Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Shopping, School Supplies to Wear, Don't Wait

The other day at work, Yafiz, Sha'ar Binyamin, we redid the store.  Our big sale is over and we're getting ready for school.

We also got in gorgeous clothes for the "chaggim," Jewish Holidays- Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Succot and Simchat Torah.  But I didn't take pictures yesterday, because I was certain that I had photographed them on Sunday.  Sorry, that just means that I'll have to post an additional blog about the store.

There are still lots of bathing suits for sale at very reasonable prices, including the tzniusdik, "modest" ones.  I saw similar styles in Jerusalem for almost double the price.  As soon as the first delivery of the two-piece short sleeved top and shorts for girls arrived I called my daughter to get approval to buy for the older granddaughters.  When the season opened the manufacturer only made them in women's sizes, but we and no doubt others requested smaller sizes.  So now we have them to sell and they are popular.  Last year many girls bought boys bathing trunks and wore them with tee shirts.

For the past few years in Israel there has been a law requiring school uniforms.  No, these aren't the type my eldest wore when we were in London. It's much simpler, less uniform here.  Depending on the school there are requirements for whatever skirts or slacks/shorts to be worn with plain tee shirts of various colors and sleeve lengths that have the school's logo ironed onto it. 

We have one of those heavy industrial irons and a wide variety of iron-on logos for schools in the area.  If you buy a shirt from us, the logo is free, but if you bring in a shirt from home or another store, you pay for the logo and the service of ironing it onto the shirt.

Since school let out, we've had a special sale on "school shirts," so many families have already stocked up and aren't waiting until the last minute.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Is There a Word Other Than "Brilliant" for This?

OK fellas, caption this!

Nu?  You must have something to say about this.  I was sure glad that I had my camera with me.  The next time I passed it was filled with drying laundry.

Monday, July 29, 2013

A Soldier's Mother's HH

This week's Havel Havelim is hosted by A Soldier's Mother.  Paula's blog, A Soldier's Mother is a very successful and popular blog, and I'm glad that it participates in Havel Havelim, which is the most veteran of all the Jewish blog carnivals.  Actually, HH is one of the all-time veteran blog carnivals.  It's a round up of posts from Jewish and Israeli blogs on all Jewish or Israeli topics from all over the world.

We use our facebook page to "coordinate," announce or volunteer who's hosting.  You're welcome to volunteer to host an edition.  I'll coach you through if needed.  Send your link or any relevant link from another blog in via blog carnival to be part of Havel Havelim.  I keep the page there up to date, so your link will go to the right host blogger.  Next week's host is Rafi's Life in Israel

PS Next week will be the Rosh Chodesh Ellul edition of the monthly Kosher Cooking Carnival.  KCC also has a facebook page.  It will be hosted by Culinart Kosher and you can send in your posts via blog carnival.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Challot Were a Success and a Prayer

Among other things, mainly vegetables and grapes, we brought challot I had made a couple of weeks ago to our married daughter and the grandkids.

I must admit that I didn't quite follow a recipe.  I concentrated on positive, good thoughts and prayers as I mixed and kneaded and tried to get the dough just right.  It's generally recommended to knead at least six minutes.

And I prayed for my kids that they would rise to all occasions, be healthy and strong and connected to G-d. 
Raising kids is much more difficult than making a beautiful tasty challah.
We do our best, and hope the recipe is good and the temperature right and our hands strong enough.  A challah is just a challah, made for eating, but our kids are our real treasures.  May G-d help us.
This is an approximation of the challah recipe:
1 c sugar (dark brown)
2 T dehydrated yeast
3 1/2 c warm water
1 c oil
 2 eggs (medium or smallish by American standards)
1 kilo or more of wholewheat flour
1 kilo or more white flour, alternate flours when adding to get a mix
It's hard to know the exact quantity of flour
mix sugar, yeast, water, oil a cup of flour
cover with plastic and let sit until bubbly and rising
add the eggs and flour, mixing as you go, then knead until it doesn't stick to your hands
coat with oil, cover with plastic and wait until it's at least doubled
"punch it down"
optional let it rise again
shape the challah
let it rise
bake, start  in an oven hotter than for a cake and then lower the heat until cooler than a cake after the outside begins to get a light brown
It's ready when the bottom is hard and there's a hollow sound when you tap it

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Tada.... FINALLY!

