My son’s bar mitzvah happened about two weeks ago. Obviously, being the proud Jewish mama that I am, I have to say the kid nailed it.
But I am not here to write The Ultimate Kvell. Rather, I’d…like to share with you the lessons I learned from this blessed event, in hopes they can prevent some headaches when you, too, are fortunate enough to witness your own son or daughter becoming a bar or bat mitzvah. So here goes: 1. Chill Out. On the way to synagogue on the morning of The Big… >> Read More
My second child — out of six — will become a bar mitzvah in a few weeks. And while I still have many more bar and bat mitzvahs ahead of me, as the accoutrements of this event threaten to overtake…its substance, I find that I am already burned out. Let me explain. We live in the New York metropolitan area — which is another way of saying “there are a lot of Jewish people around here, so almost every weekend, my 7th-grader goes to at least one bar or bat mitzvah service and party.”… >> Read More
We officially have found the coolest teen ever: 13-year-old Ava Barash. Barash celebrated her bat mitzvah in March — and she donated her gifts (along with her savings) to a sexual abuse legal fund…for models. In February, Barash had watched a news segment about Humans of Fashion Foundation — a nonprofit that works to create a safe space for workers in the fashion industry and helps address workplace misconduct, like harassment, abuse, and assault. It also provides pro-bono and subsidized legal counseling for victims. Barash is an aspiring fashion designer, so this… >> Read More
Like many Jewish moms, Jody Barrens Moran fretted about her son's bar mitzvah.
But Barrens Moran didn't just worry whether her son would have a good time, or whether the caterer would be any…good. She worried about whether he could have a bar mitzvah at all. Max, 13, is nonverbal and can’t walk without assistance. While he has significant developmental delays, doctors haven’t been able to diagnose why. However, Barrens Moran was determined to do something meaningful for his big day. And she did: According to Jewish Journal, in… >> Read More
Holy crap, a lot of stuff happened this year. Instead of focusing on the bad, we’d like to pick ourselves up and revisit those heartening moments that warmed our souls and reassured us that the…world was full of good. If these don't bring a smile to your face, we don't know what will. 1. This boy with autism led his own bar mitzvah service -- even after doctors said he would never talk. Debby Gans, the boy's mother, wrote: In front of a packed sanctuary, Benji didn’t just shine,… >> Read More