Oct 23 2014
A little over three months ago, my father died. It was sudden and devastating, but not totally unexpected. I held his hand, and with my mother, our rabbi, and sister on the phone, we said the shema and told him how much we loved him as he left us. We should all be so lucky.
My dad passed away just before Shabbat, which I think he did on purpose, to be sure that we’ll remember him at least every week. Not that he needed to worry about that, since I’ll miss him every day. He loved our Shabbat dinners around the table and singing a few zmirot before we lit candles. Shabbat became extra joyous after the first granddaughter—my gal Charlotte—was born. My dad added lyrics to one of his favorite Yiddish songs, “Shabbos, Shabbos, Shabbos, Shabbos, Shabbos, yidn zol zayn Shabbos,” to include “Charlotte, Charlotte, Charlotte, Charlotte, Charlotte, yidn zol zayn Charlotte.” Read more →
Oct 23 2014
There are some women who adore pregnancy and can’t seem do it enough, and then there are those who see it merely as a not-so-pleasant means to an end. I fall somewhere in between.
Both of my pregnancies have been relatively easy—not without little hiccups and anxieties, of course, but generally enjoyable.
Now that it’s been over a month since I’ve been pregnant with kid #2, I find myself truly missing some aspects of pregnancy—and really not missing others.
I do miss… Read more →
Oct 22 2014
I knew bat mitzvahs were a bad idea. I told my husband this in 2001, about 20 minutes after we returned from the hospital with our two new daughters and he said, “My parents want to know when the baby namings will be.”
I like to think of the baby naming as a “bris for girls,” a custom created by Reform Jews rather than God and therefore, in my mind, totally optional. So, over babies crying, I hollered as best I could—given the fresh incision across my abdomen—that there’d be no baby namings. Then, as I struggled to attach a newborn to each of my nipples, I added, “And there’ll be no bat mitzvahs either. So tell your parents not even to ask.”
But they did ask, and so did my husband, who typically asks for nothing. Read more →
Oct 22 2014
Mazel tov, Randi! The CEO, media maven, author, and member of Facebook royalty gave birth to her second child, a baby boy, on Friday, October 10th.
The name, you ask? Get excited. It’s super Jewy!
Simcha “Simi” Tworetsky is apparently already living up to his name, which is Hebrew for joy. Randi tells People, “[He's] bringing so much joy to our family. We are in love and so thankful for this new addition.” Simcha joins big brother Asher, who is 3. Read more →
Oct 22 2014
Need a night out on the town, sans kids? Of course you do! Which is why if you live in New York or plan to visit the big apple soon, you’ll definitely want to enter our latest giveaway to win a pair of tickets to see this hilarious show critics call “hysterical, heartfelt, timely and poignant.”
“My Son The Waiter: A Jewish Tragedy” is Brad Zimmerman’s hilarious and inspiring story about the grit and passion required to “make it” as an artist, and the sweet rewards that come from never giving up on your dream, even when it means waiting tables for 29 years. It’s the only “tragedy” that’s been dubbed “90 minutes of non-stop laughter.”
The show is playing at Stage 72 – Triad Theatre in New York City. We have one pair of tickets to give away to a lucky reader to choose a date that works for them (excluding Saturday nights). To enter the giveaway, please fill out the form below and we’ll choose a winner next Wednesday, October 29th. To learn more about the show, check out the website here.
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Oct 22 2014
Helicopter or snow plow? No, we’re not asking you what your favorite kind of heavy machinery is, but what kind of parent you are. Or aren’t.
This was exactly what Kveller contributing editor Jordana Horn went on “Fox & Friends” to talk about this morning in light of her recent article for Today.com called “The ‘No Rescue’ movement: Could this be the cure for helicopter parenting?”
In the segment, Jordana talks about letting her kids suffer the consequences of their mistakes, such as forgetting to bring their cello to school, instead of Mom stepping in to save the day. Check it out: Read more →
Oct 22 2014
At the age of 4, my oldest son was diagnosed with a peanut allergy. He was also determined to be allergic to dairy, chocolate, and eggs, i.e. The Four Kid Food Groups.
The allergies weren’t life-threatening. The biggest problem was that he’d get congested, the fluid would clog up his ears, and, in addition to recurring infections, he ended up suffering a hearing loss and speech delays before we caught on and removed the above four products from his diet. (The amount of time that it took us to notice goes under the heading Parenting Fail. I have many.)
For his entire elementary school career, he was extremely diligent about his diet. Even as a 5-year-old, he knew that he couldn’t partake in the pizza, cake, and ice cream served at most birthday parties. If my husband and I could arrange it, we’d send him with his own treat (my husband, the engineer, had figured out how to bake his own cakes out of more or less flour, sugar…and air). But, if it wasn’t possible for us to pack him a special meal, he just abstained. The practice taught him amazing self-discipline that I can only hope will come in handy now that he’s a typical, risk-taking teen. Read more →
Oct 22 2014
Recently, my family’s been taken with the new sitcom “The Goldbergs.” It’s an adorable show about a boy (Adam Goldberg) growing up in a (I’m assuming Jewish) family in Philadelphia in the 1980s. It’s got an overbearing, loving mother, a father who just wants to be left alone to nap in his recliner after work, and two older siblings who take turns teasing and embarrassing Adam in the ways that only older siblings can. Throw in 80s pop culture (“Star Wars,”“The Goonies,”“Ghostbusters,” mixtapes, and laser light shows) and hilarity ensues.
The series is based on the creator, Adam Goldberg’s, life. As a child, the real Adam Goldberg had a video camera and recorded everything that went on in his household. At the end of every episode, viewers are treated to a snippet of that footage that relates to the story we just watched.
After watching the first season, my husband and I decided that our 10-year-old son might enjoy it too. Some of his favorite movies have been featured in episodes. I had fond memories of watching sitcoms with my parents at his age and hoped this would be a show we could watch together as a family. I didn’t realize it would end up being a favorite show of his, and a means of therapy at the same time. Read more →
Oct 22 2014
My daughter started Hebrew School last week. She’s in kindergarten and will be learning the Jewish fundamentals—holidays, traditions, lifecycle events—all the good stuff. For me this is a huge deal—HUGE!—because I’m a Jewish educator. And now my daughter is old enough to finally be in Hebrew School, in a grade that I used to teach! It’s very surreal.
Just before the first day of school, we got an email from her teacher with that week’s essential question which would comprise the core of the curriculum. The teacher asked us to talk about the question with our children to help prepare them for the conversation in the classroom. The question was: What do I do that makes me Jewish?
It’s a perfect point to start a Jewish education. The idea of identifying what we already do that makes us Jewish is spot-on for introducing 5-year-olds to Jewish concepts and ideas. As an educator, I loved it. I was curious to see where my daughter would define her Judaism—would she talk about Shabbat time, our Friday night ritual? Or maybe how we go to Tot Shabbat regularly? Or even how Mommy runs programs for children at a synagogue, or how her preschool was part of our synagogue? Read more →
Oct 21 2014
“It’s not going to work.”
In a quest to find himself, my husband of many years had left the path of Torah. I am an ultra-Orthodox woman, and when I married my husband, he was also ultra-Orthodox. My dream was to raise my family in the ways of Torah and mitzvot. So when my husband stopped practicing our religious customs, I was at a loss.
“How am I going to continue to raise my children in the ways of Torah while still staying married to my husband whom I love?” I asked a good friend, searching for support in navigating a world of a mixed marriage. Read more →