Saturday, April 30, 2005

Baruch Hashem, bli eyin haraa

We're actually making progress putting away the Passover dishes and taking down the chametz, at least in the kitchen.
Next stop, shlepping up and down to the attic.
We're not as young as we used to be, and there are no kids to help.

Friday, April 29, 2005

making it easier

Changing back to chametz dishes and putting things back in the closets and taking out the chametz and putting away the Pesach...I'm getting dizzy already.

I hope to be more organized this year. I'll have to be, since my husband and I are on our own. Nobody to help us.

So I have to go to the kitchen and wash dishes and pots before Shabbat, and then I'll be "tacky" and serve on plastic. We should have gone away for the last day, leaving the house spotless, so that it would be easy to just change back, with dishes and pots all dry.

Maybe some day....

last day

I really can't believe that we're getting into the last day of Pesach. And it's a Shabbat, so this year we have really had a nice holiday. I had a day at home to just goof off and one in the Old City of Jerusalem and went to the Kotel, the Western Wall, and wandered around with a friend and we bought earrings.

And the next day we, plus another friend, went to the Dead Sea, and then I visited my sister-in-law and her family staying in the Citidal Hotel, where Russian President Putin is inconveniencing everyone.

And then yesterday I cooked and wrote and then went into Jerusalem to meet them and old friends for dinner. And I bought myself a watch to replace the one I had given to my daughter #3. And yes, I like the new one much better, and it didn't cost a lot.

And now, I have to finish cooking and do the shopping.

I hope to remember to serve on disposables to make the post Pesach cleanup easier.

And once the house is back to normal, I'll go to my neighbor's for their "Maimona" feast. That's where we'll eat the first chametz, delicious butter fried pancakes spread with butter and honey. I don't know how she does it. Years ago they'd invite the entire yishuv, but now it's for close friends.

Time to turn off the computer and get back to business....

Shabbat Shalom and Chag Sameach,

and I'm sure I'll be back online before candle-lighting

Thursday, April 28, 2005

It's still easier here in Israel

Or maybe I should say "anything for money," or "good business judgment," but my Cousin Kenny sent me link to an article about specially designed homes in New York for Orthodox Jews. We take that for granted here, at least in certain parts of the country. I've always enjoyed looking at the creative way many Jerusalem apartment buildings are designed with "merpesot," terraces for succot. They can't have anything hanging over them. In some of the older buildings, there would just about be enough "kosher" space for a couple of heads and plates.

I'm sorry I didn't plan my kitchen with three sinks, which some neighbors did. At least I have a full size sink in the laundry room, in which I put dirty parve pots on Shabbat. I don't know how people manage with just one sink. Yes, I know that it's possible, but I've always had two, and ours are on two different walls.

We take the light out of the refrigerator as soon as we get it, so we won't have to remember every week before Shabbat. Though I was told that the new ones are more complicated.

Big business in catering to Orthodox Jews, large families and growing population.

after almost 35 years

After almost 35 years of living outside of the USA, I took a "test" to see how my English is holding up.

Your Linguistic Profile:

50% General American English

25% Yankee

20% Dixie

0% Midwestern

0% Upper Midwestern

You can try, too.


still relaxed
from yesterday's mineral soak

meat's a thawing
must cook for Shabbat and last day of Pesach

need reminder
to serve on disposables

Just 2 and 1/2 days
and the kitchen returns
to chametz

and G-d willing
a day and a half later
my trekking son
will return home
to start
the rest of his life

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

and today...


...and today
I smell like rotten eggs
and spoiled cheese

and had
a great time
and nothing's wrong

the egg smell's from
the Dead Sea

and the spoiled cheese
was baby "cheese"
from my
baby granddaughter

American Idol

The TV show American Idol, which can be described as a modern version of "Amateur Hour" and variations, is being hit by scandals. Personally I'm not surprised.

The show's a big hit and is now being broadcast here in Israel, though probably one of the early seasons. Considering all the garbage on TV, it's a bright spot, but I don't take it seriously. It could be as scripted and choreographed as professional wrestling.

Makes me wonder about my old favorite, "Queen for a Day." Does anyone remember that classic?

Looking for a joke

The joke is one of those "three religion/nationality" ones, where one of them's a Jew, of course. They're all very thirsty and wonder about the causes, and the punchline is the Jew saying something like checking for diabetes.

