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Mother’s Day Fun Facts

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(AP Photo/Seth Perlman)

(AP Photo/Seth Perlman)

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Mother’s Day, the second Sunday in May, is just days away. This year, it’s May 11th.

What is there to know about Mother’s Day? Here are a few facts about the annual homage to motherhood.

Mother’s Day became an official national holiday in 1914, but there was an observance that dates back to the 16th century in Europe called “Mothering Sunday.” It took place on the fourth Sunday of Lent, and it was observed by returning to their “mother church.” It later changed to a less religious honoring of mothers.

In the United States, Mother’s Day was “started” by Anna Jarvis who, in 1908, who wanted to honor her late mother. Her mother had organized “Mothers’ Friendship Day” in 1968 as a way to promote reconciliation following the end of the Civil War.

In 1914, it was President Woodrow Wilson who signed the proclamation that made Mother’s Day a national Holiday.

Anna Jarvis did not like how the day became commercialized, and even tried to get people to stop buying flowers, cards & gifts for their mothers. She went so far as to get arrested protesting Mother’s Day, and went on to regret creating the holiday.

Mother’s Day is the name of the holiday, not Mothers’ Day. Jarvis’ intent was to honor each individual mother (your own), so the name is kept singular, not plural.

Here are some interesting Mother’s Day statistics:

$1.9 billion is spent annually on flowers for Mother’s Day. 69% of all gifts given are flowers. 13% of mothers buy themselves flowers for Mother’s Day.

There are 133 million cards exchanged for Mother’s Day each year, according to Hallmark. That makes Mother’s Day the third-largest holiday for card exchanging each year.

The total number of telephone calls increases 37% on Mother’s Day.

What do moms really want for Mother’s Day? The Omnibus Company took a survey, and here are some of the highlights.

Exchanging gifts? 85% of those surveyed believed their mom had exchanged a gift for another gift at least one time, though only 30% of the mothers surveyed admitted to having returned a Mother’s Day gift from their children.

Who are the other 9%? 91% of those surveyed plan to purchase a Mother’s Day gift for their mom.

The average spent on gifts for mom: $68.

Consumers buying gifts for mom to the tune of 56% believe that the gift should be on par with the labor she endured giving birth.

83% believe that texting mom a “Happy Mother’s Day” message is not good enough and completely unacceptable.

What are the most popular gifts purchased for mom? #1 is a gift card or certificate, and #2 is flowers.

What are the most popular gifts WANTED by mom?
#1 on mom’s want list is a day pampered at a spa, and #2 is a nice meal.

61% of moms think their family should spend money on a gift, and on average, they believe $62 is the right amount.

What NOT to get for mom? The gifts that were wanted LEAST by polled moms are candy, chocolate and flowers. 30% of moms just want to spend Mother’s Day with family.

58% of those surveyed plan to get their spouse or girlfriend something this Mother’s Day. The top gifts for spouses from the survey are: #1. A nice meal, #2. Gift card or certificate, and #3. Jewelry.


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