Over the past four years, I’ve been actively exploring my relationship with Judaism, Jewish culture, and my personal spirituality. What I’ve realized is that while I feel connected to Jewish…traditions, values, and the concept of a higher power, I don’t feel spiritual connection in synagogue. Reading prayers in Hebrew during services just doesn’t do it for me. I enjoy the Jewish High Holidays for the opportunity to connect with “framily” — my close friends who feel like family, whom my husband and I first… >> Read More
Why did I get the child who doesn’t work right?
What did I do to deserve the child who doesn’t eat when she’s supposed to — if she eats at all — who doesn’t sleep when she’s supposed…to sleep, who doesn’t learn what she’s supposed to learn, and often doesn’t do what she’s supposed to do? I really hate to admit it, but in some of my most trying moments of parenthood, the word “unlucky” plays in my mind like a background song, trying to be heard. “I’m unlucky,” I’ll find myself… >> Read More
I can't help but wonder why Hallmark and the retail world at large haven't co-opted the Jewish New Year. True, while there may "only" be some 5 to 7 million Jews in the U.S. (depending on who's…counting), Rosh Hashanah is a particularly important holiday in the Jewish calendar. Many Jews spend Rosh Hashanah at synagogue, immersed in prayer, self-reflection, repentance, kicking off ten straight days of "awe." But it's a family holiday, too, usually celebrated at home with a big family dinner. So why aren't there any light-up shofars or tasteful Happy New… >> Read More
The first time I read it, it didn’t register. September 10: first day of school. My two youngest are in kindergarten and the first year of preschool this year, so we’re all a little anxious about…the beginning of school. I wrote it on my calendar, and that’s when I made the connection. September 10 is the first full day of Rosh Hashanah. I’ve already gotten the day off, I’ve already planned the menu, and we’re having 15 people over for dinner. And… it’s the first day of school. We all… >> Read More
Though nobody enjoys fasting, I happen to be particularly bad at it. I’m the sort of person who needs to eat every couple of hours, even if just a small amount, and I tend to drink lots of water as…a matter of course. I therefore dread Yom Kippur each year, and that worry has only increased exponentially as I’ve added more kids to the family mix. See, back in the day, Yom Kippur was pretty doable. I’d get up that morning, spend a few hours at services, come home, pass out in bed, and… >> Read More