Next to October, my favorite month is May. All the flowers and flower-blooming trees are arriving in an array of ovely colors: yellow daffodils, red tulips, pink Dogwood blossoms, and even granny apple green leaves before they turn darker. Mostly, though, I love the azaleas with their beautiful magenta blossoms. I start and end this posting with photos of azaleas from my extended neighborhood, including the horticultural center about 10 minutes from where we live.
May is also a month of many important days such as May Day (today) Mother’s Day, Mental Health Month, Cinco de Mayo, Holocaust Memorial Day and Memorial Day.
It is raining as I type this, so May Day events in Philadelphia are most likely cancelled. Instead, here is a description and photo from Wikipedia, since I don’t want to ignore this holiday because of inclement weather:
May Day on May 1 is an ancient northern hemisphere spring festival and usually a public holiday; it is also a traditional spring holiday in many cultures. Dances, singing, and cake are usually part of the celebrations that the day includes.
In the late 19th century, May Day was chosen as the date for International Workers’ Day by the Socialists and Communists of the Second International to commemorate the Haymarket affair in Chicago. (International Workers’ Day may also be referred to as “May Day”, but it is a different celebration from the traditional May Day.)
Cinco de Mayo, which means the fifth of May, is later this week and I will be doing a food demo/luncheon at the local community center, which consists mostly of seniors who are available at 1 pm on a Wednesday. I hope to have photos and recipes to post on that day or the next day, but in the meantime, you can Google Cinco de Mayo for information and recipes. Or if you cannot wait, please click on my link from a previous posting with recipes. Here is the photo of the tortilla buffet from this link: http://www.menupause.info/archives/1141
On a somber note, May 5th (this year*) is also Yom HaShoah, a yearly acknowledgment of the 6 million Jews who perished as a result of the Holocaust during WWII. I would like to review a book called In Memory’s Kitchen, since this is a food blog/website. The subtitle is A Legacy from the Women of Terezin, a so-called model of a concentration camp for Jews in WWII. The book was edited by Car de Silva based on recipes from Mina Pachter, a Czech Jew who died in Terzin.
* The Hebrew Calendar differs from the English calendar so that Jewish holidays seems to vary, but actually they are on the same day every year, but come on different days in our English calendar, because the Hebrew Calendar is based on the lunar cycle.
Another book I plan to review is A Mind of Your Own by Kelly Brogan, MD, as my contribution to National Mental Health Month. Actually, I have several books I would like to review this month, so I will post them throughout this month and perhaps into June. Two would be perfect for Mother’s Day and another could bridge Yom HaShoah with Mother’s Day. I am still deciding…..
The end of the month is Memorial Day, which is when our pool opens. I plan to have a couple of Spring-into-Summer recipes for you to try, as well as acknowledge our service men and women. There will also be some spillover from Earth Day, especially since I went to an Earth Day Fair only yesterday, so it is still fresh in my mind and I collected some interesting information. And, I like to think it is Earth Day every day, staying conscious of how to protect the planet daily.
Happy, Healthy May!