Sunday, September 30, 2012

Mekubal-- Havel Havelim Heads Into Succot

The 379th and still counting Havel Havelim is at An Aspiring Mekubal this week, on the Eve of Succot.  I'd say it's an Inspiring Mekubal to take on this important community responsibility.  In the past few months he has hosted Havel Havelim many times.

The best way of thanking An Aspiring Mekubal is to visit and share this wonderful edition of the biggest and most veteran Jewish Bloggers Carnival in the universe!

Chag Succot Sameach
Have a Joyful Succot Holiday

Signs of Succot, Shiloh and Jerusalem

Let the pictures speak for themselves...

There can be lots of creativity in succah building.

Chag Sameach
Have a Joyful Holiday

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Pragmatic, Spontaneous aka Creative Cooking

There are two basic types of cooks.  One plans meals, checks recipes and buys the food needed.  My sister-in-law is like that.  We are very close but, oh, so different.  She can go to a half a dozen stores just to get the exact cheese needed for a recipe. 

I'm the opposite.  I never really know what I'll be cooking until I see what there is in the fridge, freezer and pantry.

My meals don't have fancy themes.  I can make a variety of different sorts of dishes for the same meal.  The closest thing to a theme would be "healthy," "balanced" and simple.

I'll give for an example my latest "invention" aka experiment.

Someone gave us a jar of olives.  We don't eat olives.  It's not that we don't like them, but...  I also had some basmati brown rice, which had been cooked up for the pre-Yom Kippur fast meal.  I made a shidduch, match, decided to cook them together.

First I sauteed onion, pepper, some olives (and the brine/liquid) and olive oil.  When I could smell it cooking, I added the cooked rice, cooked covered and stirred on a low flame.  (You may need to add a bit of water.)  When I could smell the rice cooking and the flavors blending, I turned it off.

It was a success.  Everybody liked it. 

Friday, September 28, 2012

Would You Believe....

We all know that reality is the best comedy writer.  I don't think Latma could do much better, even if it pegs this story to a conspiracy.  Maybe the American Secret Service didn't want the Israeli journalists to make it to the United Nations on time...

Here's a funny true life story I saw on a friend's facebook page.  (He's a real friend f2f, not just a fb one.)

I've never thought much of American security, but this story shows their true colors.  Who's really in charge? 

Read the story to find out about their rescue.

I have a lot to do today, my husband's Friday chores along with my own.  He has his turn at work for today.  Every couple of months he has to work on a Friday or Eve of Holiday.  So I have to go down to the grocery store, which isn't my usual Friday assignment.

You may be interested in reading my simple solution to the  problem of Yom Kippur during daylight savings time.  I blogged it this morning on Shiloh Musings.

If I don't get back here before Shabbat, have a peaceful one!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Glad I'm A Woman! And Succah Decorating Tips

There are many Torah observant women who try to bend halacha to give them the responsibilities of men in Jewish Life.  I'm not among them at all.  I'm glad that I don't have to lead a rousing prayer while fasting.  It was enough to dance along to the Yom Kippur prayers on tired legs and an empty stomach.  G-d must have given lots of energy to the young men who acted as our voluntary chazanim, cantors.  I was very happy not to have to deal with all that public responsibility.

Many of us traditional Torah observant women joke that Succot is the female revenge for Passover.

Passover logistics, cleaning and organizing fall mainly on the females, while building a succah and purchasing the arba'a minim, four botanical species fall on the males.  For some men, succah construction is a total nightmare.


Not everyone enjoys the challenge of building a succah.

And for those who are looking for an easy and inexpensive way to decorate their succah, the best deal is to use the pictures in Jewish Calendars.

I hope that you haven't thrown out last year's calendar, because you can hang up the pictures.  Also, if you've received more than one calendar, this year, or more than you need, you can just hang up pictures from one of the calendars.  Many of the decorations we use, are free calendar pictures.


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Dancing The Prayers

Today was Yom Kippur, a traditional marathon of prayers in the synagogue.  We started last night after finishing a very early dinner.  Everything had to be finished, from the last drop of water to brushing our teeth before the sun had begun to set.