Yes, the grapes are ripe for picking and eating!  We brought a lot to the kiddies for Shabbat.  I had the little ones telling me in English how many they wanted at a time:

"one, two, three"

And suddenly when I asked them, my grandson said:

So I gave him six!  That's a good way to get them using a bit of English.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Very Israeli! Is it "Only in Israel?"

What other countries in the world have this?

Not long after Israel stopped using glass milk bottles, the milk industry went to the other extreme and began marketing milk in plastic bags.  So we got these plastic containers for the bags.  You have to cut the corner of the bag to get the milk out.  I've seen people use scissors a knife and even their teeth.

Nowadays you have a choice in milk "containers."  Most stores still sell bagged milk; though our local store doesn't.  There are waxed cardboard containers and plastic "jugs" of milk, too.  Only the plastic is used for the lager quantities.  The reason our grocer (supermarket owner,) who also owns a couple of other large stores, hates the mess the bags make.  A percentage of bags always rip, making the storage area in refrigerator wet and smelly.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Simply Delicious

It really is easy to cook vegetables.

Look at this:

You can see how little work is was to make. 
  • I lined the baking pan with cut onion.
  • Then I quartered a beet
  • and sliced a sweet potato
  • and then an eggplant
  • and placed some garlic in the spaces
  • finally I dribbled some oil and baked it.
Because of the bake and serve dish it looked impressive.

Either serve as a side dish or with techina and some salad.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

An "Only in Israel Story," At The Bank

Yesterday I finally made it to downtown Jerusalem aka "Jerusalem Center" as it's called on the lightrail.  One of my stops was the bank to open one of our small savings to pay for a few wedding expenses, since a son is G-d willing getting married soon.

It's possible to do these things by internet and other impersonal ways, but I'm just too much a "people person" and just like to deal with real live breathing talking listening people.  I guess that's why I enjoy working in a store.  I just can't understand how people buy things online.  I have to feel the fabric, even if I don't try it on. Though I must try on shoes or I can never know if they will be comfortable.  Back to the story.

Our bank branch always has these things changed, like who and where and how to find the clerk to handle such matters.  I went to where I had taken care of things just over a year ago.  The clerk there sent me to the other side of the bank.  Over there they told me to go upstairs.  There a cute little "helper guide" told me to tap in my number onto a computer screen.  Well somehow my "taps" weren't strong enough, so she did it for me.  I was given a receipt with my "number."  I was told to wait until I was called. 

A minute later I heard my number and was told to go up to "the express bank clerk" who was right next to where I was waiting.  I told her what I needed to do. Of course I couldn't remember the name of the sort of account I needed to open, but she knew.  This is done all the time here.  And since I had, with the help of the young helper, typed in my number, she knew who I was and all my bank business etc.  At least it was on the screen in front of her.

"No problem," she said.  "It'll be in your account tomorrow.  My neighbor has daughters still single.  Maybe you have sons for them?"
"I also have single daughters."

just as an example of  a Jewish wedding
None of the ages/sexes matched up. And then we began talking and blessing each other.  I was in tears by the time I left the bank.  Such blessings, G-d willing...

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A Mazal Tov to The Royal Family

Nu, so it's a boy for Kate and Will.  Yesterday, when I went off to work, Kate, aka The Duchess of Cambridge was working on her labour.  At work I heard nothing.  I'm not "connected" as the saying goes, nor do I work online.  And my phone is dumb.  Even worse, nobody called me with the good news.

A formal bulletin confirming the birth of a baby boy has been displayed at Buckingham Palace
The official bulletin announcing the birth
The official bulletin was signed by members of the medical team at the hospital
    The Duchess of Cambridge has given birth to a baby boy. The baby was delivered at 16:24 BST at St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, west London, weighing 8lb 6oz. You can follow all the reaction here.
    The official announcement of the birth has been posted on an easel in front of Buckingham Palace.
    The news came via an announcement from Kensington Palace. The Duke of Cambridge was present for the birth.
    The Prince of Wales said that he was "enormously proud and happy to be a grandfather for the first time", adding that it was "an incredibly special moment for William and Catherine".

