Saturday, November 27, 2010

On my mind...

I've just spent the last half hour writing 3 posts - none of which I find remotely interesting enough to share at this time. 

It is hard to get one thought together when I've got too much on my mind. For instance, I'm trying to figure out how to pack for a 3 day business trip using one carry on suitcase.  Somehow, I have to get my big, bulky hair dryer in that little bag.  I hope I can do it.  The hotel hair dryer is never good enough for me.

On Monday, I'm starting my "OMG I'm turning 40 soon" diet.  My friend and I have vowed to be accountable to each other, keep a food diary, know the points value for every food we eat, try out a few new HG recipes and get to the gym a few more times a week. I gotta get to that certain number on the scale by February!

Tonight, I'm headed out to meet a bunch of old friends that I haven't seen in about 20 years. It is my SRJ BBYO (translated to be the South Jersey Region of the B'nai Brith Youth Organization) reunion.  Will they even recognize me? I suppose those who are my FB friends will.  It will either be a short visit or a long night.  Either way - I'm looking forward to it.  In my teenage years, these people changed my life in so many good ways and I'm eternally grateful for that.  I made lots of friends when I had so few in school.  I found my self confidence and learned how much I had to contribute to the world.  We share a lot of memories from the old JCC on Rt. 70 and summer camp that always bring a smile to my face. It will be great to reminisce with them about the good ole days. LOL!

I hope you enjoy what is left of your four day weekend! I know I will.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

So thankful...

Every Thanksgiving, I am always thankful that I am not a turkey. Having said that, there are so many other things to be thankful for.
For my husband, - for too many reasons to count.  This year, I'm particularly thankful for his new job in Philadelphia that he enjoys and gets to trade in his 5 hour NYC commute for a 25 minute train ride. Our quaility family time is 100% better and we are all grateful for that.

For my daughter, who does well in school, has inherited my dry sense of humor and comedic timing, makes her own breakfast and loves to organize things around the house, asks me what I did at work today, takes an interest in everything and goes out of her way to be nice to people every day.

For my son, who does well in school, who cracks me up with his words and his antics (especially his impression of the Cake Boss), his boyish charm, and the fact that he gives me hugs and kisses every chance he gets.

For my parents, who raised me as a Phillies fan, a good egg, a people person and who always encourage me to follow my dreams.

For my in-laws, who help me at a drop of a hat, share their hearts, home, words of wisdom and fantastic clothes that my mother-in-law doesn't wear anymore. 

For my home, which is full of love and laughter, clutter and chaos. I wouldn't have it any other way. 

For my job, which perfectly matches my skills, personality and faith.  Every day is an opportunity to help someone form a connection whether with each other or within the community.  I'm lucky to be in a position to make that shidduch (match). I'm also thankful that I work with such wonderful people every day. 

For all of my friends, from our summertime Drinks on the Driveway parties with my neighbors to hanging out with girlfriends at a great restaurant, to "talking" on FB - I am thankful for the laughs shared, stories told and lasting memories.

Finally, I am thankful for reaching this stage of my life.  In my 20's and 30's, I spent plenty of time figuring out who I was and what I want. Now that I am on the verge of a new decade, I am happy with who I am, appreciate what I have and happy that I still have dreams to make come true.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

8 days til Hanukkah

Preparing for Hanukkah can never top what my friends do to get ready to celebrate Christmas.  We don't hang lights, bake cookies or decorate trees.  However, there are plenty of things to do and this year - there is not a lot of time to get it all done.

  • Eight Crazy Nights - Do I have presents for each night for each child?  Where can I find Hanukkah paper when all I see is aisles of red and green gift wrap? Do I have enough gelt (chocolate coins)?
  • Light One Candle - Did I clean out the wax from the menorah after the 8th night of Hanukkah last year?  Where is the electric menorah for the window?  Do I need to buy Hanukkah candles? Remind the kids to brush up on their Hanukkah blessings.

  • Did you remember to check the oil? - Do I have enough vegetable oil to cook the latkes in?  Am I grating potato from scratch (remember the garbage disposal disaster of 2009)?  Hmm - maybe I'll buy the mix.  Oh wait, who has the Weight Watchers recipe for the potato latkes?  Who is bringing the sour cream and applesauce? Don't forget that my kids like ketchup on their latkes. 

  • Dreidels, Dreidels and more Dreidels - I don't encourage gambling in my house but when it comes to dreidel - we take no prisoners. Give me a gimmel (to take the entire pot of candy) or a hay for half the pot of candy (I'm on a diet).  No shins (put one in the pot) or nuns (no gelt for you!) here. Bring it on. From Texas Dreidel to Traditional Dreidel to dreidel spinning contests - we've got it all!

  • It's Not Just The Dreidel Song Anymore - Yes, I had a little dreidel and I made it out of clay.  Did you know that this is not the only Hanukkah song out there. Not even close. Here is one of my favorites - a YouTube video: Pass the Candle. If you like Laurie Berkner-esque music, check out Chanukah Fever and Funky Gold Menorah from the Mama Doni Band.
For a great (and brief) kid's video explaining the holiday, check out

Oy Vey! I think I'd better get moving .... 8 days til the 1st night of Hanukkah and so much to do!

Chag Sameach! Happy Thanksgiving and a joyous Hanukkah to all!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Sacred Space

This week at my professional conference I learned about the idea of "sacred space." When asked what I do within my sacred space, I said that I spend the time with my children. But, while this is a nice thought - the true definition of sacred space is finding a moment to myself - to breathe, to relax and be in the moment.  Sounds hard doesn't it? I think so too.

In Dallas, I was fortunate to create sacred space for myself.  It is easy to do when there are no kids around, the phone isn't ringing off the hook and no email in front of my face.  It was easy to listen to those around me share their experiences, absorb what I could and plan for the future.

Now that I am back and I have a suitcase to unpack and kids to take to karate and help with their homework, not to mention about 80 emails to go through, sacred space seems like a foreign concept to me - again. But, for my own sanity, I must find it once a day. 

I must admit that I'm still looking for it today, but I am determined to find it before I lay my head on my pillow to go to sleep tonight.