Naps Are Important

Happy National Napping Day!

If you didn’t know this was a thing, you are not alone. I only learned about the designation of a day to acknowledge the importance of naps when doing a random internet search after I realized how many photos taken at our local Cheyenne Mountain Zoo depicted its denizens in a snoozing state.

Mountain Tapir Cofan in August 2022. He passed into eternal sleep in October 2022 at the age of 19, a serious blow to Tapir conservation.

Pallas’s Cat

Having come across mentions of various special days on other bloggers’ sites, my curiosity was piqued and I apprehended with equal parts amusement and incredulity that nearly every day of the year has been assigned at least one reason to celebrate, with many having several. Different organizations offer different reasons, including churches, countries, and global organizations, such as the United Nations.

I found out about National Napping Day on “National Day Calendar” online. To give you an idea of its scope, January 1 is considered National Hangover Day (not sure how happy that one is) as well as Bloody Mary Day (presumably to remedy said hangover), both fairly vapid circumstances to celebrate, but the first day of the new year also honors the far more profound and meaningful World Day of Peace.

A random look at other months revealed the following excuses to indulge and play: National Rubber Ducky Day (January 13), National Scrabble Day (April 13), National Beans ‘N’ Franks Day (July 13), National Yorkshire Pudding Day (October 13), and National Cocoa Day (December 13).

Who first conceived of such a calendar isn’t clear, but while some celebratory causes are time-honored and international, such as Valentine’s Day on February 14, St. Patrick’s Day on March 17, or Christmas Day on December 25, others seem US-specific, such as the aforementioned World Peace Day on January 1, when the International Day of Peace has been commemorated by the UN annually on September 21 since 1981. But it’s hard to argue that our perennial longing for this elusive-to-mankind state warrants as many reminders as possible. Feel free to get lost in a very higgledy-piggledy assignment of more or less worthy causes to a certain day and month by following this link to the somewhat cumbersome, ad-laden website of the “National Day Calendar.”

African Lioness

African Lion

In case these circuitous contemplations have put you to sleep, you can thank me, as it is scientifically proven that naps are healthy and beneficial. 😊 In our stressed-out and sleep-deprived societies, where it used to be (or worse, still can be) considered a sign of dedication and badge of honor to die of overwork in middle age, we have finally come to realize that it’s not conducive to the well-being of the candle to burn it at both ends. As a consequence, National Napping Day came into being in March 1999, and World Sleep Day in March 2008. While the latter is linked to the Friday before vernal equinox in the northern hemisphere and will coincide with March 17 this year, the former always happens on the day after we spring an hour forward at the start of daylight saving time, because baseline sleep-deprived individuals have an additional hour of sleep stolen from them.

North American Porcupine

Don’t get me started on the topic of daylight saving. I hate it, to put it mildly, and it royally messes with me for several weeks. There is no clear proof it saves energy, but ample evidence that most people struggle to adjust. Many countries have made attempts to abolish the custom, but I’m not keeping up with who has, and who hasn’t. Opinions are divided if it would be better to “freeze the clock” in “regular” time, or to leave it permanently stuck in daylight saving time. Furthermore, there is no accord between different continents and countries. The US and Canada sprang forward yesterday, on March 12, while countries in the EU won’t do so until the last Sunday in March. Aren’t our different time zones confusing enough without such added artifices?

But I don’t want to rile you up and make you lie asleep at night, pondering the vexing question of an hour of your life taken from you temporarily, only to have it restored several months later just as your internal clock has finally adjusted.

So whether you live in the northern or southern hemisphere, and whether or not your country does the twice yearly time shuffle, I hope you get sufficient hours of restful, restorative sleep, and can indulge in a nap whenever your tired body or mind yearn for one.

In this sense, every day should be Happy Napping Day, as well as World Sleep Day.