It wasn't newsworthy in Sha'ar Binyamin and Yafiz where I had been working until late yesterday.  Nobody mentioned the royal couple or anything at all about what was happening in London.  The only news our customers cared about was how long the big sale would be going on and if we had the sizes and clothes they wanted to buy.  Newsworthy  was the fact that we now have child-size modest bathing suits, a two-piece which is a shirtsleeve shirt and shorts for girls.  I bought for my older granddaughters literally the minute they had arrived on Sunday.  Luckily I was just going to leave for home and waited until they had been readied for sale.

Life in my part of the world has different priorities.  I don't think we'll be selling any of those "royal baby souvenirs."


Monday, July 22, 2013

Awarded By and To...

One of my favorite bloggers, Leora of  Sketching Out  awarded me with Liebster Blog Award.  I'm not quite sure what that means, but here are the rules:

If you have been nominated below for The Liebster Award and you choose to accept it, write a blog post about the Liebster award in which you:
  1. Thank the person who nominated you, and post a link on your blog.
  2. Display the award on your blog by including it in your post and/or displaying it using a widget.
  3. Answer the 11 questions about yourself, provided to you by the person who nominated you.
  4. Give 11 random facts about yourself. (Note: I skipped this; long enough already!)
  5. Nominate 5 to 11 blogs that you feel deserve the award; who have less than 1000 followers.
  6. Create a new list of questions for the nominated bloggers to answer.
  7. List these rules in your post. (You can copy and paste them from here.)
  8. Once you have written your post and published it, you then have to inform the bloggers whom you’ve nominated for the Liebster award. Remember to give a link for them to your post so that they can learn about it (they might not have ever heard of it!)
Reciprocation by the nominees is entirely optional.

11 questions for those who accept Liebster Blog Award from Leora:

  1. Who is your favorite author? Michael Connelly
  2. What is your favorite blog topic? Oops! That is a very tough question, since I blog on two blogs.
  3. Favorite social media site? Besides blogging?  The only one I "do" is facebook.
  4. Topic of your most popular blog post ever? the easiest cake recipe is the most popular/viewed post, but I'm pretty sure that Totally Amazing Challah Shaping Tutorial  will top it soon.
  5. Where did your best vacation take place? Vacation?  I really don't vacation ever.  But we made aliyah by boat, and that was amazing.
  6. What is your strongest childhood memory? My grandfather died when I was three and a half.  I missed him desperately, and my parents eventually had to take me to the cemetery to see where he was.  
  7. What is your favorite online recipe? My own geffilte fish recipe, since I no longer have a copy of it on the inner door of a kitchen closet.  I just look it up on my blog.
  8. Which topics do you talk about in person but avoid discussing online? My husband and certain things about the family.
  9. What is your favorite film/movie? That's a tough question.  I hardly watch movies, though I adore them.  I have a humongous collection of movie DVDs.  I love musicals, such as Five Pennies and Phantom of the Opera.  I watch and rewatch movies I like.
  10. What is your favorite fairy tale? Gevalt, Leora, you sure ask difficult questions!
  11. Name a historical leader that influenced you.  I guess I must say Ze'ev Jabotinsky, who tried bringing Zionism to the Jewish People.  Plain ordinary Zionism, not socialist.  He established Betar, and I became a Zionist through Betar.
And here are my awardees:
Beneath the Wings
Phyllis, Superman Sam and Ima on and off the Bima
Ruti- Ki Yachol Nuchal!
Jen, Adventures in Mamaland and Aliyahland
Our shiputzim
Miriam's Words
Tikkun Olam

There are many other blogs I follow, but I listed here the ones I think are the lesser known, although blogged by serious bloggers.

11 Questions for my awardee bloggers:
  1. How did you start to blog?
  2. What's your favorite blogging topic?
  3. How often do you blog?
  4. What does your family think of your blogging?
  5. What advice do you have for newbie bloggers?
  6. How do you publicize/promote your blog/s, and if you don't, why?
  7. How long does it take for you to write a typical blog post?
  8. Blog carnivals, do you participate?
  9. Give the "why" and "which ones" to your answer of question #8.
  10. What's the purpose/aim of your blog/s?
  11. How has blogging affected your life?
I'm looking forward to the responses of the prize winners.  Leora, thanks.  I hope that I followed the rules. 