I'd appreciate if someone could send it to "comments" or to me.

Thanks and stay healthy!

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

very tired

wandered around
more tourists
and local visitors
than for many years

especially near the Kotel
the wall surrounding the Holy Temple
couldn't get near

a record number of restaurants
open for Pesach
strictly kosher

all full
but we noshed
on our nuts and fruit
my friend and I

and we walked
and now I'm tired

matzah brei, my recipe

I must make a quick batch of matzah brei for my husband to take to work
It's the family favorite for traveling during Pesach, Passover. I'll be back with the "recipe." Please, don't expect exact measurements.

You need a large bowl; I have have a great old plastic one with a wide base, but you can manage with any. A large frying pan with cover, spatula.

This can be made either with or without milk, though you also need eggs, matzah and either margarine or oil for the frying. I'm sure it can be made in an electric frying pan. Some jam or honey and don't worry.

First crumble about 2 matzot (more or less) per person in the bowl; I use a maximum 6 or 7; relax, the pieces don't have to be small or measured. Then pour some water and then milk on the broken matzah. How much?

Uhmm, if you have a broad-based bowl, think of the liquid getting to about 1/4 or 1/3 of the way up the matza. Don't measure or obsess; if you do it won't taste right. I've never measured; I just looked at the bowl after I poured the liquid.

Then add about one egg per matzah and mix, so the eggs break. Let it sit for a bit, while you get the frying pan (this morning I had to wash it, since I had left it soaking and forgot to wash it last night.) Next put the margarine in the pan--remember if you just washed it, wipe it dry so the oil won't splatter and burn your face. When it's hot, add the mixture, cover and lower the flame.

Do something else for a few minutes, or you'll go nuts. When (like with pancakes) the exposed top seems cooked, turn it over to finish cooking, and turn off the flame. Leave it for another few minutes.

And remember, when I say lower the flame, I mean the lowest heat, or it will burn, and I hope that you have a good frying pan, the most important pan you could own.

Then serve with jam or honey, and if it's to be packed, then spread them with the sweet stuff, cut and double like sandwiches. Wrap in foil. For a healthier sweetness, slice apples, real thin and place between the two pieces of matzah brei.

and let me know how they came out

Monday, April 25, 2005


How did we all manage pre-vcr days? And we were among the last of the tv owners to get one. I must admit that there is a downside, the house has become flooded with video cassettes of recorded shows, movies and other programs.

In our dating days and early years of marriage we would go to the movies, sometimes even two in a session. We even took nursing babies, at least the boys, since living in Shiloh meant too many hours to be away from home for me. I think that they saw "Star Wars" or was it some of the "indiana Jones" series.

Years ago, there was a lot of smoking in the movie theaters, and I became really good at flaunting my pregnant belly, when there was one, to insist that they obey the law and put it out.

After a while, I used to find the benches, chairs, seats uncomfortable. Even after smoking was no longer an issue, and people didn't smoke during the shows, I would get annoyed by all the noise people made. And I also didn't think much of what was being shown. I fell asleep during "E.T." and was bored by "Dances With Wolves."

The last time I went to a real movie theater, if you can call those modern ones the size of large livingrooms cinemas, was to see the Andy Kaufman movie, "Man on the Moon," starring Jim Carey. Andy and I were classmates, so I had to see it.

Today I ran a little movie theater at home. First a friend came over in the afternoon and we saw "Two Weeks' Notice," a cute comedy with Sandra Bullok and Hugh Grant. We had some good laughs. Then another friend came over and we continued watching at least three more episodes from the old classic tv detective series, "Homicide." She also ate dinner with us while watching. Chicken soup with knaidelach, sweet potato, salad and chicken. Not quite the popcorn of our youth, but it's Pesach.

It was good to be able to get up whenever I needed to move around, sure lots healthier than sitting in a movie theater.

Chag Sameach

post post Pasover seder

didn't sleep too well last night
even rode the keyboard at 3am
couldn't focus
so tried to sleep again

Finally at 6, I'm back in the saddle, sipping coffee and reading the Gantseh Megillah . It's chock full, including a not quite Shlomo Carlebach story I can't resist. Another article gave me an idea where to shop when next in the states. It claims that Issak Mizrachi is more than just fashion; he should be doing standup. And the greatest surprise by far, was that France wants Jewish tourism. What's the Jewish attraction, Rashi .

