Well-travelled writer Shani Bishop shares how she celebrates Mother's Day with her mum.
Text: Shani Bishop
The main difference between Mother's Day here and in Denmark is the level of decoration. There are big beautiful displays and suggestions for gifts, cards, and flowers everywhere you go in the UK. But, like all the celebrations now, this one is big. It's not just shops and supermarkets - restaurants and pubs have Mother's Day menus to tempt you to book a table to celebrate. It is normal to take your mother to lunch, so everywhere books up early. When I was a child, I gave my mum daffodils and a homemade card, but now it's taken on a life of its own!
It's been five years since I was home for Mother's Day so I was determined my mum would have a good day. The UK is different from the rest of Europe as we celebrate Mother's Day earlier. It's always on the fourth Sunday during Lent, exactly three weeks before Easter Sunday. Apparently, we share this date with Guernsey, Jersey, Isle of Man, Ireland and Nigeria!
"We have always encouraged our sons to be independent. This was turbocharged when we got to Denmark, and I found out that kids in Denmark learn to do all the chores rather than a few regular ones."
How my boys celebrate
On Mother's Day, my sons arrived in our bedroom with a tray, a white towel over their arms and a printed menu. Listed were all sorts of lovely goodies, so I asked for scrambled eggs. Fifteen minutes later, my eggs arrived with drinks, cinnamon and raisin bagel, homemade cards and chocolate gifts. The thoughtfulness was terrific, but I was impressed mainly by my son's cooking skills. At secondary school, my son is learning to cook and now regularly makes himself eggs for breakfast (he cycles to school and realised the protein kept him full until lunch).
We have always encouraged our sons to be independent. This was turbocharged when we got to Denmark, and I found out that kids in Denmark learn to do all the chores rather than a few regular ones. So after arriving in Denmark, I slowly taught them to do every household task. I was never this independent as a child, so I found this really pleasing.
How I celebrate my mum
We booked a lovely country pub halfway between our homes (pubs in the UK which sell delicious food are called Gastro pubs, some have Michelin stars). The Seven Stars Pub is picture-perfect - think Midsomer Murders. There is a duck pond outside with picnic benches, and inside is a beautiful fireplace and wooden interior. It was fully booked and lively. We had been told the food was good, and it didn't disappoint. We all ordered beef and venison roasts as this is very traditional here and just delicious. My mum got a free mini bottle of blackcurrant gin and tonic as it was Mother's Day. Gin is huge here now, and you can get all sorts of flavours - there are even Gin bars. For three adults and two children (main courses, desserts and drinks) it came to just over a thousand kroner which I think is very reasonable.
After the pub meal, we drove to a small market town and walked around a lake there. It was busy with many families enjoying the warm weather, picnicking and children playing in the playground. However you decide to spend your Mother's Day, make it extra special as all mums deserve to be cherished and spoilt.