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Ruti's Havel Havelim, Yes, She Can Do It!

This week's Havel Havelim is on one of my favorite blogs Ki Yachol Nuchal! עָלֹה נַעֲלֶה וְיָרַשְׁנוּ אֹתָהּ--כִּי-יָכוֹל נוּכַל, לָהּ. - "We shall ascend and conquer it, for we can surely do it!"

Ruti has included a fantastic variety of blog posts.  Visit and share; I'm sure you'll find plenty of great things to read.

Next week's host is A Soldier's Mother, another of my favorites.  If you have a link to submit, please send it in via blog carnival.  There's an easy sign up process.  More information including how to volunteer to host can be found on our facebook page.  Hosting is easy, because blog carnival will send you links all set up.  You just have to edit out any spam, add whatever other links you want and some spiel and optional pictures.

There's also the monthly Kosher Cooking Carnival.  It also has a facebook page, where we coordinate hosts, and gets posts via blog carnival.  Next month's KCC is a debut by Culinart Kosher.

If you have any questions about these two Jewish blog carnivals, please contact me, thanks.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Very Grown Up!

The young lady pictured here will be starting the next stage in her education in just over a month.

She'll be starting gan, nursery school.  She'll be in for a disappointment, since she thinks she's going to SCHOOL like all her elder siblings.  In her mind she's the same as they are.  I'm sure you can see that.  Can't you?

Thursday, July 18, 2013

There's Lots to Do in Shiloh This Summer

This is cross-posted in Shiloh Musings.

There are archeological excavations going on all the time at Tel Shiloh.  Besides that the new "tower" has opened, which includes  a fascinating movie about Biblical Shiloh.   In addition there will be our annual events, the TU B'Av Dancing in the Vineyards, on Sunday July 21 and T'fillat Chana, again featuring Rabbanit Yemima Mizrachi on Wed. August  28. For more information try  emailing or call 02-994-4019.

Besides all of these large events, we still come to pray every Rosh Chodesh at Tel Shiloh.

Women's Prayers at Tel Shiloh
Rosh Chodesh Ellul
Wednesday, August 7, 2013
1 Ellul 5773, 8:30am
Tour of Tel & Dvar Torah, Short Torah Lesson
Please come and invite family, friends and neighbors

תפילת נשים
ראש חודש אלול בתל שילה

יום ד' 7-8 א' אלול תשע"ג 8:30
יהיה דבר תורה קצר וסיור בתל
 כדאי לבוא ולהזמין חברות, משפחה ושכנות

You're welcome to join us.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Never Too Late, Forgiveness and Comfort

Yesterday was Tisha B'Av, the ninth of the Jewish Month of Av, a day full of tragedy in Jewish History.  Our sages tell us that the Second Temple was destroyed because of sins between people, holding grudges and taking out revenge.

My mother passed away just a month ago, and I'm finishing off an extended* shloshim, the thirty days from burial, a period of time in which the mourner is required to restrict oneself from pleasures, such as luxuriating in a bathtub, wearing new clothes, cutting hair, manicures/pedicures, listening to music, going to social events etc.  For most mourners, that is those who are mourning a spouse, sibling or child, the official mourning ends with the shloshim, but for a parent it lasts a full twelve months (according to the Jewish Calendar.)  The additional months are less restrictive; the hygienic acts of bathing/swimming, haircutting, manicures/pedicures are allowed.

Jewish Law requires a mourner to be comforted all during that mourning period, even after the seven day shiva has ended.  My shiva for my mother was international.  I began it immediately after the funeral in Long Island, NY, at my cousin's home, then I was in Westchester, NY at my sister-in-law's, then to JFK International Airport where people who realized I was in "shiva mode" with ripped shirt and slippers, said the traditional words of comfort and then I flew home to Shiloh where I completed the shiva.  Obviously I didn't have too long a time in any one place.

I can probably list almost everyone who did manage to visit or call during the shiva. That's bad.  It means that I have wondered why some people hadn't.  Their absence wasn't lost on me.  In some cases, I was (even am) very upset and surprised.  But then one by one, I have gotten calls, or people have stopped me in the street apologizing effusively for missing the shiva.  Last night one neighbor came over, not wanting to take a short-cut in comforting me.  It's a good thing we haven't yet rehung the pictures nor put away all the photo albums.