Slender-tailed Meerkats, masters at napping 😊

62 thoughts on “Naps Are Important

  1. hahaha, who knew about National Napping Day. But it’s true that it is proven to reenergize and also to save energy. Birds, for example, use it at regular intervals during the daytime. It is a state called torpor to save energy. Hibernators of course take it to the extreme.

    Love your photos of snoozing animals.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post, Tanja. So much to talk about here, like the sad fact that as I get older I find it much, much harder to get a decent night’s sleep! My body compensates for this by forcing me to snooze while watching television, usually half-way through a show that badly needs to be watched to its conclusion, meaning that I never get to find out the identity of the mystery murderer or the secret spy. Very annoying.

    On the subject of celebratory days, over here we have a National Fish and Chips Day. Hooray! Every day should be National Fish and Chips Day. And I discovered only a couple of days ago, via a link provided by fellow blogger Laurie Graves at Notes from the Hinterland (, that in the US you have a National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day. As I explained to Laurie, most Brits find the idea of combining peanut butter and jelly (or, as we would call it, “jam”) totally inexplicable and just a little bit scary 🙂.

    I was sad to learn about the death of Cofan, and read more about him and his kind by following up on the link you provided. The same article also talks about the possible reintroduction of wolves in Colorado’s wild places. Any news about this? Given the protests around a similar reintroduction in Yellowstone NP, I’m guessing it’s highly controversial?

    Liked by 3 people

    • I appreciate your thoughtful reply, Mr. P.

      I’m sorry to hear about your sleeping problems. If there is any human function that should not be saddled with challenges, it’s sleep, don’t you think?! I also find insomnia annoying, if not maddening, especially during those times when I’m wide awake with worry, instead of finding oblivion. It’s no fun falling asleep when one wants to be awake, and not being able to sleep when one wants to.

      Thank you for following the link to Cofan’s story, and the wolf’s, who also passed away. Your assumptions about the controversies surrounding the reintroduction of wolves into the wild are spot on. As you can imagine, it’s a very complex issue and both sides have their convictions and arguments. Colorado’s voters approved reintroduction, but the farmers and ranchers in those areas where the wolves would mostly live are against it. I’m afraid it’s another issue that adds to the division between political sides.

      Laurie has announced that she will, once again, write a post about one of her favorite food combinations, and I’m glad you look forward to your Fish and Chips Day(s). I’m not a great fan of deep fried food and can probably count on a few hands the number of occasions that I really relished that combo, but from the sound of it, you are more than making up for my lackluster stance. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      • Generally speaking I agree with your assessment of deep fried food, but fish ‘n’ chips has emotional connections for me. When I was growing up we didn’t have a lot of money, and one of the few treats I looked forward to was an occasional dinner of fish ‘n’ chips from our local “chippie”. In retrospect the food was mediocre, but to be able to escape from our regular eating routine for a day made me feel like a king. So today, when I enjoy fish ‘n’ chips I’m also remembering happy days of family life more than half a century ago!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Sweet pictures of napping animals. I find cat naps very refreshing and take one almost every afternoon for about 15 minutes or so. Perks me right up. I really liked the link to the National Day Calendar. As Platypus Man indicated, we do indeed have a National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day. It’s coming right up, on April 2, and being a peanut butter and jelly fan, I plan to celebrate. 😉 Stay tuned!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. A new holiday for me and quite definitely an important one! Wonderful photos, I especially loved the African male, such a handsome king. The meerkats gave me a loud chuckle at the end! We had a dachshund while I was growing up and that’s exactly how he napped. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m with you on wanting to keep the time the same all year long. I prefer permanent standard time to permanent daylight time, even as I recognize how arbitrary our numbering of the hours is.

