In this week's double dose parsha, Moses completes telling the Jewish people the laws of the Torah and all the blessings and curses they will receive depending on whether they choose to follow it or abandon it. He reassures them that keeping the mitzvos really isn't impossible. “For the mitzvah which I command you this day, it … Continue reading Parshas Nitzavim-Vayelech: Choices and a Life of Happiness vs. a Life of Meaning
We had a VERY restful Shabbos and by restful, I mean that most of our family spent it sleeping with a nasty flu that set in toward the end of the week last week. We would wake to daven and do kiddush and such, then sleep. At one point, only my husband still had his … Continue reading Fall Flu, Learning to Dress Like a Grownup, and Iggy Endures!
In addition to a ridiculously huge dog, our family also has a cat named Iggy. Other cats have come and gone from our lives, but Iggy has been with me longer than my husband, my kids, or really anyone who isn't a blood relative. Unfortunately, at 15 years old, Iggy has become very sick and … Continue reading The Life and Adventures of Iggy the Cat
If you've been under a rock for a few years, then you might just be unaware that people are increasingly getting rid of their stuff, opting to live in tiny houses, or even RV's or completely nomadic. It's kind of a recent trend in the never-ending quest to simplify our lives. There is even a … Continue reading Minimalism, Hygge, and Chassidic Judaism?
Right now, the US is kind of a mess. Texas is still drying out and cleaning up from massive flooding. A huge wildfire is burning large swaths of forest and homes in Oregon. Over a hundred small earthquakes have hit Idaho, in an area not used to earthquakes. An enormous, category 5 hurricane is headed … Continue reading Not Punishment, but Medicine?
This week's parsha seems to mirror what I see in the world around me this week. Most of the parsha is concerned with a number of blessings and curses that Moses tells the people will happen to them. He commands that half of the tribes will ascend one mountain and half the other when they … Continue reading Parshat Ki Tavo – Justice, but Where is Kindness?
It's been a strange week here in Alaska. The sun has been retreating more and more. A friend's son committed suicide. The Shabbat RV continues to have electrical issues that kept us stranded at home for Shabbos. The weather has not cooperated for a planned hiking trip to climb Flattop Mountain. All this on top … Continue reading The King Is In the Field
The mountains exhale into the chilly morning air long breaths of mist ancient rocky shoulders relaxing summer's rush fading into memory The geese have flown and the swans follow following the sun's steady retreat they seek warmer skies leaving us to slow into fall The summer rush ebbs, a tide receding those of us who … Continue reading The Long Arctic Rest
Whenever a Jew hears of a death, there is a blessing we must say. "Baruch ata Hashem, elokeinu melech haolam dayan ha-emes." It translates as "Blessed is the Lord, our G-d, the King of the world and true Judge." It's a really hard blessing to say, particularly today. A couple we are good friends with … Continue reading Baruch Dayan HaEmes