Leap Year Fun Facts

February 29th only comes around every 4 years, but this leap year is a little special, as evidenced below:

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I’ve always found Leap Day fascinating, especially for those who were born on that day.  Here are a few fun facts I would like to share about Leap Years:

  • Every leap year features an extra day added to the end of February, giving February 29 days instead of the usual 28. This bonus day happens because there aren’t actually 365 days in a year, but rather 365.242190 days. To compensate for this extra time, an extra day needs to be added approximately every four years.
  • If you’re born on February 29, you’re known as a “leaper” or a “leapling.” Around 4 million people in the world have been born on February 29.
  • Leap year babies celebrate their original birthday only once every four years.
  • The chances of having a leap birthday are one in 1,461.
  • The Honor Society of Leap Year Day Babies is a club for people born on February 29. More than 10,000 people worldwide are members.
  • February 29 became the official leap day because of the ancient Romans, who added this extra day to the Roman calendar used during the Roman Empire. Roman emperor Julius Caesar also incorporated the leap year into the calendar he created, known as the Julian calendar.
  • In Hong Kong the legal birthday of a leapling is March 1 and in New Zealand it is February 28.
  • In Taiwan, married daughters return home on leap month because it is believed that lunar month can bring bad health to parents.
  • Greeks believe getting married on a leap year will only bring bad luck. However, other cultures like Great Britain and Ireland believe a leap year is the time when women should ask men to get married instead of the usual custom of men asking women.
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  • The frog is the symbol associated with February 29.
  • Leap year is also called known as St. Oswald’s Day, named after the Archbishop of York who died on February 29.
  • Head to Anthony, Texas, or Anthony, New Mexico. Both claim the title of “Leap Year Capital of the World.” To celebrate the leap year, the town in Texas holds a large festival that features square dancing, fun events, and activities on a nearby farm, and it even offers a tour through an Aztec cave.
  • Astrologers believed children born on leap year have unusual talent, unique personalities and even special powers.

So, what are your thoughts on Leap Day, do you celebrate this day in any special way? Were you born on February 29?  I’d love to hear.

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Pie Oh My…

I have always had a sweet tooth. Well, truthfully, everyone in my family does.  I love cake, cookies, cake pops, cupcakes and of course a great slice of pie.  A few years ago I was introduced to Fireman Derek’s Bake Shop, a family owned and operated South Florida based bakery specializing in handcrafted pies, cakes, cheesecakes, cookies and decadent one-of-a-kind desserts. The bake shop was established by retired Miami fireman Derek Kaplan, who created his vision through a love of baking at a very young age.  Fireman Derek’s Bake Shop in Wynwood opened up in July 2014 and instantly became a hit.  By 2016, after years of juggling two careers, Kaplan retired from the fire department to pursue his baking career full time. In March 2019, Kaplan opened the Coconut Grove location located right on Main Highway (here’s the amazing backstory).

Derek

Wynwood location.  All photos courtesy of Fireman Derek’s Bake Shop.

I have yet to visit the original Wynwood  shop, as I live very close to the Coconut Grove store. Needless to say my family has visited numerous times, as they offer a variety of amazing pies, cakes, brownies, cookies, bread pudding, etc.  Here are my Top 5, although you really cannot go wrong with any of them:

  • Stuffed Guava White Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie.  Imagine a soft, chewy white chocolate cookie cheesecake pie stuffed with gobs of guava.  Melts in your mouth!

Guava white chocolate cookies and cheesecake

  • Guava Cheesecake.  Graham cracker crust signature guava cheesecake filling and guava and white chocolate sauce (can you tell I am slightly obsessed with guava).

Guava cheesecake

  • Key Lime Pie. Kaplan’s classic Key Lime made with condensed milk, egg yolks and freshly squeezed juice from nearly two pounds of local key limes.

Key Lime

  • Cookies & Cream Pie. Chocolate cookie crust, layer of chocolate ganache, cookies and cream mousse with crushed cookies and white chocolate drizzle. My daughter’s favorite!

Cookies and Cream

  • Salty Monkey Pie. Chocolate cookie crust, bananas in chocolate ganache, white chocolate and peanut butter mousse, with pretzels and chocolate drizzle. My husband loves this one!

Salty Monkey

As you can see they all look heavenly.  If you cannot decide on just one, you can always sample a few different ones, as they are also sold by the slice. Below is the menu, although I believe they also offer unique creations for holidays and special occasions.

Menu

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Have you stopped by Fireman Derek’s Bake Shop?  If you live in South Florida or are visiting, make sure to check them out.  I would love to know which pies/cakes are your favorites.

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Valentine’s Gifts for All

Valentine’s Day is one of those holidays that tends to sneak up on me. Don’t get me wrong, it’s advertised everywhere since December 26th, impossible not to realize it’s coming up.  But for me it’s right after Christmas AND hubby’s birthday.  So, gift ideas are running scarce for me by the time February comes around.  Every year I like to come up with a Valentine gift guide to help those that are in my same situation.  Here are a few options for all the loved ones in your life:

Vday Gifts

  1. Kate Spade Pop Hearts Oblong Scarf, available at Kate Spade stores or katespade.com, $98. Great gift for any young lady.
  2. I Love You Like Lavender Gift Set, available naplessoap.com, $125. I love the scent of lavender and this is a great gift set which contains a Lavender Vanilla 9 oz. Body Butter, Lavender Vanilla 9 oz. Sea Salt Scrub, Lavender Buds Natural Soap, Lavender Vanilla Moisturizer Stick, Lavender Vanilla Bath Bomb, Lavender Infused Honey, Lavender Floral Elixir, and Primal SWAK and Heart of Hearts.
  3. Double Heart Pendant Necklace by Lily Nily, available at lilynily.com, $23. A perfect gift for the little girl in your life.
  4. Beaded Neck Heart Print Dress by Stella McCartney, available at Nordstrom, $168.  A little pricey for some, but sure makes for a special Valentine dress for any little girl.
  5. Lavender 4 Elements Bundle with Genuine Badger Brush, available at theartofshaving.com, $95. To keep in theme with the lavender scent I love, this makes a very nice gift set for the special man in your life.
  6. Kate Spade Tom & Jerry Key Fob, available at Kate Spade stores or katespade.com, $78. For all the Tom & Jerry lovers in your life, very cute.
  7. Valentine’s Day Collection – 12 Jars, available at Goldbelly.com, $120. This is a great gift for anyone who has a sweet tooth!
  8. Valentine’s Day Pie Punches, available at any Williams Sonoma store or williamssonoma.com, $19.  These are great for the baker in your life.
  9. Valentine’s Day Pajama Pants, available at vineyardvines.com, $60. Very comfy and cozy for a night in.
  10. Color Infusion Heart Huggie Hoop Earrings, available at alexandani.com, $58. I really like these hoops, very nice for the special lady in your life.
  11. Instax Mini 9 Camera, available at instax.com, available at amazon.com, $70.  These also come in sets which include a camera case and packs of film.  Great gift for a teenager.
  12. Stripe Monogram Petite Bag in Red, available at apolisglobal.com, $78.  These bags can also be customized and personalized.  Comes in several sizes as well.

Do you typically buy Valentine’s Day gifts?  If so, I hope you enjoyed these suggestions. What would you like to receive?

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