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Dec 16 2014

How to Not Spoil Your Interfaith Kids During the Holiday Season

By at 12:00 pm

How I'm Not Spoiling My Interfaith Kids During the Holiday Season

“We get twice the presents!”

Most interfaith kids will utter this classic, and rather obnoxious, boast at some point during childhood. And I have to admit, it makes me wince and grit my teeth a little. As an interfaith child myself, I understand all too well that bragging about Christmas and Hanukkah gifts can be a defense mechanism, designed to dazzle and deflect those who view interfaith families with skepticism and disapprovalRead the rest of this entry →

Dec 15 2014

Hanukkah Isn’t Christmas! 8 Ways to Celebrate the Authentic Way

By at 10:53 am

Hanukkah Isn't Christmas! 8 Ways To Celebrate The Authentic Way

Around this time of year, I start seeing Christmas lights go up on neighbors’ houses; they’re beautiful, and I appreciate their sparkling beauty. I’d be lying, though, if I didn’t say that I also see things that make me see red, which we can file under the general heading of “Ways To Make Hanukkah More Like Christmas.” From pictures of “Hanukkah bushes” to gingerbread hanukkiyot to “Elf on a Shelf” knockoffs (ahem!), it seems like many people want Hanukkah to be more like Christmas.

Not me.

Why are people trying to turn a Jewish holiday about religious freedom…into Christmas? Christmas is a beautiful holiday, but you know something? It is not my holiday, and that’s OK. Moreover, I don’t want Hanukkah to become some weird knockoff Christmas–nor should it.  Read the rest of this entry →

Dec 12 2014

Sponsored: Win a Soy Vay Prize Package for Your Jewish Christmas Eve Dinner

By at 11:08 am

Sponsored: Win a Soy Vay Prize Package for Your #ShalomLomein Christmas Dinner

It’s no secret that Jews have a special Christmas tradition of our own–eating Chinese food, or course! Which is why Soy Vay, a delicious Asian sauce company started by a Jewish boy and a Chinese girl, is offering the ultimate gift package to help you cook your own Chinese cuisine this Christmas Eve. We’re teaming up with our foodie friends, The Nosher, to give away this epic gift package to 10 (that’s right, 10!) lucky winners.

The gift package includes:

-$50 grocery delivery gift card

-$25 Netflix gift card

-Soy Vay products: Veri Veri Teriyaki, Island Teriyaki, and Hoisin Garlic

-Soy Vay recipe cards: Veri Veri Teriyaki Saucy Vegetable Chow Mein, Island Teriyaki Mango Chicken, and Hoisin Garlic Beef and Asparagus Stir-fry

-Decorations for the Christmas Eve parties including paper lanterns, chopsticks, and toys/games (Mahjong and Dreidel) Read the rest of this entry →

Dec 11 2014

Eight Hanukkah Gift Ideas for the Grandchild Who Has Everything

By at 4:03 pm

Eight Hanukkah Gift Ideas for Grandparents to Give The Grandchild Who Has Everything

When our kids were young, we busily searched for gifts to give them for each of the eight nights of Hanukkah. Now that we’re grandparents, we don’t send a gift for each night. These grandkids seem to have EVERYTHING in abundance. So what do grandparents do when they want to give something to their grandchild that’s both memorable and meaningful, and won’t be left out in pieces the next day on the living room floor?

I recently asked a number of adults which gifts they remember fondly from their grandparents and I’ve compiled the responses. Here are eight gift ideas that are memorable and stand the test of time in years, and even decades. Read the rest of this entry →

No More Hanukkah Downer

By at 11:47 am

No More Hanukkah Downer

This is the year I’m changing my attitude about Hanukkah. Why? Because for the past 10 years, which is as long as I’ve been a parent, I’ve been a Hanukkah downer.

“Hanukkah is my least favorite holiday,” I’ve said and written countless times. Considering some of the other Jewish holidays I’ve embraced with passion like Yom Kippur and Sukkot, I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to get on board with Hanukkah. What’s not to like about lighting the menorah with family and friends, playing dreidel, eating latkes and sufganiyot, and giving and receiving presents?

Speaking of presents, the first task I have to accomplish if I’m going to enjoy Hanukkah is to eliminate my need to protect Hanukkah from Christmas. Nobody hired me for that job, and I’m hereby retiring from the self-appointed position of reminding people that Hanukkah is a minor holiday. I’ve put so much energy into making sure my kids know Hanukkah is not Christmas that I’ve lost sight of what Hanukkah is or could be. Read the rest of this entry →

Dec 10 2014

Talking to My Son About Tamir Rice, Racism & Other Things We Still Don’t Get

By at 12:33 pm

toy gun

My 10-year-old son came into the room while I was watching the news yesterday. On screen, they were talking about Tamir Rice, the 12-year-old boy who was shot and killed by police in Cleveland.

“Why would the police kill a kid, Mom?”

I stumbled around for answers I didn’t have.

“Well, I guess he was carrying a BB gun and the police thought it was a real gun.”

“My cousins have BB guns. Are they going to get shot?” Read the rest of this entry →

Dec 9 2014

You’ve Got to Watch This Hanukkah Mash-Up Song & Dance Extravaganza

By at 1:59 pm

hanukkah mash-up song dance extravaganza

What happens when you get together a 10-piece orchestra, over 50 talented dancers, and plop them into the heart of downtown Chicago to celebrate Hanukkah? You get the Hanukkah mash-up song and dance extravaganza, of course.

Elliot Dvorin and the Key Tov Orchestra cover all the bases in this one, from Adam Sandler’s classic “Hanukkah Song” to the Spanish-language hip-shaker, “Ochos Kandelikas,” and of course–much to Mayim Bialik’s delight, we’re sure–The Maccabeats.

Check it out: Read the rest of this entry →

QUIZ: How Many Kids Should You Really Have?

By at 12:12 pm

how many kids should you have quiz

So you’re deciding between one, two, or three little wonders. This is a tough decision, with many variables. Thankfully, you have me to help guide you, using a handy dandy quiz. Answer honestly.

1. Which comment makes you the most irritated?

a. Aw, is she lonely?

b. Having two kids is easy! They entertain each other.

c. Wow! Were they all planned?

2. What is your greatest strength?

a. Playing make believe for three hours in a row.

b. Dividing everything exactly in half.

c. Thriving in chaos.

3. How do you feel about changing diapers? Read the rest of this entry →

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

Dec 4 2014

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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