Monday, October 27, 2008

Response to Mother in Israel's post about culture

My father made aliya after college. Then he moved back to NY after 10 years of living here in Israel. When we made aliya he told us that he always felt this way: When he was with Israelis he felt like he was "The American" and when he was with Americans he felt like he was "Israeli." When we lived in Jlm I saw what he meant. In the neighborhood we lived in you could get along without speaking a word of Hebrew. It was amazing to me to see this. We chose to move to a yishuv where there is a significant population of Anglos but still that number isn't too large. We are forced to speak Hebrew and to interact with Israelis. Our Hebrew has improved greatly.

Being that I was born here and had a solid basis for the language I feel more comfortable communicating with Israelis. It's easier for me than for my hubby. I also understand the culture more. Most of my good friends are Americans but I've managed to make friends with Isaeli women as well. We live in a very diverse and accepting community so in addition to Americans and Israelis, there are a lot of Spanish and French speakers. Everyone tries to be very welcoming. My kids babysitters have all become my good friends.
I do however agree with Abbi's idea of the wall. Sometimes that language and cultural barrier is there and you feel that you can't break it. I live on a street where there are six Anglos out of 14. I have almost nothing to do with my Isaeli neighbors. Usually they say hello when they walk past us. I think they are intimidated by us. I'm not sure why. If they'd try to speak to me they'd see they can communicate just fine. I'll understand them and they will understand me. I do however see that my American neighbor who has been living on this street longer than us and who has kids who are slightly older than ours has more to do with the Israelis. She has kids in their kids classes so she has more to say to them. I have nothing to talk to them about and really have nothing to do with them. It is kind of sad I guess.

Part of the reason for the instant Anglo connection is that we all know that most of us don't have close family here. Because of that, we feel we have an obligation to be there for one another. When I gave birth two weeks ago the Americans organized meals right away. They didn't let me have a moment where I'd have to cook for the chagim. The Israelis however took time to get organized. We have a vaadat chessed that is supposed to organize meals. They didn't call until a week and a half after I gave birth. When they called they didn't call me. They called an Anglo neighbor who had been living here for a while and asked her to call me. Once again I'd say they are intimidated. I don't know why. The other Americans act like my mother, sister, aunt, grandmother all in one. They adopt the neighborhood kids and take care of them. For someone whose parents are far away, you need that extra mommy care sometimes. You know you can count on your Anglo friends for that.

Israelis don't understand our need to play the role of lost family members. They have their parents nearby. They can always go to them for shabbat or chag. They can go to their siblings. We can't. That's when having Anglo friends comes in. Friends in different cities will invite each other over. This is important and gives us a family feel.

Although it may be hard to become Israeli, I think that it's worth it at least for the sake of our kids. We may not ever feel like we'r 100% Israeli in terms of culture but we sure do want our kids to be Israeli. We don't want them to view themselves as Americans. We don't want them to go to college in America or to ask people to bring them American products every time they visit from the states (the way we do). We want our kids to be productive parts of Israeli society and therefore they need to integrate well. If they feel they don't fit in they may be more likely to go back to the old country. They may have a hard time finding a job if they can't integrate properly into Israeli society.

Bottom line, it's best to take the best of both worlds. Learn manners from the Anglos and cleaning tips from Israelis and everything will turn out fine.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

My First Day Back

Today was my first day back to regular mothering (plus a new baby). My father took the kids to gan with me and then left for Jlm. That left me and Uri home together, alone. We took a nice nap together. Then I woke up and did some laundry. I picked up my son from gan and when we got home he did his homework-he's really in gan chova but they call it kita alef. Anyway, then we walked to pick up my daughter because having to handle buckling in three carseats in the back seat of our car was too much for me. In the morning it took us a while to do it. I may have to switch the placement of the carseats or something.

So we picked up my daughter and boy was she happy to see us. The ganenet did say that she had a pretty good day for her. We took a walk to the makolet to pick up some conditioner b/c my daughter has lice and we're trying awefully hard to get rid of it. Then we picked up my hubby's suit which got stained with mud last time it rained. We walked back home and everyone had lunch. This was around 2:30. After lunch we folded laundry, cleaned up a bit, read some books.

