One hundred years ago, Anna Jarvis created the special event we know as Mother’s Day. That’s right—Hallmark Cards did not invent this holiday, but they have certainly helped to keep it alive. In 1914, President Woodrow Wilson declared it a national holiday and by the 1920s, Hallmark and other companies began to produce Mother’s Day cards.
Ironically, Anna Jarvis, didn’t have a husband or children, but she came up with the idea from a remark her mother made about how it would be nice to honor all mothers with a memorial. Flowers, candy and breakfast at a local restaurant after church, however, wasn’t Anna’s idea of a mother’s day tribute. She felt that a white carnation should signify honoring a mother’s love. She didn’t approve of how the holiday became such a commercial cash cow for retailers, and felt that mothers deserved better gifts than store-bought items.
Hmm….I like gift cards, myself.
The last time we took my mom, Lois, out for Mother’s Day we arranged it as a girls-only social event. She had a blast. About ten of us took her to a fancy buffet at a country club and spent a couple hours doing what girls do—chatting, gossiping and laughing. Little did we know that this was the last time we’d celebrate with her as she died a couple weeks later. I’ll always be grateful that her last Mother’s Day was a memorable one. This picture of her is at approximately age 18.
While writing this piece, my daughter called and asked what I wanted to do for my Mother’s Day celebration. I’m thinking that breakfast and a trip to the garden center to look at perennials for my yard would make my day. And maybe a white carnation.
What about you? What plans are you making for your mom on Mother’s Day? If she’s not with you any more, like mine, tell us your fondest memories of her.
Denise Devine has had a passion for books since the second grade when she discovered Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder. She wrote her first book, a mystery, at age thirteen and has been writing ever since. She's been a member of Romance Writers of America (RWA) since 1991 and has won or placed in numerous writing contests. Her latest book is a contemporary inspirational titled “This Time Forever” and is available in both digital and print formats. www.amazon.com/dp/B00JGL83LW