It's Mother's Day 2020. This holiday, first celebrated regionally in 1908 before going nationwide six years later, usually means that children spend the day with their moms.
Such closeness, however, has been happening every day for weeks for many families. Moms and dads and children and sometimes extended family members have hunkered down together at home 24/7 as a COVID-19 precaution.
But it is mom's special day, so I hope that all y'all came up with some change of pace this second Sunday in May to celebrate all that mothers do and all the extra they've taken on during the coronavirus outbreak.
Call and see: Every Mother's Day, a lot of folks who live far from their mothers reach out via phone.
This year, Smartphones' Facetime and the perennial Skyping are joined by Zoom, with dispersed siblings holding visual conference calls to collectively express their Mother's Day wishes.
In that spirit of outreach, I want to spread the Mother's Day sharing beyond our species. As a long-time birder, I enjoy watching the hatching each year of new avian families.
Sometimes it's via the nests that birds construct in our backyard plants. But for a wider view, I spend a lot of time at the Cornell University Lab of Ornithology website.
The Lab has a collection of live cameras that capture the nesting and feeding activities, at various times throughout the year, of more than a dozen birds and birding sites.
My favorite right now is the new clutch of owlets. The screenshot below shows the growing fuzzy trio of young barred owls jockeying for space.
In a few months, I see them out on their own, but still together like these three:
Whoa, check out Dave's stick pic.twitter.com/fuhT8Glz6g— Cute Animals Videos. (@videos_animals) May 4, 2020
You can watch the baby owls and other birds live or select from some recent best-of tapings, like April's hatching highlights.
More maternal recognition: On this Mother's Day, these feathered moms are working, taking care of their perpetually hungry young.
That's the case, too, for many of their human counterparts who also are tending to babies or, because of their financial situations, can't take a day off even during a public health pandemic.
These moms deserve special recognition. And while we can't provide it in person, we can support programs that support them.
That's why this week's Sunday Shout Out goes to those philanthropic endeavors.
Motherly suggests 7 charities that are helping moms.
Classy lists 5 nonprofits by and for mothers.
MyDomaine looks at 8 nonprofits designed to help single parents.
Charity Navigator, itself a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that tracks other charitable organizations, takes a more expansive approach. It suggests honoring your mom, stepmom, grandmother, aunt, friend who's a surrogate mom or any other the other maternal figures in your life by donating to a nonprofit and cause she cares about in her name.
If, sadly, your mom is no longer with you, the donation can be in her memory.
Charity Navigator has compiled a list of organizations that cover many categories of interest and importance to all the different types of moms. However, it also notes that, "By no means do we think these categories cover all women," and suggests using its search engine to find a reputable charity that's special to your mom.
You can share your Mother's Day inspired philanthropy by leaving a comment here on the ol' blog. You can share your mom's favorite cause and how you are recognizing her today by using the social media hashtag #ihonormymother.
Tax breaks for donations: Finally, since this is a tax blog, I've got to touch on that component.
I know you're not giving to a mom-specific or any charity for tax reasons. But if you can get some tax savings from your charitable donation, I'm sure your wise mother would advise you to take it!
These prior posts have more on the tax rules regarding giving: