Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Farewell, Goldschläger, Farewell

Many, many years ago at a festive event for relatives, their relatives from the other side brought a very delicious and unusual drink/liquor. Ever since then, we managed to buy a bottle for ourselves every few years. We'd have a bit on special occasions, and lucky guests would have some too. Yes, I'm referring to Goldschläger.
Goldschläger is a Swiss cinnamon schnapps (43.5% alcohol by volume or 87 proof; originally it was 53.5% alcohol or 107 proof),[1] a liqueur with very thin, yet visible flakes of gold floating in it.

We've had this bottle for awhile, though it's now empty and in the trash. I finished the last drops last night when clearing out the liquor cabinet. To get the very last drops and bits of gold I poured in some light beer. Yes, they actually go together, at least according to my unschooled taste buds.

Next time I travel I'll have to see if I can buy more, though I've heard that the recipe has changed and it isn't as good. Will it just live on in my memory like Crème de menthe, which I haven't seen for a long time? But according to Wikipedia it still exists.

Monday, March 30, 2015

And What Did You Find While Cleaning for Passover?

That's the bonus of all this cleaning. We find things including things either we didn't know were missing or figured we'd never see again.

When I moved the TV cabinet, which now hosts the Shabbat candlesticks I saw something small and shiny.

Yes, this small gold earring. I hadn't seen it for years. I do have one which I wear quite a bit, but I hadn't seen its partner for a long time. Now, I have it and am totally amazed.

I guess I shouldn't make fun of spring cleaning.

Sefirat Ha'Omer, Counting the Omer Tips

Jews are supposed to "count the Omer."

"What's that?" you ask.
In the Jewish Tradition, the term “Sefirah” also has a specific meaning, and refers to a count of the 49 days between Pesach and Shavuot: between the Festival of “Physical Redemption” and the Festival of “Spiritual Redemption.”
On Pesach, the Jewish People were redeemed from a terrible period of physical slavery in the “House of Bondage” of Egypt. On Shavuot, which commemorates G-d’s giving His precious gift, the Torah, to the Jewish People at Mt. Sinai, we celebrate our going from Spiritual Slavery to Spiritual Freedom. (OU)
Those are the forty-nine 49 days from the second night of Passover until just before Shavuot.

Hmmm... you may be thinking.

"What's Shavuot?"
“And it was on the third day, as it became morning, and there was thunder and lightning, and a thick cloud on the mountain, and the sound of the Shofar was very strong, and all the people in the camp were seized with trembling” (Shemot 19:16)
One of the Three “Regalim”
Along with Pesach (Passover) and Sukkot, Shavuot is one of the Three “Pilgrim Festivals” on which Jewish families, especially the males, who are freer to leave at specific times, such as the times of these holidays, and are not charged as much with the responsibilities of the home and the raising of children, are commanded to appear at the Temple in Jerusalem. (OU)
Well, Passover is the Holiday commemorating our leaving the slavery to Pharoah in Egypt, and Shavuot is the Holiday commemorating our receiving the LAW, usually pictured as the Ten Commandments, from G-d at Mount Sinai.

To help us connect these two Holy Days, we are supposed to count every night, the days and then the weeks, until we reach seven weeks, seven periods of seven.

Now, that is not as easy as it may seem. I used to forget very early in the period of those 49 days. That is until I began to get a reminder on my cell phone. I also have signed up for email reminders. They help on all nights but the last Holiday night of Passover and Lail Shabbat, Friday nights. Nowadays I set up my own "reminder," alarm on my phone. When I hear the alarm go off in the evening, after dark, I then do the count. To check which number, I can then look at the email reminder if I'm not on the computer.

My pre-smartphone cellphone blasted alarms even when off, which was great for Sefirat Ha'omer, but since I turn off my phone for Shabbat, Friday night is still problematic. There are synagogues that remind people during morning prayers so a day won't be missed.

G-d willing, I'll somehow remember. What's your trick?

1, 2, 3... 49!

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Threats from Google! Help!!!

Even though I've already deleted hundred of emails and dozens of photos, the messages from google, gmail, google + etc have been that I'm 2% short of maximum in terms of free storage. Is this symbolic of my pre-Passover cleaning, ridding the house of the forbidden Chametz?

Does it mean that I should start blogging on a different free service?

When I have time, I guess that I should try to delete some of my YouTubes, films. What do you think?

Does anyone have any simple suggestions? And to make things clear, I do not want to spend money. It's bad enough that I don't get paid for my writing. I certainly don't want to pay to write publicly.

Right now I'm sticking to photos already in the system.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Shabbat HaGadol, Tzav: Jewish Blog Carnival Combo, Havel Havelim and Kosher Cooking Carnival

This combined Havel Havelim-Kosher Cooking Carnival is cross-posted on Shiloh Musings.

