| By JeanAnn Taylor |
April Fool’s Day is a fun day filled with harmless practical jokes and wearing silly hats. It is thought that the goofiness surrounding this day began with the French who once celebrated the New Year on the first day of April. In 1564, the decision was made to adopt a new calendar which started the new year on January 1st. Those who resisted were considered “fool’s.”
There is something quite enchanting about taking a walk during a spring rain shower — at least as long as you are covered by a rain umbrella! These useful accessories have been keeping people dry since the late 1600s. They were originally called parasols and designed to give protection from the harsh sun. The parasols, used strictly by women, were considered to be the ultimate symbol of femininity, and were associated with high fashion and wealth. Most men did not carry umbrellas as it was considered to be effeminate practice. Finally in 1750, Jonas Hanway disregarded the ridicule associated with the feminine umbrella and designed a more masculine variation. He carried his new device everywhere he went. By the end of the century, rain umbrellas became a common accessory for both men and women. While the umbrella has evolved through the years, the basic canopy shape has remained the same. The original materials of whalebones have been replaced with aluminum and the silk covering has been replaced with water-proof teflon coated materials. Umbrellas today are stylish and come in a plethora of pretty patterns.
He Loves Me. He Loves Me Not. He Loves Me!
The sweet innocent daisy is the April flower of the month. Daisies love full sun and rich well-draining soil. They are easy to grow and are resistant to insects and disease. They make a strikingly colorful statement when planted in large groups. The plants are commonly grown from seed directly sown into the flowerbed. Separate the plants every three or four years to avoid over-crowding. The daisy blossoms can be cut for simple and unpretentious flower arrangements.
A Tisket, A Tasket, A Pretty Spring Basket
Re-new an old tradition with this sweet but forgotten rite of spring. Years ago, on May 1, small baskets of flowers were secretly hung on the doors of friends and family. These pretty posies were also used to indicate loving feelings toward a sweetheart. You can easily make your own bouquet by picking a few spring flowers from your yard and placing them in a small container of your choice. Tie a ribbon on the handle, then hang the bouquet on the doorknob of your intended. Your simple act of kindness will surely bring a smile!
Thanks to JeanAnn Taylor for these informative and fun “Snippets” each month! She is a style expert, home organizer and Mary Kay Beauty Consultant. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.