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article imageOp-Ed: Tea for Mom on Mothers' Day from Petaluma People Services Special

By Jonathan Farrell     Apr 26, 2017 in Lifestyle
Petaluma - Whether it is said with a greeting card, a phone call or a dinner gathered in her honor, taking some time to express appreciation for the mom in one's life is important.
In this high tech, stress-driven 21st century society we live in, moms and motherhood are essential for life on this planet. So to have a day set aside just to commemorate mothers is significant.
Yes, it is true that the founder of Mother's Day in America, Anna Jarvis became bitterly disappointed of what she had helped institute back in the early 1900s. As reported by the Huffington Post, commercialism spoiled her vision of what she wanted it to be, a national holiday to honor women in a vital role. No sooner did the U.S. Congress establish Mothers' Day as an official commemoration in 1914, Jarvis began to speak out against it.
Seen here from last year s Mother s Day Tea  seniors and volunteers of the Petaluma Peoples Services...
Seen here from last year's Mother's Day Tea, seniors and volunteers of the Petaluma Peoples Services Center celebrate the occasion by honoring senior moms.
Courtesy of Petaluma People Services Center
Still, regardless of any commercialism from the sale of flowers, cards, candy and phone call charges, Mothers' Day is an official moment on our collective national calendar to recognize the most important of family ties; the bond of a mom. It is one of the most powerful forces in nature and some see it as having some inexplicable link to the divine. The power a mom has to provide and love her family, her community and the world is amazing.
On Saturday May 13, the staff and volunteers at Petaluma Peoples Services Center wanted to recognize it by hosting its fourth annual 'A Special Tea for Mom.' While commemoration festivities will no doubt be held everywhere, what makes this local event unique is that is in honor of senior moms.
Petaluma People Services Center is mindful of all the people in the community in need. And among the homeless, working poor, troubled youth and displaced families are the seniors.
Health and longevity is a blessing to those who have family close by. Yet, as Petaluma People Services Center, executive director Elece Hempel pointed out. Many of the seniors who they reach out to are lonely and must fill their days with meaningful activity on their own. 'A Special Tea for Mom' is a way to reach out. "These women will be treated to a special Mothers’ Day celebration," she said, "with flowers, treats and entertainment at the PPSC Senior Café. It is our community's way to give this honor to women who don’t receive cards, phone calls or Happy Mothers’ Day wishes, and have no one to celebrate with."
The local Rotary Club has teamed up with Petaluma People Services Center to help with the event.
The local Rotary Club has teamed up with Petaluma People Services Center to help with the event.
Courtesy of Petaluma People Services Center
Modeled after a program in Spokane, WA called 'I Remember Mama' that Hempel's mom has done. She saw Mother's Day as another way to reach out to the community.
Hempel knew her idea was on the right track, as established tea houses in the Spokane area like Brambleberry Cottage and Silver Spoon Tea House have an annual Tea for Mothers. "It's our busiest day of the year," said Brambleberry Cottage owner/manager, Dawn Kiki. And it is something that families have done together over the 20 years the cottage has been in business serving tea.
Hempel noted that "My Mom has done this for years and years in Spokane with the Volunteers of America of Eastern Washington. And last year when I told her I was so tired; being on my feet all day that Mothers' Day (in 2016) serving 60 moms, she told me to 'toughen up' – she had just done a tea for 400 mothers - at the 'I Remember Mama' event."
Dedicated to improving the social and economic health of the community Petaluma People Services Center provides programs that strengthen the dignity and self-sufficiency of the individual. Teaming up with the Petaluma Sunrise Rotary Club, as well as many others, like the local Girl Scouts who are working on origami Flowers for the moms, Hempel anticipates a wonderful afternoon of tea, with food and entertainment.
Offering more than just some tea  the annual tea service for Mother s Day at Petaluma People Service...
Offering more than just some tea, the annual tea service for Mother's Day at Petaluma People Services will be a full-service tea and luncheon.
Courtesy of Petaluma People Services Center
"So many of our mom’s in our Senior Services programs," said Hempel, "have outlived their kids and spouses; it is just a special way to honor them." Tickets of $10.00 per person can be bought in advance. Mothers are free. To make a donation in honor of a mother or grandmother, Petaluma Peoples Services Center will send her a Mothers’ Day card acknowledging your love and appreciation for her and that a donation was made in her name. "Host a table for $50 and bring your Mom," said Hempel, "you receive your family or business name prominently displayed on a table and two general tickets to the event."
'A Special Tea for Mom' will be held on May 13 - the second Sunday of the month, at the PPSC Senior Cafe, located on Novak Drive in Petaluma. Tea service starts at 2:00 PM. For more information visit the Tea event page at the Petaluma People's Services Center web site.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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