This Shabbat was Shabbat HaGadol-Tzav, The Great Shabbat-Command!
Tzav(Leviticus 6-8) Everyone Needs a Push
"Command Aharon and his sons [by] saying, this is the teaching of the olah, it is the olah on its fire on the altar the whole night, and the fire of the altar will burn in it (Vayikra 6:2)."
Rashi explains that the Hebrew word "tzav," command, implies ziruz - encouragement and urging - for that time and for all generations. Particularly when it comes to situations involving loss of money (because the Kohanim do not receive anything from a burnt offering other than the hide), is there a need to encourage and urge. (aish.com)
And I've found myself hosting the pre-Passover Havel Havelim and Kosher Cooking Carnival now that it's dark and Shabbat has ended.

Havel Havelim is the long-running international weekly Jewish blog carnival. It was started by Soccer Dad who now longer blogs, and now we organize it on our facebook page. It floats from blog to blog, whoever is willing to host. Next Havel Havelim, just after Passover, will be hosted by Tzivia, Adventures in Aliyah Land  please send to tzivia@aliyahland.com with a one-line description of your post, thanks.

The monthly Kosher Cooking Carnival is my initiative, and it has also been in existance for quite a few years. It includes posts about all aspects of kosher food and kosher cooking, cookbooks, halacha (Jewish Law,) customs, restaurants and recipes. It also has a facebook page to notify people about who's hosting etc. I'll probably host next month (according to the Jewish Calendar,) too, unless there's a volunteer. If I'm just doing KCC, it'll be on me-ander and not Shiloh Musings. Send your links to me at shilohmuse@gmail.com, thanks.

I'd appreciate your visiting the blogs, comment, share and especially share the link to this HH-KCC combo, thanks.
Remember, you don't have to be a blogger to enjoy, read, comment and share Havel Havelim and the Kosher Cooking Carnival!!
Here are the posts, in no particular order, except that those sent by the bloggers are first. Then mine and those I found.

Yojeved Golani, Lessons to be Learned from the Fire
Nechama and Me, and Widespread Election Fraud Against Eli Yishai's Yachad/ HaAm Itanu Party, Time all suggested by Yojeved
From Varda Epstein:
Another Alternative Peace Plan, Death To America? Oh, That’s Nothing, The Red Rattler Theatre’s Permissible Exclusion, VIDEO: McCain Tells Obama To Get Over It,
Kosher in the L.A. and Newark Airports
Kosher in Phoenix, Actually Scottsdale, AZ
Visit Shiloh, Passover and Beyond...
How to fix your internet problems in Israel (sort of).
Doug on Israeli Beers: Podcast on four Israeli beers, An evening at the Frieds -- delicious food, excellent beer, Golan Brewery launches new Og Double Bock Wheat Beer
The White House's Freudian Slip
Store on Wheels
Obama’s Jihad Against Israel
#blogExodus: Bless
Coming to a Close - Interesting Dreams
Beef in Beer, Great Success!
Israel, the Liberal Country of the Middle East
Bli eyin haraa, Good News, Better News
Can Obama be Impeached?
State chametz almost couldn't be sold
Free attractions and Museums on Pesach 2015!
What We Talk About When We Talk About Matzo Balls
Covering My Head with a Scarf - not a wig
Two Audio Shiurim for Pesach: "Two Types of Redemption", and "Pesach and Eliyahu Hanavi"
Is this the End of the Two-State Solution?
Netanyahu's "Anti Arab" Election Speech, Was It Racism or Realism?

Please join our blogging community.
Remember, you don't have to be a blogger to enjoy, read, comment and share Havel Havelim and the Kosher Cooking Carnival!!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Kosher in the L.A. and Newark Airports

It's not easy to find kosher food when stuck in airports. The Israeli Ben-Gurion aka Natbag or "Tel Aviv" has kosher food, but I usually find myself choosing between overly expensive fruit, chocolate and nuts if I can't bring from home. During my recent visit I had a lot of trouble, since I ended up spending the night in Newark Airport. 

I brought instant oatmeal with me for the Newark to Phoenix, AZ flight, but that was cancelled, so I was stuck. There were places where they sold instant oatmeal, but finding boiling water was almost impossible. 

That's because there weren't any coffee places open in the middle of the night. But they also sold some yogurts. Some were kosher.

It was better in the Los Angeles Airport, where I ended up when rebooked to AZ via LA.

Coffee Bean is a chain that has many kosher products, and some branches have even more. There were kosher tuna sandwiches in that branch. So, after a delicious and very needed cup of coffee, I got myself breakfast, a tuna sandwich.

