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Monday, March 24, 2008

Purim 5768

It's always a bit of a downer when Purim is over. All the excitement and energy abruptly ends and the "normal" week begins. How much more so, when Purim celebrations have been going on for almost a week!

Sunday (still Purim for us) was a lot of fun!

Everyone slept late -- a real "Sunday".

I would have slept even later, but.... even though there was no Megillah reading, we still had to make Mishloach Manot. After putting together some things on my own, I decided to be the "bad guy" and woke up my "staff"!

Every year I am determined to make something creative (and moderately healthy).

A friend of mine, DF, always makes Mishloach Manot with a theme. One year it was breakfast (complete with bagels & cream cheese); one year it was lasagna and salad; etc.

Another friend, BB, gives Shiv'at HaMinim.

I'm sure there are people out there who give Mishloach Moanot with all the b'rachot (blessings).

This year, fresh baked challot and a bottle of wine were popular for those who celebrated Purim on Friday (i.e. most of the world's Jews, besides those who live in Jerusalem).

And every year, I consider all sorts of variations on the above.

But, unlike my friend, A Mother in Israel, who is so cool (and baked individual quiches!), I just can't get it together!

And then there's Jameel.... well, who can compete with waffles!!

For one reason or another, every year I fall back on our family "standard":
popcorn (a few years ago popcorn became our fail-safe filler, since EVERYONE loves popcorn), some sort of baked good (sometimes home baked, other times not) for mezonot,
a fruit (complicated this year because of shmita),
and candies (it used to be just toffees, but my kids rebelled, so every year we get a few fun candies).

Our goal is to make something simple, inexpensive and fun. If my kids would be happy to receive it, then they are happy to give it. (hence the funky candies). Since we usually don't have candies in our home, their standards are still pretty basic (gummy candies, flavored powder, lollypops, etc)

Maybe next year we'll be more creative.... (and healthy!)

Anyway, we made an assembly line and managed to get everything packed, decorated and labeled! Then Moshe took the kids to make deliveries.

I was tired! But, instead of resting, I tried to straighten up after the morning's hurricane.

So, when I picked up a forgotten bag of Mishloach Manot that Y was supposed to deliver to elderly people in the neighborhood, and a bottle of wine fell through the bottom of the bag, I felt like crying! There was wine and broken glass all over the kitchen floor... and I was barefoot!

As I cleaned off my wine-drenched feet and put on shoes, I thought of the laughter workshop. I tried to laugh about the mess. "ha, ha, ha...tzchok ha'yayin...." The laughter wasn't real. Still, something must have "shifted", 'cause I didn't cry when I got down on my knees and cleaned up the mess.


We went to our first Purim Seudah, around 1:00. Our hosts are one of the more seriously Orange families in our neighborhood. It was great to really sit down and talk with them. They are so interesting!! They have daughters the same ages as Y and A, so it was also a good opportunity for the girls to spend some time together.

Then we went off to our second Purim Seudah. These friends, with whom we have celebrated Purim before, are a bit zany (well, the husband is). But nothing prepared us for the sudden surprise invasion of 9 chassidic men who came over to daven ma'ariv just as we were about to drink tea!

Though we sat for hours, both meals ended too quickly. And, before I knew it, we were on our way home, and Purim was over.

And so, our "normal" week began....

Sunday night, post-Purim, our kids got ready for bed. Then, we all sat down together and watched Star Trek.

Please daven (or send happy, healing thoughts) for RivkA bat Teirtzel.

With love and optimism,


Gila said...

Laughter my ass. I would be crying too. Or cursing.

Unknown said...

Karin RivkA,

I think you and your readers would enjoy the following article, you need to be registered at the New York Times on line to access it, it is very poignant. http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/03/24/prayer-faith-and

I put a space in the link between "and" and the dash "-" so it wouldn't be cut off here. Just remove the space and you're good to go.


torontopearl said...

Two seudot???

One was plenty for us, thank you very much, with just a space of a few hours before we left our host's house and brought in Shabbos.

As for themed mishloach manot, we know a family who must really put great effort into their themes: this year, they sent the packages in plastic firemen hats -- a bottle of hot sauce, a couple of hot peppers, Hot Tamales candy box and bar-b-que flavoured Bissli were the offerings.

When one has the time/inclination, you can assemble lovely themed packages.

I mainly send out donation cards these days or order baskets through shuls and girls' schools here in Toronto.

But when given the time, I will put together something nice myself. I once bought flowerpots and also herb seeds to put in the pots, along with the other goodies. This year I prepared a particular package and put it in a colander -- I like practical, useful items!

Hope as spring visits us, you're feeling stronger every day...

RivkA with a capital A said...

Gila -- that's the point!!

Esther -- thanks

TorontoPearl -- Great ideas! I'm all in favor of "practical, useful items"!! Btw, don't forget, we had our seudot on Sunday, not Friday. So, two wasn't as crazy as it sounds... (we had one more to attend, but we ran out of time)