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Showing posts from April, 2014

Dear Hashem: Take care of my brother.

NOTE: One year after my brother Eli's death in 2014, I published a book about the intertwining of our lives and his struggle with schizophrenia. This post and many other writings are included, in slightly different form, in that book. Please wait until the ride has come to a full and complete stop is now available in print and Kindle editions. Through laughter and tears, I invite you to come share my final journey with my brother. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- You think you know crazy?  Maybe, maybe not.  My family’s idea of crazy is a little different from most, although I’ve discovered that once I admit this, the stories sometimes start coming out of the woodwork.  We’re not alone, but our family craziness is still, I think, a little nuttier than most. Our stories include dashing from a festive Pesach meal to bolt the door against my brother.  Visiting him while he’s tied in restraints to a bed… or in a special visiting roo

Naomi’s Bunkbed Rules

no shoes no rude noises do as your told only bring a pillow to prevent lice no food on my bed avoid putting fingers & hands in mouth no more blankets not alot of dolls (get lost) consider a doll like mine BIG have fun, Naomi ♥ Love, The dictator of the upper bunk. (For some reason, she enjoys writing script even more now that she’s here.  I think because it sets her apart from the other kids in her class, who are only learning how to print.  Sadly, she has not finished learning the capital letters, so she just sort of guesses.) Good Shabbos!!!

Humbug Haggadah: HuffPo picks 25 “new” Haggadahs, to which I say bah.

Just the folks you want all up in your seder business… the ever-scandal-rousing Huffington Post brags this week that New Haggadahs Offer Unique Passover Experience For Every Seder Table .  In this case, they’ve decided to mix in where they’re not wanted by stirring up the pot and dishing up 25 “new” Haggadahs. Now… before you get all riled up at me for being reactionary, please know:  I am all FOR new haggadahs.  In fact, I personally buy a new haggadah every single year.  (At least one!)  So I totally love new haggadahs. But there are haggadahs, and then there are haggadahs.  There are haggadahs that are all about Pesach, and then there are haggadahs that are all about other things – fair trade, for instance, or vegetarianism.  A few people this year (through facebook) tried to get me interested in connecting the idea of agunot (women whose husbands refuse to grant them a get, a halachic divorce, meaning they can’t remarry) with the liberation of Pesach… but I held strong. It’s no

Ouch – do we miss homeschooling.

The first day of Pesach break (okay, it’s really the second!) seems as good a time as any to take a deep breath and evaluate how the school year is going for us so far.  The year of schooling and not-homeschooling.  A year of literally HUGE continental shifts. It’s also great timing because we did our annual (this year NOT) homeschool matzah bake this morning.  It was weird and very, very different.  But there’s a science-y edge that might be interesting and that got the homeschooler in me just a little revved up after gathering dust for a few months.  (click through to read all the details and maybe even try it out yourself!) For the past few years, during March break, and every summer for a couple of weeks, the kids went to day camp.  It was like school – a nice break, gave them a chance to be with other kids and socialize “normally” for a change, gave me a few days off… etcetera. We were happy to do it because we always knew that at the end, we’d go right back to homeschooling