I should have told Soccer Dad that I'd do Hevel Heveilim for Pesach.

Now, for another cup of coffee.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

post Passover seder

I can use a vacation
and larger clothes

house hasn't yet emptied
though refrigerator
can breaathe

Hallelie can sing
"Ma nishtana..." the 4 questions

but not when in the script

lots of dishes to wash
and crumbs to sweep

and lots of leftovers

and it's still Pesach
for almost a week

Friday, April 22, 2005

just before the seder, the Passover Seder

I'm pretty sure I've done everything. The idea to get it all ready before Shabbat, because the seder is Saturday night, and we don't want delays.
Now I remember must cut some tin foil.
vegetables rinsed
food cooked
water boiled

I'll heat the soup

just waiting for married daughter and her family
daughter #1 already here
she helped with the charoset

chrain, horse raddish done

must go back to the kitchen

Shabbat Shalom and Chag Sameach

only a few more hours

ready or not
just a few more hours, and it's Shabbat

so ready or not
Pesach must be prepared

just a few more veggies to cook

if anyone needs
super simple knaidlach or gefilte fish recipes
ask in the comments and I'll try to post
as soon as can be

hallway filled
with bags of food

how did I mangage when house was full of kids?

one thing for sure
there wasn't a shelf full of mushrooms
in the fridge
which isn't large enough

at least
for this holiday

must get back
to exercising
more than my fingers on the keyboard

Thursday, April 21, 2005

head hurts

I'm sure I haven't been drinking enough. That's why my head hurts.

gefilte fish, 2 soups, chulent, chicken, beef, turkey legs, kugel, 1 type of veggie

now for ol' Yerushalmi custom--sponja g'doyla, or maybe I should just wash some dishes first

dinner will be arriving with my husband, our tradional post b'dikat chametz feast--felafel!

still have lots more to cook, but hard...

call me ol' wounded thumbs--both cut

major debate and misc.

There's a major debate going on, email style, about what time to have the post seder dovening of Shacharit. Our usual summer time, and now all year time, is 8am, but this year there are a few families who figure that after a long full Passover seder and heavy meal, they'll have trouble dragging themselves out of bed. So they started lobbying to begin at 8:30. We're voting to keep it at eight.

So far, we're in suspense.

The beef sliced easily this morning, and it's already in a tray that can go straight onto the "platta." I poured an entire small Purim wine into the beef while it was cooking. Softest beef I've sliced ever. Guess it's shikker. (plastered,

Now another dilemma--should the beef be served at the pre-seder meal or post-seder meal? Chicken both nights and turkey drumbsticks and beef jockeying for the two morning spots.

Yesterday, finally, after a couple of "take me!" notes to the local email list, a neighbor rescued the cornflakes, crackers and other goodies. I may look like a human garbage pail, but I'm not. She had very good plans for all the chametz, which included some cookies.

"Thank Heaven for Hungry Children!"

And if mine are hungry, I can't help. They're all so far away.

Back to work...

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Remind me, please

I'd appreciate reminders, to do my nails, whatever will be left, Friday morning. Most of my last polish has peeled and chipped off, with the nail chips. Yuch! I never had nice fingers, and this is the worst season.

No new clothes for the holiday, but I got a new appliance. It's a large "electric frying pan." I did a batch of chicken in it, hold a lot. But the chicken didn't come out oven-crisp, which was what I wanted. At least it's better than in the pot, in which the bottom layer is overcooked and the top a health danger, or they all get mixed and.... forget it. that's why I bought the new Pesach toy.

Beef's cooking, soup stock made. Tomorrow I have to finish the soup and do side dishes. Oh, and of course I cut my finger.

Chometz is in the attic. I was sure that I had another pot; can't find it. We'll survive. Tomorrow's gefilte fish, too.

Dishes to wash, and all the closets are changed.

Just me and my husband for b'dikat chametz. First time just the two of us since our first Pesach married, 34 years ago. Two months and we're married 35 years.

We're old.


Maybe I'll speed up after my exercise class. We're having it today instead of our usual Thursday.

