Eating Matzah as the Bears Awaken

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

House Showings and Passover Cooking

I had just put a huge brisket for Passover in the oven, the kind that you have to cut just to fit in the pans.  Two glorious full sheet pans where covered and ready to go and the oven was heated.  My cell phone announced a text.  It was from our realtor. "Can you do … Continue reading House Showings and Passover Cooking

“Turning Over” My Kitchen…and Turning Over my Pre-Passover Anxiety

The same thing happens EVERY year without fail.  I always plan to "turn over" my kitchen (that is, clean and kosher it for Passover), as close to Passover as possible so that my family doesn't have to either eat kosher for Passover food longer than necessary or eat their floury, chametz-leaden food in the garage.  … Continue reading “Turning Over” My Kitchen…and Turning Over my Pre-Passover Anxiety

My Son and His Passover Sacrifice

One of the things my son was looking forward to most about 8th grade was the Advanced Orchestra trip to Hawaii that the 8th graders in his school take every year.  He had been thrilled when he'd first heard of it during his Junior High orientation and he'd fundraised last year to help send the … Continue reading My Son and His Passover Sacrifice

All That You Can’t Leave Behind

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

The Non-Gebrokts Non-Jews

Passover is an interesting holiday.  It's one where traditions and customs really seem to come to the forefront in a way they don't always the rest of the year.  From how stringent each family is about their cleaning and prep to what they will and won't eat on the holiday, there is so much variation, … Continue reading The Non-Gebrokts Non-Jews

The Season of Letting Go

Passover must always fall in the spring.  It's a rule of the Jewish calendar and a whole leap month will be added to the calendar to make sure this happens.  For Orthodox Jews, this also means that Passover cleaning is a form of spring cleaning, with cabinets cleared out and all manner of pasta, flour, … Continue reading The Season of Letting Go

Spring and the Sabbath Always Come

It's sunny and warming up here in the frozen north.  Everywhere I look, the snow is melting and we're seeing patches of green grass underneath, a glimpse of the world that will be ours in just a week or two if things continue.  The world is waking up here after the long winter and birds … Continue reading Spring and the Sabbath Always Come

Our First Seders as Guests!

I hope everyone had a wonderful and meaningful Passover.  We had our first Seders as guests.  For years, we've hosted our own Seders with a mix of guests, usually non-Jews, or even just our family and we've enjoyed all of them.  For the songs my husband couldn't remember the tunes for or couldn't communicate those … Continue reading Our First Seders as Guests!

Happy Passover!

The sun becomes more and more stubborn here in Alaska and begins to pay less and less attention to the clock.  At this time of year, it begins to become a little disoriented because, besides rising much earlier and setting much later, the light also tends to look like the sunlight of mid afternoon right … Continue reading Happy Passover!

The Ups and Downs of “Practicing” Pesach

To boil or not to boil?  Which customs shall we use?  How stringent do we want to be this year?  These are all relevant questions we face as we clean out cabinets and work to gobble up all the chametz (leavened foods) in our house prior to Passover.  We're often on our own to try … Continue reading The Ups and Downs of “Practicing” Pesach

The Kindness of Strangers and Our First Shabbat in the RV

My heart is full today.  Yes, it is snowing again and the roads are a mess and the Spring that seemed so close by last weekend now feels like it has fled south to the lower 48, but...this weekend is our first weekend in our Shabbat RV and we have invitations to both Seders from … Continue reading The Kindness of Strangers and Our First Shabbat in the RV