Mother’s Day on Sunday will be marked with the traditional cards, candy and flowers, and this year with untraditional virtual celebrations.

As Ohioans remain in the stay-safe mode with limited travel, masks and social distancing due to the coronavirus pandemic, families will be finding ways to honor their mothers from a distance.

Historians credit Boston poet Julia Ward Howe – a suffragist and author of the lyrics to the “Battle Hymn of the Republic” – with originating the idea of a day to honor mom when she asked in 1872 for an annual mother’s day for peace. Though it did not catch on as a yearly event, Anna Jarvis of West Virginia successfully launched a day honoring the memory of her mother and others in 1908. She is credited with being the founder of Mother’s Day in the U.S.

A day for moms finally found an official place on calendars in 1914 when President Woodrow Wilson signed a bill establishing Mother’s Day as a national holiday on the second Sunday in May.

This year, families will be getting creative as they honor mothers, grandmothers and great-grandmothers, sometimes from afar. Online cards are growing in popularity as a way to reach out to moms of any generation. Grandmas living apart from the family might receive a slideshow with photos from the past on their computer or smartphone. Some families might record a video of a grandchild’s musical performance to send to mom. A funny one will make her laugh; a sentimental one will make her cry.

Consider having a virtual brunch using FaceTime, Skype or Zoom with family members eating and chatting as if they were sitting around a table instead of a computer screen.

No matter how you celebrate, mothers will truly cherish those special moments.

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