Try This Fun Trivia!

Ready to test your knowledge of all things maternal? This special mothers' day quiz focuses on famous mothers from all walks of life: TV moms, movie star moms, inventor moms and more. But don't make the mistake of assuming that all of the mothers featured in this quiz are necessarily candidates for sainthood: we've thrown in a few not-so-saintly moms, too. Here goes!
Ann Douglas

More Mom's the Word by Ann Douglas 1. Who invented the disposable diaper?

2. What mild-mannered mother of two managed to get on the cover of Time magazine by selling more than three million copies of a book telling women how to please their husbands in and out of the bedroom?

3. This well-known film star played the role of a suburban mother driven to commit murder by a neighbor who refuses to separate her recyclables. Who was the actress and what was the film?

4. When was obstetrical anesthesia first developed?

5. What did Wanda Holloway and Verna Heath have in common?

6. What domestic diva and mother of one visited the set of The Stepford Wives while parts of the movie were being filmed in her hometown?

7. What famous new mom waxed rhapsodical about baby poop in a recent interview with Redbook magazine?

8. What mild-mannered 1960s TV mom went on to become an outspoken anti-nuclear and anti-war activist during the 1970s?

9. What special event had 44 million viewers planted in front of their TV sets on January 19, 1953?

10. What 1990s TV personality and mother of two got her career start as a Christian entertainer?

11. Which three 1970s "TV moms" appeared in a "milk mustache" campaign during the late 1990s?

12. What TV mom was attacked by then Vice-President Dan Quayle for being a poor role model for American women?

13. This 1980s "brat pack" movie star appeared pregnant and nude on the cover of Vanity Fair in 1991. What is her name and what are the names of her three children?

14. What 1940s mom became a household name when she, her husband, and their two sons began playing themselves -- a family with two boys -- on a popular radio comedy and then a follow-up TV show?

15. This 1965 TV show only lasted for a single season, but it's still remembered as being one of the worst television comedies of all time. The premise of the show? The lead actor's mother is reincarnated as a car. What was the name of the show?

16. This actress made cameo appearances in such feature films as The Seven Year Itch and Invasion of the Body Snatchers, but she's still best remembered for playing a ghoulish mom in a 1960s TV show. Who was the actress and what was the name of her character?

17. The reputation of this 1940s Hollywood starlet took a beating after her adopted daughter published a scathing tell-all biography. What was her name and what was the book?

18. This Massachusetts mother made headlines in 2001. What was her name and what was her claim to fame?

19. What famous movie star mom both directed and acted alongside her own son in a 1991 Oscar-nominated movie?

20. What actress and mother said, "TV family sitcoms have always been about fathers who know best and mothers who are so enchanted with everything they do. I wanted to be the first mom to be a mom on TV."

1. The disposable diaper was the brainchild of Marion Donovan, a Westport, Connecticut, mother who was driven to desperation by all the work associated with washing, bleaching and air-drying cloth diapers. In 1951, she obtained a patent for the world's first disposable diaper. While she was initially unable to interest any large consumer goods manufacturers on the product potential of disposable diapers, in the end, she managed to sell rights to her idea for a cool one million dollars. Oh, baby!

2. Marabel Morgan was the bestselling author of The Total Woman, a Christian marriage manual which first hit the bookstore shelves in 1973. In addition to recommending "costumes" such as go-go boots and baby doll pajamas to spice up one's sex life, Morgan claimed to have the recipe for the perfect marriage: a subservient wife and a doting husband. "It is only when a woman surrenders her life to her husband, reveres and worships him, and is willing to serve him, that she becomes really beautiful to him," she wrote. "She becomes a priceless jewel, the glory of femininity, his queen!"

3. The actress was Kathleen Turner and the movie was the 1994 cult classic Serial Mom.

4. Anesthesia for first used for pain relief during childbirth in Europe in 1847. Apparently, the first woman to receive chloroform was so delighted by her pain-free delivery that she named her baby daughter Anesthesia. Unfortunately, there was one unforeseen side effect: she had so little memory of the delivery that she required some convincing before she was prepared to believe that the baby was actually hers.

5. Wanda Holloway and Verna Heath each had 13-year-old daughters competing for positions on the same cheerleading squad in their hometown of Channelview, Texas. Holloway ended up doing time in prison for trying to hire a hitman to murder Heath. She did so in the hope that Heath's daughter, Amber, would be so distraught by her mother's death that she would drop out of the cheerleading competition, clearing the road for Holloway's daughter Shanna Harper to make the squad.

