Tying Tzizit as a Family

Tallit by Sarah Resnick

With thanks to Sarah Resnick, founder of Advah Designs, for this blog post. She and I met online, then in person at the URJ Biennial - where I ordered this gorgeous tallit for myself. As b’nai mitzvah students and their families prepare for their big day, life can start to feel like a whirlwind of phone calls with caterers, chanting Torah trope while pacing up and down the hallway, and a hundred other details that both the kids and the parents have to do to get ready. As a tallit artist and the founder of Advah Designs, I’m lucky to get to spend a lot of time with b’nai mitzvah families, … [Read more...]

Tu B’Shevat – Celebrate Trees

Maple in Snow

Ready for a celebration that enlivens the winter?  Tu B’Shevat is a one-day holiday, often called "The New Year for the Trees," that starts this year at sunset on January 24th. In brief, this holiday celebrates the season when the sap begins to rise in trees in Israel, like almond trees. But if it’s freezing cold where you live, and your trees are covered with snow,  you can give a very simple nod to the holiday in your home by adding some of the fruits and nuts that grow in Israel to your dinner table – like grapes, figs, olives, dates, pomegranates, and almonds. Stewards of our … [Read more...]

F.I.N.D.S* – Alicia Jo Rabins

Alicia Jo Rabins

Happy 2016! As we dive into the new year, we often think about resolutions - next year, I want to exercise more, learn more, spend more time with the kids. if you're pondering exploring new music -- always an interest of mine -- let me introduce you to Alicia Jo Rabins. Last summer, I took a chance on the first-ever “Lunch and Learn” session offered by Jewish Women’s Archive* led by Education Program Manager Etta King and Alicia Jo Rabins. The subject:  Ruth and Self-Revelation. I loved her blending of exploration of text about Ruth and her mother-in-law Naomi with four Rabbinic … [Read more...]

From Jewish Holidays In A Box – Thank You!


As 2015 winds down, we hope you have a little time to rest before the new year starts. And we send sincere thanks to you for a great year of sharing thoughts and ideas! Thanks, also, to: Devante with KellysThoughtsOnThings for their kind review of our Hanukkah Bingo Game. Jordan E. Rosenfeld for inviting us to contribute to her piece on RewireMe.com called “How to Celebrate Interfaith Holidays.” Lisa Carpenter with Grandmas Briefs for her lovely review of our Hanukkah Bingo Game. ReformJudaism.org for publishing our article, “How I Try to Create Jewish Memories for my … [Read more...]

Hanukkah 2015 – Share Your F.I.N.D.S

Gecko Menorah

As we move into the last weekend of Hanukkah, when lots of families are planning parties and gatherings, let’s share: what are the best Hanukkah menorahs, recipes, and adventures that you discovered this season? For us, a F.I.N.D is a Fabulous. Intriguing. New-to-me. Discovery. Gecko Menorah We discovered this adorable gecko menorah at FairTradeJudaica.com that simply tickled our grandsons! (In 2016, we will do a full post about this wonderful organization.) What amazed me was that our 3-year-old knew it was a gecko when he pulled it out of the box! One note: we learned right away … [Read more...]