Mother’s Day Events Invite Moms, Kids to Celebrate

Keanne Daniel

Moms share stories on the playground, at after-school activities, in the workplace, and basically wherever parents congregate. We laugh, we empathize, we encourage and we support each other. Now there’s a new forum for motherhood stories: the Listen to Your Mother show May 8, 7:30 p.m., in Kenan Hall at William Peace University in Raleigh.

Selected local writers will read their personal essays during the show, sharing the humor, challenges, reflections and experiences of motherhood in celebration of Mother’s Day. The Raleigh show is the first for the area and is part of a national series that started from an inaugural Mother’s Day event in Wisconsin in 2010.

Two Triangle mothers and writers, KeAnne Hoeg and Marty Long, heard about the show in other cities and applied to bring it to Raleigh. Hoeg and Long will read essays during the event, along with 13 others.

marty-long-family.jpgHoeg, mom of a 3-year-old son pictured above, says she had an “unconventional and long” journey to motherhood. “[I] wanted to provide an opportunity for a variety of voices and experiences on motherhood to be heard,” she says. “The stories we have to tell are very important and help show that motherhood is sweet and hard and messy and funny and not always sunshine and roses.”

Long, pictured at right with her family, believes in the power of sharing stories, and found comfort in other mothers’ stories during the year after her first child was born, five years ago. “Our words are the thing that separate us from the other species,” she explains. “We share our stories and understand each other a little better every time we listen.”

The following excerpts are from a few of the stories that will be read at Listen to Your Mother:lindsay-onofrio.jpg

In my quest to become supermom – I became less than mediocre mom. I was subpar mom.
— Lindsay Onofrio, mother of three and a licensed massage therapist, pictured at left with her family

There are, in every mother’s heart, childhood milestones that are met with both fear and longing. For many, it is weaning from the bottle or the breast. For some, it is that first day school. For me, it was potty-training.
— Jennifer Weickum, mother of two and a school counselor

“You’re grounded. I can’t wait until you have kids of your own… ,” my mom yelled up the stairs. “Yeah, right,” I thought. I was 13 and had a bad attitude. “That wasn’t going to happen,” I mouthed, “Ever.” I hunkered down in my room, and scribbled furious entries into my journal.  For hours, days, years I scribbled furious entries. The journals are up in my attic, in the house liisa-ogburn.jpgwhere I now live and have three children of my own as bad as, or maybe even worse, than I was.
— Liisa Ogburn, mother of three who works at Duke University, pictured at right; she moved to the Triangle from Japan in 2003

When I became a mother nearly 17 years ago, I treasured all of the firsts:  first steps, first words, first tooth. But in the blink of an eye, the baby I so wanted and cherished has grown up into a young man, ready to create his own firsts – first day of college, first love, first career.
— Michele Lynn, mom of a teenager who works as a communications consultant

Tickets to Listen to Your Mother are $15. Some material may not be appropriate for young children; show organizers recommend it for ages 13 and older. For show information and ticket purchase, visit

Note: Location updated April 22.


Enjoy the following kid-friendly ways to celebrate mothers rounded up by Janice Lewine, Carolina Parent Calendar & Directory Editor:

Nature Crafts: Are You My Mama?
May 4 – Create Mother’s Day cards while learning about the different styles of mothering in the animal world. Ages 6-8. Registration required. $8/child. 1-3 p.m. Blue Jay Point County Park, 3200 Pleasant Union Church Rd., Raleigh. 919-870-4330.

Life Cycles with Mom
May 10 – Discover the life cycles of butterflies, frogs and ladybugs, and make a special craft to celebrate the mother in each one. Ages 3-5 with adult. Meet at the Cypress Shelter. Registration required. $4/child. 1-2 p.m. Harris Lake County Park, 2112 County Park Dr., New Hill. 919-387-4342.

Mother’s Day Tea Party
May 11 – Enjoy afternoon tea, scones and Mother’s Day treats. Kids can decorate a tea hat and a keepsake teacup, and enjoy a healthy lunch. Registration required. $25 members, $30 nonmembers. 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Kidz Celebrate, 6801 Falls of Neuse Rd., Raleigh. 919-645-9799.

Mother’s Day Workshop
May 11 – Kids create a gift for a special female in their life. Ages 4-12. Register online. $14/child, $10/sibling. 10 a.m.-noon. KidzArt, 30 N. Main St., Wendell. 919-215-4870.

Moms Rock!
May 11 and 12 – Children learn to make and maneuver the perfect breakfast-in-bed tray. Create slammin’ Mother’s Day presents and have fun making Mom feel like a star on her special day. $5 ages 1 and older. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Marbles Kids Museum, 201 E. Hargett St., Raleigh. 919-834-4040.

Mama Birds
May 12 – Learn about the parenthood of birds and the many species of birds that live at the lake. Discuss the roles that male and female birds play in raising chicks, and investigate the park’s nest boxes. Registration required. Free. 1-3 p.m. Lake Crabtree, 1400 Aviation Pwky., Morrisville. 919-460-3355.

Run Like a Mother 5K
May 12 – Women and girls ages 12 and older journey toward health and wellness during this women-only race, which includes a kids’ 1-mile run for ages 11 and younger. A post-race party with refreshments is at the finish line, along with activities for kids. Register online. $45. 8 a.m. Kerr Family YMCA, 2500 Wakefield Pines Dr., Raleigh.

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