Of that list of people, almost everyone has since spoken to me.  There are still a couple whose absence really hurts.  I was planning on letting it fester, but then inspired by a wonderful blog post by my friend Ruti, I realized that it would be a terrible mistake.

None of us are perfect.  I'm sure I have unintentionally and inadvertently hurt or offended many.  If I decide to forgive those who have hurt me, there's a chance that I, too, will be forgiven.  It's never too late to forgive and comfort, but don't procrastinate any more.

* My shloshim for my mother is longer than thirty days, because the funeral was four days after her death, and we count it from the funeral, not the day of death.

my mother with a great-granddaughter

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

We're Getting Closer

Every week or so I've been updating you with pictures of the grapes!  Li'at, li'at as they say in Hebrew, slowly, slowly.

When the dark grapes are dark purple they are ready.  Closer to the house there are green grapes.  They ripen even later on in the summer. They must be translucent to be ripe and sweet.  Now they look waxy, like cheap wax ones.

Monday, July 15, 2013

אין מילים Ain Milim, No Words

There are times when the best response is:
אין מילים Ain Milim, No Words

And that's how I feel right now.  When certain tragedies occur, no words will help, therefore that's the best response.  Generally by talking we just make things worse, very unintentionally of course.

Sympathy and support can be conveyed by a look straight in the eye, a pat on the shoulder, a hug or just holding or gripping hands.

Silence says the most.  Absence and the wrong words are the worst.  There are tragedies that put everything into a new more accurate perspective of good and bad, happy and sad.

This will have to suffice for now.

Tzom kal, an easy fast.  May we soon merit the Moshiach and return to the living of those who have passed away.  May Tisha B'Av be a feast day for all, G-d willing.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Two Super Simple Ways to Cook Chicken Breasts

I found, post-shiva, a bag of "something unrecognizable" in the freezer.  When sitting shiva, one isn't supposed to handle the mundane tasks of the house.  My kids took over, and here I am almost a month later still trying to get it to its usual mess.  I have found various foods in the freezer which I am 100% certain I didn't buy.  Among them was a bag of chicken breasts, which I took out to cook for Shabbat.  I don't know what the kids had planned on doing with them, but I made two different things.  We were expecting guests, so I felt like having something a bit different.

#1 I sliced up an eggplant, and lined the bake and serve pan with it.  Then I placed the chicken breasts and topped them with onions, tomatoes and some spices.  I dribbled just a drop of oil, put it in the oven and baked it.  You really can't get easier than that.  It's also very dietetic. 

#2  There were too many to fit in the bake and serve pan, so I took the rest and prepare them in a small frying pan.  First I cut up onions and placed them in the frying pan, then the chicken breasts and topped them with a  fresh tomato.  When that was ready, I wrapped it in foil and put it in the freezer.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Thieves in Broad Daylight!

Look carefully, do you see those "cute" furry animals?  Well, they aren't all that cute to the neighbors who have found their gardens, trees, flowers, vegetables etc destroyed by them.  Poisons can't be used against them, because they are "protected."  They are called hyraxes shefanai sela.

The lawmakers who made those laws obviously haven't suffered from the damage my neighbors have.  Those thieves have no fear.  They are enjoying the landscaping and destroying it so humans won't get any enjoyment.  They have cost neighbors thousands of shekels in damaged plants, from flowers to fruit trees.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Does Your Whiskey Need a "Hechsher" to Be Kosher?

I'm not a whiskey drinker.  Water, wine and a very occasional beer are my limit. But for those Torah observant Jews who like their drinks serious and strong, whiskey is their favorite.

If you're not yet familiar with Jewniverse, now's the time. You may like to get into this article about kosher whiskey.
But obtaining the certification isn’t easy. Over the years, distilleries acquire hundreds of oak casks for aging their whiskey, and their origins are generally unknown. Many of the casks are assumed to have housed sherry in the past, which, as wine, is subject to much stricter kashrut scrutiny. So kosher scotch-makers like Glenmorangie have to know exactly what’s been in their casks.

Bottoms up!

Good Reading for the Nine Days

Here's the latest Havel Havelim...

Enjoy and join in our community.  Share, share, yes, please share the post.