In Coffee Bean, unlike Starbucks, all the coffees are kosher, even the fancy ones. I had a regular one, which was what I needed at the time. But it's a good thing to know.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

My New Low-Tech One Cup Coffeemaker Filter

Honestly, I don't know what it is called. I used it at my friend's home in New York and asked her where to buy one.

It just has three simple parts. The lower one has a very fine filter, finer than a French Press, so I can use it with my inexpensive Israeli Elite Turkish Coffee.

Then there's a cup that fits in which has a few small holes.

  • The filter piece goes over the cup. 
  • The coffee goes over the filter, and 
  • the cup with holes over that.
  • Pour in the water which drips slowly picking up the flavor of the coffee and lands in the cup. 
  • You can use the cover to keep in the heat.
  • And then when it's finished, meaning all the water has filtered through, you can rest the filter and cup on the cover.
I bought it at Zabar's on Broadway, but I can't find it on their site. It was the last one they had, and I bought the display smaple. 

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Kosher in Phoenix, Actually Scottsdale, AZ

Just before Purim, meaning a few weeks ago, I went to Arizona to visit my father, sister and family. Since I was worse than jet-lagged after spending a night in Newark Airport about 36 hours earlier, I needed a good meal. We went off to Mozart, the lovely kosher dairy restaurant I'd been to in the past, but I noticed right next to it a new kosher restaurant, PAPRIKA, (480) 998-2559 7116 E Mercer Lane.

As regular readers here probably know, I've discovered that it's possible to get a better, more satisfying meat meal for less money than a dairy one would cost. That's especially if you want to cut down on carbohydrates. So, my sister and I decided to give Paprika a try.

It's next to Mozart for the simple reason that they both have the same owners, new owners from what we were told and I now have read on the internet. Actually, the WC-Restrooms for both are the ones in Mozart.

I can't remember exactly which  two types of meat I had ordered. I think one was beef and the other chicken, but I do remember that they both tasted very good. The meat was freshly cooked to order, and the salad was OK for an American one. 

The food is an American version of a simple Israeli meat place except for the soup, which if my memory is correct, was a borscht-beet soup. That tasted very nouveau, more the style Mozart is known for.

We were very pleased with our meal, recommend the restaurant and wish the owners well.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Traffic, Oy The Traffic

I'm not alone complaining about the traffic. It's so common for there to be traffic jams on the road north of Jerusalem. It can add quite a lot of time to the trip home. Sometimes almost the entire way from the "city line," aka Hisma machsom until the Adam Junction is full of sitting and "crawling" cars.

When the road start getting jammed, the Adam security road is sometimes opened for some vehicles, including the bus. We, the lucky ones, then go by at a normal speed, while the cars on the main road crawl.

Sometimes there's even a real reason for the back up, like a traffic accident.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Yocheved's Havel Havelim

Thank you Yocheved for the wonderful Havel Havelim!! Havel Havelim is the long-running international Jewish blog carnival. I'll be hosting it next week G-d willing and will combine it with the Kosher Cooking Carnival. So please send me links for both, thanks.

Havel Havelim is coordinated on our facebook page; click here. And the Kosher Cooking Carnival has its facebook page; click here.

Check out the carnivals and the links, comment and share. Thanks to the hosts and participants.


Sunday, March 22, 2015

Store on Wheels

When I walked out of the Shiloh Boys School, Ohel Shiloh, after voting last week, I noticed a truck parked. The side was down, and I took a look. It was a store on wheels selling sheets, towels and blankets. Just as I was about to take a picture, the light was turned off. Apparently it was time to close and go to wherever. I saw someone who seemed to be in charge and told him that I wanted to photograph it and write about it.

So, he turned the light back on.

Very impressive. He's a modern peddler bringing his store and stock from community to community. Here's his card.

If you call him, tell you that it was really a good idea to turn the light back on. I wish him luck.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Window-Shopping and Walking in New York

At Yafiz, Sha'ar Binyamin, I'm the "window-dresser," though we don't have windows. I dress the manikins. I do my best, but what I achieve is nothing like these gorgeous store windows I photographed in Manhattan less than two weeks ago.

I do believe that nicely dressed/arranged windows can draw in customers.

I must admit that I love walking through Manhattan. I did a lot of walking while there from midtown to the upper west-side and back. I don't even have to shop to enjoy myself.

Friday, March 20, 2015

My Mom My Hero, Book Review

First of all, I must admit that there's nothing objective about my relationship to this book, My Mom My Hero, by Lisa Hirsch. It was due to Hirsch's publicizing the book on a facebook page that I rediscovered Lisa and renewed our friendship. Lisa and I had grown up together in Bell Park Gardens, Bayside, NY and then were next-door neighbors in Great Neck, NY. Her parents were family friends.