    I see that German says Nickerchen for nap, focusing on the nodding. There must be people who take a Nickerchen while wearing a neckerchief.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I always wonder about all these „ National day of….“.
    As for the „Daylight saving“, well in my opion it is useless and instead of it, it would be better if all the nations would concentrate on some common climate actions!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s good to know that these “national days” exist, as they make it easier to find a common theme for similar photos, such as for my snoozing animals. 😊
      And I wholeheartedly agree that everybody’s number one priority should be our climate.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Cute napping animal photos, Tanja. Power naps (20 min.) are proven to refresh, but going longer may be counterproductive they report (something to do with brain waves). That said, I rarely nap, I think it messes with my ability to fall asleep at night. 🌛
    DST is hard to adjust to, for sure. Much easier to ‘fall back’ in autumn than to get up an hour earlier in spring.
    Daily holidays are for the most part amusing. It reminds me of when I lived in Guatemala, there always was a procession in the streets celebrating some saint’s day. There must be dozens of Catholic saints!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Every day is napping day in our house – but it’s the cats who are usually at it(experts of course). DH has always been good at having a quick nap and waking full of energy but I always used to plough on…not so much now. Seems that napping may be gradually getting to me!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Ich bin froh, hast du meinen Beitrag SEIN und VERGEHEN kommentiert. So habe ich dich wieder gefunden, da ich von deinem Blog keine Meldungen über neue Beiträge mehr erhielt. Ich weiss nicht warum, habe mich jetzt bei dir wieder angemeldet. Ich wünsche dir eine erfreuliche Zeit.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. The photo of the Meerkats is absolutely adorable. I enjoy sleeping animals and birds generally; their vulnerability is part of the charm. I almost never nap, but I’ve never had sleep problems at night. I’m sure part of the reason is my occupation. After 8 or so hours of physical labor, the body takes over, and sleep comes. Of course, I seem to lack a healthy worry gene, too. Even when there are problems that ought to be able to keep me awake at night, they don’t. I will say that my favorite napping time is a nice, rainy afternoon. There’s something about rain and sleep that go together well.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The meerkats show us how napping is done! Alas, neither am I a good napper nor a good sleeper. Even if I’m physically tired, I carry my worries into the night, and they seem to grow the darker the night.
      I’m glad you don’t have the worry gene and are blessed with a good night’s sleep–or a nice nap on a rainy day.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Das sind ja ganz entzückende Bilder. Den Feiertag kannte ich übrigens gar nicht.
    Jedes Bild was für*s Gemüt – ich bin momentan sehr wetterfühlig. DAs Wetter hier ändert sich fast stündlich – eben noch Sonne, dann Schnee, dann Regen, Sturm und dann wieder warm. Grrrrr.
    Aber es gibt Schlimmeres.
    Liebe Grüße

    Liked by 1 person

  12. What a fun collection of napping critters. I have a fondness for napping myself. 🙂 I never noticed a lion’s eyes closed before. If that one is typical it looks like the ‘x’s of dead animals in cartoons but that one is obviously and happily quite alive.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Oh, naps got me through finals in college! I never would’ve been able to write all those papers and cram for exams without naps. After college, naps help me recover physically and mentally too!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I must say, that first picture shocked me a bit as I was scrolling down – thought to myself, whoa, Tanja has been on safari.
    I am a horrible sleeper – brain refuses to shut off, always have been, likely always will be. Mid-day naps have a very bad effect on me (makes me nauseous for some reason). I can see their health benefits nonetheless. At this point, run myself to exhaustion and hope I hit the bed when I land. Absolutely love that last shot – need to use that image whenever someone tells me how retired life is going – post run of course hehehe.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Visiting our local zoo is a bit like going on safari, so you weren’t wrong. 😊
      I also have trouble napping unless I’m sick or I couldn’t sleep at night. The meerkats make look it easy and fun. I hope you are getting all the sleep your body needs to deal with what sounds a VERY busy lifestyle!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Dear Tanya… it seems I’ve been napping and have let this lovely post slip by… better late than never?
    I really don’t care which time we choose. I just want them to stick with ONE of them and not have to go through the horrible adjustment twice a year.
    I enjoyed the napping shots very much and it seems they’ve inspired me to have a snooze…. 😴

    Liked by 1 person

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