Thursday, July 11, 2013

Still Writing That Journal

It's almost four weeks since my mother passed away in Tempe, AZ, very quietly and undramatically while napping after breakfast.  Since I played no part in planning the funeral, and due to American laws and customs, the funeral was a half a week later.  That left me in a very strange halachik Jewish Law status.  There wasn't all that much I was permitted to do, or really felt like doing.  It also took a couple of days until I knew for sure when the funeral would even be, which delayed the purchase of plane tickets to New York.

I kvetched on facebook about my forced inactivity, no going to work, no reading fun books, no watching TV or movies etc.  David Bedein--Behind the News in Israel quickly came up with a suggestion:
"You're a writer; keep a journal.  If you don't have a laptop to take around when you're traveling, get an old-fashioned notebook."

So I sent my husband to the local store and he got me a small (half-size) notebook.  It's a amazing how quickly it began to fill.  I wrote a lot.  I started it when I was home. I wrote when in the airport, on the plane, at my sister-in-law's, again in the airport, airplane then home in between shiva visitors.  I even had to ask my sister-in-law to buy me another one. (She got me a set of three from Staples.) I take the notebook all the time with me and write on buses and when waiting and at home and babysitting at my daughter's.  I admit that sometimes days pass when I haven't found or made the time to write, but when I write there's so much to write.

When I began writing it, I figured that it would be a good activity for the first thirty days, aka שלושים Shloshim.  In my mother's case it's really more than thirty days, since the halachik end of shloshim is calculated according to burial, and hers was delayed a couple of days.  Since I haven't committed to saying a daily Yizkor, I did not think I needed the year of reflection that Ari L. Goldman used to frame his memoir of his father, Living a Year of Kaddish, which my friend lent me, so I'd have something permitted/suitable to read.

The Goldman book was the perfect book for me to read at the time.  It's honest and reflective.  It doesn't claim perfection, not of his father nor himself.

Ari Goldman is a well-known published writer, not a blogger.  He wrote an excellent book, which I recommend reading. 

I do plan on "doing something" with this journal I'm writing, most probably make it into an e-book, which can be accessed through one of those e-publishers, or whatever.  If by some strange unexpected miracle, the book gains some commercial popularity then maybe there would be a paper version.  But the main reason for writing this journal is, like my blogging, to keep me sane and express my thoughts and feelings.  It's not meant to be a classic biography or autobiography.  It is a memoir with all the quirks characteristic of that genre.
Memoir (from French: mémoire: memoria, meaning memory or reminiscence), is a literary nonfiction genre. More specifically, it is a collection of memories that an individual writes about moments or events, both public or private that took place in the author's life. The assertions made in the work are understood to be factual. While memoir has historically been defined as a subcategory of autobiography since the late 20th century, the genre is differentiated in form, presenting a narrowed focus. Like most autobiographies, memoirs are written from the first-person point of view. An autobiography tells the story of a life, while memoir tells a story from a life, such as touchstone events and turning points from the author's life. The author of a memoir may be referred to as a memoirist.
I've been including things that some people may find unpleasant, but that's all from my truth, how I remember my mother, my life.  None of us are perfect, and if life was perfect, it would make a very boring read.

PS re: the old-fashioned pen and paper method of writing
I actually find it much more efficient and less distracting than when I type on a computer.  At first my handwriting was terribly "rusty."  I wasn't used to writing more than a few words by hand.  But now I really enjoy sitting with my little spiral notebook and pen.  Of course there will be a need to type it all up, but that will be the first stage of editing, no doubt. I'm not the type to hold a laptop on my lap in all sorts of places.  I don't even have one of those lightweight computers.  I do my "heavy typing" on a pc in the den.  The dining room laptop, lives on the dining room table during the week.  It's more tiring to type on that the pc.  I was taught touch-typing in the 7th grade, JHS 74, over half a century ago. I need a good standard, old-fashioned keyboard.  Or I need a pen and paper.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Yes, I Guess I'm Human

I'm one of those people who jump up with my alarm if not sooner.  I can become pretty intolerant when hearing people talk about always being late and not hearing their alarms.  But yesterday was a rare one. I slept through my alarm. 

