I don't really have any special affinity for May Day, but since it is Love Thursday, it makes for an appropriate title! I have loved this day, however, be it May Day or not. I finally got a gift put together for our new neighbors that just had twins. I also put in an address card with our house address (in hopes of pictures of those little cuties in a Christmas card), our phone number and e-mail addresses. I made it in Photoshop, but can't show it to you on-line. . . I might get some weirdos showing up at my house asking for one of my world famous lattes or one of my children! I also got other things done that needed doing . . . so for 2008, I love May Day.
I was curious about the May Day History so I googled (that's an action verb) it and found this helpful website. Apparently, it started way back before the birth of Christ and as with most ancient festivals, has pagan traditions connected to it. The Druids had their thing they did with the day, celebrating it with new fires. The Romans brought it to the British Isles in the form of the Festival of Floralia, celebrating with flowers and trees. By the Middle Ages, almost every town and village had a Maypole and it became a day of dancing and fun mostly for the kids. The Puritans in England discouraged any involvement in the holiday because the merriment indicated sinfulness, but traditions stuck and eventually some trickled to the New Country and we loosely, very loosely, celebrate it today. In many countries, it is celebrated as a Labor Day. In France, they celebrate by giving a stem of muguet (Lily of the Valley) to each other. (Apparently, it's also the only day where you can make a profit selling muguet without having to pay taxes!)
Sometimes, you just need something to celebrate, so I chose to do just that today. My favorite choice of the ancient traditions is the flowers. Thankfully, we didn't need a fire to keep warm here in the NW today since the sun is shining brightly! (Actually, sun doesn't equal warmth here, but whatever. . . ) I gave the Druids the boot and stuck with the Romans. I made these cards and bought these flowers . . .
. . . for my neighbors. I made sure to have enough to leave vases full on my daughters' dressers. They'll be happy to find them.
As for the Caprese Salad . . . one of my favorite things that I love!! I tend to get busy doing things and I forget to eat until my stomach is just making so much noise and I'm so uncomfortable that I can't stand it anymore. Today, that happened about 3 PM! I MUST take better care of myself. My eyes caught the tomatoes on the counter, and my brain remembered the fresh mozzarella cheese in the fridge and I knew exactly what I was having of lunch. Or maybe it was dinner. Or maybe a snack. Oh well, at any rate, you can eat this salad any ole time because it's just that good. If you've never had fresh mozzarella, may I strongly suggest that you do! Here's the way to do it:
Cut the fresh mozzarella into slices and layer on a plate with tomato slices. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, sprinkle with a chiffonade of basil (ooh fancy word!), season with salt and pepper, and enjoy one of the best things you've ever eaten!
Oh and I gave myself some flowers, too!