Showing posts from March, 2009

Rivka's Shabbat

I mentioned last week that we have named the upcoming shabbatot. This shabbat is Rivka's shabbat because we are hosting Sheva Brachot for Rivka nee Simon who was married this week in Yad Binyamin. Friday night dinner we will eat out and Shabbat lunch will be at our house.
We cleaned up the living room/dinning room so that we can seat all 40 people. We are sharing the menu responsibilities, so its not too hard. I love working with my wife. She does event planning, and so we have sooooo many utensils and serving dishes that everything is going to look great!

Chulent Moshe B'Teva (pigs in a blanket)
Sweet Noodle Kugel
Mandarin Orange Lettuce Salad
Cabbage Salad (whole head)
Bean Salad
Ketchup, Mustard, Humus, Matbucha, Drinks

Dessert: Cookies, Tea, Coffee

The countdown begins (good news)

This week we received excellent news. The most wonderful person who is donating their kidney to my son has passed all the tests. We scheduled the actual transplant for the week after Pesach. There are still a few re-tests that need to be completed, but it looks like the countdown has begun.
Everyone is now excited and nervous. It is one thing to talk about the transplant and another thing completely to actually doing the surgery.
It is probably a good thing that we are totally buried with work and the upcoming holiday. We don't have a minute to rest and think about what is actually going on.
There is no way that I can express our gratitude to Asaf's donor. I'm reaching out to you, my readers, for suggestions. We expect to be able to tell you the donor's identity at some point, but for now its "The donor!"
May we all have a healthy holiday and a good year. Elliot and Leiah

Rafi Shabbat

My wife has decided to name the next few Shabbatot based on the main events. This shabbat, my soldier son finally got leave for the weekend after 6 weeks on the base. We really missed him and are very happy to spend some quality time with him. Of course, right now he is asleep and tonight he is eating at his girlfriends house. Oh well, at least we get to do his laundry.

We have a busy weekend. Four girls from the New York area (Midreshet Amit) are visiting. In addition, we have a young boy in a wheel chair and his helper. They are from the Kav L'Chayim organization. This wonderful group provides support and help for very sick children My sister was heavily involved in the US branch called Chai Life Line. These two will be eating lunch with us tomorrow.

Tomorrow will be busy. First, we have a special Kiddush for our good friend Leya Gale who got engaged this week to a nice young man named Ron-Moshe. We are very excited about the upcoming wedding and wish them a happy life …

Paris Alone

I'm in Paris on an academic trip. The bad news it that I need to be here for Shabbat. The good news is that I finally found the correct neighborhood in which to stay. The traditional jewish tourist neighborhood is mainly old mizrachi (algerian and tunisian). Its very close to the tourist sites. The problem is that its not a particularly nice neighborhood and that all the food is mizrachi. If you like honey in your pastries, then go there.
This trip, I am staying in the 17th Arrondissement. Its much more of a white collar place and the restaurants reflect that focus. Its a bit far from the touristy things, but the metro is everywhere and easy to use. Here is a map I made of the kosher locations.
On Wednesday night, I ate at a fancy at a french restaurant called Brasserie Belvedere, 109 Avenue de Villiers. I tried to order saurkraut in wine, but the waiter suggests that it was a "special" dish that I would not like. Instead, I had salmon and then chicken and nood…

Frustrating end-of-the-week, Sunshine on the horizon

This has been a hard week. I have a big review for a University project next week, and the whole team has been focusing on meeting our deliverables. With the pressure comes recriminations and conflict. Its natural, but not particularly helpful.
After a very painful day on Thursday, I attended a local event that was billed as a Purim Shpiel. I was looking forward to a light evening of entertainment in the spirit of Purim. Unfortunately, I must have missed the description of the event, because it was actually a cantorial event. First, I have little patience for the cantorial style. I really enjoy singing, but I don't like the overblown extravagance that seems to be part and parcel of these events. To make matters worse, the presentation included movies and pictures of Hasidic rabbis and their followers. Now this was a national religious event, and these images did not represent our views or our community.
Imagine yourself in a fraternity of the 1960s. You invite the local neg…