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Dec 8 2014

Free Stuff Alert: Glow-in-the-Dark Hanukkah Onesie

By at 1:55 pm

glow-in-the-dark hanukkah onesie giveaway

What glows in the dark, is made with 100% organic cotton, and is the must-have Hanukkah item for fashionable babies? Obviously, it’s this Glow-in-the-Dark Hanukkah Onesie!

This bad boy will be the hit at any Hanukkah party, especially once the sun goes down. ModernTribe is graciously giving away one of these onesies to a lucky Kveller reader. To enter, fill out the form below, and we’ll choose a winner this Wednesday, December 10th. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

How I Learned to be OK with Losing Control

By at 10:06 am

pregnant woman belly

From the moment I discovered that I was pregnant, I was ready, working to ensure that my baby would be as healthy as he or she could be. Yes to lots of fruits and vegetables. No to nitrates or cured meats or sushi (a particularly difficult one for me). No to Caesar salads, yes to the flu shot (after wonderful advice from my doctor). Yes to telling immediate family. No to telling anyone else… yet. Yes to dreaming up names and possibilities for a future my husband and I could only imagine. Yes to the excitement and even the sense of overwhelming responsibility of the enormous tasks that lay ahead. Each step pondered, considered, and thought out.

From the moment I discovered I was pregnant, it was all about control. Control over what I ate, where I went, and the plan I set for the future.

How different the world looks now, almost six years since my first pregnancy. The initial moments of my pregnancy were all about embracing that control. Our lives now, however, are anything but.  Read the rest of this entry →

Dec 5 2014

Free Stuff Alert: The Chanukitty Sweater

By at 11:45 am

chanukitty sweater giveaway

Well, if you’ve been looking for the perfect Hanukkah sweater for the little girl in your life, you can stop. This is it. The “Chanukitty Sweater.” Featuring both adorable cats and dreidels, it really doesn’t get better than this. Which is why we’re very excited to be giving one away, courtesy of ModernTribe.

(Oh, and before you ask why only little girls get to have all the fun, check out these amazing Hanukkah sweaters for boys, women, and men.)

To enter to win the sweater, fill out the form below. We’ll choose a random winner next Tuesday, December 9th. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I Was Laid Off in My Third Trimester & Now I’m in Limbo

By at 8:59 am

laid off in third semester pregnant

Now that I’m over the shock of having been laid off right around the start of my third trimester of pregnancy, I’m trying to stay positive and focus on my family and health for the next couple of months. It’s been a pretty big adjustment. For the first time in my life, I don’t have a job with official working hours. Rather, I’ve been staying home full-time with my toddler and squeezing in whatever freelance work my schedule allows for. I’m also starting to tackle my seemingly never-ending list of household projects, or at least the ones that don’t require a ton of lifting, bending, and maneuvering.

There are definitely some benefits to having been laid off when I did. I can now spend more time with my son, get more sleep (I was previously waking up at 5:00 a.m. daily), and give my body a break from my formerly grueling two-hour, multi-step commute.

But I guess there’s a downside as well–namely, that I feel like I’m completely in limbo. Read the rest of this entry →

Dec 4 2014

They’re Not Teaching Our Kids the Whole Truth in History Class

By at 3:46 pm

I Hardly Recognize the History My Kids Are Learning in School

When my son came home from school the other day, the first thing he said to me was, “I learned about the Mayflower today!” And an immense feeling of dread overtook me.

This is not the first time this has happened. Last month, he came home from school and said, “I learned about Christopher Columbus today.” And again, my stomach dropped.

Don’t get me wrong; I love how excited my son is about learning. And I definitely didn’t let him in on my worry either time. My problem is not his. My problem is that I spent eight years as a middle school social studies teacher. Read the rest of this entry →

This Jewish Boy was Asked to Write a Letter to Santa in School. His Response is Perfect

By at 2:39 pm

jewish boy pens epic letter to santa

Recently, the woman behind the blog XO, Isabel got in touch with us with the above image and following message:

Proud of my nephew, Sammy. His teacher gave his class a writing assignment to do a “Dear Santa” letter and tell him what they wanted for Christmas. Given that he’s Jewish, he had the choice to either not do the assignment, citing his beliefs, or to have a little fun. I’m glad he chose to have a little fun.

We’re proud of you too, Sammy. And we really hope you get the Infinity Version 2.0 Marvel Superheroes Edition. And that Santa joins in on the fun.

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Free Stuff Alert: Win a Chalkboard Menorah

By at 1:44 pm

chalkboard menorah moderntribe giveway

Less than two weeks to go until Hanukkah, and we’ve got some more fun swag coming your way! ModernTribe, home of the cutest Judaica you’ll find on the web, is graciously giving away one of the most unique menorahs we’ve seen to date–the chalkboard menorah!

Your kids can decorate the menorah any way they like, and erase and recreate for all eight nights of Hanukkah. To enter the giveaway, fill out the form below and we’ll choose a winner next Monday, December 8th. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

After My Brother’s Death, My Kids Saved Me

By at 11:04 am

after my brother's death my kids saved me

The depression creeps up on me every December. I should recognize the signs by now; it’s been almost 12 years since it happened. Yet each year I am startled to discover the source of my sadness, and how fresh the grief feels on my brother’s yahrzeit (the anniversary of a person’s death). A raw ache, a wordless, gut-clenching feeling, envelops me each year, and it’s as if no time has passed.

My brother Avi died suddenly in his sleep at age 26. I still remember the exact moment when I found out. I had a few unusual minutes of quiet as my 2-year-old twins were occupied, and I jumped on the treadmill. My husband took the early morning call and handed me the phone with a stunned look. In a single instant, my world was irrevocably changed. Life would now be divided into the before and after of this awful event. My parents, my other two brothers, and I would forever carry this deep wound, and the well of hurt, regret, and a trail of “what ifs” along with it.

We all busied ourselves with the duties of new mourners: notifying others, arranging a service, and preparing the house for shiva. I felt strongly that my boys should not travel with us to the funeral; I didn’t want to expose them to a sadness and devastation they couldn’t understand. And I didn’t want them to see their mother fall apart. Read the rest of this entry →

Should My Daughter Have to Share Her Birthday?

By at 9:39 am

Should My Daughter Have to Share Her Birthday?

When I was pregnant with my second child last year, I had three wishes for her birth (aside from the whole “healthy baby” thing): I wanted to have a VBAC, I did not want to be in the hospital over Shabbat, and I didn’t want my two kids to have the same birthday.

Even before I knew they were both going to be the same gender, I knew this last wish was risky. After some reproductive difficulties over the previous year, my husband and I were thrilled to find out on the day before Passover that we were expecting our second child. If you’re a wine drinker like me, taking a pregnancy test the day before the first seder is just par for the course–which is why I had done the exact same thing three years earlier. In my personal life cycle, a positive pregnancy test the day before Passover means a baby on Hanukkah. Read the rest of this entry →

Dec 3 2014

We Lost a Member of the Jew Crew

By at 3:52 pm

woman at gravesite

I got a phone call from my high school friend, Mikey, a year ago. We used to be very close, but as time and miles have grown between us, we rarely talk more than once every few years. He said, “Did you hear about J? She’s dying.”

In a high school with 1600 students, J was one of the six members of our “Jew Crew.” We grew up attending the same Reform synagogue, hanging out in the graffiti-decorated youth group lounge, bonding together over our differences from everyone else around us. We were Jewish, living in a small town where Christmas trees adorned every public school classroom. We were known on sight for the religion we practiced, rather than the people we were. Read the rest of this entry →


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