Monthly Topics - Sept 2017

Labor Day

Labor Day is a legal holiday celebrated on the first Monday in September in the United States, Puerto Rico, the Canal Zone, and the Virgin Islands. Peter J. McGuire, founder of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters, first suggested the celebration of Labor Day, in honor of the working class. The Knights of Labor, who held a large parade in New York City, initiated it in the U.S. in 1882. In 1884, the group held a parade on the first Monday of September and passed a resolution to hold all future parades on that day and to designate the day as Labor Day. In March 1887, the first state law to declare the day a legal holiday was passed in Colorado followed by New York, Massachusetts, and New Jersey. In 1894, the U.S. Congress made the day a legal holiday. Parades, and speeches by labor leaders and political figures, mark Labor Day celebrations.

“No” Labor Day

Make sure to take this Labor Day off and relax. After all, you deserve it for all you hard work you do, the rest of the year long.

Always Finish
If a task is once begun,
Never leave it till it's done.
Be the labor great or small,
Do it well or not at all.
- Anonymous

Daylight Savings Time
Phyllis McGinley
In spring when maple buds are red,
We turn the Clock an hour ahead;
Which means, each April that arrives,
We lose an hour
Out of our lives.

Who cares? When autumn birds in flocks
Fly southward; back we turn the Clocks,
And so regain a lovely thing –
That missing hour
We lost last spring.

National Grandparents Day

The impetus for a National Grandparents Day originated with Marian McQuade, a housewife in Fayette County, West Virginia. Her primary motivation was to champion the cause of lonely elderly in nursing homes. She also hoped to persuade grandchildren to tap the wisdom and heritage their grandparents could provide. In 1978, President Jimmy Carter, proclaimed that National Grandparents Day would be celebrated every year on the first Sunday after Labor Day.

Grandparents’ Day

Remember to appreciate your grandparents this Grandparents’ Day, DATE. Send a card, some flowers, or a little gift. Or maybe just a simple phone call will let them know that they are loved and appreciated by you, their favorite grandchild.

New Survey Celebrates Grandparents' Key Role

How important are grandparents in today's complex society? Very important, according to T. Berry Brazelton, a noted pediatrician and author of many books on family and child development. Brazelton, who chairs the Pampers Parenting Institute, a one-stop resource center for parents of children from newborn to age 3, is adamant about the essential role of grandparents in today's society. "Your active participation instills a sense of family and continuity that adds to your grandchildren's feelings of belonging and security," he says.

That's important news since an estimated 1.3 million children are entrusted to their grandparents every day and another 2.4 million children live in households headed by a grandparent, according to U.S. Census Bureau estimates. The Pampers Parenting Institute recently commissioned a national survey of grandparents in which almost half of those surveyed said they see their grandchildren at least once a week. Just over half (51 percent) said the best thing about being a grandparent is spending time with their grandchildren - and then sending them home to their parents! According to Brazelton, that time gives babies and toddlers an additional source of love. It also allows grandparents to teach family values and history to school- age children and inspire older children and adolescents to want to grow up just like them.

Grandparents' biggest concerns about safety during those visits are hot stoves, stairwells, electrical appliances and cleaning products. They were also asked with which celebrity grandparent they most identified. Most women named Barbara Bush. Men lined up with Bill Cosby. The Pampers Parenting Institute and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recently produced the booklet "A Grandparents Guide to Family Nurturing and Safety" which includes the following helpful tips:

  • Baby-sit regularly if you can. It develops trust and understanding with your grandchild.
  • Instill a sense of family by sharing family history, traditions and holidays.
  • Resist the temptation to give your children advice or criticism about their parenting skills.
  • Respect the limits your children set for their children.
  • Lavish your grandchildren with positive feedback on everything from schoolwork to art projects. Your praise helps build self-esteem that they'll need to get along in the world.

"Take your role seriously - you have a lot to give," says Brazelton. To receive the booklet or more information on child and parenting topics, visit Dr. Brazelton's home page at

The Jewish High Holy Days

Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are the most important of all Jewish Holidays and the only holidays that are purely religious, they are not tied to historical or natural events. They are observed in the fall season of the western calendar and the seventh month of the Jewish calendar - Tishri. Rosh Hashanah begins a 10-day period, known as the High Holy Days or Yamim Nora’im, a time of penitence and prayer that ends with Yom Kippur. Jews worldwide are given these 10 days to repent for their sins and ask God for forgiveness.  “May you be inscribed in the Book of Life” is the common greeting during this period, as it is believed that on Rosh Hashanah God records the destiny of all mankind in the Book of Life. On Yom Kippur the Book is closed and sealed. Those that have repented for their sins are granted a good and happy New Year.

