In a flashback episode Dorothy recalls a birthday where Rose took her to a Suck E. Cheese's and she had to put up with an obnoxious clown named Mr. Ha Ha. After Dorothy was dragged along with the kids who're also celebrating their birthdays, she was set to shove her cake in Mr. Ha Ha's face, before he stated that's not very adult-like and he'd sue if she tried. Dorothy sat back down when one of the kids came up to Mr. Ha Ha, shoved his cake in the clown's face, and then wished Dorothy a happy birthday.
At the end of "Blanche's Little Girl," Blanche and Rebecca reconcile, and it seems as though their relationship will finally begin to heal, a point proven in later episodes.
"Mother's Day" is made of this trope. The premise is simple: the girls are planning to go to a Mother's Day brunch, but first wait for their children to call them. As they do, they have flashbacks to previous Mother's Days:
Dorothy reminisces about visiting Stan's mother, who is extremely mean and belittling to her. But when Stan leaves the room, Mother Zbornak confesses that she secretly likes Dorothy, and thinks that she's perfect for Stan: "You love him, but you're hard on him." When Dorothy then asks about why she's so nasty to her, Mother Zbornak reveals that she doesn't want Stan visiting, proving that she and her daughter-in-law are Not So Different.
Blanche talks about the last Mother's Day she spent with her own mother, who at that point suffered from advanced dementia. After giving her a lace handkerchief, Blanche launches into a lengthy story about a Mother's Day on which, as a seventeen-year-old, she almost married a much older man so that she could become his daughter's (who was a schoolmate of hers) stepmother and force her to not try out for the cheerleading team. Blanche's mother corrects her—that incident didn't take place on Mother's Day, but Christmas Day. Blanche is shocked that her mother remembers an event from the past so clearly, and Mrs. Hollingsworth explains that, even though she has days when she quite literally can't remember who she is, she has never forgotten anything Blanche has done.
Rose tells the story of a Mother's Day she spent in a bus station as she tried to visit St. Olaf, where her children were waiting for her. She meets an elderly woman named Anna who is also waiting for a bus, planning to spend the holiday with her daughter. The two talk, and Anna eventually reveals that her daughter is dead, and that she visits her gravestone every year to mark the occasion. But this year, Anna ran away from her nursing home to make the trip, and she's afraid that she's going to be found out. Sure enough, a police officer arrives to take her back just as the bus pulls in...only for Rose to stand up and declare that Anna is her own mother, and that they have a bus to catch (the bus station attendant even gets in on this moment by silently smiling and nodding to the two as they walk by, promising not to tell). Anna quietly thanks Rose, who simply says "Happy Mother's Day."
Finally, after all of the flashbacks have been shared, the girls prepare to leave. Rose points out that Janet, Blanche's daughter (with whom she's had a very rocky relationship), has not called her, but Blanche insists, as she's done for the whole episode, that that isn't going to happen...only for the phone to ring as they stand up from the table. It's Janet, and Blanche's voice breaks with happiness as she talks to her.
Many episodes have moments where the four women describe each other - and the offspring of each other - as family. They may argue, bitch, snipe, be sarcastic as is humanely possible to be... but they are, truly family.
The Episode where it is revealed that Dorothy does listen to Rose's St. Olaf stories; she listens enough to tell the father of a family friend one of the stories to inspire him to take back his pregnant sixteen year old daughter. The look on Rose's face when she finds out is so heart-warming that you realise just how much the women, despite everything - all the snipes, sarcasm, bitching, arguing - do listen and respect one another.
When Dorothy's sister visited and offered to take Sophia to live with her, first they worked out their perceptions of Sophia's Parental Favoritism, then when they all agreed that Sophia would stay in Miami:
Sophia: You're both good daughters. Most people my age have children trying to get rid of them. My children are fighting over who gets to keep me.
In the finale, when Dorothy is on the way to her wedding, the driver is revealed to be Stan. It seems as though he wants to keep her from going, which is what Dorothy expects, but he tells her that he is genuinely happy for her and wants to escort her there as a final parting gift.