January! The first month of the year! The month when it all begins! Like November and December, January is pretty dominated by one huge holiday. Unlike those other two, though, January's big day is in the beginning of the month. New Year's Day is the big moment in January; after that the whole month is just cuddling and trying to stay awake.

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January is National Hot Tea month, which makes sense because in a large part of this nation, it is unbelievably, bitterly, bitingly cold outside during this month. Here in Pittsburgh, the average high temperature in January is 35.1 degrees Fahrenheit. So stay inside and drink copious amounts of tea.  Fortunately, we have plenty of teas here at the store.  Whether you like herbals, greens, blacks, or others, we have the tea for you.



January is also Mail Order Gardening month. If you're wondering whether that's exactly what it sounds like, it is. If you're wondering why you would need a month for that, you clearly don't do much gardening or ordering stuff through the mail. If you're wondering how much gardening someone who lives in Pittsburgh can do during a month where the average temperature is 35 degrees, it's very little. If you're wondering when I'm going to stop starting sentences with "If you're wondering," it's now.

January is National Soup month and Oatmeal month for much the same reasons as it's National Hot Tea month.  It's freezing cold outside and you need something hot and liquid in your tummy. I'm a pretty big fan of soup, myself.  Not so much on the oatmeal, but soup rocks.  There are few things better for the soul and belly than a bowl of homemade chicken soup with fresh egg noodles.  Yum.

Finally, January is Self-Love month. Again, something that decidedly warrants a month-long celebration. And again, exactly what it sounds like. Maybe. I'm also pretty egotistical, though, so it could just mean the kind of self-love where I think I'm awesome. Hard to say.

Elephants, like several other species, love to get wasted.

Important Dates in January:

1 - New Years Day: This holiday speaks for itself. A day of renewal, resolutions, and hangovers. Of course.

3 - Drinking Straw Day: A day to appreciate that wonder of modern engineering, the little plastic tube through which beverages may be consumed.

6 - Twelfth Night: This day (night) signifies the last of the "12 days of Christmas." It apparently is the source of some confusion and controversy. Stay tuned for a Twelfth Night blog entry to relieve the anxiety!

8 - Bubble Bath Day: Like New Year's, self-explanatory. Who doesn't love baths with bubbles?

Dip pen, fountain pen, rollerball, ballpoint. Pencil. Whatever floats your boat.

8-14 - Universal Letter Writing Week: Obviously, a card store is the perfect place to celebrate writing letters. And none of this email nonsense. Long hand and in cursive. Send it to someone you like. It's fun and archaic!

12 - Fruitcake Toss Day: I'm not sure about this one, since every day should be Fruitcake Toss Day. Seriously. Any day on which you receive a fruitcake should be fruitcake toss day. But officially, it's on the 12th.

13 - Public Radio Broadcasting Day AND Rubber Ducky Day: On one hand, NPR. On the other, Ernie and his Rubber Ducky. I'm surrounded by greatness.

Smaug, for instance.

16 - Appreciate A Dragon Day: There are SO MANY great dragons, you guys. So many. For reals.

17 - Judgment Day: Some ambiguity here as well. I'm not really sure if this is supposed to be Judgment Day as in the end of times or Judgment Day as in that guy's pants are way way way too tight and ripped and he needs to check himself before he wrecks himself. Both seem fun.

18 - International Fetish Day: Fetishes are fascinating. Taking a day to celebrate our stranger sides seems very healthy. If you have a healthy fetish, indulge it on IFD. If you don't, look into one! It's all the rage.

The King of the Corns

19 - Popcorn Day: Seriously. A day for popcorn. Popcorn rules. It's definitely the King of Corns. Though Corn on the Cob is also Corn royalty. I don't know. Crown Prince Corn on the Cob? Emperor Popcorn? Now I'm just combining random titles and corns. Anyway, popcorn is great.

24 - Talk Like a Grizzled Prospector Day: January 24th, 1848 was the day that gold was discovered in California which led quickly to the California gold rush. We commemorate those events with TLAGPD.

25 - Fun At Work Day: Sometimes I think that these holidays were literally made up by the people I work with. And/or that they were made up with Kards Unlimited in mind specifically. Seriously, we are the champions of having fun at work. Stop in and see!

28 - National Kazoo Day AND Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day: First and foremost, I find it hilarious that both Bubble Bath Day and Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day occur in the same month. Hilariously bubbly. Secondly, kazoos are hands-down the easiest instrument to play and every kid should have at least one. It's a fundamental music-learning tool. Also they sound funny.

Mmmm, cake.

January birthdays:
1 - J.D. Salinger 
3 - JRR Tolkien (Smaug will be voiced in the upcoming Hobbit movies by the guy who plays Sherlock (bday below) in the current BBC series.)
6 - Sherlock Holmes
7 - Charles Addams (Learn more about a super weird mind here.)
8 - Stephen Hawking 
9 - Severus Snape 
12 - Charles Perrault (Learn more about a founder of fairy tales here.)
18 - A.A. Milne 
19 - Buffy Summers & Edgar Allen Poe & Patricia Highsmith (World's weirdest threesome.)
20 - Hannibal Lecter 
27 - Lewis Carroll 
29 - Aquaman 
30 - Lily Potter 

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