Now that the New Year is upon us, it’s time to kick my yiddishe mamma tushie into gear. We are recuperating from the lingering malaise of our family Christmas visit with our Christian in-laws. The…two holidays coinciding made it even worse, stirring up my not-very-latent, seemingly genetic Jewish guilt. Not only did we have our annual Christmas Eve gift-giving and tree, but my 4-year-old was exposed to hours of television, including many Christmas specials. We had to alternatively force and entice her to watch Hanukah programs as well. Somehow… >> Read More
With my daughter’s 6th birthday party, Hanukkah, and Christmas all falling in a brief seven-day window, the holidays felt extra-stressful this year for my little interfaith family.
Of course,…some of the stress is self-imposed. Like most moms, I tend to put way more pressure than necessary on myself in an effort to make the holidays memorable, when in reality, my kids are thrilled to be home in their jammies with their mommy and daddy for a few days with nothing to do but… >> Read More
Salad fix-ins? Check.
Menorah, candles, and dreidels? Check, check, check.
My husband, kids, and I were headed to family dinner at our dear friends’ house. Though she and…her husband aren’t Jewish, my friend is a history teacher who loves learning about and sharing multicultural traditions. Since she’d never lit a menorah before, she asked me to bring ours—and I was more than happy to oblige. For good measure, I also brought some dreidels and—because our kids ate all our gelt the first… >> Read More
The other day my daughter said to me, “Mommy, you’re not the most special person in this family.” It was a pointed remark, out of nowhere.
I raised an eyebrow and said, “Is that so? Then…who is?” Of course, I already knew the answer. “Well, I am. You see, none of the rest of you daven [pray].” Without even a hint of humor she continued, “None of you know Hashem the way I do. I daven every day.” I tried very hard not to laugh because I could see she… >> Read More
A confession: I have a Christmas tree. It’s slightly larger than a “Charlie Brown” Christmas tree, but it’s standing proudly in my family room.
For 17+ years, I have been a mom to two…Jewish kids and we’ve always celebrated Hanukkah. Not Christmas, not Chrismukkah—Hanukkah. There have been dreidels, latkes, hanukkiyot, and various versions of the infamous Adam Sandler song. We’ve hung “Happy Hanukkah” banners and eaten plenty of donuts. I grew up with a Jewish mother and lapsed-Christian father, but to appease my Christian grandparents my mother went… >> Read More