Books Read in 2013

I don't have it much in me to write a long post about the books I've read this year.I love to read. Even throughout all of the terribly difficult times in the hospital with Sam and all of the stress of the last few weeks of his life and the horrible hole that he left in our lives…reading brings me solace and comfort. I can lose myself in a book ....more

TorahMama: Vayishlach

Jacob prepares to reunite with his brother Esau and in the night he wrestles with a being. Eventually, he prevails and says, "I will not let you go until you bless me." In the course of the blessing, Jacob is also given a new name, the name Israel. My daughter, age...more

TorahMama: Vayetze

In this week's Torah portion, Jacob dreams of a ladder stretching from the ground into the heavens. He sees angels on the ladder, going both up and down. When he awakens from his dream, he says, "surely God was in this place and I, I did not know it." So often, as parents, we get bogged down in the details ....more

TorahMama: Toldot

Esau and Jacob are the twin sons of Isaac and Rebecca. Esau, the elder, is mostly interested in hunting and being outdoors. Jacob is more reserved and home-focused ....more

TorahMama: Chaye Sarah

Eliezer, Abraham's oldest servant, is sent to find a wife for Isaac, Abraham's son. Abraham doesn't give him a lot of criteria, so Eliezer must determine on his own what qualities are worthy in Isaac's wife. He determines for himself that, upon his arrival at the communal well, he will ask a young woman to draw water for him ....more

TorahMama: Vayeira

When God tells Abraham that Sarah will bear a child soon, the text says that Sarah laughed “within herself.” Ah, what a way to begin parenthood, with laughter. Tradition tells that Sarah and Abraham struggled with infertility, and we know how difficult the entrance into parenthood can be for so many of us. But to begin with laughter? ...more

The Heart of the Torah

Tonight begins the holiday of Simchat Torah, when we celebrate the cycle of the Torah reading. We finish the last words of Deuteronomy and begin again with the first words of Genesis. The last letter of the torah, lamed, and the first letter of the Torah, bet, together spell the Hebrew word "lev," which means "heart." The Torah is the heart of the Jewish people, it is the heart of who and what we are ....more

#blogElul 29: Return

It's so hard to believe that this is the last #blogElul post....that a full month has gone by of preparation and readiness for the Holy Days of our year. With today's topic, "return," I return to my intention for the month...to use this space to prepare, in some way, for these Days of Awe...and I think that I have. Each night, I return to my computer and I sit down and I contemplate the topic for the next day (I usually work a day ahead!)...and I look deep inside and I consider what this word means to me today ....more

#blogElul 28: give

The Jewish month of Elul, which precedes the High Holy Days, is traditionally a time of renewal and reflection. It offers a chance for spiritual preparation for the Days of Awe. It is traditional to begin one’s preparation for the High Holy Days during this month with the Selichot, the prayers of forgiveness ....more

#blogElul 27: intend

i wanted to i meant to i tried i intended i didn't mean it it wasn't my intention i missed the mark. i'd better try again. The Jewish month of Elul, which precedes the High Holy Days, is traditionally a time of renewal and reflection ....more