An Extraordinary Day Need Not Break the Bank
Baby Boomers Can Celebrate Mother’s Day, Even If You Don’t Have One!
“Life requires warmth and light, like the sun’s glow radiating across the growing field. Warmth and light can come from the spirit as well, like a sun within you. Let your warmth radiate. Shine your light. Help to grow what surrounds you.”
Michelle Hawk, Editor, Wellness Pursuits
As we all know, this coming Sunday, May 9th, is Mother’s Day. A day to honor mothers for all they do out of selfless love and caring. A day to recognize and appreciate mother’s roles in our lives, whether you live in the same city or apart. Distance has no barriers on this special day, and your window is closing rapidly if you haven’t already made arrangements. So read on and pick up some quick and easy tips to make her day more memorable.
As for us baby boomers and seniors, this day is often extended to generations of mothers, grandmothers, great grandmothers, stepmothers, as well as mother figures. Heck, you could be one or more of these.
I always like to share a brief history about the various things I write about, and this is no exception. However, if you’re interested, you will have to scroll down to the end of this blog to read about what I found in my research. But first take a moment to celebrate this special day.
This past year has been a real challenge on all of us. Many are rethinking how to give extra recognition to our mom’s as we might still be apart. If not in person, most mother’s wish to simply connect with their family in any way possible, with a phone call or even video chat.
You need to take a moment and reflect on the meaning of this poem by Howard Johnson and Theodore Morse from 1915.
“M” is for the million things she gave me,
“O” means only that she’s growing older,
“T” is for the tears she shed to save me,
“H” is for her heart that is of purest gold,
“E” is for her eyes, with love-light shining,
“R” means right and right, she’ll always be,
“Put them all together and they spell MOTHER, a word that means the world to me.“
Here are 11 wonderfully creative (sometimes virtual) and very low budget ideas to reach mom and show her a little extra comfort, love and recognition. Afterall, our moms were always there for us.
- OFFER YARD AND GARDEN SERVICE. If you’re local, give mom a “gift certificate” from you for some period of time, be it for the day, a week or even a year until next Mother’s Day. Help her by doing little chores around the yard or her precious garden.
- SPECIAL DELIVERY OF FLOWERS. Or if you’re local, go to Trader Joe’s or Costco, pick out a beautiful bouquet and deliver them yourself. Better yet, bring a plant for her porch or back garden to be enjoyed all year.
- COOK, COOK AND MORE COOKING. Cook something special for your mom or set up a virtual brunch date. If you’re local make a meal for mom, or if you’re the mother and they are celebrating you, suggest a meal you really enjoy. I believe everyone has a sentimental menu or recipe that’s just waiting to be enjoyed. Goodness, if you don’t cook, then get creative and pick up a meal and set a magnificent table with candles and share. If you both live a distance apart, send a recipe that you both love. Cook the meal, then share it either via Facetime, Zoom or a plain old photo texted between the two of you. No boundaries!
- CLEAN THE HOUSE. 34% of the population wants a clean house, and especially on Mother’s Day. How about rolling up your sleeves and cleaning and perhaps even doing the windows. Too much for you? Then take her on a shopping trip just for her, and let her rule the day.
- PHONE CALLS. This one doesn’t matter if your local or not, all mothers appreciate a call where you can share special memories and a funny story or two. Most important is to always tell her how much you love her.
- WATCH A MOVIE. Saddle up, side-by-side on the sofa for a favorite movie during the day or evening. A good chick flick or romantic comedy with some tasty popcorn or a delicious cocktail. If you’re apart, watch the same movie at the same time. Many streaming services have ways to watch online.
- MAKE A VIDEO. It’s not that difficult to make a short video of you and your family and share it with mom. Or perhaps a music playlist, or a piece of art or special photograph and frame it.
- GET OUTSIDE. Pick up your mother and go for a stroll in the park and make sure to pack a picnic lunch.
- MAKE A HOMEMADE GIFT. You don’t need to buy a gift, our mothers at this age probably don’t need much in the way of gifts, except special one’s from the heart. Here are a couple of very low-cost ideas that are fun and easy.
