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Celebrating all our mothers

On Sunday, May 9, 2021, millions of people will celebrate the special women in their lives, particularly the mothers, grandmothers and stepmothers who often tirelessly care for those they love.

This year all the mothers in Orange County deserve to be recognized for their tireless efforts as they navigated through a pandemic, two hurricanes and a winter storm. Moms young and old were traveling unknown roads and showing love and support for each other.

Created by Anna Jarvis in the early 20th century and designated an official United States holiday in 1914, Mother’s Day is a special day in many families. Apart from birthdays, primary female caregivers may not always get the recognition they deserve, nor be entitled to a day to kick back and relax and let others take the helm. Mother’s Day entitles them to something special.

Even though the way people have been living has changed during the COVID-19 pandemic, Mother’s Day may be the first holiday on the calendar when the world can finally regain some sense of normalcy. But caution should still prevail during Mother’s Day celebrations. Thankfully, there are plenty of creative ways to celebrate mothers and mother figures this year.

  • Dine truly “al fresco.” Outdoor dining has become commonplace, and even before it was a safety measure, enjoying a meal on a sun-soaked patio or overlooking a body of water was popular. If you’re worried about limited restaurant space or crowds, plan a picnic at a scenic location, such as a botanical garden or county park. Include Mom’s favorite foods and enjoy the fresh air and delicious foods together.
  • Create a photo slideshow. Digital photos have eclipsed prints in many people’s hearts. But too often digital photos never get seen after they’re initially taken. That can change when you compile a slideshow of favorite photos from childhood and even present-day photos that Mom is sure to appreciate. Use sentimental music or Mom’s favorite songs as the soundtrack, and include some inspirational quotations or personal voiceovers. This is one gift that can be shared in person or over group meeting apps.
  • Get involved together. An especially meaningful way to honor a mother who is always giving her time and love is to become involved in a difference-making organization. Joint volunteerism is a great way to spend more time together working toward a worthy goal.
  • Enjoy her hobbies and interests. Devote a day or more to trying Mom’s interests and hobbies, whether they include hitting the links, knitting, singing in the church choir, or digging in her garden.
  • Send an edible gift. If you can’t be there to celebrate with Mom in person, have a special meal delivered to her door. Then enjoy the same foods with her via Google Meet, Facetime or Zoom. Don’t forget a tasty cocktail so you can toast the special woman in your life.

Mother’s Day celebrations can be unique, heartfelt and customized based on family needs.

While time-outs may be torturous for young children eager to get up and go, alone time may sound like paradise to busy mothers.

It can be helpful for parents to schedule daily timeouts, though breaks a few times per week can do the trick as well.

Timeouts can benefit moms who need a break during or after a long day. Such breaks can be restful and reenergizing.

Any woman can benefit from a time-out, but working mothers juggling careers and home life may be especially in need of scheduled breaks.

Women who want to incorporate more breaks into their daily routines should know that it’s possible to do so, even on the most hectic days.

  • You don’t need much time. A break doesn’t need to be extensive to be effective. Schedule around 30 minutes for the timeout. That’s just enough time to watch a sitcom, read a chapter in a book or enjoy a nice, steamy bath.
  • Choose a kid-free time of day. If possible, select a timeout period when the kids are away from home or you can be guaranteed some alone time. If this is not possible, make an arrangement with your spouse to look after the kids while you get some alone time.
  • Find an enjoyable activity. Select an activity for the timeout that you may not have the opportunity to enjoy when other people or tasks require your attention. Listening to music, taking an exercise class, writing in a journal, engaging in artwork or other crafts, or reading a book make for great timeout activities. A timeout is not the time to catch up on chores.
  • Treat yourself on occasion. Build an extra treat into the time-out, such as a bite of a favorite dessert or purchasing a clothing accessory or a luxurious body butter. This can make the timeout even more enjoyable.

Timeouts can be utilized by women who feel they need opportunities to unwind and put themselves first for a short time.