Sunday, March 27, 2011

That Time of Year!

Hope you all are well....for those of us trying to "get it right" the count down is on!...I have started cleaning and eating down the food stocks...but I must admit I am concerned on a number of fronts...Yes, the usual convert lament about all and any holidays, but this year we have two....yes two more issues to throw into the proverbial kosher for passover stew....

We are trying to sell our house...and hardly no family to celebrate with....

First the house...

We completed the year of mourning for my husband's mother this January and about a month or so later sold her home, my husband's childhood home....So with that we have purchased the home of our  dreams, on the water in the town in which we problem...we already have the house we currently live in!
So for the past month we have been trying to get rid of this house! The real estate lady keeps telling me "keep your house neutral!".. meaning make it so anyone can see themselves in it. Well this is impossible once I start the great change over. I'm a busy working person and have little time, so I start moving the passover storage boxes within a two week time of the actual holiday. But this year I need to be quicker...and more organized. This is a very tall order! So this year I think I'm going to try some sort of plastic covering for my porous surfaces...(note to self...when redoing the kitchen in the new house... solid stone!)

Buy my house!...It is in our local Eruv!

So the no family issue makes me sad. My daughter moved across the country to the youth alternative living city of Portland! (any of you see the mini comedic series protlandia?...) My husband's youngest is studying abroad and the oldest is staying put in Boston. With the exception of my husband's brother a secular Jew, and his partner a lovely man from Japan, my husband has no relative in the area and hardly any relatives anywhere!

So in an effort to get a seder  that I can enjoy preparing, I have decided to focus on a second night gathering. A lot of folks who are not religious will do a first night but not I can do a mitzvha and have a second night seder for me and invite folks who would more than likely be done with the passover stuff.  This is coming along....I have 9 folks including our selves so far and am still waiting on a few others. ....

But what to do about the first night? My fall back is Chabad...but that is a bit out of our element....I am going to try and hint harder over the next few day... wish me luck!

Just Because!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Check Out This Cantor!

ok I'm biased...this is Cantor Ethan Leifer the Cantor of the Merrick Jewish Center...where I am on the board....take some time to check him out, he is truly gifted!
This video is from a concert held at our synagogue a few weekends ago....there are some other videos from the event on You Tube if you would like to hear more.
He is talented, but he also has been very lovely to me....he has taken the time to hold Hebrew classes which I have attended, and bluntly where I was the slowest learner in the class. He never was anything but supportive of me and I am grateful to him for that!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


With so many epic, archetypal events, positive, negative and disastrous going on in the world it can seem trivial if down right selfish to be considering my own little world...yet in some ways I believe this is something Judaism give to us...the way to remain focused and together even when the global energies are tearing at the seems.

We say prayers many times through out the day, we concentrate and what foods etc... yet in keeping ourselves whole and connected to the mundane of life we also connect to the people struggle in man made and natural life and death encounters through out the world, I get to live.....I get to make a choice...I get to focus on the mindfulness of my daily life.... 

This choosing we can do for ourselves but we also can choose to engage in practice for the sake of the entire world....there is a Buddhist Monk, Thich Nhat Hanh, who is fond of saying peace in oneself is peace in the world...

If we can carry the ability to stay focused on the micro while the world spins with the pressing and overwhelming nature of the macro....we are positively giving back to the world......

Friday, March 11, 2011

Zero Hour....

Our Shabbateinu starts this evening... on December 29th the cantor of the shul I attend sent the following:

hi Karen,
I would like to assign you Shma and V'ahavta for the Friday night service of Shabbateinu? Sound good? I will of course send you a recording.

I am not ready...but I think I will never be ready so here comes zero hour! I have had non speaking aliyah during services but I have never had to speak in Hebrew in front of the congregation! I have been listening to the recording given me so much I have been dreaming about the V'ahavta....I'll let you know how it went...........

Shabbat Shalom

Purim Song

Dunking Rachael

Love, Faith and Life