COVID-19 makes for an unusual Mother's Day; people and businesses find new ways to celebrate

Health officials continue to discourage large gatherings, meaning many families had to adjust how they celebrated Mother's Day.

For some, it was a Zoom visit with Grandma, for others, a takeout meal or simple walk around the neighborhood. Others found creative ways to say thank you from a distance.

Florists at J. Miller flowers in Piedmont arranged bouquets while wearing masks and other safety equipment. They worked all weekend to prepare gifts to brighten spirits on this very unusual Mother’s Day. The store only offers curbside pickup and no-contact deliveries.

"Since people are restricted to seeing their mothers and loved ones there’s a huge disconnect," said co-owner Valerie Lee-Ow. "They want to show their love and gratitude through flowers that share so much joy and happiness.”

Customer Tanya Roscoe picked up carnations for Piedmont Gardens Assisted Living Community. Many residents there can’t hug their kids or grandkids this Mother's Day because visitors are not allowed.

"They’re all missing their families right now and we want to give them as much love as we can," said Roscoe.

Children’s Fairyland in Oakland was also selling bouquets as part of a fundraiser. The flowers were all picked from the gardens at the amusement park.

"It was kind of spontaneous," said Jackie Salas, the landscape supervisor at Fairyland. "We wanted to share part of the grounds since nobody else is able to see any of the pretty flowers blooming. It was a nice way to be able to share some of the joy with the mother’s this weekend.”

Mother’s day brunch was served in to-go boxes at Sunrise Bistro in Walnut Creek. A line of customers waited on the sidewalk for their orders.

"It’s a special day. We came to order some food, got some cupcakes," said customer Roger Flores.

Customers we talked to like Folger Emerson were happy to give mom a break while supporting businesses that have taken a huge hit during the shelter in place order.

"Today being mother’s day just wanted to step out and make it easier on my wife since she’s been a stay at home mom," said Emerson. "It's important to support small businesses and take pressure off the moms that cook.”