Married 15 years, and we still have so much to talk about!
Our anniversary was this past Shabbat, and Moshe and I decided to go away, together, alone.
Our kids are older, so getting away was not difficult. Our eldest is at machaneh (camp). And our other two went to friends (MD to NE and A to AV).
But where could Moshe and I go... that was a challenge!
Apparently, August is the peak of vacation season (I seem to be the only one in the world who did not know this). EVERYONE is on vacation this week! EVERYWHERE is booked up! Not to mention, that all the hotels, motels, hostels, and field schools raise their rates now, and often require a minimum 2-3 night stay. (Me: "But we only want to stay for one night". Them: "Even if you stay for one night, you have to pay for two." Me: "I'll get back to you.")
Someone should warn young couples before they get married: (imagine a deep voice)
"Kids, be careful, this day will determine when you go on vacation... for the rest of your lives!"
Considering that we really wanted to go away just for Shabbat, and that we mainly planned on eating and sleeping, we did not want to travel far, or pay a lot of money. We just wanted to hang out together.
Two friends, BS & SM gave us a gift to "upgrade" our anniversary plans. (We were so touched by your thoughtfullness and generosity. Thanks!!)
Another friend, AS, who was going away that weekend, offered us the use of her home in Alon, in the Judean dessert (our own personal "zimmer" (vacation home)). (Wow, more praise and thanks to follow!)
We decided to be creative.
We used the "extra" money to go out to a very nice restaurant during the week and chose to spend Shabbat in Alon.
At the last minute, a friend, AK, offered to cook for us, so we even had delicious, homemade food! She made my favorite chicken (an amazing garlic chicken -- maybe I'll even post the recipe). I was so happy.
At first, both Moshe and I had mixed feeling about our compromise. We felt we made the right decisions, but that things were not exactly as we had in mind.
That will not be the case next year!
Staying at my friend's home was absolutely the best thing that we could have done!!
True, no one was there to serve us, clean up after us, etc.
No one was there at all!
We did not see anyone else the entire Shabbat!!
When we got there, the table was already set for Shabbat.
After Moshe davened, we sat down to dinner. The food was delicious. We sat and talked, and talked, and talked. Before we realized it, it was 1:30 in the morning!
How did the time fly so fast?!
The same thing happened the next day. We sat down to lunch and, before we knew it, it was 4:30 in the afternoon!
We set up and cleaned up together, and everything went smoothly. We were totally relaxed.
We took a quiet and peaceful afternoon nap, and woke up in time to eat Seudah Shlishit (the 3rd Shabbat meal).
At some point, we realized that Shabbat was over. We were not in a rush. We finished our meal and our conversations. Then we cleaned up, packed up our things, and, began the return to our "real life."
I do not know if I can fully convey how absolutely wonderful our Shabbat was.
We talked about everything.
We were completely together.
I would not have changed a thing.
We both agreed: we would love to do this again next year.
Please daven (or send happy, healing thoughts) for RivkA bat Teirtzel.
With love and optimism,
Plant for kapparos during shmitta
5 hours ago