My alarm clock caught me in a deep sleep. I had to cover the burners and stove top to make my coffee. Why didn't I do it last night? That's what begins to happen, when there isn't time pressure. I should have had my husband transfer the last closet, but I needed some "normal time."

There's a wash in the machine. Ends up that the plumber found a thick, hard blockage in the first pipe into which the washing machine drains. After much poking and prodding, he cleared it, and now I can launder without floods. What a relief.

The meat and chicken are pretty much thawed and sitting, in pots, on the counter. After the exercise classs, I'll start the cooking and my new electric fyer/chicken cooker will have its maiden batch.

I'll also have to do more shopping today, good excuse to get out. My husband recorded "Law and Order," and I still have one or two episodes of "Homicide" to watch. Dd#1 will bring more. Nothing like the classic detective shows.

Must get on with my morning. And also cover the "island." I'll use the butterfly contac paper. I'll also use it on the high chair. Hallelie should like it.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Progress! We're Making Progress!

Baruch Hashem and thank G-d for other people's children!

I hired one of them to help clean, and it was worth every penny! He got more done in six and a half hours than I would have done, even if I had a year. He fixed up the "unused" bedrooms. The kids don't live at home, so the rooms attract clutter like a ten ton magnet attracts staples. The girls room was fuller than the storage room under the house. Now maybe my single daughters will come home a bit more. He also fixed up the boys' room, so that when the trekker returns, G-d willing just after Pesach, he'll have a place to put his bags. Unpacking will be another problem, since their closets are full. oops! this is starting to sound like Baile Rochel!

Dishes have been switched, and I put contac paper on the counters, and took the meat and poultry out to thaw.

Ok, there's still plenty to do, but I can start cooking tomorrow.

G-d willing

A Letter From Malka Mishmash

The following is a letter received from a dear friend, Malka Mishmash...

Baile Rochel,

You made me laugh in the midst of my own balagan (I used to think that the word(s) meant "Come to the kindergarten" but, alas, nothing so pleasant.

Last Thursday the movers came and packed half of my things, carting them away to my new flat 3 blocks from where I have been living for the last 1-and-1/2 years.

If it were only moving - Dayenu
If the other half were not being moved tomorrow (Mon.) -Dayenu
If I were not retiling the ugly dark blue bathroom and the blushing pink guest toilet - Dayenu
If I were not redoing the kitchen that could not be used because of its age and could not be looked at because of its ugliness-

There are so many DAYENUS that they are falling into the Chad Gadyas!

My marble floors were cleaned, waxed, and buffed and they are all dusty once again. I seem to hear Adir Hu in my ears. Maybe it's time to be thankful to the good Lord for giving me the strength and enthusiasm to be doing all the renovations in the new flat as well as moving.

Malka Mishmash

Monday, April 18, 2005

Something to Read

There's something good to read-- Hevel Hevelim ! It's fuller than full, so take a gander! It's only missing one highly recommended musing .


more tunes, re: Baile Rochel

Either add them as comments, or send them to me, and I'll post.

to the tune of born free... hametz free, as free as the winds blow, that's how our souls go, free to follow HaShem...

from the musical bye bye birdie ...bye bye hametz, you're gone for 8 whole days, bye bye hametz, we're gonna change our ways!

a sinatra memory- cleaning thru the night, it wasnt dances, cleaning through the night, what were the chances, i'd be up til 3 or maybe up til fooour ?

everly brothers... cleeeeean, clean , clean...clean, clean clean clean, whenever it's pesach, all i have to do is cleeeean,

jeremiah was a bullfrog...the afikoman was a missing, was a good friend of mine, sent the kids out a searchin', after we had drunk our to the world, all the boys and girls, freedom to the Jewish people in the world and joy to you and me!

chag sameach to you and everybody in ha eretz for a kasher pesach... may we merit to see the geula and real shalom in our borders.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Baile Rochel #3 Pesach Cleaning

Baile Rochel’s Back! #3
The 2nd of Nissan
April 11, 2005

Pesach* Cleaning

Some things will never change; I’ll always hate Pesach cleaning. Simply, it’s because I’ve never liked to clean. And Pesach cleaning is the most dangerous.

