Counting our Many Blessings

soldier-shipFrom the awesome view of Jerusalem and our ability to easily travel there whenever we want, to the variety of kosher l’Pesach foods, the feeling of connectedness with everyone we meet, perfect holiday weather, and the smiles on the faces of the kaleidoscope of nationalities blending into Am Israel, we feel so extremely blessed to be living in this Holy Land! And that’s just the simple things… then there are the incredibly humble yet learned Rabbis who provide us with their sweet guidance and the men and women of the IDF who joyfully serve our nation. [continue to video…] Continue reading Counting our Many Blessings

2 – 2 + 1 = Mashiach

Shabat shalom Yesterday I woke up pondering this question and it’s still on my mind so I’m sharing some brain food for Shabbat this week…

If we didn’t have 2 Chief Rabbis of Israel, but instead only 1, we’d have the Kohen Gadol and Mashiach – correct?

In other words, if we focused on what unites us and dispose of what divides us…

Shabbat Shalom!

What Type of Pesach Cleaner are You?

Cleaning items in bucket isolated on whiteLast week’s Mishpacha’s Family First Magazine had an article with Pesach cleaning advice (which overwhelmed me) and I was amused by the Editor’s confession that as a working mother she doesn’t try to keep up with her neighbor’s professional-level efforts (I’m sorry I can’t quote exactly because I gave the magazine to a friend for Shabbat reading).

This prompted a chat with a few friends during which I learned that some begin what they consider to be Pesach cleaning right after Tu B’Shvat, while others with small children don’t bother trying until a week before Pesach.  I don’t have small children around the house anymore – I do have a dog (does that count?) – but I’m still of the let’s not overdo this variety.

By nature I’m a planner; I prepare checklists and project plans for just about everything in my personal and professional life (and Hash-m laughs) so why don’t I wear myself out weeks in advance like so many other women? Continue reading What Type of Pesach Cleaner are You?

Tu B’Shvat 5773

This has been quite an upside-down, inside-out sort of month!  Every single plan I had was interrupted by something that caused plans to change or be abandoned.  This week began with a stomach bug (for me) and my mom being rushed to the ER and now still in ICU. Clients I had planned to do work for weren’t ready with materials I needed, while old clients who had been dormant suddenly had emergencies that needed my attention. As I was getting on the bus this morning heading to Jerusalem to help train a new employee (which I was supposed to have done on Monday), I received a call indicating that the new guy couldn’t make it and the boss was working from home!  Somehow the events of this week transformed me and as I disconnected from the call I said a silent “ayn baya” and continued on to Jerusalem. Continue reading Tu B’Shvat 5773

Pray for our Soldiers

As the IDF launches “Amud Anan” (Pillar of Defense), please pray for our soldiers.

Praying and learning Torah in the merit of a soldier’s service for Am Israel was instituted by King David.  For anyone not sure what prayers to recite, Tehillim (Psalm) 23 has been suggested.  A list of soldier’s names Continue reading Pray for our Soldiers

Customs vs. the Freelancer

Last week I received a page-long notice from the Israel Postal Service indicating that a shipment had arrived for me and I needed to travel all the way to Givat Shaul to pick it up!  There were lots of Hebrew words and I didn’t have the time or patience to two-finger type them all into Google Translate to figure out what on earth they wanted from me! So I scanned the document and sent it off to my good friend and lawyer Tzvi Szajnbrum for advice while I was doing some maintenance on his Voleh site.

Tzvi advised me to take the notice to the Post/Customs office in Givat Shaul and that I’d probably have to fill out a form to retrieve my merchandise.  So this morning I took the trip (with my headache and sore throat) and acquired a number upon arrival – #173, they were serving #161, it could be worse… I sat down and waited.

When #171 was called, I left my seat and started working my way to the front of the place to avoid losing my spot to an impatient Israeli, and that’s when an alert worker just coming off break noticed the paper in my hand and kindly told me I was in the wrong place!  I needed to go to the Meches (customs) office around the corner, down the hall and through the door. Continue reading Customs vs. the Freelancer

Gates Are Open But Maybe YOU Shouldn’t Come!

Due to recent conversations with potential olim I was going to write a detailed post regarding Israeli government benefits for new olim – myth vs. fact, but this morning I found a comprehensive listing at NBN that includes links to government agencies and even a handy Sal Klita (absorption basket) calculator!

I’m disappointed (and yes, a tad bit disturbed) when I meet people contemplating Aliyah whose decision seems dependent on just how many freebies the Israeli government will be handing out. One man recently decided not to make Aliyah after learning that healthcare is not completely free here!

Where do such expectations come from? I don’t know because they’re so foreign to how I was raised. From where do these people think the government gets this money to give away?  Continue reading Gates Are Open But Maybe YOU Shouldn’t Come!

NBN Wants to Bring Your Parents Home

Jamie Geller bring your mom home

I just received this message from NBN with an incredible offer that should be shared with every American-Israeli Jew whose parents are still living in the US.

Limited Opportunity: Bring Your Parents Home…On Us!

Give your parents the gift of reuniting with your family in Israel, by helping them make Aliyah this year. In order to help make Aliyah easier for retiree Olim (65+)*, Nefesh B’Nefesh is offering you a free round-trip flight from Israel to America, so you can help your parents pack up, then join them on a special Aliyah ‘Generations’ flight at the end of December 2012.

Apply now – contact Liz Bernstein, MSW, Director, Aliyah Guidance & Process-North America , and help bring your parents home to Israel this year, so you can spend this Winter together in Israel!

Jamie Geller (in the photo above with her mom) and everyone else –  BRING YOUR PARENTS HOME! Continue reading NBN Wants to Bring Your Parents Home

Oops! Forgive me?

Dear Family, Friends and Ranting Readers (people I haven’t met but who read my rantings),

It’s that time again. I’ve been assessing the situation and have determined that I’ve lived another year of being pathetically merely human. I got lazy and allowed myself to fall into that negative, sarcastic and judgmental trap again this year. Between Facebook, blogs and media sites (providing an abundance of juicy content I couldn’t resist drawing from and spewing out),  my reach has become farther than ever before and I should have taken that responsibility a bit more seriously. I’m sorry, can you forgive me for any harsh words and thoughts I may have inflicted on you?  I admit that I’m not sorry for everything I’ve written, Continue reading Oops! Forgive me?