One of my big challenges for this year is to be more patient with my children.
One of my kids is a wonderful boy with a sweet streak, but he is also extremely energetic and impulsive. I start every day striving to be patient, but too often I get frustrated with his behavior and start nagging/punishing.
Continue reading #MeditationMonday – Hebrew Meditation for Patience
Rabbi Gideon Weitzman, the rabbi of my shul/beit knesset in Modi’in, recently published an excellent book entitled, His Words, Their Voices: Essays on the Haftarot.
In his essay on the specific Haftarah (a section of the book of Prophets) that is read communally on the second day of Rosh HaShana, Rabbi Weitzman struck a chord with me by writing about the “playful child.”
Continue reading The “Playful Child” on Rosh HaShana
In late May, I decided to get serious about improving my health. Since then, I’ve lost 20 pounds (9 kilos) and feel MUCH better. Six relatively easy steps have helped me transition to a healthier lifestyle.
Continue reading Six Ways I Lost 20 Pounds
My father isn’t particularly religiously observant. But this Father’s Day I am thinking about something he said over and over to my siblings and me during our childhood that has profoundly affected how I practice Judaism and live my life.
Continue reading A Jewish Father’s Important Catchphrase on Father’s Day
This Mother’s Day I am reminded of all the happiness lessons I learned from my Jewish mother.
1. Be friendly and nice: as a kid, I would get annoyed when my mother would stop and chat with what seemed like every person in line at the supermarket check-out. Of course as I matured, I realized how much more pleasant the world would be if everyone gave other people the feeling that they matter.
Continue reading A Jewish Mother’s 5 Happiness Lessons
Everyone said it would be difficult to raise kids within the framework of a “mixed marriage” and they were right. After a decade of marriage and the birth of three cute kids, my Jewish–Israeli wife would be the first to tell you that married life in Israel with a Jewish-American husband hasn’t always been as smooth as Philadelphia cream cheese on a delicious whole wheat bagel (and she would never use such an American metaphor).
Continue reading Four “Mixed Marriage” Parenting Rules
This week I went to my hair stylist*, Erez, for a quick haircut around lunch time.
I’ve been a loyal customer since moving to Modi’in, Israel ten years ago. He does a nice job cutting my hair (sadly, there is less hair to work with as time passes) and I enjoy talking to him. After quickly catching up, we started chatting about whether Israel will ever extend its weekend and officially make Sunday a day off.
Continue reading My Hair Stylist’s View on Kids, Technology and Shabbat
The Shabbos Project (@ShabbosProject_) is a wonderful idea that is sure to increase simcha (happiness) worldwide. This weekend (the first day of the new month of Cheshvan/October 24-25) Jews in more than 212 cities and 33 countries will experience the joy of observing and celebrating Shabbat (or “Shabbos”). As a Jew who keeps Shabbat on a weekly basis with his family, I’ll try to explain why Shabbat never fails to put a smile on my face.
So, why does Shabbat = simcha?
Continue reading 5 Reasons Why Shabbat = Simcha (Happiness)
I am starting this blog in October 2014 in a state of sadness.
There are so many blessings in my life and don’t get me wrong, I experience many moments of great happiness. And yet I’m all too often unhappy. I have been binge eating in secret to dull my feelings, although I’m not sure how much of a secret it is, because I’m overweight and out of shape (I’m on blood pressure medication at the age of 38).
Continue reading Starting State (Sad)