Tuesday, December 30, 2008

My nachat update

Somehow (again) I got carried away from my main reason for blogging. So here's an update on my yidishe nachas.

For about 2 weeks now SiM started pronouncing Eh's name correctly. It's very sweet and touching. I'm trying to teach him how to whisper (unsuccessfully of course, but it does good to my psyche) because in the morning he 'unt Eh' to play with him and I prefer for her to sleep as long as possible.

Eh sings the dreidel song quite well. SiM can finish all the 'stanza's of the dreidel song and loves to listen to me singing svivon ('unt moh svivon').

SiM knows lots of nursery rhymes and songs but the only thing he'd hear in the car is 'abba song' which is an instrumental CD of shabbat songs. The original 'abba song' is traditional shalom aleichem.

SiM's a party kid. Not only does he love dancing but he encourages others to dance as well. And when we went to a wedding a few days ago, he was clapping (without prompts) together with the rest of the guests, as various ppl walked down the isle.

Earlier today Eh's let SiM play with a latka-in-a-pan toy she made in her play group. They were taking turns catching the latka on the pan. At one point, SiM didn't get the latke where it was supposed to go, yet Eh happily cheered for him
"Good for you! You did a great job with catching the latka! Almost..."

Eh is SiM's teacher (vocabulary, play, squabble, etc). Recently, Eh started saying 'mines' instead of mine. Naturally, when it came to getting a treat/toy/anything, Eh would say (scream?) 'mines' and SiM would answer 'No, mines!'
Today, during dinner we were trying to decide who gets a Nemo cup and who, an Elmo cup. Eh said That cup is MineH (got to love all the great 'things' kids pick up at daycare). Sim replied - No, MineH! And I realized (and shared my epiphany with hubby) that if we continue to consistently speak with Eh in Hebrew, we may not need to work so hard with SiM.

And finally, tomorrow is Eh's birthday party @ play group and I cannot contain my excitement. I shopped for goodies for tomorrow's peckalach only to realize that
1- I still need to buy a birthday cake or cupcakes for all (This info because available around 10P after I spoke to Eh's morah);
2- The party bags that I bought are exceptionally cute and can barely hold 40%-less-fat-than-regular-corn-puffs let alone all the other stuff that I bought in 3 (three) different stores. I'm considering brown bagging it (hoping that my local grocery sells brown bags)...

Monday, December 29, 2008

Meme, edited

Thanks to Moshe's comment and "Dina's interpretation of my tag, I've edited my meme.


Unforgettable, that's what I'm not

Shabbat Chanuka I encountered a former classmate (high school). I came over. Said hi. Confirmed that she was who I think she was. She said she can't recall my name. I said it. She asked me if we went to seminary together...I, quite unnecessarily said, "high school".

My former classmate had a few kids around her...And for the rest of shabbat I had a recurrent and disturbing thought that maybe my pregnancy/childbearing-related memory loss is not as temporary as I hoped.

Sunday, December 28, 2008


I can't believe I was tagged... For a double meme. Thanks Mike,I thought I'll just do one but thanks to Moshe, I'm doing both...

Here are the rules: Grab the nearest book. Open the book to page 56. Find the fifth sentence. Post the text of the next two to five sentences in your journal/blog along with these instructions. Don’t dig for your favorite book, the cool book, or the intellectual one: pick the CLOSEST. Tag five other people to do the same.

---Uncle Vernon looked as though he has something stuck in his throat; Aunt Petunia, however, was oddly flushed. "Well, Harry...time for us to be off," said Dumbledore at last, standing up and straightening his long black cloak. "Until we meet again," he said to the Dursleys, who looked as though that moment could wait forever as far as they were concerned, and after doffing his hat, he swept from the room.

Truth be told, this was not the CLOSEST book. More than 40 closest books didn't have page 56. And the next closest book had a graph on page 56 and examples of regression analyses on pages 57 and 58. This was the 3rd closest. Hope it counts.

Seven Facts About Me:
The Rules:
1. Link to your blogger and list these rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people (if possible) at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.
4. Let them know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blogs.

1. I like cars and I love driving. I also enjoy 'challenging' fast or expensive car drivers.

2. I know how to milk cows.

3. I used to enjoy catching bees, flies, and spiders. I no longer remember how to safely catch bees though.

4. I went to Touro college because the campus was around the corner from my house.

5. I usually remember names, diagnoses, physical appearance, room numbers, insurance info, date of admission, etc. of any patient with whom I have any contact for the duration of my assignment ( and sometimes longer). I usually cannot recall the name of the main character in a movie/book as soon as I finish watching the movie/reading the book.

