Anna M. Jarvis (1864-1948) is credited with originating the first Mother’s Day celebration in the United States. The short version of the story is that Anna was unmarried and very devoted to her mom. She decided to start a letter writing campaign to gain support from influential people who could help to create a day that specifically would honor mothers. Well, it worked! See what a little letter can accomplish?
Throughout the years, I have kept love notes from my eldest daughter, now married and a teacher, crafted with heartfelt sentiments such as “Mom, I love you but could you please stop making that terrible yellow cake for every holiday? Thanks and happy Mother’s Day.” Or, my 13 year old son, who inscribed in one of his previous cards “Mom, please stop trying to kiss me in the carpool line, Love, Jonathan”. Okay, got it. I still have one child left and she seems to “love me the best ” at the tender age of 10. Everything I do is fabulous (except sing) and I still light up her world…at least for a couple of more years.
I realize it’s a passing phase. I can remember discouraging my mother from picking me up in the carpool line because her brakes made a faint squeaking noise. I also was disappointed because she was not as cool as my friend Lisa’s mom who wore really short skirts and could make smoke circles with her skinny cigarettes. There were also other annoying things she did like make me go to Sunday school plus church and insist I drink those horrible shakes with a raw egg in it because I refused to eat anything that was green, yellow or had seeds. (I did make the exception for dill pickles and I traded my mother’s high school ring and my first communion rosary for a pickle and a bag of Fritos on the school bus one fateful afternoon – she cried).
Now that I have three children of my own, I realize that there are some universal terms that all moms must learn in order to be effective parents. Among them are “If Johnny jumped off a cliff, would you do it too?”, “Did you wash your hands? Oh yeah, let me smell them.”, and “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” I can vividly remember thinking to myself “I will never treat my kids this way!”
Many years later, I have turned into my mother! I catch myself saying and doing some of the same things, sans the raw egg milkshake. I have some great memories of home and family and these experiences that have shaped my life and who I am as a wife, mother and woman. Although she is still very much alive her legacy will one day live on through her examples of patience, love, and unconditional forgiveness. I’ve now decided that all of these are much more “cool” than making smoke rings with a cigarette or wearing short skirts! And, if I am very lucky, I will someday hear my own children ask their kids “Did you use soap and are you wearing clean underwear?”
How about surprising mom, or the mother of your childen, this year with breakfast in bed?
Breakfast in Bed Etiquette Tips:
- Plan ahead
- Small children can make their own cards with construction paper, scissors, glitter, and glue
- Set a tray with a pretty linen or paper napkin
- Warm the coffee cup and chill the juice glass before serving mom
- Serve mom’s favorite breakfast foods (not yours)
- Add a small vase with a flower from the garden
- Keep the refills of coffee coming until her breakfast is over
- Clean up the dishes
- Plan a “mom” special day after the breakfast
- Make her a bubble bath and then tuck her into bed at the end of the day
For more of Diane’s Mother’s Day Etiquette Tips, visit: Hitched Mag