I should preface this with, "If your intention is to live within an Orthodox community and be accepted as a Jew most places, including Israel and for your children to be seen as legitimate Jews in Israel and among Orthodox Jews." There are plenty of converts for whom these really aren't serious concerns and who … Continue reading Why You Should Not Pursue an “Open Orthodox Conversion” – An Article
The week before we flew out of Alaska, it seemed to be a good idea to climb a mountain. The weather was beautiful and the kids really wanted to do something uniquely Alaskan, so we grabbed a couple of their friends and I drove us up to Flattop mountain while Mr. Safek worked. Climbing a … Continue reading Climbing the Mountain
It's been an interesting week. We had Shavuos, but first, we closed on our old house in a mad rush of moving boxes and furniture. Through some coincidences, we found a place to live temporarily until our flight leaves Alaska. An acquaintance living on the east coast reached out to us, asking us if we'd … Continue reading Shavuos, Last Week in Alaska, and the Mystery of the Missing Rabbit
I've written a lot about the good sides of having a long Orthodox Jewish conversion process and I think there are some obvious downsides, but there is one downside that became readily apparent recently that I hadn't really stopped to think about and has come up for us. You can become TOO comfortable with being … Continue reading The Downside of a Long Conversion Process
A little over 2 years ago, Mr. Safek and I bought our dream house and it was everything I had ever wanted in a home. It is bright, airy, with plenty of room. It has a nice, fenced in backyard with lots of sunlight and decks. It has room to garden and room for a … Continue reading Our Last Shabbos in Our Dream House
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
Why not pick up an old hobby while in the midst of moving chaos? Now, most normal people would probably think that now, our last dwindling month in the Greatland, is probably the least logical time for me to try to start running again after a 7-8 hiatus. Yet, somehow, it just felt right. So, … Continue reading Running in the Rush
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?
An interesting discussion wandered across my social media feed this week. It began with a post suggesting "Comebacks For Converts," basically a list of ideas for dealing with nosey questions that converts often encounter. The post itself is pretty good and has some good ideas. The discussion that ensued, however, made me think for a … Continue reading Converts, BT’s…Heck Everyone – You Can’t Control What Others Will Think Of You
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!!!