Mothers’ Day was created for families to show appreciation for the hard work mothers do 365 days a year, caring for and nurturing their families. A woman’s first real Mothers’ Day is the day her first baby is born and in order to show the love and joy felt by family and friends, a piece of jewelry is often given. Some examples of types of jewelry given at this special time are: a brooch featuring a stork with baby, a pram or rocking horse pendant, a charm bracelet with a first charm of perhaps a baby bootee or baby rattle, with room for more to come. Or it can simply be an exquisite pair of earrings.
Each year following the birth of her first child, the family again celebrates Mothers’ Day, to remind her of her special place in the family and the appreciation felt by her children and partner. These annual Mothers’ Days present further opportunities to show Mother just how much she’s loved, in the form of a special gift: often a new piece of jewelry. Again, this could be a new charm for her charm bracelet, a new pair of earrings in her favourite style, a pendant depicting a mother embracing a child, or a brooch featuring hearts intertwined.
Some jewelry manufacturers design special jewelry for Mothers’ Day gifts. Usually made in gold or sterling silver, they have a “maternal” feature, emphasising her love for her children. Examples seen are bracelets with charms which spell out the word “Mother” or simply “Mom” or “Mum” including charms of baby dummies, baby shoes, prams, rocking horses, children’s bikes, babies, love-hearts, and tiny silver frames for photos. These suppliers come up with new ideas every year. Charm bracelets are great ideas because a new charm can be added each year, depicting a new baby or new event in the family, every year. Special events may, for example, be the entrance into school of a child. I have seen charms with the words, “apple for teacher” written over a red enamel, silver apple, a blackboard with chalk charm and many others. Another special event would be a sporting achievement of a child, which has involved Mother’s time and efforts during the year: I have seen baseball charms, ballerina charms, pony charms and many more. And of course, the most important event of all: the birth of a new baby.
These charm bracelets have been made popular by such well-known names as Thomas Sabo, Pandora, Links of London, Tiffany, and others. They all manufacture charms of their own certain style. There is a charm to be found to suit every occasion in a mother’s life.
Whilst mothers treasure even a scrap of paper with her child’s first drawing, these special Mothers’ Day jewelry gifts, given with love from her family, are the ultimate expressions of love and are therefore the most treasured of all. Worn with pride, they are an item to be admired by family and friends for many a year, treasured as a family keepsake, and to be passed down through the family for generations.
In Australia, and most likely elsewhere in the Western world, a popular topic to be found on mother’s online forums, discussed at playgroups and debated in families, is the piercing of babies’ and children’s ears and the wearing of tiny baby/children’s earrings. It is a polarising subject, with the “fors” and the “againsts” adamant that their opinions are “correct”.
Many cultures over the centuries have pierced babies’ ears but in Western nations, this hasn’t been a popular tradition. However, there is an increased awareness of the subject, as more and more parents have their baby’s ears pierced. The age that babies have their ears pierced is becoming younger and younger. It is now quite common to see a very young baby girl with the glimmer of gold, silver or precious stone on a perfect shell-like ear! More and more commonly, boy babies too, are having a single ear-lobe pierced and sport a diamond which may in fact be a cubic zirconia but looks just as good.
Paediatricans advise that provided babies are over 6 weeks, and the parent scrupulously cleans the ear daily and turns the earring until healing is complete, which can take several weeks, there is no reason why the piercing of a baby’s ear is dangerous. The piercing does cause momentary pain, but minutes later it has been forgotten. The earrings sit on the ears unfelt and unseen, impressing only friends and family!
Piercing older children’s ears may not be as simple. Little girls may well be looking forward to having their ears pierced and to wearing the beautiful little children’s earrings that are available, but when the time comes, they may be frightened and change their minds. Some children back out several times, but each time, regret not being “brave” enough and then agreeing to it again. It can become a trial but usually, the desire for the earrings wins out and the deed is done. Never to be regretted.
One benefit of waiting until a baby is older to have her ears pierced is that an older child can often clean their own ears and turn their own earrings from quite a young age. Often this is given as a reason by mothers, for waiting.
It is important that earrings be lead and nickel free and made of a metal that will ensure a low chance of allergic reaction to which some babies are prone. The word “hypoallergenic” covers earrings made from 925 Silver (sterling silver), stainless steel, titanium and gold, which are generally the safest metals. . Choose earrings without sharp edges and a firmly held backing plate, also rounded for safety.
Tiny studs, often in the shape of teddy bears, animals, hearts, flowers or insects are very popular. For religious reasons, some choose a silver or gold cross.
As little girls grow, they will delight in choosing their own earrings and will often choose a slightly dangly earring, called a “drop earring”. Earrings also make excellent birthday and Christmas gifts for babies and children, and often grandparents buy a children’s jewelry box in which to keep the growing collection. Jewellery boxes can be silverplated trinket boxes, or multi-level and drawered creations featuring Brahms Lullabys and turning ballerinas. All do an excellent job of keeping a little girl’s earrings – and other jewelry – safe.
As they grow up, children will enjoy looking at their baby photos showing the tiny earrings they wore at the time.