Then we went to pray.  The Yom Kippur evening prayers begin very softly and seriously.  We ask G-d to cancel whatever vows/oaths we may have said over the year, and while we're at it, we add a "PS" that older ones and future ones be cancelled, too.

After that is an extra long evening prayer, including Vidu'i, Confessions.  Most of the tunes are pretty somber, but sometimes I find myself sort of hopping around.

Then it's back home for a long night's sleep.  There isn't much to do on Yom Kippur, certainly not nosh.

The next morning we were back in synagogue sort of glued to our seats.  Well, not quite glued, since we're supposed to stand for long periods of the services.  There was a break, less than two hours.  We don't have professional singers/chazzanim/cantors leading the prayers.  We have some brave neighbors with strong voices.  Some of them are more feeling/soul than skill and would never have been accepted into a school glee club, unless the school had a policy to accept everyone.  But, davka, those neighbors sometimes make the best prayers, all feeling,, and that's what Yom Kippur is about.  Prayers must be sincere or they are useless.

Frequently when standing was becoming painful, the tunes would get lively and I'd find myself dancing.  OK, sort of dancing, since I could only move up or down, busy work for my ankles and knees.

The final part of the Yom Kippur Prayers is Ni'ila, from the Hebrew for locking.  We must get our prayers in before G-d locks the door.  That was sung by a young man with an excellent voice who had chosen great tunes and my neighbors and I who were in the same row ended with our arms around each other swaying to the tunes and singing along.

Perched up in the women's balcony we, too prayed/sang at the top of our lungs.

May your year be full of "good things."

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Eve of Yom HaKippurim Message

Yesterday at Yafiz, the color of the day was white.  Most people wanted to buy white clothes for Yom Kippur.  It's traditional to wear white, to symbolize our cleaning, spiritual cleaning.  Our spiritual insides should be as pure as our clothing.  I was very busy putting together suitable outfits for our customers.

My basic Yom Kippur outfit, also worn on Shavuot has been upgraded with a new white (and silver) scarf.  I also recently bought one of those long lace-trimmed shirts to wear under my blouse with the lace showing.  Not only does it look nice, but it'll keep me warm as fasting cools me off.

Dry Bones

Hat tip to Rafi's Life in Israel for the Unetaneh Tokef Prayer. "ונתנה תוקף" - החזן הראשי לצה"ל סא"ל שי אברמסון

On Rosh Hashanah will be inscribed and on Yom Kippur will be sealed how many will pass from the earth and how many will be created; who will live and who will die; who will die at his predestined time and who before his time; who by water and who by fire, who by sword, who by beast, who by famine, who by thirst, who by storm, who by plague, who by strangulation, and who by stoning. Who will rest and who will wander, who will live in harmony and who will be harried, who will enjoy tranquillity and who will suffer, who will be impoverished and who will be enriched, who will be degraded and who will be exalted.
Congregation aloud, then chazzan:


Remove the Evil of the Decree!
Gmar Chatima Tova to all

Monday, September 24, 2012

First Havel Havelim of the Year

We're into new Jewish year mode, so there are lots of firsts, of course...

new HH logo by Paula
Ya'aqov's Esser Agaroth is the host of the very first 5773 Havel Havelim, the long longest-running Jewish blog carnival.

There are three Jewish blog carnivals that I know of.  I wonder if somewhere there are Jewish bloggers who do something similar but somehow have slipped under the our radarA few years Awhile after I became involved with blogging and blog carnivals, I started the Kosher Cooking Carnival when a recipe of mine was rejected from a recipe carnival, because the edition's theme was pork.  At the same time I was also hosting a lot of editions of Havel Havelim and commented that there were so many gorgeous posts filled with pictures, that maybe we (somebody?) should start an additional Jewish blog carnival based on that theme.  The Bagel Blogger, who no longer blogs, took up that challenge and created JPIX.  Now it's coordinated by Leora.

Back to Havel Havelim...
There's a nice variety of posts, even though Ya'aqov doesn't agree with all of them, including one of mine.  We jbloggers are a very heterogeneous group, so don't think that all the posts included are the same.

Happy reading, and please don't forget to comment and share, thanks.

