Saturday, 22 March 2014

Mother's Day, Just ONE Day, Not Nearly Enough Time for Mothers(!?!) -- a History of Mother’s Day or Mothering Sunday

Mother's Day, Just ONE Day, Not Nearly Enough Time for Mothers(

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Many take Mother's Day, if not their Mothers also, for granted. We ALL do, as children growing up. Mother's Day is MORE than just a Sunday on which to send FLOWERS to Mom. Mother's Day is a memorial that serves as just a fleeting moment of the year to show HONOUR and due REVERENCE to the one we love so dear; to the one who brought us into this World and gave us LIFE. It's only ONE day, and NOT anywhere near enough.

Early Mother's Day celebrations dates back to the Spring celebrations to HONOUR Rhea, the Mother of the Gods, in ancient Greek civilization, according to some sources; although it could probably be traced further back than that -- to the ancient Persian Civilization, for example. More recently, Mothering SUNDAY in the United Kingdom, for instance, became a TRADITIONAL day on which people would visit the CHURCH where they were baptized -- although it now also celebrates MOTHERHOOD in modern times.

The modern-day origins of Mother's Day can be attributed to two women – Julia Ward Howe and Anna Maria Jarvis, who were important in establishing the tradition in the United States. Around 1870, Julia Ward Howe called for Mother's Day to be celebrated each year. It continued to be held in Boston for about 10 years under her sponsorship, but died out after that. Other sources say that Juliet Calhoun Blakely initiated Mother’s Day in Albion, Michigan, in the late 1800s. Her sons paid tribute to her each year and urged others to honour their mothers.

In 1907, Anna Maria Jarvis held a private Mother's Day celebration in memory of her mother, Ann Jarvis, in Grafton, West Virginia. In 1908, she played a key role in arranging a church service that attracted 407 children and their mothers. A Mother’s Day International Association was founded in 1912 to promote the holiday in other countries. Mother’s Day has grown increasingly popular since then

“Being a full-time Mother is one of the highest salaried jobs in my field, since the payment is pure love.” -- Mildred B. Vermont

Eight of her twelve children had been baptized in tears of grief. For Ana Maria Jarvis the Civil War was far from civil. It didn't seem fair that a mother should outlive so many children, yet she did. In doing so, Ana left a legacy that was adopted and championed by an unmarried daughter who shared her mother's name.

In 1905, the younger Ana would baptize her mother's grave in her own tears and begin a quest to bring attention to the incredible GIFT of Mothering.

Two years later, Ana Jarvis sought to have Mother's Day recognized on a National level. The second Sunday in May was the second anniversary of the death of Ana's mother so this was a logical choice for Jarvis. Ana lobbied the Politicians to accept the notion of a day set aside to honour ALL Mothers. By 1911, the day was celebrated in almost every State in the Union.

The tradition did not stop in America either. This special Holiday is now recognized in many Countries around the World, although the actual DATE may vary in different Countries. For instance, in the United Kingdom (UK), Mother's Day (Mothering Sunday) is held on the FOURTH Sunday of LENT. It is exactly three weeks before Easter Sunday, and usually falls in the second half of March or the beginning of April.

Traditionally, people in the UK visited the CHURCH where they were baptized, as stated before. Mothering Sunday is now a celebration of MOTHERHOOD. People VISIT and take GIFTS to their MOTHERS and GRANDMOTHERS.

More than a Century has passed since the Mother of inspiration passed away, and yet it is her LEGACY that is reflected in the admiration of multiple generations for the tradition of MOTHERHOOD.

Mother’s Day falls on different days depending on the Countries where it is celebrated.  It is held on the SECOND Sunday of May in  many Countries -- such as Australia, Canada and the United States. It is held exactly three weeks before Easter Sunday in the United Kingdom (UK). Sundays are usually non-school and non-working days in these Countries.

In the UK therefore, Mothering Sunday, or Mother's Day, is held on the fourth Sunday of Lent, as stated. It is exactly three weeks before Easter Sunday, and usually falls in the second half of March or the beginning of April.

Mother’s Day is an annual PUBLIC HOLIDAY in Countries such as Costa Rica (August 15, on the same day as Assumption Day), Georgia (March 3), Samoa (second Monday of May), and Thailand (August 12). Restaurants and Cafes' may be busier than usual as some people take their Mothers out for a treat.

Mothering Sunday is NOT a Bank Holiday in the United Kingdom (UK), as stated. Public transport services run to their usual Sunday timetables. Cafes', Restaurants and Hotels may be fully booked a long time ahead, as many people treat their mother to a special MEAL on Mothering Sunday. Those wishing to eat in a Restaurant on Mother's Day may need to RESERVE a table in WELL advance.

