Years ago, in 2011, I traveled to Israel. At the time, we thought that we were close to completing our conversion process and it was important to me to see Israel before that happened. I wanted to see the land of my prayers and see if I felt a connection to it. To me, to … Continue reading What Israel Means to Me as a Non-Jew in the Conversion Process
I came across a great quote today that stuck in my head. My manager at work is one of those people who is naturally intellectually curious about life in general, not just his specialty and he finds my observance fascinating. I enjoy our conversations because his questions challenge me to better define and articulate portions … Continue reading Hashem as a Life Coach
Over a year ago, we sat in our Rabbi's office and he promised, honestly and earnestly, that our conversion journey would finally end in the mikvah the coming April. This April slipped by with little fanfare and drama, peacefully but busily, as we prepared for our move. At this point, there is no more timeline … Continue reading Preparing for Shavuos and the Conversion that Wasn’t
It's a question I get asked often, particularly when non-Orthodox Jewish friends and family learn just how long our conversion has been taking. I've even had Orthodox friends on the more left side of the Orthodox spectrum question our dedication to Orthodox Judaism. My answer usually depends on how much time we have to talk. … Continue reading Why Orthodox Judaism? Why Not Another Type?
No, it's not THAT big news, but it is BIG! A cousin of mine has a son with a genetic illness. As part of working through his treatment, she and her parents recently had to have genetic testing. She knew that her mother is part Ashkenazi, but the surprising news...is that her father is too. … Continue reading BIG NEWS!!!
There is one great comfort in the long, dark Alaskan winter and that is that the odds of being eaten by a bear go down considerably. Bears hiberate during the winter, only occasionally stirring if there's a warm snap, but generally sleeping through the dark cold months in their dens beneath the snow. About the … Continue reading Eating Matzah as the Bears Awaken
I used to be a big U2 fan. I'll freely admit that as a child of the 80's, I was listening to U2 well into the 90's. One of their songs that always stuck with me was the song, "Walk On," particularly the lyrics about "all that you can't leave behind" and the idea of … Continue reading All That You Can’t Leave Behind
I just completed a JLI class at my Synagogue all about communication and the power of speech. This morning, I had a perfect example of exactly what we'd been studying happen right in front of me in the grocery store line. A coworker and I were standing in line to pay for some small purchases … Continue reading The Power of Speech
In this week's parsha, we talk about the actual building of the Mishkan, the moveable tabernacle that the Hebrews carried around with them in the desert wanderings. Up to this point, we've talked about why there needed to be a Mishkan and we even had a rather long parsha that explained in great detail all … Continue reading Slowing Down and Building the Mishkan
I have a couple of really wise friends that I listen to and always learn something from our conversations. Today, we were talking about the power of teachability and it seemed to fit exactly with a lot of what has been going on in my life recently as well as struggles I have seen around … Continue reading Teachability, Conversion, and Life
This morning, I saw a particularly timely cartoon come across my Facebook feed. When something goes wrong in your life, just yell, "PLOT TWIST," and move on! My life has been full of plot twists. Interestingly, I've always, in the moment, reflected on the fact that bad news, or a major life change, never seems … Continue reading Plot Twist!
Orthodox Jewish conversion has a lot of fascinating quirks that a lot of people aren't aware of unless they've dealt with the process directly. One of them, which I mentioned in relation to my husband yesterday, is the fact that once you emerge from the Mikvah as an entirely new, Jewish person in the eyes … Continue reading Soon, My Children Will Not Be Mine