Let’s Start a New Holiday

Josie Leavitt - May 9, 2011

The week of Mother’s Day is always a fun one at the bookstore. There is an increasing panic as Sunday draws near. In the beginning of the week, husbands and fathers come in the store feeling a little self-righteous because they’ve actually planned ahead of time to get their wife a thoughtful gift and their Mom a card in the mail in time to arrive by Mother’s Day.
Then there are the men who come dashing in on Friday and Saturday. They buy whatever card we have left, ask what a “good book for a woman” might be and are thrilled when we offer to wrap. These men are not bad men, they are just busy men who might not always have Mother’s Day on their radar. The kids are usually very helpful in book selection. I must have overheard three conversations where a little kid, usually a girl, spent a long time trying to convince her dad why a princess or fairy book might be just want Mommy would want. “Daddy, she likes to dress up!”
I think most bookstore employees this week worked hard at helping men get the perfect book. Part of our jobs is to make the gift giver look great. We don’t just recommend what’s hot, we ask questions: what does your wife like? does she have any hobbies? any favorite authors? do you two do things together? etc. A thoughtful gift can only work if thought goes into every aspect of the purchase.
I like to envision every Mother’s Day beginning with breakfast in bed. Not a gourmet breakfast, mind you, but the kind a lot of kids make: scrambled eggs with bits of shell, slightly burnt toast and nothing actually hot, except maybe the coffee. Then the gifts come out. Homemade cards, which are adorable from the kids, maybe a gift certificate for a pedicure and a heartfelt card from the husband and then a book that she wants to spend all day reading. And if most families are really thinking about their hard-working moms, they will have let her had the day to just read. Imagine, a whole day to just read guilt-free.
I think we should have Reader’s Day, so all the folks who aren’t mothers or fathers can still have a guilt-free day of reading, just because it’s their day.

7 thoughts on “Let’s Start a New Holiday

  1. Vicki

    Since I’m not a mom (and can’t biologically have children), it makes me cringe when people wish me a happy mother’s day every year. It would be nice if people didn’t make the assumption–kinda like you shouldn’t ask when someone is due if you aren’t sure they’re pregnant.
    So I LOVE the idea of Reader’s Day–a day made just for me!!

  2. J. Sarayda Shapiro

    I also love the idea of a Reader’s Day! And, it wouldn’t just have to be for adults. It could also be used for encouraging children to read. Schools could have special reading-related activities that day, and parents could give their children small gifts–books, of course!


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