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Small Holidays to Celebrate With The Kids This Summer

Written by Leith Tigges

Photography by Illustration by Alessandra Olanow

Most can agree that everything—especially the little things—should be celebrated as much as possible. When you’re not commemorating all of the most popular holidays like Halloween, Easter, Fourth of July, and Thanksgiving, there are loads of less-recognized celebrations to look forward to throughout the year. Lucky for us, that means a few more low-key days to celebrate with your family! And, while it can be easy to overlook the little things and focus more on the big picture, treating yourself and your little ones to smaller days of festivities makes the little celebrations that much more important and special! Every day should be fun and celebrated, so round up the kiddos and mark the calendar: it’s time to observe some of our more obscure holidays!

June 2: National Donut Day
Whether you like yours glazed, sugared, or stuffed with vanilla filling, the second day of June is all about celebrating everyone’s favorite: the donut. Stop by your favorite neighborhood vendor, or attempt to make them at home. Either way, both you and the kids are bound to enjoy this special day of sugar!

June 4: Hug Your Cat Day
Cats need love, too! More importantly, someone decided that they needed their own holiday. Take this special time to give your furry friend a few extra loving squeezes, or buy them a new toy to show them how much you care.

June 6: National Yoyo Day
Take a moment to put down the fidget spinner and pick up one of America’s favorite pastimes: the yoyo. You and the kids will have a ball trying to learn new tricks in the backyard. Make it a competition and see who can learn how to “walk the dog” first.

June 7: National Chocolate Ice Cream Day
The kids are likely to jump at the chance to celebrate this holiday, especially if it means family-favorite ice cream is involved. Whether you and the family are whipping up a homemade batch for dessert, or you make the trip to a local ice cream shop, don’t skip out on this sweet celebration!

June 8: Best Friends Day
Spend this special day honoring a special person! Get the kids (and their friends) excited by planning a day full of fun complete with some of their favorite things. Whether it’s a trip to the zoo or a sleepover, this day can be spent showing appreciation for the loved ones in your life!

June 10: Iced Tea Day
Is there anything more refreshing on a hot summer’s day than iced tea? Make a batch of this cooling beverage to enjoy as a family on June 10, or take it one step further and open an Arnold Palmer stand. Your neighbors will love the innovative spin!

June 11: Corn On The Cobb Day
Yes, you read that correctly! There is actually a day dedicated to corn on the cobb. And, why not? The kernels of delicious yellow are a perfect addition to any weekend barbecue or family dinner. Get the kids involved in shucking, and at the very end, allow them to top their ears with a variety of flavors: queso fresco, butter, or tantalizing spices!

June 12: Red Rose Day
On June 12, roses are red, and that’s all that really matters! Head to your local farmer’s market or out into your garden and buy or pick a dozen for a loved one. It’s a win-win!

June 13: Sewing Machine Day
If you’re one for creating things at home—clothes, blankets, or the like—this holiday is one you’ll want to mark on your calendar. Purchase or download a new pattern that you and your littles can do together. You’ll find so much satisfaction in setting aside an entire day to create together.

June 15: Smile Day
The world needs more excuses to smile, and luckily, there’s now a holiday dedicated entirely to the act. Encourage your family to flash those pearly whites to everyone you encounter—friends, teachers, even the grocery store clerk. You’ll be surprised at what a mood changer it can be for all parties involved!

June 17: Eat Your Vegetables Day
Both moms and kids can rejoice for this special day (okay, maybe just moms!) Vegetables might often be a dreaded topic around the dinner table if your little one isn’t into broccoli or peas, but this can be a great opportunity to make things fresh and fun! Try visiting your local farmers market to pick out some seasonal veggies, or gather some up from your own garden.

June 18: International Picnic Day
Everyone loves a good picnic, so this day should be celebrated far and wide! Pack up a basket of goodies with the kids and take a trip to a park where you can all enjoy a warm summer day, while munching outdoors.

June 19: Kissing Day
Whether they come on the cheek or in the form of butterflies, set aside time on this special day to kiss your loved ones. Take it one step further by purchasing chocolate kisses and passing them out to friends and family.

June 21: International Yoga Day
Perhaps not every kid is interested in downward dog, but stretching is something that the whole family can get in on. Do some simple tree poses in the backyard, and see who can balance the longest!

June 22: Chocolate Eclair Day
Not your everyday pastry! Toward the end of June, head to a local patisserie and scoop up a box full of these pillowy delights, or try your hand at making them yourself. Whether you eat them as a family or recreate them on your own, the day is sure to be parfait!

June 23: National Pink Day
Make June 23 a day dedicated solely to the color pink! Wear it, bake pink cupcakes, and even do arts and crafts exclusively in the color.

June 24: Swim A Lap Day
Summertime means public pools are open. Whether you have one in the backyard, or belong to one in your neighborhood, use June 24 are the ideal opportunity to get into the water. Have competitions with yourself and others to see if you can improve your time.

June 25: Catfish Day
And, no, not the Internet scam! This June 25, why not have a catfish cookout in the backyard? Invite your neighbors and friends over to fry up these fishy delights. It might just be the perfect opportunity to introduce a new dish to your littlest kids who may not have tried it yet.

June 26: Forgiveness Day
While your children might not yet be in feuds they need to grant their forgiveness, June 26 offers an ideal opportunity to teach your littles about the importance of absolution. Take a few moments to demonstrate what it truly means to forgive and have them try putting it into practice throughout the day.

