When it comes to honoring mom, some Jews view Mother's Day as an occasion that shouldn't be limited to the second Sunday in May. Since we are commanded to honor our parents every day, the Jewish attitude suggests thatexpressing gratitude to mom should be more than a once-a-year event.
But, I'm sure there isn't a Jewish mother (me included) who does not appreciate the flowers, phone calls, cards - and most importantly, the hugs - that result from this special day. And rightfully so.
Motherhood is a struggle. In fact, the Bible, whether it talks about matriarchs like Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel and Leah, or lesser known figures like Hannah or Yocheved, depicts rearing kids as an all-encompassing struggle. From bearing children, giving birth, to raising and mentoring them, motherhood is a bumpy ride with unpredictable turbulence no matter how smooth you think you have it.
So, when Mother's Day comes around, I embrace the day as a mother, but even more as a daughter. With lunches to pack, beds to make, and kids to carpool, my daily routine doesn't offer an opportunity to tell my mom how much I appreciate everything she did - and still does-for me.
This Mother's Day, I look forward to heading to the kitchen to celebrate my mom. Sure I can easily take her out to dinner, but nothing says "I love you" like homemade goodies, especially when they are a tribute to the comfort food mom made me growing up.
Inspired by the idea of making an heirloom cookbook but daunted by the effort it takes to collect all of mom's signature recipes?
Surprise her by making a special meal featuring some of the food she made when you were little. Think of comfort foods like special soups and salads, casseroles and pasta. Or, present her with a package of baked goods that stand out from all the desserts she made when you were a kid.
The most important part of this thoughtful gesture is to include a note describing the memories you have of the dish and why it stands out.
It's kind of like making an heirloom cookbook, but much easier. And instead of just collecting the recipes, you get to eat the food, too.