Yes, in all seriousness, the emergency rooms of Israeli hospitals fill up with people who are a bissel too enthusiastic and generous with the cleaning materials. And there are the little kids, nebich, who try to help or sometimes even sample magic liquids and pastes. And don’t forget the sprays, if they can soften and remove that baked in, inedible yuch from the ovens and stove tops; I hate to think what it does to eyes, lungs and sensitive, and even not so sensitive, skin.

So, I’d say that it’s “pikuach nefesh,” life-saving, not to obsess over Pesach cleaning. Besides the human health issue, it’s not very safe for the appliances either. Did you know that people who clean very well have to replace expensive appliances more frequently? No joke. The more you clean, the more chance you’ll get liquid into places it shouldn’t be, or remove screws that can’t be replaced by mere mortals. A damp cloth, how about one of those agunah sports socks, with mild dish soap wiped on your appliances and tiles cleans fine and makes the any microscopic chametz inedible, therefore non-chametz. It’s really not that hard. If I can do it, anybody can!

I’ve heard that electricians make a good portion of their annual salary on pre-Pesach emergency repairs. Every year there are actually people who steam-spray their kitchen walls, including the electric sockets. Just remember, seriously, water and electricity are a dangerous combination, and home repairs are the minor accidents.

When I was young, I once cleaned my kitchen sink so well that the drainpipe detached, and I had to wash dishes in the bathroom, until I could find a plumber. If it could happen to me, it could happen to anybody.

And to put you in a better mood, we can sing along to famous show tunes rewritten specially for the season:

“I’m Going to Wash That Ch’metz Right Out of My House”
“Thank G-d for Rubber Gloves”
“If I Were A Rich Gal, …I’d have a house specially for Pesach”
“I Could Have Cleaned All Night”
“Get the Chametz Burned on Time”
“Shall We Eat?”
“There’s No Knaidlach Like My Knaidlach!”

Chag Kasher, Bar’i v’Sameach,
Have a Happy, Healthy and Kosher Passover,

Baile Rochel
Copyright©2005BatyaMedad, Contact me for publication permission; private distribution encouraged.

*Passover holiday

good news, good news, bad news

good news--the plumber fixed the fleishig sink

good news--my washing machine isn't leaking

bad news, clogged pipe running from laundry room to bathroom and probably out to the sewer

and after I proved it to the plumber, he has yet to return

and back to the best news--it's not the washing machine

as hard as it is to get the plumber, the washer repair service is worse

so I've been musing....

ok and cleaning a bit, too

and I even checked our storageroom, which has more space than I had expected, so I through out a few bags, and I also threw out a double tape that had been "gracing" the house though not entertaining for a decade or more, and I gave away some crackers to the pre-Pesach camp, now run by kids who weren't even born when it began

enough norishkeit
time to return to the scrubbing
though I'm not obsessing
just doing what's really necessary

the kitchen will be kosher for Pesach, and every room will be cleaner than usual

that's enough

before the plumber arrives

Let me get this up quickly; I made a date with the plumber for 7:30am. And even though he used to play with my daughters on our merpeset in Bayit V'Gan, Jerusalem, over twenty five years ago, I should be dressed and dovened before he takes apart my kitchen. Yes, less than a week before Pesach. But it's better than during Pesach, or not being able to use the fleishig sink during Pesach.

Now for the story.....

The Gantseh Megillah features a great Pesach with Marlon Brando story. And he's not the only celebrity mentioned.

What do you think? And who were your most interesting or surprising or unlikely seder companions? Anything special planned for this year?

a reminder

I write some of the reminders for

This is what I wrote for this week. New members are invited to join it and our main group

Enjoy Pesach!


Pesach (Passover) is on Sunday (motzei Shabbat), 15 Nisan 5765 (April 24, 2005).

That means that all cleaning must be finished by Bidikat Chametz Thursday night

Seder preparations before Shabbat, including having candles in holders for Saturday night lighting.(Seder preparations may be done after Shabbat, before the seder, but that makes for more balagan)

To keep fridge from getting over-full, plan for the seder or Sunday (chag) food that can be made Wed. or Thursday and then frozen. A tray of frozen cooked chicken, one layer, can be put on the platta or blech after lighting candles Sat. night, and if you do the whole seder, it will be ready to eat on time. If you're making the seder, it may be a good idea to have the kitchen ready early for less stressful cooking time, even before other rooms are "finished.