June 27: Sunglasses Day
In the summer time, just about every day can feel like Sunglasses Day! Be sure to mark your calendars, though, because June 27 is the day to dig out your most stylish shades and step into the sunshine. Not only are frames a fashion accessory, they’re also essential for protecting your eyes.

June 29: Camera Day and Hug Day
Could you envision a sweeter two-for-one deal? Give your kiddos a polaroid or disposable camera and allow them to capture the world as they see it. You’ll both have a blast looking back at what they’ve decided to snap. Extra points if they capture a hug in action!

June 30: Meteor Day
Head to your local library and check out a variety of reads about the stars and the sky. Learn about meteors, and if the weather and timing permits, try taking a telescope, thermos of hot cocoa, and blanket out at night to see if you might be able to spot one.

July 1: International Joke Day
Now’s the time to break out the joke book and get your loved ones giggling! They say that laughter is the best medicine, so take advantage of this day and leave everyone in stitches.

July 2: Build A Scarecrow Day
Regardless of if you need to keep away pesky intruders, have a ball creating this Wizard Of Oz favorite. Break out an old flannel and pair of overalls, and set up camp in the front yard. It’s a creative activity both you and the kids are sure to enjoy!

July 4: National Country Music Day
Whether you’re a fan of the genre or not, why not give this music-filled holiday a whirl? Listen to various country music artists during your commute, and discuss your favorites. You may even discover a new favorite song!

July 7: Chocolate Day
Who doesn’t love an excuse to celebrate sweet chocolate? Eat milk, dark, or white; bake a cake with cocoa; or even treat the family to chocolate milkshakes.

July 8: Video Games Day
Now, video games can be a bit controversial. But, why not take this day to focus on playing more education varieties as a family? Learn what your kids’ favorites are, and consider this an opportunity to monitor if they’re family-friendly enough to be played on their own.

July 9: National Sugar Cookie Day
Whether they’re handmade or store-bought, have a ball with your mini me’s while decorating these sweet delights. If in the end you have surplus, the neighbors are sure to enjoy a quick visit and a couple of your finished products.

July 17: Hug Your Kids Day
Be sure to give your littlest ones extra squeezes on July 17, as this holiday is one celebrated globally.

July 20: National Lollipop Day
Need we say more? Buy a bag of their favorite flavors at the store, or head to a specialized candy shop and have them pick out their own colorful variation.

July 22: Hammock Day
Pack up the car and get out to your local park! Find the perfect spot between two trees and spend the day hammocking in the sun. Bring along a book or frisbee for those in-between moments of boredom.

July 23: National Hot Dog Day
Don’t just prepare one of America’s favorite foods on July 23! Why not create a hot dog bar in the backyard and invite over your neighbors for a cookout? Provide all the essential toppings–such as ketchup, mustard, and relish—and even a few nonconventional options. Everyone will enjoy chowing down on these backyard finger foods.

July 24: Cousins Day
For those of us who are lucky enough to have a big family complete with cousins, consider July 24th your special day! Get creative and make homemade greeting cards with the kids to send to your family members, or try a video chat to catch up face-to-face.

August 2: National Ice Cream Sandwich Day
Who doesn’t love a cold and tasty ice cream sandwich on a hot and clammy summer’s day? Buy a box of the traditional take from the store or Schwan’s, or take a stab at making your own. Whatever you decide, the entire family is sure to love this delicious day.

August 3: National Watermelon Day
Use August 3 as an opportunity to teach your little ones how to pick the best watermelons. Cut them in half and eat them, or make watermelon balls. Garnish the fresh fruit with mint or Tajin for an added flavor punch.

August 6: Sister’s Day
Take a moment to let your sister know just how much you care. Even if it’s not your biological sister, but your soul sister, write her a card, give her a bit of extra love, or treat her to something special. If you have daughters, make August 6 an entire day dedicated to showing each other how much they are appreciated.

August 9: Book Lovers Day
Book Lovers rejoice! This day is the perfect excuse to whip out a new novel, or make a trip to your local library. You can even try organizing a small gathering of your child’s friends for a mini book club!

August 10: National S’mores Day
Break out the Hershey’s, mallows, and graham crackers, and set up the bonfire, August 10 is all about a campfire favorite. If you don’t have an outdoor bonfire, try making them in the fireplace or microwave inside.

August 11: Son and Daughter Day
Round out the summer by honoring the kiddos in your life! Take some time today to communicate your appreciation to your little ones: hug them extra hard, and make them smile extra big.

August 15: Relaxation Day
A special day that will have everyone on board. Make sure to treat this as an actual holiday, too. Rid yourself of tedious obligations and duties, and take a little extra time to relax as a family.

August 19: National Honey Bee Awareness Day
Honey bess are fascinating little creatures! Use August 19 as an opportunity to learn more about these powerhouse bugs and all that they do for our ecosystem. If you’d like to take it one step further, visit your local farmer’s market to test out different honey flavors, or suit up and see how honey is produced.

August 22: Be An Angel Day
This particular holiday is dedicated to random acts of kindness. Pack up the kiddos and head out into your local community to see where you can lend a helping hand.

August 26: National Dog Day
This list wouldn’t be complete without an entire day dedicated to our four-legged friends! Come August 26, make sure that the whole family gives your furry family addition a little extra love. Bake him or her special treats, take them on an extra long walk, or simply pet them more.

August 31: National Eat Outside Day
What better day for a picnic or barbecue that August 31? Whip up or call in a favorite meal, and head outdoors! Whether it’s in the comfort of your own backyard or at a local park, the entire family is sure to appreciate some quality time in the great outdoors together.

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