An owl's eye view of forests and trees

Mixing Things Up a Bit: New Ways to Celebrate Old Holidays

Remember Festivus, a holiday for the rest of us, from Seinfeld? Well, this year provides a unique opportunity to start up some new traditions out of old holidays. And this time, the celebrations can be for all of us.


Yes, this veers off from my usual subject matter. I thought it was time for a change of pace from all the serious.


Inspiration here comes from my amazing friend, Cheryl.


On February 14, 2018, both St. Valentine’s Day and Ash Wednesday will be celebrated. On April 1, 2018, both April Fool’s Day and Easter Sunday take place.  Too much coincidence there. We have to play with that.  And why should Christians have all the fun?


So, I thought I would come up with some new secular celebrations based on the intersection of those holidays. They can be for fun. Or serious reflection. Your choice.




On this day, we can contemplate and repent our past romantic mistakes. Let’s face it, even those in blissfully happy relationships have a few.


So, think on those mistakes, repent them, and then do two things.


First of all, learn from those mistakes. Then resolve to take those lessons. Going forward do better by yourself and any partner, or partners, you may have.


Second of all, having resolved to learn from your mistakes, forgive yourself.  You’ve looked at yourself. You have resolved to do better. Don’t beat yourself up any further.  Cut loose the weight of guilt and regrets. Start forward on better footing and with a lighter step by lightening up on yourself.


To show our observance of this celebration, we can burn our old Valentine’s Day cards. Then spread the ashes on our cheeks in the form of hearts.


Enjoy.  Good loving to you.


Burn on brave hearts




This is the “Jesus Died…Just Kidding” Day for Christians. But all of us can just take the time to learn to laugh some when contemplating death.


I don’t mean that in a cruel way. Or even a morbid way. Death is scary. Disturbing. Heart-rending.  Inevitable.  Inescapable. Terrifying.  As a result, it becomes something we find difficult to face, or even discuss.


Learning to laugh at things helps make them less terrifying. At one of the best funerals I ever went to, we sat around laughing at all the funny stuff the deceased had done.  Which is exactly what he would have wanted.


So, learning to laugh at death, just a little, will help us better be able to talk about it. To deal with it.  Learn to laugh, so that you can do better by yourself in the future.


We can celebrate this day by telling “death” jokes.  Or reminiscing about Death’s funny bits in Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series.  (For those who don’t know, Death was a character in the series. And had some very funny bits.) Or just remembering the funny stuff some deceased loved one said.


Here. I’ll start:


I’m not saying your perfume is too strong. I’m just saying the canary was alive before you got here.



Enjoy. Laugh it up.


A joker to the last


Whether you choose to celebrate the old holidays, or these new ones, or both, I wish you all love and laughter in the following months.


  1. Ross Anderson

    I, for one, truly appreciate your cheerful acceptance of this unusual conjunction of holidays with holidays. Thanks!

  2. Ann Anderson

    For an example of past romantic mistakes:

    I regret those times I tried to make myself into someone else to please my romantic partner.

    I also regret those times I made my romantic partner feel like they had to be someone else to please me.

    I will try, going forward, to be true to myself and encourage my partner to be true to himself.

    And I forgive myself for losing sight of myself.

  3. Ann Anderson

    Want more humor about the subject of death?

    Here’s another one liner:
    I was a little taken aback when I got my receipt from the funeral parlor. On the bottom, it read, “Thank you. Please come again.”

    Here’s one from a stand-up routine (by Bob Monkhouse, I believe):
    I want to die like my father, peacefully in his sleep…[Three beat pause]…Not screaming and terrified, like his passengers.

    Or something that’s more slice of life:
    Conversation from one of the cars in a long funeral procession – Daughter: “Dad, what’s going to happen to us when you die?”
    Son (while busy texting): “We’ll get to ride in the limousine, dummy.”

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