Then it started to rain. Of course I knew that it would rain but I'm in no shape to take down a sukkah or schach. What can I say? I can't move my hubby to do something if he doesn't want to do it. The same thing happened with putting the sukkah up. I told him we should do it early b/c I know how to do it and I can guide him but he stubbornly refused. There was an excuse every Friday until after I gave birth. The day I came home, the last Friday before sukkot, he asked the neighbor for help. Unfortunately, because we moved an had to reconfigure our sukkah we didn't have enough of the right size boards. So we really couldn't put it up before shabbos. On motzei shabbos hubby got more boards from the hardware store and the neighbors put up the sukkah on Sunday. On Monday my dad and uncles put up the schach. Now if that's not last minute I don't know what is. Now hubby is in no rush to take down the sukkah. So what if it rains. We'll wait til the sukkah dries up and then ask the neighbor for help taking it down. I'm not as laid back as hubby. He can only do stuff on Fridays b/c that's the only day he's off. He gets home too late to do anything after work. So I'm leaving this to him and I'll try to watch calmly from the sidelines as we wait for our sukkah and schach to dry. Boy do I hope that those beams hold our schach up b/c if it lands in the mud nobody will be happy.

Hubby is going to a wedding tonight. I told him to go by himself. I didn't want to take baby and thought that it would be better if I rest rather than going. I can't really dance anyway so I would just go to socialize. I don't need to spend money on a babysitter for that. I would probably have a better time than he but because I just had a baby I was the natural candidate for babysitting.

Somehow I managed to deal with kvetchy baby and hyper kids. Baby fell asleep in time for me to make dinner and check my daughter's hair for lice. Fun fun. We ate and then I decided to read a new book to the kids. After that I changed them. All this was able to run smoothly b/c baby was asleep. Thanks babe. I put the kids to sleep while nursing. It went pretty smoothly. Now the house is quite. Kind of strange although I don't miss the noise one bit. I guess I'll have to go to sleep early or something. Wow, imagine that.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Playing Catch Up

So a lot of time has passed since I last wrote. I appologize. There really is a good reason. Where did I leave off. I had an ultrasound on Sunday. On Monday I posted the whole story. On Monday I tried to call someone to induce me by natural means. She wasn't home. After a whole long day, I decided to take a long walk around the yishuv. Our yishuv is very hilly. I left the house around 9 PM and the weather was beautiful. Walking downhill from our house I felt like I had so much energy. It was amazing. I walked two blocks lower than what I planned. Then I decided not to bite off more than I can chew and I started heading back uphill. That's when I really felt how preggy I was. I went very very slowly. I got home and felt great. I took a shower and went to sleep.

At 1 AM my wonderful 2.5 year old daughter woke up screaming. She wanted Ima. My hubby urged me to go into her room so that she wouldn't wake up her brother screaming. So I went sleepily into her room and sat my very pregnant self down on her rocker. That's when I felt it. All of a sudden I felt like I was having a contraction. The only thing was, it was in the abdomen and not at all in the back. This made me unsure if it was really a contraction. Then I felt another one. Still I wasn't sure and wasn't worried. After she fell asleep so did I. Then when I woke up I saw that I was still feeling these quasi contractions. I thought maybe it's painful Braxton Hicks. It wasn't so painful though. I realized that it got worse when I stood up. It was hard to eat breakfast because I felt like I had a head up my tush. My baby had been head down for two weeks.

When my hubby got home I told him that I thought I'd be giving birth that day, Tuesday. We got the kids mentally ready and sent them off to gan. We made arrangements for them to go to our neighbor again. We got their bags ready. Meanwhile I was still having more "pains." I decided to try to drinking white wine test. I love white wine (sweet that is). I drank a cup and tried to rest. It didn't work. I told my hubby he should stay home with me. He gets a day off for the birth. We cleaned up the mess in the house together. We did laundry, dishes, swept the floor. It was like last minute nesting. My hubby slept for an hour and a half while I continued to clean. Then about an hour before my kids were supposed to come home I woke him up. We decided to go to the hospital. We double checked that we had everything, including provisions for Yom Kippur in case the labor was extra specially long.

