Suddenly, do you know what day May 8th this year was? As you know, it’s Mother’s day. Mother’s Day in Japan is celebrated on the second Sunday of May. Mother’s Day in Japan is a special day to say thank you to your mother, just like in other countries. In Japan, Mother’s Day is now celebrated on the second Sunday in May, following the American model.
Did you celebrate it in your family?
Mothers Day Origins
The origins of Mother’s Day as celebrated in the United States date back to the 19th century. In the years before the Civil War, Ann Reeves Jarvis of West Virginia helped start “Mothers’ Day Work Clubs” to teach local women how to properly care for their children.
These clubs later became a unifying force in a region of the country still divided over the Civil War. In 1868 Jarvis organized “Mothers’ Friendship Day,” at which mothers gathered with former Union and Confederate soldiers to promote reconciliation. The official Mother’s Day holiday was created in 1908 by Anna Jarvis, daughter of Ann Reeves Jarvis, in honor of her late mother. Jarvis pushed hard for a holiday to celebrate all mothers after the death of her own, and after lots of hard work, determination and promotion President Woodrow Wilson finally made it an official holiday for the US in 1914.
Mothers Day Gift Giving
As with any national holiday, Mother’s Day involves the giving of gifts and cards to show Mum how much she’s valued and appreciated. Traditionally Mother’s Day gifts included flowers and a Simnel cake. The flowers were picked by the workers on the way home from work for a day with their mums; they could pick wild flowers from the country lanes. It is still a tradition today to spoil mum with a stunning colorful bouquet of flowers, as well as more modern gifts such as perfume, clothes or jewelry.
These coffee beans are a gift for Mother’s Day at home this year.
Mother’s Day Around the World
While versions of Mother’s Day are celebrated worldwide, traditions vary depending on the country. In Thailand, for example, Mother’s Day is always celebrated in August on the birthday of the current queen, Sirikit.
In Ethiopia, families gather each fall to sing songs and eat a large feast as part of Antrosht, a multi-day celebration honoring motherhood.
In the United States, Mother’s Day continues to be celebrated by presenting mothers and other women with gifts and flowers. Families also celebrate by giving mothers a day off from activities like cooking or other household chores.
In Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, Mother’s Day also is observed on the second Sunday in May. Switzerland introduced it in 1917. Germany’s first Mother’s Day observance took place in 1922 and Austria’s in 1924. In 1933, Mother’s Day was declared an official German holiday. Following World War II, German Mother’s Day was revived again with cards and flowers as gifts as Mother’s Day in the United States… Since 1949, flower shops have opened for business on the second Sunday in May in the newly established Federal Republic, West Germany. Recent statistics reveal that during the days before the holiday, around €120 million were spent on flowers each year.
Disputes about Mother’s Day
Florists, greeting card manufacturers and gift sellers long ago recognized the vast business potential and profited richly from it. Anna Jarvis, who devoted her life to the declaration of Mother’s Day as a holiday, was offended and fought against the rampant commercialization as she aimed “it to be a day of sentiment, not profit.” It was her wish and intention that mothers should be respected and honored every day, and not just with presents on Mother’s Day. Contemporary critics point out that Mother’s Day has indeed become vastly commercialized, especially in recent decades.
If you have a special day, you may think that you should celebrate only that day, but it is important that you do not forget to thank you everyday.
Mother’s Day in Japan
People usually give red or pink carnations to their moms on Mother’s Day. Some people take their mums for Sunday lunch on Mother’s Day.
Most kids give their mums flowers and handmade cards for Mother’s Day. Recently, it seems to have become a custom for a new generation of workers to present their mothers with a gift brought from their first month’s salary at the end of April.
I hope you spent Mother’s Day making you happy this year as well.
≪Please check our workers blog!≫
Please click here to support us, too!
☆ 海外生活ブログ ☆