Dust isn't chametz, and neither is window dirt. And nobody, including the dog, makes a meal over the yuch in the tile cracks.


Friday, April 15, 2005

of getting old/er



Three retirees, each with a hearing loss, were playing golf
one fine March day. One remarked to the other, "Windy, isn't
it?" "No," the second man replied, "it's Thursday." And the
third man chimed in,
"So am I. Let's have a beer."

"Old age ain't no place for sissies."
-Bette Davis-

Contact to subscribe


so peculiar
how people get here

I had a visitor checking out
Hagara or Hagarah designer clothes
and I don't remember writing about it

I do wear the clothes

just last night
a jacket

and a great dancing skirt
to Sunday's wedding

and I also have
a wild top
for special occassions
and two velvet jackets

so if
they search again
here's something worth reading

I bought them all
on sale, of course

Thursday, April 14, 2005


just got back
long day
saw daughter #3

need to sleep

important to
make time
also with
adult kids

so far today

I've been up since 4, after being disturbed and couldn't fall back to sleep, even on the couch. So perked my coffee and checked emails, plus. And prepared and roasted the chicken and polished the silver and washed some dishes and spent time on the computer and now Frank Sinatra's singing to me from the cd and drank the coffee and had a yogurt and through something out of the freezer that we didn't eat and won't eat.

And it's not even 8am, so I had better get dressed and doven and go to my exercise class, though I wasn't supposed to eat anything before the class, but I was starving after almost 4 hours of activity.

And nobody, so far at least, has guessed the literature question nor reported which music makes cleaning doable, bearable or even fun.

I'll turn off the computer after posting this.

At least Frank Sinatra is singing to me.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

whistle while you work

What's your favorite music to make the medicine go down? ---oops! I mean to make cleaning for Pesach, Passover, easier?

A few years ago, when I couldn't afford an extra pair of hands, I treated myself to a cd of "Carmen," and that's what's on now. Such a dramatic tragedy puts everything in different proportion. Earlier, to get me in "the mood" I listened to Bing Crosby. To get more in the spirit of things I'll put on "The Diaspora Yeshiva Band;" Ruby, are you reading this?

And of course, if I want to feel young, there's the "Beatles" and my '50's and '60's music.

Now, on with the show!

couldn't sleep

couldn't fall asleep last night
almost got up
out of bed

thought of kvetching
to the cyber world

or watching
a movie

but due to my age
can't read myself to sleep

can't risk
breaking my glasses

Tuesday, April 12, 2005


How can I clean for Pesach when my mind is so cluttered with articles clamoring to be written?

Monday, April 11, 2005

literature quiz

What does this story remind you of? I'm waiting for your guesses!

An unemployed man is desperate to support his family. His wife watches TV all day and his three teenage kids have dropped out of high school to hang around with the local toughs. He applies for a janitor's job at a large firm and easily passes an aptitude test.

The human resources manager tells him, "You will be hired at minimum wage of $5.15 an hour. Let me have your e-mail address so that we can get you in the loop. Our system will automatically e-mail you all the forms and advise you when to start and where to report on your first day."

Taken back, the man protests that he is poor and has neither a computer nor an e-mail address. To this the manager replies, "You must understand that to a company like ours that means that you virtually do not exist. Without an e-mail address you can hardly expect to be employed by a high-tech firm. Good day."

Stunned, the man leaves. Not knowing where to turn and having $10 in his wallet, he walks past a farmers' market and sees a stand selling 25lb crates of beautiful red tomatoes. He buys a crate, carries it to a busy corner and displays the tomatoes.

In less than 2 hours he sells all the tomatoes and makes 100% profit. Repeating the process several times more that day, he ends up with almost $100 and arrives home that night with several bags of groceries for his family.

During the night he decides to repeat the tomato business the next day. By the end of the week he is getting up early every day and working into the night. He multiplies his profits quickly. Early in the second week he acquires a cart to transport several boxes of tomatoes at a time, but before a month is up he sells the cart to buy a broken-down pickup truck.

At the end of a year he owns three old trucks. His two sons have left their neighborhood gangs to help him with the tomato business, his wife is buying the tomatoes, and his daughter is taking night courses at the community college so she can keep books for him.

