Freedom From Hate?

This weekend, in a Chabad house not that different from my own Synagogue, a man opened fire and shot and killed a woman who dove in front of her Rabbi, saving his life.  several others were injured.  They were there celebrating the last days of Passover, much like I was, thousands of miles away.  They … Continue reading Freedom From Hate?

Passover and Freedom from the Emergency Room

Sometimes, despite your best intentions and planning, holidays go sideways.  This is how we ended up at the emergency room yesterday on the second day of Passover. My husband is a type 2 diabetic on an insulin pump, along with high blood pressure, heart disease, and a triple bypass last Fall.  Even before we lit … Continue reading Passover and Freedom from the Emergency Room

Asbestos Roofs, Passover Cleaning, and Other Things You Learn to Love

Note:  That's not our roof! Tomorrow night Pesach begins.  I know...I should be cooking right now, but, instead, I'm taking a break from work to update this blog and think about all the cooking I should be doing.  Happily, we have invitations for most of our meals for the first 2 days of Passover!  It's … Continue reading Asbestos Roofs, Passover Cleaning, and Other Things You Learn to Love

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!