Mother's Day Fast Facts

(CNN)Mother's Day is always observed on the second Sunday in May in the United States. It is also celebrated in many other countries.

May 8, 2016 - Mother's Day
Facts:
In the United States, 26.3 was the average age of a mother giving birth for the first time in 2014.
    In its early days, people observed Mother's Day by going to church and writing letters to their mothers. Eventually, sending cards and giving gifts and flowers were added to the tradition.
    About 133 million Mother's Day cards are exchanged annually in the United States, according to the Greeting Card Association.
    Consumers purchase an average of 2.8 Mother's Day cards.
    Approximately 65% of card sales occur five days prior to Mother's Day.
    More people purchase fresh flowers and plants for Mother's Day than for any other holiday except Christmas/Hanukkah.
    In 2016, the National Retail Federation (NRF) estimated that U.S. consumers would spend $21.4 billion celebrating Mother's Day.
    Most consumers will give cards (78.4%) and flowers (66.5%) or take mom out (55.2%) in 2016, but more money will be spent on jewelry ($4.2 billion), followed by outings ($4.1 billion) and flowers ($2.4 billion), according to the NRF.
    According to the Insure.com 2015 Mother's Day Index, the various tasks Moms perform at home would be worth $65,284 (up from $62,985 in 2014) a year in the professional world.
    Anna Jarvis started the tradition of wearing a carnation on Mother's Day. A colored carnation means that a person's mother is living. A white carnation indicates that a person's mother is dead.
    While many countries celebrate Mother's Day on the second Sunday in May, a tradition which began in the U.S., it's celebrated annually on May 10 in Mexico. Similar celebrations of mothers are held on various days of the year in other countries, often following ancient or religious traditions.
    In Britain and some parts of Europe, the fourth Sunday of Lent was often celebrated as Mothering Day, but that has been replaced by Mother's Day, for the most part.
    History:
    1872 -
    Julia Ward Howe, who is a pacifist, suffragette, and writer of the "Battle Hymn of the Republic," first suggests Mother's Day in the United States. She suggests the day as a day mothers could rally for peace and for several years, she holds an annual Mother's Day meeting in Boston.
    1908 - Anna Jarvis begins a campaign for a nationwide observance of Mother's Day in honor of her late mother, a community health advocate. Anna Jarvis was deeply dismayed over the commercialization of Mother's Day. Before she died in 1948, she admitted that she regretted ever starting the holiday.
    May 9, 1914 - President Woodrow Wilson signs a bill recognizing Mother's Day as a national holiday.