On Rosh Hashanah it is customary to eat foods that are sweet with flavor. This symbolizes the "sweetness and good fortune" of the New Year ahead. Foods flavored with honey, apples and carrots are commonly served. The Rosh Hashanah meal begins with apple and challah dipped in honey. Challah, the bread usually eaten on the Sabbath, is also specially prepared for the holiday. Instead of the traditional braided loaf, the Rosh Hashanah challah is round - symbolizing the cycle of the new year. The design of ladders or birds are added to the holiday challah by some families to commemorate the prayers rising to Heaven.  Below you will find a delicious recipe for a Honey Whole Wheat Challah for you to enjoy this Rosh Hashanah.

Honey Whole Wheat Challah

  • 4 cups Flour
  • 4 cups Whole-Grain Wheat flour
  • 2 pkgs. Active Rapid-Rise Yeast
  • 1 ½ tsp Salt
  • 2 cups Hot Water
  • ½ cup Honey
  • ¼ cup Margarine
  • 2 Eggs - beaten
  • 1Egg Yolk
  • 1 tsp Water
  • Sesame Seeds -- or poppy seeds


  • Combine both flours in a large bowl. Set aside 1 cup.
  • Add yeast and salt to flours.
  • Combine the hot water, honey, and margarine. Stir until margarine melts.
  • Stir warm liquids into flour mixture.
  • Stir in eggs.
  • Knead dough on lightly floured board 7-10 minutes adding as much of reserved flour as needed to form a smooth, elastic dough.
  • Cover dough and let it rest for 10 minutes.
  • Cut dough into two parts and shape each part into a ball.
  • Place both balls on a greased cookie sheets. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until the balls double in size.
  • Beat egg yolk with the remaining 1 tsp water. Brush loaves with glaze and sprinkle with sesame or poppy seeds.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 45-55 minutes or until brown. Remove from pan and cool on wire rack.
  • Makes 2 loaves, 24 servings.


September got its name when it was the seventh month of the Roman year. September is…

  • All American Breakfast Month
  • Baby Safety Month
  • Library Card Sign-up Month
  • National Chicken Month
  • National Courtesy Month
  • National Hispanic Heritage Month
  • National Piano Month
  • Self-Improvement Month
  • Women of Achievement Month

Special weeks during the month of September are:

  • National Dog Week
  • National Farm Safety Week
  • Religious Freedom Week

International Day of Peace
The International Day of Peace was originated in 1981 by the United Nations to focus on peace issues in the world. It is celebrated on the third Tuesday in September in conjunction with the convening of the opening of the U.N. General Assembly in New York.

Native American Day - North America
This day, sometimes called American Indian Day, is celebrated on the fourth Friday of September. It is not celebrated in every state. Usually, Native American traditions and arts are promoted during this day.


Beat the Summertime Blues
If you find yourself with a case of the 'end-of-summer' blues, a dose of Caribbean-style relief may be just the thing to shake things up a bit. But you don't have to hop on a plane to do it; simple recipes for food and drink are an easy way to beat the summertime blues. Try transforming your next backyard barbecue into a meal of tropical pleasure with Malibu barbeque sauce.

Just add 1/4 cup Malibu to one cup of your favorite prepared barbecue sauce to create a sauce and marinade laced with the subtle, sweet flavor of coconut - great for meat or poultry. And don't forget to add some Caribbean flavor to dessert. Add a splash of Malibu on top of ice cream or in tropical fruit salads.

A Reminder of Nature’s Abundance
After the harvest of fruits and vegetables is over, leaving the sweet aftertaste of another summer gone by, there will still be a remaining bounty to carry into winter. Delicious Bartlett pears serve as a reminder of Mother Nature’s abundance and stay with us for months to come, enlivening autumn menus. One example, fresh pear lattice coffee cake, comes hot from the oven smelling of cardamom and pear essence. The best part is that it’s a snap to put together. It jazzes up a coffee break whether you’re at home or in the office. While you’re at it, why not make two? It’s easy to do and is sure to bring smiles from the boss. Of course, if you’re the boss, your employees will love you for it.