Gmar chatima tova!
Have a wonderful and many, many more!

ps Jbloggers, please participate in the carnivals by sending in links and hosting, thanks.  Information in the linked editions.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Why The Best Wine is From HERE!

When I write "here" or "HERE" I'm referring to the Shiloh area, the genuine Bible Land, Efrayim-Menashe tribal lands.  There's an article in Arutz 7 explaining that famous French wine grapes are actually from here, brought there a millennium ago.
"The grapes used to make Chardonnay are actually grapes that the French Crusaders brought back from here," Harow stated. She said that Israeli wine experts have been explaining that the word Chardonnay actually comes from two Hebrew words meaning "gate of G-d." (Sha'ar Adonoiy)
"We tasted the award-winning wines, but there's something much more then the quality," Harow commented. "We saw the ancient wine presses and the some 2,000 little huts that were found in the regions of Ephraim and Menashe. As good as the wine was its so much more," she said. Further evidence that most French wines are named after the region from where the grapes grow, such as Burgundy and Bordeaux, however there is no such region called Chardonnay in France.
The secret is now out!

Chardonnay grapes Wikipedia
more of my grapes
my green grapes before fully ripe

No doubt in the hands of experienced winemakers fantastic wines can be made from my small vineyard.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Time Change, Again, Same Daylight, Just Earlier

As a morning person I like the fact that I'll be seeing the sun earlier in the morning, now that we won't be having daylight savings time for the next half year or so. 
Israel will revert to standard time at 02:00 tomorrow (Sunday, 23 September 2012). At that time clocks should be turned back one hour to 01:00. (GPO)

It had been bothering me that the sky was getting so depressingly dark when I wake up.  From tomorrow it will be bright, sunny and cheerful most mornings.  That is unless I have to get up very, very early.

There is one thing that bothers me.  Why should they instruct us to do it at 2am.  Do they really expect us to stay up that late?  Will we be arrested if we do it at a different hour?

Seriously, I think the announcements should say:
Before you go to sleep put back your clocks, watches etc one hour.

If I'm not mistaken, my cellphone gets set back automatically.  Hmmm... I wonder if I'm right about it.   I think that's what has happened in the past.  The big problem is that I use it as an alarm clock.  Worse comes to worse I'll just be getting up an hour early, right.  I must now look for an old-fashioned battery alarm to use, too.

This is the night we get an extra hour of sleep.  Sounds good to me.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Israel, Through New Eyes

We made aliyah forty-two 42 years ago, and we sailed here in a giant cruise liner.  That's like being captive in a hotel for almost two weeks.  Towards the end of the trip there were two stops, one in Lisbon, Portugal and the other in Piraeus, Greece.  The Israel we found was not the modern Israel of today. 

Even the wealthy of Israel in 1970 didn't live like your average American of the time.  Now aliyah is to a country that rivals any when it comes to technology and modern conveniences.  Of course there are lots of "only in Israel" things here.  After spending two thirds of my life (my entire adult life) as an Israeli, I take things for granted.  This is all normal for me.

So I got a kick out of watching the "finale" of Jamie Geller's aliyah series. 

I must admit that I didn't watch any of the previous nine of this series of ten youtube videos.  I don't know all that much about her, though I did review her book  Quick & Kosher Cookbook-Meals in Minutes.  Geller is a Jewish media star and no doubt there will be more series from her, most probably on how to use various Israeli fruits and vegetables and how to make typical Israeli foods.

My only real complaint about her video is the awe shown to the rebuilding of the Churva Synagogue.  I'm among those who feel that it should have remained a ruin to remind us that Jordan destroyed it and nobody but Jews cared.  What should be built is the Third Beit HaMikdash, Holy Temple on Har HaBayit, The Temple Mount.