–make your own herbal vinegar
–make your own facial scrub
–make some jam or jelly
–make rose or lavender sachet or potpourri
–if you must buy something, then go online and splurge with a piece of jewelry
- CARDS. Ah, the old-fashioned way of reaching out. What mother doesn’t appreciate the kind and thoughtful gesture of card giving, where you actually take the time to sit down and write out your thoughts, and sign your name.
- VISIT HER, WHEREVER SHE MIGHT BE. If your mother has passed,
–visit her gravesite
–talk to her as though she were with you
–set out a bouquet of flowers in remembrance
–light a candle
–write a letter
–or simply sit back and recall all the memorable times together—she will feel it and so will you
–and don’t forget to tell your mother you love her
Whatever you do this Mother’s Day, make it special and worth remembering. Can you actually recall past Mother’s Days and what you might have given or did for your mother. Doubt it. Make this one different.
Share this with your children, so they don’t feel obligated to spend money on you. This past year has placed so many burdens on our children the last thing they need to do is part with their cash—let them know it’s the gesture that counts.
To my mother who I lost this past January,
I love you deeply and always will,
HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!
Your BoomerGal, Connie.
A wonderful message from Michelle Hawk as you celebrate Mother’s Day:
“Your light shines no matter which direction you face. You extend a piece of your spirit wherever you go, and you also leave a part of it behind. Let your light shine inward as well as outward, so that what you do offer of yourself might be a beacon to others while also illuminating your own path”
Michelle Hawk, Editor, Wellness Pursuits
A SLICE OF MOTHER’S DAY HISTORY
Mother’s Day is a celebration honoring the mother of the family, as well as motherhood, maternal bonds and the influence of mothers in society. It is observed on various days in many parts of the world, most commonly in the months of March and May.
Festivals began with medieval traditions of the Mother Church, “mothers of earthly homes,” Mary the mother of Jesus, and Mother Nature. Other traditional celebrations existing for thousands of years included the Greek cult to Cybele, the mother god Rhea, the Roman festival of Hilaria or the Christian Laetare Sunday. During the Middle Ages people would return to their home or “mother church” once a year in the middle of Lent. Back then, a child would often leave home at the tender age of 10 to work in the fields or apprenticeships. In the 16th century England, this celebration became a “mothering Sunday.” Children, mainly daughters, who had gone to work as domestic servants would be given the fourth Sunday in Lent to return to their mothers and home parish. The oldest son or daughter would bring a “mothering cake” which would be cut and shared by the entire family.
Historians theorize that it was the return to the “mother” church that led to the tradition of children getting the day off to visit their mother and family. Constance Adelaide Smith was an early advocate of Mothering Sunday, an equivalent celebration with less focus on the biological definition of motherhood.
Fast forward in time where the modern Mother’s Day began in the United States at the initiative of Anna Jarvis in the early 20th century. In 1907 Ms. Jarvis held a memorial for her mother at St. Andrew’s Methodist Church in Grafton, West Virginia where today it holds the International Mother’s Day Shrine.
Anna Jarvis was a peace activist who cared for wounded soldiers on both sides of the American Civil War. She eventually joined with Julia Ward Howe, who had proclaimed Mother’s Day 40 years earlier as an international dedication to peace. Ms. Jarvis wanted to set aside this day and honor all mothers because she believed a mother was “the person who had done more for you than anyone in the world.”
In 1908 the U.S. Congress rejected a proposal to make Mother’s Day an official holiday, however, through the persistence of Ms. Jarvis by 1911 all U.S. states observed the holiday. In 1914 Woodrow Wilson signed a proclamation designating Mother’s Day to be held on the second Sunday in May, as a national holiday to honor mothers.
While the United States holiday was adopted by a few other countries, several including the United Kingdom and Greece celebrate Mothering Sunday, while others selected a date with historical significance such as in Bolivia where Mother’s Day is a fixed date remembering a battle in which women participated to defend their children. Some countries such as Russia and the Ukraine celebrate International Women’s Day, which is gaining in popularity every year.
Rest assured, however the day is celebrated, its intent remains to honor and show the utmost respect for your mother.
A note of thanks to Wikipedia for their outstanding editorial contribution to my research.