By the end of the second year he has a dozen very nice used trucks and employs fifteen previously unemployed people, all selling tomatoes. He continues to work hard.

Time passes and at the end of the fifth year he owns a fleet of nice trucks and a warehouse which his wife supervises, plus two tomato farms that the boys manage. The tomato company's payroll has put hundreds of homeless and jobless people to work. His daughter reports that the business grossed a million dollars.

Planning for the future, he decides to buy some life insurance. Consulting with an insurance adviser, he picks an insurance plan to fit his new circumstances. Then the adviser asks him for his e-mail address in order to send the final documents electronically.

When the man replies that he doesn't have time to mess with a computer and has no e-mail address, the insurance man is stunned, What, you don't have e-mail? No computer? No Internet? Just think where you would be today if you'd had all of that five years ago!"

"Ha!" snorts the man. "If I'd had e-mail five years ago I would be sweeping floors at Microsoft and making $5.15 an hour."

*Thanks to Pastor Tim for this joke!*

recovering of sorts

if you were there or know who got married, comment

was at a beautiful wedding last night
in the heart of Tekoa

tall, handsome bearded groom
in the heart of Tekoa

sweet, petite, pretty bride
in the heart of Tekoa

chupah (wedding canopy) crowning the setting sun
in the heart of Tekoa

dancing until the night is done
in the heart of Tekoa

proud Jews, one and all
in the heart of Tekoa

working, so the country won't fall
in the heart of Tekoa

Mazal Tov to our good friends and their kids
in the heart of Tekoa

great way to finish the chametz
in the heart of Tekoa

Chodesh Tov and Shavua Tov
in the heart of Tekoa

Saturday, April 09, 2005

obeying the law

Willow Tree asks a question , and this is my answer:

There are principles. I know that this isn't quite what you want, but not everything's worth getting arrested for, so I try to be careful.When we came back from shlichut with our daughter #3 she was of the age of smallpox vaccinations. I refused to get her vaccinated, since I considered the law unwise/incompetant/out of date. A few months before there had been an announcement by the World Health Organization that the vaccinations were no longer recommended. All of the recent cases had been from labs, so my toddler didn't need it. I explained to the nurse in Tipat Chalav that soon she'd get notice to stop them, and then I'd follow her orders. She thought I was crazy (and dangerous), but I was right.

What I tried to post on Friday, after Thursday night's one was swallowed by the blog monster

I wrote a long post about yesterday's visit to Kever Rachel, Rachel's Tomb in which I described the horrid feeling of being jailed and going through heavy imposing gates, while Arabs and others roam freely.

The once attractive city, now bare of flowers, and filled with heavy concrete walls.

And of Nava Applebaum's (HaY"D) wedding gown draping the tomb...Mother Rachel cries for us, her battered, persecuted children, hated by our brothers, like Josef's brothers hated him.

But what have we done? We're only trying to live according to G-d's command.

And then suddenly, after I finished my prayers and "required" t'hilim (psalms,) I was just saying whatever t'hilim seemed right, I heard, could it have been, no, not really, someone singing and playing a guitar. The long corridor produces echoes, so I couldn't tell it was just one or a whole group. But I had never heard music in Kever Rachel before.

So I hurried to finish; I was curious. I found a man strumming a guitar and singing. I almost forgot that I was behind bars and reinforced concrete walls.


I hope that blogspot's really back. From Thursday night until Shabbat began I couldn't post anything.

Now I don't have time. I have to "granny," "bubby," be a good "savta."

Thursday, April 07, 2005

shloshim, 30 days, so quickly

Yesterday was the "shloshim," 30 day's from passing away, memorial for Shimon (Sidney) Simons, Z"L. Especially since he passed away so suddenly, no warning whatsoever, it's hard to believe that he's already in "olam haba." Some friends of his said that they had no idea that he had passed away until they saw the "shloshim" announcement in the paper.

People came from all of the country, family and friends and of course neighbors from Shiloh. Late afternoon we gathered around the grave for t'hilim (psalms) and prayers, and then we proceeded to the Mishkan Shiloh synagogue, built to resemble the Tabernacle as described in the Bible. There we prayed the mincha prayer, listened to divrei Torah and eulogies and ended with the ma'ariv, evening prayers.

