Mothers Day – an Ancient Celebration:
Did you know that a long time ago ‘Mother Goddess’ was celebrated rather than mothers. Yearly ‘Mother Goddess’ festivals originated in Egypt and were popular in ancient Greece too where they became so wild with fun that they were eventually banned!
A later incarnation in England fell on the 4th Sunday of lent and early Christians used the day to honor the church where they were baptized (their mother Church). Then something changed in 1600’s. A clerical decree in England broadened the celebration to include real mothers; earning the name ‘Mothering Day’. It was a compassionate day for working classes who were allowed to travel back to their place of origin to visit their mothers. It also was a one day reprieve from lent and all the fasting. Families around England could enjoy a family meal with ‘mother’ the guest of honor with cakes and flowers presented to her.
In 1907 Miss Anna Jarvis in the USA started a campaign that made Mother’s Day a national holiday by 1911. Anna’s mother died when she was 41. She felt that children should appreciate and celebrate their mother’s more while they are still alive. She hoped this day would increase respect and love for one’s mother and strengthen family bonds. She fought against it being commercialized. In 1912 the Mother’s Day International Association was incorporated to further promote meaningful observations. Mother’s Day celebrations are now a tradition around the world. Australia along with the USA, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Turkey and Belgium all celebrate on the same day. Remember that the ‘mother’ figure today can be a male, a relative, friend or other caregiver who has taken on the ‘mothering’ role. Please remember to honor them on this day too.
White carnations were Miss Anna Jarvis’s mother’s favorite flower. This flower was chosen to represent the sweetness, purity and endurance of mother’s love. The white carnation is now a tradition worn or placed in the home in honor of one’s mother that has died. A red carnation has since become the symbol of a living mother and is either worn on a lapel or again bunched and placed in one’s home to honor one’s mother.
How to make your mum feel special without spending money:
Here are a few suggestions to help your mum feel really good on her special day, remembering that holidays are more meaningful if we get away from buying gifts.
– Plan to do a secret act of kindness each day for 7 days leading up to Mother’s Day. This can include secretly doing one of mum’s chores for her each day. Imagine how good mum will feel by Sunday!
– Leave a note of appreciation in a different spot each day for the 7 days leading up to Mother’s Day eg inside her slippers, on the bathroom mirror, on her steering wheel, on her bedside lamp, under her pillow etc.
– On Mother’s Day don’t talk about yourself instead make the focus all about your mum. Focus on her by asking questions about her childhood, her favorite memories, her favorite subjects at school, her favorite hobby, favorite food when she was young, her first job, her most memorable holiday, her most embarrassing moment, how she met your father, what life was like when you were born, her funniest and fondest memories with her children etc. By focusing on your mum and her memories you are expressing your love for her.
Teach an old cake tradition:
Simnel cake was originally a ‘Mothering Sunday’ tradition. If you are a father of children still at home, make a special time with them to make this ‘Mothers Day’ cake as a surprise for mum on Mother’s Day. You can have fun and get creative by decorating it differently each year. Simply Google ‘Simple Simnel Cake’ to find an easy recipe.
Happy Mothers Day to all mums xx