6. I love fresh bread and butter.

7. I bought myself earrings for my 13th birthday and pierced my ears for my 16th.

I'm tagging Barb,Subjugatedwife, and
"Dina as they appear not to have been tagged by this one yet...

Friday, December 26, 2008

You aren't that yeshivish

Last Friday, I took SiM to MD @ 10:30. Then it snowed. So I had the luxury of a couple of hours to do what I please. So I decided to indulge in the forgotten luxury also knows as manicure.

In the nail place (calling it a salon would make me a superlatives user, so I shan't) I met one of my old neighbors. She asked me where I'm sending Eh next year.

Eh's school happens to be a bit of personal current events. My inefficient pushing combined with my unnecessary honesty resulted in Eh ( and me) missing some important deadlines. So I told this neighbor a short summary of our somewhat frustrating school application process. Then I mentioned that I'm still thinking of a couple of schools. The neighbor immediately told me not even attempt one of them because 'it's NOT for you *with a sourish face*'. Ok. I was just telling my options, not final decisions...Whatever.

Time in the nail places is kind of slow so we continued the conversation and I asked where the neighbor sends her daughters. She told me. And added right away. "But you aren't yeshivish ..." I agreed with her again and conversation dwindled.

A few minutes later I noticed one of this neighbor's daughters doing her nails, too. She was dressed exactly like me (minus the head covering/plus glam hair).

And since those nails take a long time to polish and dry, I sat there thinking. Why point out how unyeshivish my family is instead of describing the general parent body of the school? Why dispense invaluable advise to someone you see once in 6 months? And, was this just a case of yeshivish 'figi' and not-yeshivish 'vicked'?

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Truck driver for a day

Today, for the second time this month, I got the honor (and the pleasure) of driving a Cadillac pick up truck. Here are some of my observations ( as seen from the driver's seat of a pick up truck):

1. Men stared.
2. Women stared.
3. A double parked yiddishe mench in a minivan did a double take.
4. Sedans cut me off less.
5. Those sedans and SUVs that did cut off/pass me, invariably showed off how fast they can really go.
6. Pedestrians were more cautious (except for one who tested pick up's breaks. b"H they passed).
7. Every pick up truck (especially domestic) challenged me to a race.
8. I felt like I was driving a tractor.
9. I enjoyed all the puddles, ponds, and mini lakes instead of driving around them.
10. A colleague pointed out that people with low self esteem typically overcompensate by driving big cars.I'm still thinking about this one...

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

What would you like for your birthday?

Eh's birthday is on Chanuka. And Eh's been looking forward to Chanuka for quite some times now.
On shabbat, hubby asked Eh what she'd like for her birthday. She said "I want a doll for chanuka and a balloon for my birthday." Hubby assured her that she'd get a doll and kept asking what else, besides the balloon, would Eh like for her birthday.
The reply was quite consistent - a buba for chanuka and a balloon for birthday.

Today after dinner I told Eh that as soon as she and SiM wash their hands they'd get their chanuka presents. However, the washing up process was taking a bit longer than anticipated. I started losing my patience and said to Eh that if she doesn't want her doll (by taking her time with handwashing), we can send it back to the store. Eh's response?

'I want the doll. And SiM wants a balloon.'

Monday, December 22, 2008

Monday, December 15, 2008

IS the cup Always 1/2 empty?

In 2003 I introduced 2 of my friends who became a couple and eventually got married. They were expecting a baby @ the end of November... They didn't respond to my texts in the beginning of December and I started worrying whether everything's ok with the baby. Tonight I got an email with links to baby's pictures. Thank Gd, the baby's well and is 3 weeks old. But what gives with the birth announcement.

Was this a case of neglect or (maybe) ALL their friends got first notice 3 weeks late?

Thursday, December 11, 2008

When I grow up...

Before going to sleep Eh told me the following:

When SiM's going to have teeth (we had many discussions that SiM cannot eat certain foods because he doesn't have enough teeth) he is going to go to my school. And I am going to get new teeth (possibly still impressed with out next door neighbor who got 2 new teeth) and go to school far away.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Crayola vs Laffy Taffy

The other day Eh and SiM were coloring. SiM's coloring activity usually involves a bit of scribbling and lots of opening and covering the markers. So while the kids were busy coloring, I went to the kitchen to make some tea. I came back, commented on Eh's beautiful pictures, then looked at SiM. And I had to do a double take because in a minute's time it took me to make tea SiM decided to digress from his usual coloring activity and try to taste the marker. Or was it 'eat' the marker.

