut Butter Day with these cookies.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all- purpose flour (sifted)
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup peanut butter (creamy or crunchy)
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ¼ cup quick oats (grind in blender or food processor to chop finer)

Filling:

  • 3 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream

Preparation:

  1. In a large bowl, cream together butter 3/4 cup peanut butter, white sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla. Add egg and beat well.
  2. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and oatmeal. Add to creamed mixture.
  3. Drop by teaspoons onto greased baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes, or until cookies are a light brown. After removing cookies from the oven, press flat with a spatula, place cookie on wire rack to cool.

To Make Filling: Cream 3 tablespoons butter or margarine with the confectioners’ sugar, 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter, and the cream. Add cream a tablespoon at a time until the mixture is smooth but not runny. You may not need all of the cream. Spread filling onto half of the cooled cookies, then top with the other half to form sandwiches.

Published: March 25, 2014

 

Winnie the Pooh Day – Jan. 18, 2016

Date When Celebrated : Always January 18th

Winnie the Pooh Day is an opportunity to enjoy your favorite bear and all of his friends. This day was created to celebrate the birth of A.A. Milne in 1882. He was an author of children’s story books, and created Winnie the Pooh and his friends. Winnie’s pals include Christopher Robin, Tigger, Eeyore, Piglet, and Roo.

Winnie the Pooh

Have fun coloring one of the world’s favorite bear, Winnie-the-Pooh.

Have some fun today. Celebrate Winnie the Pooh Day by reading some storybooks about the adventures of Winnie and his friends. Don’t read them alone. Read them with young children.

Did you Know? In his works, he was known as A.A. Milne. The initials stand for Allan Alexander.

A. A. Milne was born Alan Alexander Milne on Jan. 18, 1882 in London, England.

Happy Birthday, Ben! – Jan. 17, 2016 – 310th Birthday

Ben Franklin

Ben Franklin

Ben Franklin’s Birthday – January 17, 1706

Although never a President, Benjamin Franklin was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States and has been dubbed as “The First American.”   He is also featured on the United States currency, the $100 bill.

“A renowned polymath, Franklin was a leading author, printer, political theorist, politician, postmaster, scientist, inventor, civic activist, statesman, and diplomat. As a scientist, he was a major figure in the American Enlightenment and the history of physics for his discoveries and theories regarding electricity. As an inventor, he is known for the lightning rod, bifocals, and the Franklin stove, among other inventions.[3] He facilitated many civic organizations, including Philadelphia’s fire department and a university.”

 

An inventor, a statesman, an author, a diplomat, politician  – to name a few of his credits — he was also a printer, civil activist and scientist.

 

Read Kathy Padden’s article: 10 Interesting Things You Probably Didn’t Know about Ben Franklin

Included in the article is some of many contributions including creating the first volunteer fire department in America in 1736 officially named the Union Fire Company but more affectionately known as “Benjamin Franklin’s Bucket Brigade.”   He also founded the first colonial insurance company, Philadelphia Contributorship for the Insurance of Houses from Loss By Fire, in 1751.

In addition, Franklin penned several articles on fire safety.  He often offered advice on how to avoid potential fires, writing “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”