The Story of Mother’s Day

Anna Marie Jarvis (May 1, 1864 – Nov 24, 1948)

Anna Marie Jarvis (May 1, 1864 – Nov 24, 1948)

In 1914, President Woodrow Wilson announced that the second Sunday in May would be the holiday we now call Mother’s Day. Although our mothers have been celebrated in many ancient cultures, they have only been nationally recognized for one hundred years.

The hero of this American story is Anna Marie Jarvis, the Mother of Mother’s Day.

Anna Marie was born in the tiny town of Webster, West Virginia in 1864. She spent her childhood living in Grafton, West Virginia. Her mother was Anna Reeves Jarvis. She always remembered her own mother’s dream of establishing a day to honor all mothers. When Anna Reeves died in 1905, Anna Marie began a mission to create a day in which we could honor the woman who brings us into the world and instructs our footsteps in life.

In 1907 Anna Marie gave a white carnation to each mother in the congregation of her mother’s church at St. Andrew’s Methodist in Grafton, West Virginia. On May 10, 1908, she held a memorial service in honor of her mother at the church. The bell rang seventy-two times for each year of her mother’s life. Anna Marie also wanted children to spend time writing a note of appreciation to their mothers, and during the following years, she began a quest that would change the way we now celebrate the second Sunday of May.  After much public speaking and mailing hundreds of letters to people of power, Anna finally established what we call Mother’s Day.

In the early 1920s, “greeting card” companies began selling Mother’s Day cards. Jarvis detested this because her intention was for children to compose words from their hearts. Florists marketed carnations, which infuriated Anna Marie so much that she was once arrested for protesting at a Mother’s Day carnation sale.

It is ironic to note that although Anna Marie worked almost a decade trying to establish the holiday, she spent the rest of her life trying to end Mother’s Day, and invested her family’s inheritance campaigning against what the holiday had become. Her intention was reform, not revenue. Her New York Times obituary said she became embittered because too many people sent their mothers a printed greeting card. She said,

“A printed card means nothing except that you are too lazy to write to the woman who has done more for you than anyone in the world. And candy! You take a box to Mother—and then eat most of it yourself.  A pretty sentiment.” -Anna Jarvis.

To preserve the spirit of celebrating mothers, the Why Mom Deserves a Diamond® contest was established in 1993 by Diamond Mike Watson in honor of his adoptive mother and the birthmother he had never known. Today the contest is in honor of all moms. Although diamonds and gemstones are the tangible prize of the contest, the original words of love are the greatest prize. Diamond Mike’s company, Gallery of Diamonds jewelers in Newport Beach, California, has archived over 86,000 poems of appreciation from kids of the United States. These poems are freely accessible to all moms whose child has been declared a winner.

More information on Mother’s Day and the Why Mom Deserves a Diamond® contest can be found at

Anna Jarvis: Mother of Modern Mother’s Day. Josh Mapes May 12, 2012.
Story of Anna Jarvis.
Anna Jarvis: Mother of Modern Mother’s Day.  Josh Mapes May 12, 2012.

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Blank business card

We are all made from stars. We are mainly water, carbon, and a few other elements. But we are mysteriously unique from one another. Some of us are more creative, some more logical. Some of us are better at expressing words and concepts, others are better at numbers. Although we contain the same substance, it is unarguable that we are also expressly different.

When I was a child I was often asked what I was going to be when I grew up. Most adults seemed to demand a single answer, such as a doctor or lawyer. Fortunately, I discovered that I could be whoever I desired whenever I desired.

I am a jeweler by trade. It is the diamond business that has been my livelihood since I was twenty-two years old. I realized, however, that all of us can be anything we can imagine.

When I behold a large gem, I am a diamond merchant.
When I strum the guitar, I am a musician.
When I pour aromatic beans, I am a coffee maker.
When I perform a trick, I am a magician.
When I gaze at a star, I am a time traveler.
When I pause to listen, I am a father.
When I admire a sunset, I am the sunset.