I had a mid-morning study date with my Matan Al HaPerek chevruta buddies.  To get to my friend's apartment I didn't need to leave all that early, but I always get up at least two hours before I have to leave the house to drink my water and coffee, shower, dress, doven, have breakfast etc*.  I hate starting off the day rushing and panicking.

At about 2am I awake and couldn't fall back to sleep.  Too many things were swirling in my mind.  I didn't even fall asleep on the couch.  I tried drinking water and having some goats yogurt.  It was already almost four; I decided that if I didn't fall sleep soon I'd just get up and do things. 

The next thing I knew my husband was calling my name and saying:
"It's a quarter to seven.  Didn't you want to get up early?"

Oops!  I sure did!  I DID NOT HEAR MY ALARM AT ALL!!  I rushed through my morning routine* which also includes blogging on both blogs, this one and Shiloh Musings.  Two hours later I was walking out the door, after pretty much everything was done.  The only thing I didn't do was pack a snack, some almonds and fruit. 

The bus to Jerusalem showed up just as I got down to the bus/tremp stop.  I got to where I had arranged to meet a friend exactly on time.  We had a fantastic learning/study session.  My plans were to then take sandals to a sandlar get new heels, then go to Machaneh Yehuda to shop and then meet up with my daughter to shop with her in Ariel, dropping off my bags, the shuk stuff and younger grandchildren at home on the way.  But as my friend was about to let me off on Rechov Agrippas, I realized that I was too, just too, tired and hungry (remember that I had forgotten to take fruit and almonds) to do those errands properly.  So she dropped me off at the "city line" outside of Pisgat Ze'ev and I efficiently tremped home.  The rides came quickly, and I was home in no time.

At home I made a quick lunch with the vegetable soup made the other day and was ready to go shopping with my daughter when she showed up.

The extra sleep I got when I didn't hear the alarm made up for the sleep I had missed in the middle of the night, which is good.

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

The Av KCC Ouside the Box

Thanks so much to Yosefa for her nice and refreshing Kosher Cooking Carnival.  She did a great job. 

Funny coincidence. We both posted about pickles, but her "Kosher Dill Pickles, from scratch, naturally fermented and full of probiotic goodness" sounds much better than mine.

If you'd like to host a KCC please let me know. They come out weekly on Rosh Chodesh, the beginning of the Jewish month.  Submit your blog article to the next edition of kosher cooking carnival-kcc using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.  We also coordinate on our KCC facebook page.
And don't forget Havel Havelim, which is weekly again.  It'll be hosted this coming Friday or Sunday on Shiloh Musings.  You can submit articles/blog posts from this week via blog carnival.  If you'd like to host an HH please let me know, and Havel Havelim also has a facebook page.

Monday, July 08, 2013

Facebook Friending, Accept All, or Keep Up Some Barriers?

Just a reminder to send in your posts ( to be included in the next Havel Havelim, thanks.

Some of you readers are facebook friends of mine, and some of you even clicked this post because I mentioned it on my facebook status.  To be frank that's why I joined facebook, to promote my blogs, but as I got to know fb, I began to treasure the personal, family and friend-real friend aspect of it.  Most of my children, along with cousins and their kids are facebook friends, and I quickly began to limit the amount of people I agreed to "friend."  Suddenly I put up barriers.  If I didn't "know" someone either personally or their blog or want to know them as a person, I refused to accept their fb friendship.

Last night I was at a workshop (here in Shiloh) about using social media for Hasbara, Israel's information campaign.  Now, that is why I opened an account with facebook.  The young man who spoke, from something called "newmedia," if I got the name right, said that to make a splash, have your message get out to the maximum of people, you must have masses and masses of facebook friends.  If I do that, I will offend my kids and confuse family.  Of course I do post links to my blog posts, even the most extreme posts, or especially the most extreme posts.  My political opinions are far from Center.

I have a lot to think about.  Your opinions are welcome.

Sunday, July 07, 2013

Patience, Just Another Week or Two or ...

A couple of weeks ago I took this photo

And then last week I took this one:

As you can see the grapes are starting to get dark, getting purple, deep dark purple.  When they're all purple, they'll be ready to eat, and I'll eat them, G-d willing.  It's worth waiting or they just won't be sweet enough.  We have late ripening grapes, and the green grapes, which are larger ripen even later.

Patience, patience....