End the Tears of Sadness

I haven’t posted to this blog in a very long time, and someday I may find the time to fill you in on all the happenings of the previous year that have caused me to take a “time out” from writing.  When I saw this video this morning, I felt strongly that it needs to be shared with an additional message:  the tears of sadness are completely unnecessary if families would throw off the chains that bind them to the galut.

Warning!  In addition to the tears of sadness, this video is filled with tears of joy so you may want to prepare yourself with tissues before viewing!  Those joyful moments have the power to invoke a choked up feeling that may lead to tears for anyone who has already made aliyah. It’s a short, but very emotionally powerful video. Kol Hakavod to  Nefesh b’Nefesh – I hope the organization has invested in Kleenex stock because this is one of many very well made videos available for viewing on the NBN YouTube Channel.


Please do your part to bring an end to the unnecessary tears of sadness, NBN is waiting to help you now…

Please Come Home!

I haven’t written in awhile for several reasons; 1) I am really busy LIVING a happy life in Israel despite what you might see in the twisted media and 2) I honestly became discouraged that my pleas have fallen on deaf ears.  When I saw the latest Maccabeats video today it made me think of all of you who remain in the old country – I miss you – and so I’ll leave it to these beautiful voices to share what I pray is stirring in your hearts.

Efrat is Happy!

Efrat is not only happy, Efrat is Good according to the sign Rabbi Shlomo Riskin is dancing with in this fun video that has me recalling why we almost moved there – great people!  If you’re making Aliyah, Efrat is a great choice.

Below this video on YouTube is an important message that I encourage you to read and respond to:

During these difficult times which are facing the Jewish people I thought it would be appropriate to convey the fact that we will not despair and that we are still happy.
The way in which we plan to perpetuate the memory of the 3 boys who were murdered in our neighborhood is by building a simcha hall in Efrat.
I strongly encourage you to take part in this important endeavor.

Donations are US tax deductible at:
Please add at the “Dedicate this donation” line:
Efrat Development Foundation

Moshe Feiglin: Time to Change Direction

Moshe Feiglin has a plan that will ring familiar to followers of Rabbi Meir Kahane’s vision. Perhaps the time is right? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

This video is in Hebrew with English captions – to turn them on, click the YouTube logo to open this in a YouTube window and then click the captions icon at the bottom of the YouTube screen and select your native language.

We are One

Worry. Grief. Devastation. Anger. So Many Tears. My heart breaks for family and friends of Gil’Ad, Eyal and Naftali. I never had the privilege of meeting these young men, but I know them and their mothers, fathers, siblings, other relatives and friends – I know and love them because we are one.

This oneness is something that I don’t believe can be experienced completely between Jews until they are living side-by-side in Eretz Israel (I know there are those of you in galut who will say I’m crazy, that you love your communities, etc. but honestly – with all due respect – you really don’t know until you’ve lived here). And so with permission from Rabbi Yehoshua Fass of Nefesh B’Nefesh, I am sharing his letter of strength and encouragement at this most difficult time for Am Yisrael. And as always, I implore you to come home!


Tuesday, July 01, 2014

To my extended family and friends,

We are all experiencing feelings of intense grief, anger and anguish. It is impossible to go about our daily routine without these feelings overshadowing any other thought or action. It is heartbreaking and tear-jerking, as a parent, to find oneself in the position of needing to react to the range of questions and statements from our own children: From the innocence of “how could someone want to kill a child?” to the militant expressions of vengeance. Continue reading We are One

Yom HaAtzmaut 5774

Independence Day in Israel is celebrated with fireworks, food, live performances, food, military exhibitions, picnic food, lots of fun things for kids, food, touring beautiful places, food and more food!

This is a must share, beautifully done video celebrating Israel’s 66th Anniversary, I hope you all enjoy it too!

Good Advice: Get Out!

Yisrael with cotton candy at the Jerusalem Music FestivalWe’ve been living in The Land now for almost 6 years, which I think makes us veterans (or “vatikim”) by olim standards. In addition to an overall life-changing experience, making Aliyah can be a career changer for some. My reaction to the first year of work famine was to work doubly hard in the following years in an attempt to catch up financially. Even under the best of circumstances I have workaholic tendencies and I’ve only recently realized that it isn’t healthy to work 16-hour days indefinitely; I need to slow down and give my family some quality time as well. And that is what prompted me to take my 13-year-old to the Jerusalem Sounds of the Old City Music Festival last Thursday.

WARNING! It’s been a long time since I’ve posted and this is going to be a long post!

Continue reading Good Advice: Get Out!

The Cost of Jewish Education

nbn-cost-of-educationThis chart, put out by Nefesh B’Nefesh is pretty accurate from our 5 year experience here with public religious elementary school.  Our son has entered 7th grade in a private yeshiva and the cost is comparable to what the chart displays for high school.

Find out more about the educational benefits of Aliyah at the NBN site.

Costs may vary based on location and other factors (like private vs. public education).

Aliyah Planning: Finances

financial-guide-aliyahI made my semi-annual trip to my accountant’s office yesterday and, as usual, it was not a pleasant experience. This is in no way my accountant’s fault!  Rivki at Don Shrensky & Company is one of the nicest and kindest people I’ve ever met (i.e., she always tries to soften the blow) and she has the patience of a saint!  The main reasons that these visits have been so painful (financially and emotionally) is my pathetic Hebrew reading skills and lack of understanding of the differences between the American and Israeli tax systems for self-employed people. This is not Rivki’s fault as I just recently moved my business to their office from a different accounting firm.

As we reviewed the many red notices I received in the mail while she was on maternity leave, Rivki pulled up my accounts online and explained the thousands of shekels in penalties lodged against me by the various tax offices for a combination of errors and my lack of response to their overwhelming (due to my lack of Hebrew mastery) paper in the mail notices.  Rivki patiently and thoroughly explained every field on all the monthly & bi-monthly forms I am required to submit to Mas Hachnasa (similar to the US IRS), Bituach Leumi (national insurance – similar to Social Security + more) and Ma’am (the evil VAT – value added tax – people who have been making my life hell), as well as how I am supposed to calculate each and make the payments. Continue reading Aliyah Planning: Finances