A Double Mother’s Day

Coming from the US I must admit I am a little confused about Mother’s Day here in the UK.  Strictly speaking it is called Mothering Sunday here and this year it takes place this Sunday, 26th March – in the US, however, we celebrate Mother’s Day in May.

The differing dates made me ask several of the other residents here in Vincent House just when they celebrate Mother’s Day back in their home countries.  It seems that we celebrate our mothers on different days all over the world.  Quite a few countries choose May to hold their special day for mothers including Spain, France and Sweden, while in Thailand it is August – and I will be telling my Mom back in New York how much she means to me on the 14th of May this year.  It is fascinating how traditions can be so similar yet so different depending upon where in the World you are from.

I wanted to understand why it is called Mothering Sunday here in the UK.  It seems it was originally religious and was marked on the fourth Sunday of Lent exactly three weeks before Easter Sunday. Centuries ago, people visited their mother once a year in the middle of Lent – apparently, it was said you were going ‘a-mothering’ hence the name Mothering Sunday.

It will be so interesting to watch Londoners mark the occasion this Sunday. I am quite sure that the restaurants all around here in Notting Hill will be full of families honouring their ‘Mums’ and I bet lots will be indulging in the wonderful afternoon teas many places serve these days.  It will make me miss my ‘Mom’ a lot and I realise I must get my Mother’s Day card pronto in order to have it available to send when the holiday is celebrated in May in the US! The challenge comes in finding a card that doesn’t say ‘Mum’ as opposed to the American ‘Mom’.  Now there’s more interesting research to do – ‘Mum’ versus ‘Mom’.  Seems we may speak English in both the UK and US but so many words and their spellings can be very different.  So much to learn in my adopted home town of London!

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