6. According to Jerry Oppenheimer, author of Martha Stewart -- Just Desserts: The Unauthorized Biography, Martha Stewart was on hand for parts of the filming of the classic 1975 horror flick, The Stepford Wives -- a movie in which housekeeping robots take the place of mere flesh-and-blood housewives.

7. Celine Dion is the proud new mom who sang the praises of baby poop to Redbook magazine. "For me, poop says it all. When you want to know the truth, look to the poop?.Once Rene-Charles was playing with a vitamin bottle and he ate a little of the paper label off it?.I swear, the next morning that paper was in his poop. And I thought, 'If I don't watch this kid close enough, one day he's going to send me a fax in his poop!'"

8. While the devoted viewers who turned into The Donna Reed Show (1958-1966) would never have imagined the quintessential suburban mom becoming active in political protests, that's exactly what happened in real life. In the 1970s, she co-chaired the anti-nuclear and anti-war association "Another Mother for Peace." Unlike other TV moms of the same era, Reed wasn't a mother off-screen. None of her three marriages produced any children.

9. That was the date when the TV character Lucy Ricardo (played by the zany but much-loved sitcom queen Lucille Ball) gave birth to Little Ricky on air. And in a now-classic example of life imitating art, Ball managed to give birth to her second child, Desi Jr., that very same night!

10. Kathie Lee Gifford of Regis and Kathie Lee fame got her feet wet on TV by appearing as one of the World Action Singers on Oral Roberts' TV show in 1972 -- a singing gig arranged by none other than prominent Christian singer Anita Bryant. By the late 1990s, Kathie Lee had become one of the most famous celebrity moms in America, thanks to her repeated on-air updates about the day-to-day escapades of her unspeakably cute children Cody and Cassidy.

11. The three milk mustache-sporting moms were Florence Henderson (The Brady Bunch), Shirley Jones (The Partridge Family), and Marion Ross (Happy Days) -- all bonafide moms in their own right. Henderson is a mother of four, Ross a mother of two, and Jones a stepmother of four.

12. The TV show Murphy Brown and its title character, played by Candice Bergen, found themselves under attack by then Vice-President Dan Quayle in 1992. His beef with the show? He felt that the single mother TV character was a poor role model for American women.

13. Demi Moore is the movie star in question, and her three children are Rumer, Scout and Tallulah.

14. Harriet Nelson instantly became one of the most recognizable mothers in America when The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet made its national TV debut in 1952, building on the success of an earlier radio show based on her family's experiences. The TV show's 14 year run (1952 to 1966) earned it a spot in the record books as one of the most successful TV sitcoms of all time.

15. My Mother The Car.

16. Carolyn Jones played Morticia Addams in The Addams Family (1964-66).

17. The actress in question was Joan Crawford and the book was Mommie Dearest, written by her adopted daughter Christina Crawford in 1978. The book became a feature film in 1981, with Faye Dunaway playing the role of everyone's least favorite mommy.

18. Massachusetts Governor Jane Swift earned herself a spot in the history books by becoming the first governor to give birth while in office. She gave birth to twins May 2001.

19. The mom in question was none other than uber director Barbra Streisand and the film in question was The Prince of Tides (1991). Streisand's son, Jason Gould -- the product of her eight-year marriage to actor Elliott Gould -- played the awkward teenage son of Streisand's character.

20. Roseanne Barr, star of the 1980s hit sitcom Roseanne.

Ten milestone moments in the history of motherhood
1946: The first edition of Dr Spock's Baby and Child Care hits the bookstore shelves. The book will go on to sell more than 50 million copies worldwide over the next five decades.

1949: Virginia Apgar, MD, develops the APGAR test -- a test that is used to assess the health of newborns during the first few minutes after birth.

1950: A Life magazine article about natural childbirth lets millions of American mothers know that there's an alternative to being unconscious for the delivery.

1956: Seven mothers band together to form La Leche League -- this at a time when only 20 percent of American mothers are breastfeeding their babies.

1960: The birth control pill hit the market just in time for the sexual revolution.

1969: Pediatric nurse Ann Moore and her mother, Lucy Aukerman, design and patent the Snugli -- the first commercially successful pouch-style baby carrier in America.

1977: Warner-Lambert introduces the world's first home pregnancy test.

1978: The world's first test-tube baby, Louise Brown, is born in Britain.

1997: Bobbi McCaughey of Carlisle, Iowa, gives birth to septuplets on November 19th. Thirteen months later, Nkem Chukwu gives birth to the world's first surviving octuplets in Houston, Texas, in December. The smallest baby, Odera, dies at one week of age.

1998: America's Health Network -- a cable TV channel -- carries what is hailed as "the first Internet birth." The four-hour broadcast culminates with the birth of a 7 1/2 pound baby boy.


recommended for you