I sincerely wish the Geller family yishuv tov,  a wonderful, successful and healthy life in the Holy Land.  If they decide to visit Shiloh and tour Shiloh HaKeduma at Tel Shiloh, they should give me a call.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Internet Security-- Locked Out-- Suspended

Last night I somehow found myself locked out of my own facebook account.  On one hand, I'm glad they're on the ball about trying to keep out security breaches, but, on the other hand, I was the one being locked out. 

my present profile picture
They did offer me a couple of chances to prove my own identity.  I was supposed to identify fb friends in some pictures.  The first picture seemed impossible to know who was in it.  Like most facebook users I've collect or amassed a number of fb friends whom I don't actually know or don't know well enough to greet in the street.  And many of us frequently use profile pictures that aren't quite us.  So how can I be expected to know who's in the pictures they showed me?  So I opted out and took a chance at my identity question.  Somehow, probably a spelling snafu considering the late hour and my brain's limitation after fasting and late shift at work, I goofed that one, so facebook suspended my account.

This morning I saw lots of facebook messages from various fb friends in my mailbox so I tried again.  Thankfully, facebook gave me another chance and actually asked me to identify someone I have known forever.  That was a good sign, and I easily recognized all of the other people I had to identify.  Then I had to change my password.  That is much harder, since now I have to remember the new one and the old one was so simple...

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Great Start to The New Year, KCC and HH

What a wonderful way to start the new Jewish year, 5773! Havel Havelim #377 is in MamaLand and the Tishrei Kosher Cooking Carnival is Here in HP.

Both are very nicely illustrated, but neither has its official logo.

There are lots of really good posts on both of the Jewish blog carnivals, which are like floating internet magazines.  Havel Havelim is more general, being on any sort of Jewish or Israeli topic.  And the Kosher Cooking Carnival is for blog posts about all aspects of kosher cooking.

They each have a facebook page/group to help coordinate the carnivals, Havel Havelim and Kosher Cooking Carnival. Information about hosting can be found there.

Next week's Havel Havelim will be hosted by Esser Agaroth, and next month's Kosher Cooking Carnival will be at  Adventures in Mama-Land.  Send your links for KCC to blog carnival and HH to bc or the special HH form.

Thanks to the hosts and the bloggers.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

5773, Greetings for the New Year

Yes, here's this year's fruit head. 
Be a head or ahead and not a tail nor a tale-teller, either.

This year's head is based on a lemon, no, not a lemon like our first washing machine that kept breaking down.  I mean a lemon for its vitamins and minerals, magic healing properties.  I drink water with freshly squeezed lemon juice whenever I'm not feeling well.  I find it much more effective than most potions and medicines, from the conventional to the exotic.  Try it the next time you have a cold, sore throat or flu.

The grape if from our garden, our personal, family vineyard.  In Jewish lore grapes are symbols of fertility and the Shiloh/Shomron area are specifically mentioned in the Bible as a prime grape-growing are.  His eyes are raisins which are dried grapes.

And he's wearing a crown of an olive branch.  OK, that may be a bit Greek, but Israel's Paralympic athletes did win quite a few medals.  Olives are also mentioned in the Bible.  Olive oil was used for many things including anointing our kings.  G-d willing it will be used to anoint the Moshiach, speedily in our days...

Sunday, September 16, 2012

What's Rosh HaShannah Really About?

As I get ready to go to work, I have had to force myself out of the cooking/cleaning mode of Rosh HaShannah, the Jewish New Year and begin to remind myself that feasting and entertaining aren't the most important aspects of the Holiday.

It doesn't really matter if you're serving a three, four or five course meal and have lots new clothes to wear.  It doesn't even matter if your house is totally spic 'n span or not.

We are supposed to get to shul to hear the blasts of the shofar resound, but for women, it's a technicality that we may miss if it just is impossible logistically and there's nobody who can come to blow shofar for you at home.

No doubt that I'm not the only one who finds myself losing track of the true purpose of this season.  It's not the material, nor the culinary.

It's internal, no, not physical, not at all.

We're supposed to be doing our inventory on our lives, behavior to others and to G-d.   It's not the honey we eat that makes us sweet, it's the way we speak to and treat other people.  And if we're nasty and obsessive about keeping mitzvot G-d's commandments then they don't register with G-d the way we had intended.

May we learn how to focus and act the way we are supposed to.  We needn't just ask G-d to show us mercy.  We must show mercy to others.

May we all be blessed with success in all that is truly important, good health and wise judgement.