May G-d bless Sophie with a long and healthy life filled with joyous occasions.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

so nice to be here

It's those little things, rabbi's letters, hechsherim, displayed for all to see at the "cosmetics fair." A whole bunch of cosmetics companies set up sales tables, in the Jerusalem Central Bus Station Mall, selling Kosher for Passover make-up, creams and more--discounted! The prices were low, and for a bus traveler like myself, this was a great opportunity to get some KP lipstick...and a few other things.

it's not too late

It's important to read this.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

winter's back

cold again
winter was teasing
bedroom heater's back on

have gloves will travel

but now I'm tired

two and a half
weeks to Pesach
and I haven't even started

no help
must hire

getting older

sometimes see old friends
look familiar,
then suddenly
they look so old

Do they say the same about me?

the best

re: the best exercise vs aerobics
exercise in the water
even walking, in not on

aerobic routines are safer in the water

have fun!

Monday, April 04, 2005

pains me to say this

Among those who long since decided that aerobics isn't the best exercise, still it hurts to hear the news that Jane Fonda has already had surgery on her knee and at the young age of 67 will be having a hip transplant. And considering that she has always been slim, osteoperosis is statisticly higher.

One advantage to being "padded."

Hevel Hevelim features hosts of bloggers including....

Party time! The latest Hevel Hevalim is finally up, hosted by Critical Mastiff. It's a good try for a youngster, and I'll have to correct his historical knowledge. Big difference, since I lived through what he referred to, but... should know that Baile Rochel hasn't hit 60 yet; she just likes to dance to '60's music.


can't sleep

been up
since about
can't sleep

clocks switched
an hour ahead
last Thursday night

lost hour's sleep
hard to fall asleep early

suddenly this morning
middle of the night

wasted time

took laundry
to fold
and watch
last night's CSI

spooky one
glad didn't see it
at night

would have dozed
or too spooked to sleep

no new mail
so check yahoo

finally drinking coffee
how can I have coffee
so early?

but I've been up for an
hour and a half

good morning world

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Is this normal?

Is this normal? Has or would any other country destroy innocent civilans' lives, homes, business only to expect major terrorism as a result? What's the point? Cutting off one's nose to spite one's face is almost normal in comparisan.

New pope?

The old pope, John Paul II, is dead. He was the one the Jewish world felt comfortable with. He was from Poland, like many of our grandfathers, fathers, great-grandfathers. He had the same sort of accent. It was easy to forget that he represented a religious authority that had persecuted and murdered Jews, that had given the Nazis tacit support and worse. He appeared so modern, a linguist, friendly. Though his religious beliefs were considered conservative.

The Vatican is rich, appears indestructible, though there are fewer young men willing and wanting to be priests, and there are fewer young women willing and wanting to be nuns. Catholic families are no longer of uncontrollable sizes. Birth control is the defacto norm, so parents of few children no longer encourage their best and brightest to "enter the church" to give them the status and "protexia" it once brought. When you have one son, you want him to reproduce.

There's an enormous gap between the "machers" in the Vatican and the simple Catholics. Will the new pope be able to bridge the gap, or will the church crack, crumble and collapse?

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Don't be shy

I haven't been putting my notes from T'hilim, Psalms, Kohelet, Ecclesiastes, for a few weeks. I get the most out of the notes, because it helps me to remember and absorb what was taught in class. But I'd really like to know if anyone looks forward to reading them.

So please, don't be shy and let me know if you want me to resume putting my notes up.

Last week, Nissan wasn't feeling well, so the class was cancelled, but I went over the previous notes with a friend who had missed the lesson.

Shavua Tov

Friday, April 01, 2005

almost Pesach cake

I made an "almost Pesach cake," not like, "almost kosher for Pesach," but like "it's almost Pesach, what's there to use up? cake." It has bananas, apples, two types of brown sugar, and two types of chocolate chips--white and brown. It will also be iced.

It's my #2 daughter's birthday. She won't be here, but I'll be hosting the shiur nashim, women's study group, and we have guests tonight, so it'll be just perfect.

Shabbat Shalom

ps I've been experimenting and not fully measuring. Let's see how it comes out.

time change

that time of the year
an hour of sleep

longer Fridays
before Shabbat

must change all the clocks
on April Fool's