|fabric facsimile of 1950s jellybean dress|
Today, April 22, is National Earth Day which, along with its original intent in the environmental movement, is special over this way because hubby and I met on the very first Earth Day 1970, (ahem...) 45 years ago. April 22 is also National Girl Scout Leaders Day and National Administrative Professionals Day (source: National Day Calendar). Somewhere along the way I also saw where the month of April is not only National Poetry Month but "Distracted Driving Awareness Month."
But what I'm celebrating today is National Jelly Bean Day. (Check out the link for ideas on how to celebrate!)
Yes, Jelly Bean Day, April 22. Jelly beans can be celebrated anytime, of course, since it's like they bring their own party to town when you eat them, but it is nice they have their own day. For me however they carry special significance--and not just because they are a favorite candy. That fact was proved this past Easter season when I gave into the impulse to eat more than I should. Thankfully the stash is finally gone.
No, it's because I am transported back to the five-year-old-me whenever I eat them--and all because of a dress.
And speaking of interesting, in reading up on jelly beans I discovered that the confectionary actually came into play during the time setting of my WIP--the Civil War era. According to Jelly Belly's Origin of the Jelly Bean: "The exact origins of the jelly bean are lost in time, and only a part of its history is known. Most experts believe the soft center is a descendant of a mid-Eastern confection known as Turkish Delight that dates back to pre-Biblical times. The shell coating is an offspring of a process called panning, first invented in 17th century France to make Jordan Almonds for the Royal Court...Somehow the two processes made their way to America. The earliest known appearance of a jelly bean is a 1861 advertisement for William Schrafft of Boston that promoted the sending of jelly beans to soldiers in the Union Army during the Civil War."
Ah, will I use that tidbit of history in my story? Who knows--it hasn't made its way in yet. But it does pique my interest and I wonder... Is it a tempting idea because it could be integral to the story or because in my childhood I had a jelly-bean dress? Is it part of discovering my story, or because nostalgia drives the idea and I want to make it work?
Was Willa Cather right in saying most of a writer's basic material is acquired before the age of fifteen? Hmmm, something to think about.
Have you found any surprising tidbits lately that you are considering adding to your story? Are there any leftovers from your childhood that have find their way your pages? (Hopefully they don't include any stale jellybeans!) What is your favorite flavor of jellybean?