May we all have a true Shannah Tova u'Metukah!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

For A Healthy New Year

In less a day it'll already be another year according to the Jewish Calendar, 5773.  Yes, it'll be Rosh Hashannah.  It's a two day holiday.  The custom is however you start the year will reflect on that future year.  It's customary to start the holiday meal with "simmanim," "signs."  There are the very traditional ones like apple and honey for a sweet year and lots of different puns using the names of foods for a good wish.
Many people use some sort of fish or animal head as a centerpiece on their table. 
“May it be God’s will that we will be the head and not the tail.”


And if you use a fruit head, then you're asking for a healthy year!

Friday, September 14, 2012

There's a Price...

This isn't what I had planned on writing, but...

According to Jewish Law, there are many things we are forbidden to do on Shabbat.  If, and it has happened to many of us, suddenly an electric appliance or light bulb goes out and suddenly stops the electricity, even if it's just a few minutes after the very beginning of Shabbat, we must leave it all alone and not fix it, flip the fuse back on.

There are ways to get it done, like finding a non-Jew who can somehow understand the hints.  It's forbidden to outright request the act to be done.

Way back in the late 1960's when I was a "Stern girl," on rare, extremely rare occasions a radio alarm would go off on Shabbat blaring unacceptable noise in the dormitory.  Then we'd make our way to the entrance and "hint" to the non-Jewish guard that we needed help because of awful noises in room --.

For the first couple of decades here in Shiloh we had no way find a local non-Jew.  There just wasn't anyone. If there were some types of general problems with water and electricity that could be easily fixed locally, then the rabbi would sometimes say it could be done, but not in private homes unless life was really in danger. 

On occasions as we've gotten older, so have our parents and some parents live here or visit over Shabbat with non-Jewish caregivers.  Those families find their Shabbat frequently disturbed by requests for the non-Jew to fix some electrical problem. 

One family just sent out an email notice that their resident non-Jewish caregiver, who is responsible for giving 24/7 care to a very handicapped person is feeling very abused by all these requests, and they are tired of all of the knocks on the door waking them up.  From now on, if anyone needs such help, they will have to pay the non-Jew immediately after Shabbat.

There's something we must all remember about the caregivers.  They are hired to take care of the handicapped full-time, day and night and frequently don't get much sleep. They are not supposed to be leaving the home where they work, so when people ask them for favors it's a real problem, morally and legally.

Shabbat Shalom

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Joining the Pilgrimage to Tel Shiloh

Last night at the (now annual?) Tfillat Chana at Shiloh HaKeduma, Ancient (Biblical) Shiloh at Tel Shiloh were innumerable, certainly thousands, of females, mostly high school students.  There were also older women of all ages from all over the country.

The Rabbanit Yemima joked that women coming before Rosh Hashannah to pray at Tel Shiloh is our response to the men who have been filling airplanes to Uman this week, so they can spend Rosh Hashannah at Rebbe Nachman's grave.

The popular speaker Rabbanit Yemima Mizrachi explained why she had returned to Shiloh.  Last year she had prayed for another child, and just a couple of months ago, she gave birth to a baby boy.  So, Rabbanit Yemima Mizrachi's a believer in the power of the shechina (G-d's presence) that still hovers in Tel Shiloh, where the Mishkan, Holy Tabernacle had stood almost four hundred years and the Biblical Chana had prayed.


Tel Shiloh is a large park by Israeli standards.  Going there to pray doesn't mean subjecting yourself to the crowds you'd find in the popular tombs and cemeteries like Kever Rachel.  It's possible to also arrange a tour, picnic, visit the souvineer shop and small restaurant.  For more information call 02-994-4019.

I go with friends to pray there every Rosh Chodesh.  Next Rosh Chodesh is Cheshvan:

Women's Prayers at Tel Shiloh
Rosh Chodesh Cheshvan
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
30 Tishrei 5773 8:30am
Tour of Tel & Dvar Torah, Short Torah Lesson
Please come and invite family, friends and neighbors
תפילת נשים
ראש חודש חשון בתל שילה
יום ג' 16-10 ל' תשרי תשע"ג 8:30
יהיה דבר תורה קצר וסיור בתל
נא לבוא, לפרסם ולהזמין חברות, משפחה ושכנות

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Get a Headstart on the New Year

Have a healthy one!  I've been making fruit and vegetable heads the past few years.  This "still life for Rosh Hashannah" is as healthy and traditional as you can get.

