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Memories of Passover Past

My father is a known hoarder of haggdot. One could say he’s a collector but we have boxes and boxes of haggadot that he has ‘collected’ over the years. Every Pesach, at the seder, all attendees can choose their haggadah. We all have different ones and share readings from our books. It makes for an interesting and rich seder experience. Over the years, I have gone through phases. The animated haggadah, the alternative ones, for …

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The Gift of Giving

A funny thing happened on the way to the airport. On February 1, right around 3:30 in the morning, I looked at my wife somewhere around Monaco and I-70 as we were sitting in a taxi van, and I told her, “Sweetie, I have good news and bad news. The good news is that we remembered all of our bags and carry-ons for our upcoming two-week trip to Israel. The bad news is that the …

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Framing Your Perspective – A Life Lesson In Positive Intentions

Picture this… you get home from work and the kitchen is a mess. You can see evidence of all the food your spouse and kids have consumed all day, dishes piling up on the counters and in the sink. The kids are whiny and your spouse is grouchy. How do you react? I think you have three viable choices: Start yelling about the mess, which will likely result in more whininess and grouchiness, and probably …

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Standing Up To Bullies – A Lesson From Purim

The holiday of Purim is a time for children to dress up and engage in festive activities but one unusual tradition is to drown out Haman’s name during the Megillah reading.  Why do we do this? Because he was a big bully that threatened the Jewish people.  We celebrate Purim to honor and remember Mordechai and Esther who bravely defied Haman’s orders and saved the Jewish people from annihilation. Nowadays we worry about our children …

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Five Reasons Purim Kicks Halloween’s Butt

At first glance, Purim is Halloween’s red-headed step-sister; an inferior, wannabe holiday. And that might have been true back when you worried which lunch table to sit at and wondered whether your crush even knew you were alive. Now that you’re worried about paying for college, and wondering if your kids will notice if you give their loud, annoying toys to Goodwill, Purim is the superior holiday. Not convinced? Let me explain the virtues of …

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Gefilte Fish and Easter Eggs

“I love matzah,” my husband declared a few years ago when I looked at the calendar and realized it was almost time for Passover. “Really?” I asked, incredulously; “I’m pretty sure that the only people who say that are the ones who didn’t have to eat matzah for a week every year when they were kids,” I said confidently. But no, my husband really does love matzah. I still maintain though that he wouldn’t love …

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Six Things I’ve Learned Over Six Years In An Interfaith Marriage 

I met my husband when I was 29. With nearly three decades to picture exactly what kind of guy I was going to end up with, I had a lot of expectations. For one thing, I was certain he’d be Jewish. And if he wasn’t Jewish, he’d have at least played his fair share of Coke and Pepsi at his friends’ bar mitzvahs and danced the Horah at their weddings. I never imagined I’d be …

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The Obstacle Course of Choosing a Name

Recently, my husband and I learned the gender of our second child—expected in June 2017. I will not be revealing it in this blog post or anytime soon (much to my friends’ and families’ disappointment). I bring it up only because learning it meant we could narrow our conversation about selecting names from two possibilities (one for a girl and another for a boy) to only one—and that brought a slight sense of relief to …

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Taking Lessons From The Torah

This month we celebrated the holiday of Tu b’shevat, the new year of the trees. It’s a time to give thanks for the trees, nature, fruits, and vegetables around us. But looking deeper, we call the Torah the tree of life because, just like trees, the Torah has many branches, each one holding a different story or concept to share. The books of the Torah are like the roots of a tree which bring growth …

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It’s Tu B’Shabbat: How to Host a Tu B’shevat Inspired Shabbat

Tu B’Shevat (the 15th of the Jewish month Shevat) is one of my favorite Jewish holidays. I remember it from my own childhood Hebrew school experience when we sang a song about growing like trees and we danced around, pretending we were funky-shaped trees. Oh, those were the days! Now it has become my favorite holiday because it connects me with my Jewish farming heritage. We celebrate this holiday, culturally, marking the birthdate of our …

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Love, Marriage, and the Denver Broncos

As a fourth generation Denverite, I bleed orange and blue.  My two minute drive to synagogue every morning is occupied with the voices of Mark Schlereth and Mike Evans analyzing every detail of the current Broncos situation. As 104.3 The Fan always declares, there is no offseason for talking Broncos football. My sixty second commute to work includes the analysis of Broncos insider Cecil Lammey, and my two and a half minute drive to drop …

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The Challenge When Your Kids Have A Large Age Gap

My girls are eight years apart and while the age gap has many advantages, it can be challenging to find activities they will both enjoy. Over the last few years, we’ve tried different tactics:   Divide and Conquer Like it sounds, this is where each parent takes one child and does something – whether it’s a fun activity or errands. This was our weekend strategy for much of the first year of Izzie’s life (now …

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