Many people believe that Mother’s Day is now largely COMMERCIALIZED, with Card Companies, Flower Shops, Jewellery Stores, Gift Shops, Restaurants, Hotels, and Department Stores advertising promotions and special DEALS for this event. Anna Jarvis, in her lifetime, unsuccessfully filed a lawsuit to stop the OVER-commercialization of Mother's Day.

There are, however, various WAYS to show appreciation for MOTHERS and MOTHER Figures on Mother’s Day symbolically or otherwise – without contributing towards, or endorsing, the aforesaid over-commercialization of this very special EVENT. They include WHITE Carnations, which Anna Jarvis asked to be the Official Symbol for the day, as well as the International Mother’s Day Shrine. This Shrine is dedicated to the preservation of motherhood. The structure is listed on the National Register of Historic Places in the United States. It is located together with a Museum at Grafton, West Virginia, and aims to preserve, promote and develop the spirit of motherhood.

The choice of a Mother's Day GIFT is a common celebration of that tradition. Special CARE should be exercised when seeking out a GIFT that proclaims a willingness to attempt to pay a DEBT that can NEVER be fully repaid.

Mother's Day, or Mothering Sunday, is now a day to HONOUR Mothers and other Mother Figures, such as Grandmothers, Stepmothers and Mother-in-Laws. Many people make a special effort to visit their Mother. They take CARDS and GIFTS to her and may treat her to Brunch, Lunch or High Tea in a Cafe', Restaurant or Hotel. People who cannot visit their mother usually SEND gifts or cards to her.

An important part of Mothering Sunday is giving CARDS and GIFTS. Common Mother's Day gifts are CAKES, FLOWERS, CHOCOLATES, JEWELRY, and luxurious CLOTHING. Some people do not give a physical gift, but choose to treat their Mother or Grandmother to a special Meal, Beauty Treatment or Fun Outing.

Specially decorated Mother's Day CAKES are available in many Stores. In the days and weeks before Mothering Sunday, many schools, Sunday schools and children's organizations help their pupils to prepare a HANDMADE card or gift for their mother.

Mother’s Day was originally a time when people returned to the Church, in which they were baptized or where they attended services when they were children. This meant that families were reunited as adults returned to the towns and villages where they grew up. Over time, it became customary for young people who were working as servants in large houses, to be given a Holiday on Mothering Sunday. They could use this day to visit their own mothers, and often took a GIFT of food or hand-me-down clothing from their employers to her. This subsequently moved towards the modern Holiday, on which people still visit and take gifts to their mothers.

Traditionally, people observed a FAST during Lent. Lent is the period from Ash Wednesday until Good Friday. During the Lent fast, people did not eat  sweets, rich foods or meat. However, the fast was lifted slightly on Mothering Sunday and many people prepared a Simnel Cake to eat with their family on this day.

A Simnel Cake is a light Fruit Cake covered with a layer of Marzipan and with a layer of Marzipan baked into the middle of the cake. Traditionally, Simnel Cakes are decorated with 11 or 12 balls of Marzipan, representing the 11 Disciples and, sometimes, Jesus Christ. One legend says that the cake was named after Lambert Simnel who worked in the kitchens of Henry VII of England sometime around the year 1500.

The choice of a Mother's Day GIFT is a common celebration of that tradition, as previously mentioned. Special CARE should be exercised when seeking out a GIFT that proclaims a willingness to attempt to pay a DEBT that can NEVER be fully repaid.

A gourmet GIFT such as an Oil and Vinegar Set can pay homage to the grand tradition of Mother's Day in a way that brings a stroke of brilliant ELEGANCE and STYLE to the occasion.

GIFTS for the Kitchen or that will ultimately tempt the palate are perfect for Mother's Day gift giving primarily because moms spend so much time in the kitchen. Gifts that aid in meal preparations or pamper the taste buds are a welcome departure from more familiar gifts.

A Kitchen GIFT may even indicate a willingness to return for a well-anticipated MEAL with Mom. Spending time with our Mothers is important in maintaining closeness throughout the years. A Mother's Day Kitchen GIFT speaks volumes in regards to individual thoughtfulness, creativity and degree of kindness.

It's possible to become so caught up in our own worlds that we forget the moments in childhood when our jelly-stained hands would reach for Mom's and we'd gaze into her eyes wondering why we so wanted to be like her when we grew up.

Should you be able to take the second Sunday in May off to personally express your appreciation for your Mother, be sure to take along a special GIFT that says YOU CARE. Then, consider investing some of your time with your Mom. Grab her hand and look into her eyes, and allow yourself to recapture the wonder of childhood. You're in the midst of greatness.

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