I'm going to ditto, recommend Ya'aqov's Rosh Hashannah Challenge.  It deals with human relations, bein adam v'chavero.  I really don't think there's anything more important than this.

We must remember that all the teshuva, repentance we do to G-d is worthless if we don't repair our relations with other people.  G-d can't fix it; only we can.  A "thank you," a smile and a helping hand go a very long way.  These are mitzvot, no less than eating the most mehadrin foods.  It's a tough one for us all, so let's all try.

Shannah Tovah to all!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Only in Israel: Babysitting in the Cemetery

Yesterday was an azkara, memorial for a neighbor who had passed away from cancer a few years ago.  I ended up next to a good friend who is also a very veteran immigrant, though not from the United States.  Even though our backgrounds are actually very different and we've both spent two-thirds of our lives here in Israel, there are times we're both taken aback by major cultural differences that exist between our childhood home cultures and are present one.

We suddenly found ourselves babysitting for the infant granddaughter of the deceased when the young mother suddenly wanted to stand with her siblings and father closer to the grave.

"A baby at a cemetery?"  My neighbor whispered to me with that familiar "only in Israel shrug." 

There were other grandchildren attending, though not as many as at azkarot of other friends, but no doubt with time will will be many more.  Our friend was pretty young when she died, and it was just a few years ago.  Now more of her children are married and parents.  As the grandchildren increase and grow older, they'll be joining us all visiting their savta, grandmother by her grave, unless the Moshiach comes beforehand and there will be T'chiyat HaMeittim, resurrection of the dead.

In Israel cemeteries, funerals and azkarot aren't "adults only."  Children grow up learning about life and death and remembering.  That's what an "azkara" is.  It's from the Hebrew זכר the root "remember."  It is a joy and comfort to see children attending these events, knowing that although our friends no longer breathe the air of life, there is a new generation that although may never have known them, they know of them.  The children can see that we must remember and pay homage to the dead.

I think that the Israeli custom of welcoming children to cemeteries is the right one.  This way children know that the dead didn't desert them and disappear.  The dead can still be visited and there's a presence always.

Shiloh Cemetery- photo by Batya Medad
When I was three and a half my grandfather passed away.  This was the third death in my mother's family in well under a year.  First her mother died and a half-year later her eldest brother.  I had become very close to my grandfather during this time, as he lived with us for a few weeks here and there.  I kept asking to see him and didn't know what it meant, his being "dead" and all.  Even the most precocious child has no concept of death.

Finally, someone suggested to my mother that she do the unthinkable and take me to the grave.  I remember that I had been prepared with explanations that he was "underground," so I pictured the New York City Subways, thinking that we'd go down the steps and I'd find him, and he'd talk to me that way he used to.  Instead, we were in some park-like place and I met a "grave" for the very first time.  It was not at all traumatic; it was a relief.  I finally knew where my grandfather's body was.  His neshama, his soul is with me still almost sixty years later.  He was a very religious, Torah observant man, and I have no doubt that my being who and what I am today is a result of the things he told and taught me when I was just three years old.

Li'ilui Nishmato: Avraham ben Avraham
May his soul ascend higher: Avraham ben Avraham,
named after his father who had been murdered before he was born.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Fantastically Simple Quinoa

I'm a fan of the one-pot meal, and my quinoa recipe is to be made in one covered pot or large frying pan, yes, covered of course.

Quinoa is pretty new to most pantries, and many people haven't yet tried it, neither tasted it nor cooked it.  Have no fear.  It's a lot easier to eat and prepare than tofu and costs far less, too. 

Actually I just cooked myself a quinoa lunch.  And as it cools, I'm blogging the recipe.

I sauteed (in a covered frying pan) an, onion, a carrot and a green squash with a bit of oil.  When it was just starting to smell like it was cooking, I added a couple of tablespoons of quinoa and some boiling water.  Sorry, but I can't give exact quantities, since I didn't weigh or measure anything. 