Now that I've admitted this, I must tell you about the book. It's based on the journal-like blog, Alzheimer's - My Mom My Hero, Lisa has been writing about how she deals with her mother Ruth's Alzheimer’s disease. Lisa writes with great openness and honesty, not only about her mother today but about her childhood relationship with her.

Many of us, of our generation, who have surviving parents are dealing with the same sort of problems and situations. Most frequently, the brain does not stay as sharp as the body. In other cases, it's the body that can no longer function as well as the brain. Old age is no picnic for sure, and dealing with parents who are no longer capable of making basic decisions or care for themselves is a very complicated situation. My siblings and I have also been dealing with these issues. Our father is now in what's called a "memory center," where he is cared for 24/7. He's physically hearty, but needs help with his daily care.

Ruth Elian, Lisa's mother, still has her sense of humor, although she sometimes forgets the name of her daughter. Lisa chronicles her vists and phone calls. This is not a depressing book. It's joyful and a must-read, especially for those who are facing or expecting to face such a situation. Actually, it's a book that everyone should read. There's a lot of wisdom. It's written simply and honestly.

  • Paperback: 200 pages
  • Publisher: Logan Shawn Press (March 15, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615773982
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615773988
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • File Size: 888 KB
  • Print Length: 202 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0615773982
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Logan Shawn Press (March 8, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled 
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Better Late than Never, The "Unveiling"

It was a bit crazy to go to the states, davka, this time of the year. It's not like there was an important family wedding or medical emergency with my father (who is in Arizona, where I also went) or someone else important. Even though it's close to two years since my mother passed away, and we hadn't yet done the unveiling, the time was best for others, so I went.

We were lots a cousins together, plus a couple of old friends. It was nice being together.

My mother is buried with her old friends from Oakland Jewish Center, Bayside, NY, which closed its doors the same summer my mother passed away.

I don't think my mother would be crazy about her location in this corner, but that's where she is now. When my father reaches his "120," he'll join her. My sister based the design of the stone on the one by our paternal grandparents' graves in the "Neshelsk" NY cemetery.

After our little ceremony, which we did without any rabbi, we went to the nearby Hunki's Pizza of Plainview, LI, NY. We shared salads, pizzas, felafel and each other's company, which was nice.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

March Jewish Book Carnival and Havel Havelim

March Jewish Book Carnival on A Damaged Mirror and 
Debut Havel Havelim on One Bittersweet Symphony

Let's start with Havel Havelim, the long-running international Jewish blog carnival, which is hosted by volunteer bloggers each week. This week's, for the first time, is on One Bittersweet Symphony. She did a wonderful job. There's a nice variety of blogposts. Check it out; you're sure to find some great blog posts to read and share.

Next week Yocheved of It's My Crisis and I'll Cry if I Need To is the host, G-d willing. Please send her your links to giveretgolani@gmail.com with "HH" as subject  and a short "blurb" about the post before Shabbat, thanks.

For more information about Havel Havelim join our facebook page.

The Jewish Book Carnival comes out monthly, in the middle of the month, and this month's is to be found on  A Damaged Mirror. It includes a wide variety of links to book reviews of Jewish books. Take a look, and you're bound to find reading ideas.

Enjoy them all, Havel Havelim and the and the Jewish Book Carnival.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

52 Frames Weekly Photography Challenge, Didn't Miss a Week!

Although I was on the road for almost three weeks, considering a staff trip with my husband's Begin Heritage Center and then a family visit to Arizona and New York, I still managed to send in photos, granted not the best quality, to 52 Frames.

I used my Galaxy 2 "smartphone," considered rather borderline retarded by today's standards, for both the photo-taking and sending off to the 52Frames site. When in New York, my phone was used as a "tablet," and I had a small, old, cheap cellphone with an American simcard which for $2- a day gave me unlimited American phone-calls.

Here are the photos, starting backwards, most recent to the one which was posted when I was "in-transit" between Israel and Arizona.

"Ritual," which we were told did not need to be a religious ritual. I ended up taking a picture of my "NY Ritual," which is shopping for bargains. This photo is from the Fifth Avenue branch of Lord & Taylor's, a favorite spot for me where sales items get another 50% knocked off.

I took two photos which were very similar. One was blurry, and the other not, but my big mistake was not deleting the blurry one which ended up being the one submitted. Here's the one I had meant to submit.

The lesson is to delete all bad photos!!!

The week before was Reflection, and I took advantage of the large windows and gorgeous art of my Purim-Shabbat hosts in Manhattan. Thank you!!

And the Week 9 Black and White. I took the photo in Jerusalem, at the shuq/shuk, Machane Yehuda open market.

It was taken in "color" although it is black and white. I did use the computer at home to edit it a bit, which is how I achieved that "blurry frame."

Now I'm home, thank G-d. And I know that Passover is soon. G-d willing I'll do all that is necessary and not lose my smile.