Cheer Du Jour

A little cheer to forget your troubles, and better yet, to toast with a glass of bubbles!

August 6 – National Root Beer Float Day

Root Beer_01

Root Beer_01 (Photo credit: rob_rob2001)

Customers seated at an unidentified ice cream ...

Customers seated at an unidentified ice cream and soda fountain, Seattle (Photo credit: UW Digital Collections)

Thanks to the good people at FreeFlys, I learned about another sweet holiday. August 6th is National Root Beer Float Day, a day to celebrate the summer classic by getting a FREE (yes, you read that correctly) small Root Beer Float at participating A&W restaurants from 2 p.m. til close. Click here to see details. Can this deal be any sweeter? Yes, it is also a fundraiser for the Wounded Warrior Project. As I have probably mentioned before, despite my reservations about our participation in some of our current wars, I fully support our soldiers. Please click on the link to learn about other ways you can support this exceptional group, whether by donating money, volunteer time, or simply writing a letter to our troops.

As usual, I digress. If you can’t make it to your local A&W, or can’t wait to begin the celebration, make your own float. recommends that you pour your root beer into the glass BEFORE adding the vanilla ice cream, to avoid a big spill. I also learned from this site that the root beer float was invented in the late 19th Century by Frank Wisner, and is also called a black cow. All these years (let’s not dwell on how many, exactly), I thought a black cow was a Coke float…and here, I thought I was a dessert aficionado (well, confirmed dessert addict, in any case). This, of course, makes me digress again to thinking of Laverne and Shirley’s Pepsi and milk concoction (which never seemed like a good idea) and has been tested by Beverage Science as one of their pop culture experiments. I leave you to your own decision on this.

YumSugar expands the history, by explaining that Wisner was inspired to add the vanilla ice cream to root beer (which began being sold thirteen years earlier, in 1881) by the snow on top of Cow Mountain.

A turbo-charged recipe, by MidwestSimple, incorporates vanilla vodka into the mix. Another alternative is the Root Canal Float, proposed by Vintage West:

Posted on May 30, 2013 by nswentz under Drinks


via Yep, that will play | Vintage West.

Whatever your pleasure, be sure to enjoy the cool treat and toast the holiday!

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July 11 – Free Slurpee Day

Two Slurpees in a car cupholder.

Two Slurpees in a car cupholder. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Free small Slurpee on 7/11 from 7/11! Enough said! (ok, maybe I need to give a shout-out to laist, for their innovative additions to the classic summer treat – examples: vodka, Campari, and even saki – for adults only!).

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June 7 – Free Doughnut for National Doughnut Day at Krispy Kreme

Homer Simpson just fainted…it’s true – Krispy Kreme promises a free doughnut Friday 6/7! Now that’s what I call a HOLIDAY!! Dunkin Donuts is also celebrating, with a free donut with purchase of coffee on 6/7.
Or, if you want to celebrate at home, Real Simple has posted a recipe for quick and easy doughnuts:
via Yahoo! Shine

Serves 8 | Hands-On Time: 15m | Total Time: 15m

3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 8-count package large refrigerated biscuits (such as Pillsbury Grands)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1. Heat ½ cup of the oil in a medium skillet over medium-low heat.

2. Place the biscuits on a cutting board. Using a 1-inch round cookie cutter or shot glass, cut a hole in the center of each biscuit, reserving the extra dough for “holes.”

3. Test the heat of the oil by dipping the edge of a doughnut in the pan. When the oil is hot enough, the edge will bubble. Place 4 of the doughnuts and holes in the skillet and cook until golden brown, 1 to 1½ minutes per side. Transfer to a wire rack or paper towel–lined plate to drain. Add the remaining oil to the skillet, reheat, and cook the remaining doughnuts and holes.

4. In a large bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon. Gently toss the warm doughnuts in the mixture a few at a time. Serve warm or at room temperature. This recipe makes 8 doughnuts, plus holes.

Lastly, has a recipe for a cronut-type recipe that looks delish! If you want to learn about the cronut fad, ABC has a news video featuring the cronuts craze.

Celebrate National Doughnut Day! Visit Krispy Kreme on June 7 at participating US and Canadian locations (scroll below) for a FREE doughnut of any variety. No purchase necessary. Excludes CT and Puerto Rico

Join in the fun and conversation by liking us on Facebook, following on Twitter (@KrispyKreme), follow us on Instagram and pin us on Pinterest. Join the conversation below by using #NationalDoughnutDay2013 or #NationalDoughnutDay. Your tweets, images, and pics may appear here.

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Feb 20 – Happy Hoodie Hoo Day!

English: Blizzard

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Got a bad case of the winter blues? Try shouting out some Hoodie Hoo’s! What? You’ve never heard of Hoodie Hoo Day? Ok, I confess – I hadn’t either, until I spotted it on Care2’s e-card site. Yes, they have a Hoodie Hoo e-card that you can send to all your friends (click here – it’s free!). A little Internet digging revealed that the holiday-creating super duo at Wellcat conjured up this day to encourage the coming spring to come a little bit faster. It turns out that Tom Roy and his wife, Ruth, have master-minded many joyous celebrations, including the uber-holiday Call in Sick Because You are Well Day. Well done, Wellcat! Back to Hoodie Day – the day to go outside at noon and shout Hoodie Hoo to chase winter away. You can see photos here, demonstrating a Hoodie Hooing crowd. Click on the Hoodie Hoo e-card to hear the Hoodie Hoo call (note: hoodie rhymes with moody), try a few practice calls, and get out there at high noon to scare away Old Man Winter!

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Feb 15 – 18: The 16th Annual Great Backyard Bird Count

What a week – King Cake, Pączki, and oh, so much lovely Valentine Candy! Want a chance to walk some of that off (not that there could possibly be many calories in the aforementioned treats)? It’s Birding Time! See below for steps (literally and figuratively) you can take to help our fine, feathered friends. The 2013 GBBC takes place February 15 through February 18.


(Photo credit: Shellie @ Firefly Creek)

See the website for instructions and other tools and information: 2013 downloadable instructions (PDF), FAQs, GBBC Photo Contest rules, GBBC participation certificate, Local events, Educational materials, Learn About Birds, and a printable checklist of species for your area in the United States and Canada.

The 2013 GBBC will take place Friday, February 15, through Monday, February 18. Please join us for the 16th annual count!

The Great Backyard Bird Count is an annual 4-day event that engages bird watchers of all ages in counting birds to create a real-time snapshot of where the birds are. Beginning in 2013, GBBC checklists will be accepted from anywhere in the world! Everyone is welcome–from beginning bird watchers to experts. It takes as little as 15 minutes on one day, or you can count for as long as you like each day of the event. It’s free, fun, and easy—and it helps the birds. Participants tally the number of individual birds of each species they see during their count period. They enter these numbers on the GBBC website.

Why? Scientists use the GBBC information, along with observations from other citizen-science projects, such as the Christmas Bird Count, Project FeederWatch, and eBird, to get the “big picture” about what is happening to bird populations. The longer these data are collected, the more meaningful they become in helping scientists investigate far-reaching questions, like these:

• How will the weather influence bird populations?; Where are winter finches and other “irruptive” species that appear in large numbers during some years but not others?; How will the timing of birds’ migrations compare with past years?; How are bird diseases, such as West Nile virus, affecting birds in different regions?; What kinds of differences in bird diversity are apparent in cities versus suburban, rural, and natural areas?

The Great Backyard Bird Count is led by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society, with Canadian partner Bird Studies Canada and sponsorship from Wild Birds Unlimited. via How to Participate — Great Backyard Bird Count.

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