I left it all to cook covered on a low flame until most of the water was absorbed, and then I turned off the flame and let it finish on its own.

You may certainly add whatever spices, herbs etc you like.

#376 Havel Havelim Beneath the Wings

Alpine flowers survive
 in the cold tundra climate.
 "Courage does not always roar.
 Sometimes it is the quiet voice
  at the end of the day saying
"Tomorrow I will try again".
Rickismom, who will always be Rickismom, is the host of this week's Havel Havelim.  It's hard to believe that we're at #376 already.  It has been a very long time since Soccer Dad decided to organize a Jewish blog carnival, floating internet magazine on Jewish and Israeli topics.  I used to be a frequent host when our numbers were just in the double digits.  Now I'm more behind the scenes, helping to coordinate via our facebook page and blog carnival account.  I really appreciate those who step in a host our weekly carnivals.

There's a nice variety of blog posts.  Please read, comment and share; especially share this Havel Havelim in your blog, facebook, twitter or email the link to friends.
If you'd like to participate by sending in links to your posts or something suitable you've seen,  just the immediate week, not something old, then either use the blog carnival form (must sign-up for it--very simple) or check out alternate ways on facebookOur facebook page is also where you can offer to host an edition.  It's not hard and is a great way to get your blog more exposure.
And just to remind you, there are two other Jewish blog carnivals, the Kosher Cooking Carnival and JPIXKosher Cooking Carnival- Submit your links via blog carnivalTo host contact me  Please join our facebook pageJPIX-To host contact Leora.  Submit your links on the special form

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Sometimes What Seems "Crazy" is Really the Most Sane

No doubt our family and many friends, even the Zionists, thought we were nuts when we boarded the Greek Line Annamarie barely two months after our wedding in 1970.  In some ways it was crazy.  We had no real idea what we would need for our life in Israel or how to pack.  We under-packed what we could take for free, in terms of the cubic feet, and we filled up the tiny stateroom (bunkbeds and the shaliach said we would get the honeymoon suite) with all sorts of unnecessary things that should have had been boxed in the hold.

Yes, we were two young and dumb kids, officially newlyweds off to a new and no doubt exciting life in the HolyLand.

Insane as it seemed then and reflecting on it now, it still seems crazy, it still was one of the wisest things we could ever have done.

So many people we know had the same dreams, and they are still dreaming far away.  The lucky ones have children and grandchildren here in Israel, so they visit, even when they can't afford it.

I blogged a bit of our story on Shiloh Musings.

Living in Shiloh puts us in the very center of Biblical topography and agriculture.

טז וְיֵשׁ-תִּקְוָה לְאַחֲרִיתֵךְ, נְאֻם-יְהוָה; וְשָׁבוּ בָנִים, לִגְבוּלָם. {ס} 16 And there is hope for thy future, saith the LORD; and thy children shall return to their own border. {S}
Jeremiah Chapter 31 יִרְמְיָהוּ

Saturday, September 08, 2012

Easy, Healthy and Yummy Vegetables

A few years I picked up some pretty bake and serve pie pans, not that I ever bake pies.  They are usually used to make all sorts of baked vegetable dishes.  I like using them, because I think they look nice on the table.

Sorry, I only have pictures from before baking them.  I made these Friday afternoon and didn't take them out of the oven until the meal, and then I couldn't photograph how they looked.

One has three orange vegetables, carrots, sweet potatoes and pumpkin with grated ginger root and a bit of oil.  The oil is important, because Vitamin A and the other vitamins in orange vegetables are absorbed via fats/oils

In the other pie dish I put an eggplant, which I opened by slicing twice as you can see.  Inside I placed some onion and garlic.  And I also poured a bit of oil.

They were both easy to prepare, bake in a hot oven and serve.

Friday, September 07, 2012

Sad, Season's End

Early next week we won't see this:

The fence will be bare, and the pool will be empty.

No more diamond shimmer sparkling from the sun.

Neither the bathtub nor small private pool can be a substitute for this.

Chairs will be stored away and lovely lawn deserted.

This is the last day of the season.  We may never have a Shiloh Pool like this again, since we've been told by the authorities to build something new.   Contributions are welcome.