His lips , tongue, and even tips of his front teeth were deep blue. (It must've been a fresh marker.) Amid adamant protests I quickly rushed to wash out ' the blues' before anybody else would notice what the kid has done under my supervision:) Thankfully, the markers are washable and in less than 3 minutes SiM was pretty much back to his usual 'color'.

Then, a couple of days later, grandma took Eh for pizza and the 'pizza man' gave Eh a laffy taffy for frequent patronage. Eh was so proud of her candy, she brought it home and showed it off to everyone. Then, she ate it.

After the whole PM routine of brushing teeth, putting on pjs, and reading a book, I said something that made Eh giggle. And I saw her tongue. It was deep blue ( apparently food coloring not as easily washable as the dye in the marker).

This left me wondering: should I be scandalized by my kids eating candy and be cool if they taste a marker once in a while?

Sunday, December 7, 2008


Timing is everything. I try to be punctual. I say witty things as soon as I hear someone else say something unwitty ( unless I'm working on self control). Poor timing is the pits.

With all that in mind, I didn't attend the memorial service for the terror victims of Mumbai, Hy'd, last Wednesday because I was 45 minutes late in leaving my house. Today, I decided to be on time and I was at the memorial service @ 9:05. The place was Packed. A rabbi was in the middle of a speech already. I was surprised @ such general punctuality but glad that I made it. Then, 10 minutes later, there was a break for Ma'ariv.

The service was called for 8...But the lesson of fighting bad with good, darkness with light, and loving every Jew still holds true.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Work, school, blah

I took Eh to a doctor today because she's been complaining of an ear ache. I lucky 9:15AM appointment still set me back 2.5 hours. I drove more than 1/2 way towards work when the babysitter called saying that she has a family emergency. I turned around, drive back home, take SiM and drive the babysitter to the location of the emergency.

That location is approximately 15 minutes away from work, so I make a judgment call and go to work with SiM to see if my presence is really needed there (read: if I have to look for someone to watch my kids in PM ). The situation @ work was under control but SiM ( as most 18 month olds would) got lots of attention and my quick stay extended to nearly an hour.

Then, the administrator walked into the gym (The same one, who spied on me for 3 months and THEN turned off the internet @ work). He greeted SiM (only) who in turn blew a raspberry. I felt obligated to return the greeting for SiM. The admin asked whether we are visiting or I don't have a babysitter. "No babysitter". Then the administrator asked How long is HE staying? I very much wanted to say that he is ready to leave but I'd like to take care of some things that I didn't finish the day before. Instead, I said we are about to leave. "Good, because kids aren't allowed here" and some other stuff re: policy.

I'm one of the first to follow and enforce P & P, that's part of my job. But just yesterday, I noticed that the admin had 2 (two) kids in his office for at least 1/2 the afternoon. And as per my colleague, sometimes there are 4 kids who come to visit dad...What gives!?

And then, to add an insult to an injury and annoy someone who's already annoyed, one of the schools to which we applied for Eh called and said that Eh's too young. I submitted her D.O.B. with the application before the interview. Did she become younger after they saw us/her!? Why waste my time with the whole application process???

Now I'm sitting and repeating my mantra "Love every Jew, Love every Jew" and thanking Gd the kids are napping so I can vent.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Still mourning

It all keeps running through my head. The bravery of Sandra Samuel and the miracle of Moshe Tzvi's survival. The personal tragedies and indredible dedication of the Holtzbergs, HY'D. All the others who perished. Rivka Holtzberg, zt'l, being 6 months pregnant. Little Moshe witnessing his parents' death. The funeral which I watched in the morning. The words of Lubavicher Rebbe -if a few terrorists can accomplish so much bad how much more good a lot of us can accomplish.

I think the first time I came in contact with chadabnicks was in Italy. After all other representatives of various orthodox organizations left by the end of the summer, chabadniks were the only ones who stayed on (I later realized they were shluchim). They tought us, fed us, help us celebrate Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur. They gave us a glimpse into the Jewish life that we weren't allowed to know of in our previous lives.

In my glorious single traveling days, my friends and I used to go to Chabad houses for shabbat, frequently just arriving at their door steps without any warning and still being welcomed in. Chabadniks in SF were there to feed us delicious baked chicken in the Golden Gate Park on chol hamoed Pesach ( a funny site- us and some users happily munching).

Chabadniks are the ones who visit Jews in some remote and sometimes forgotten places like nursing homes and hospitals in not-so-Jewish neighborhoods. The minor nuisance of being offered chanuka candles to one who lights is nothing in comparison to many many people who'd light because they were offered these candles. They may be controversial, a group one loves to hate yet Chabadniks like you because you are Jewish. Period.

I'm mourning. We all are. But maybe the best way to find comfort is to remember that we, Jews, are one and act that way.