So, it is not the ingredients of our makeup that defines us, but the combination of those ingredients that defines our essence. It is awesome that we can be philosophers, scientists, and great teachers. We can be anything we want, whenever we want.

Thought for the day: Ask yourself, “Who am I?” If you could print a single title on your business card, what would it say? How many different business cards would you need? I hope many.

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I love my mom!

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Life is Amazing, so be Amazed


Life is amazing, so be amazed. Instead of acting like you’ve seen it all before, live as though you’re seeing it all for the first time.

You are in fact experiencing this bright new moment for the very first time. So look carefully, lovingly, and with the highest of expectations.

Take an interest in what you’re doing, in where you are, and in every part of life you touch. There is new treasure to be discovered everywhere, so find as much as you can.

Let yourself be curious about whatever crosses your path. Let yourself be fascinated by what you see and what you learn.

There is never any reason to be bored. Embrace a vision of life that is endlessly fascinating and truly amazing.

Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, be amazed. And your life, along with your whole world, will indeed be amazing.

— Ralph Marston

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This is a picture I took on my last trip to Guatemala. This family was appreciative that I wanted to take a picture of them. If you look closely, you can see pure joy on each face. This is all the proof I need to know that happiness does not come from objects that surround us, but rather from the love that is inside us.

Since this was a quick stop on my journey across the country, I do not remember what small village this was taken, or the whereabouts of this beautiful family. I do wish I could share this photo with them, for it is also wonderful memories that become a great source of joy.

What do you feel is the real source of human happiness?

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3. Like an Ambulance…

#whymomdeservesadiamond, why mom deserves a diamond, gallery of diamonds, diamond mike watson, mother's love, for mom, i love you, love poetry, children's poetry, kids poetry, 92660, newport beach, diamonds

This poem is just one reason why mom deserves a diamond.

These excerpts have been pulled from the Why Mom Deserves a Diamond contest archives where hundreds of thousands of gemstone-winning poetry are forever preserved.  The winners are students age 5 to 18.

Visit for more information, or to support our sponsoring jeweler.

Or subscribe to this blog to see more– just click on the FOLLOW button to the right.

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The Apple Experience


Years ago, a jewelry customer thanked me for my services, then excused himself to go to his car to retrieve something.  He was a fruit vendor by trade, and returned with small bag of apples. He reached into the bag, pulled out a large greenish-red Gala, and handed one to my wife and another to myself.

“Do you like apples?” He began with a confident voice. “These are my gift you.  They are the sweetest, crunchiest, most delicious apples you will ever eat in your life.”

My wife and I each took a bite.  While we were still chomping, the man looked into our eyes and said, “I would like to ask each of you, have you ever eaten an apple as wonderful as these homegrown Galas hand-picked from Washington state?”

My wife’s eyes opened wide with excitement.  I mumbled something signifying pleasure. As we each swallowed, there was no doubt we had shared the same experience – we had each partook of the world’s greatest flavor. The colorful fruit had transformed into the nectar of the gods.

“Thank you for helping me,” the man said as he walked out the door.  “Enjoy your apples.”

The amazing thing is, to this day, I cannot recall eating an apple as wonderful as that Gala.   If I had scientifically examined it, would it have been sweeter or crisper than any other apple, or was it wonderful only because I believed it to be so?  Did my ears translate the conviction of the man’s voice into reality?  Did my eyes see the vivid colors of the fruit, which my brain in turn interpreted as a culinary sensation?  Did the sawing penetration of my teeth alert my mind to be prepared for a heavenly experience?  Did my brain send a signal to my taste buds which became acutely aware of taste?

Whether you are a scientist or a philosopher, I wonder what really happened that day. I continue to ponder about it, and wonder how that moment seeps into our lives and interactions with all things.  The brief ordeal affected me profoundly, and I became convinced that we experience what we are persuaded to experience.

We also see what we want to see. We hear what we want to hear. We find what we want to find.

Chew on that for a while.

Copyright © 2014 Diamond Mike Watson

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