We drove to Haddasah Ein Kerem since I was hoping the labor would be over by Yom Kippur. We got there around 2 PM. My hubby dropped me off as I was constantly having contractions. I assumed that they were contractions b/c they were pretty regular although there was no pain in the back. I was walking and then would stop every time a contraction came. I went down to the cheder kabala where I had to wait for a while. They practically ignored me b/c they were swamped. I kept pacing back and forth. I even saw a friend of mine (an NCSY advisor). I was glad that my labors took time b/c otherwise I would have had the baby on the floor of the cheder kabala. Finally they sent me to do an ultrasound and then a monitor. The ultrasound showed that I had more water than the other estimates. The monitor was fine. Finally at around 4 PM a doctor came and checked me internally. At that point he told me that I was 3 cm dilated. Boy was I relieved. Now I knew that those pains were contractions. I also knew that I had progressed nicely by laboring at home.

At 4:30 the doc told us to go daven mincha and come back at 6 PM for another check. We davened and then walked to the nice mall they built there. We bought food in the only mehadrin food place, Neeman. I had a salad and then my hubs went to daven maariv. When I went back to be checked I was still at 3 cm. I couldn't believe it. I decided to pace back and forth in the hallway so that gravity would help me open up more. I also did squats. At 7 PM I was checked again and was almost 4 cm dilated. My midwife, Avital was very nice but I knew that I wouldn't be having the baby before her shift was over at 11 PM. I wasn't advancing so fast. My doula in training arrived around 9:45. She was very helpful. She went in the shower with me and helped spray my belly while I sat on the ball. I was in so much pain when I stood that I preferred to stay in the bed. Every time a contraction came I held onto the doula and the bed and tried so hard to relax. It wasn't really happening.

At 11, Gila came in. She was great. She basically stayed with me until 1 AM when I gave birth. The contractions were coming fast and hard b/c the babies head was so low. They were coming every two to three minutes and lasting three quarters of a minute. I wasn't doing well. Gila convinced me to break my waters. She told me that the contractions couldn't come any faster or harder than the pain I was in. I broke down and finally allowed her to do it. She broke my waters and within a minute I went from 6 cm to 9 cm. I felt the urge to push. The baby's head was so low down. I pushed for 25 minutes. As soon as my waters broke I wanted to push him out and another midwife came in. Each midwife had one leg up on her and the doula had one of my hands. With the other hand I held my leg. I kept pushing with all my might. I was expecting to push once and be done with it. I was so frustrated that the babe wasn't coming out. They said to me the baby is coming, do you want to feel it. I said, "No thanks." So I kept pushing and they were rubbing with almond oil. The head was inching out and finally I gave a few long pushes and the head was out. The body was pulled out after. They placed the baby between my legs while I birthed the placenta.

They announced happily, it's a boy! I couldn't believe it. I was sure it would be a girl. My hubs didn't even hear when they said it was a boy. I said to him, "Did you hear that? It's a boy!" The baby was born at 1 AM on Wednesday morning. Wed. night was Yom Kippur. That meant we were going to have a chol hamoed bris. As soon as I thought about all of this I told my hubby to call my parents and invite them to the bris. My dad immediately got working, trying to find a flight. They were thrilled to say the least. Meanwhile, baby looked very healthy. He was 3.6 kilos. That was more than all the estimates. I tried to nurse for a while but he was really really hungry.

After the birth I felt the greatest high. I had given birth naturally. I didn't use any pain relief. I had developed self-confidence. I have Esther to thank. She was telling me that after they break her waters she gives birth quickly and easily. Once I took that leap, Hashem took care of me. It was the easiest labor I've had so far. It was the shortest. I also didn't tear b"H. This meant that recuperating would be much easier and faster. It makes such a difference. Unfortunately, because it was the middle of the night and there had been a lot of birth and a lot of c-sections that week, I was placed in the hallway that "night." I didn't get much sleep. Imagine having just given birth and wanting to go to the bathroom. You wouldn't feel so comfy going into any room to use their bathroom. So around breakfast time I asked someone to use their bathroom. That was a relief. Hubby and kids came to visit me. They were so excited to see baby. After 12 I got a room with a paranoid lady. She convinced me to place my stuff in the safe. I played with it until I got the hang of how it works. I put my stuff in and it got locked in. They called security but they didn't come before Yom Kippur. The nurses were so kvetchy. The Russian ones were particularly moody. Nobody wanted to be working there on that day.

The nurses made it very clear to us that they weren't there to serve or help us. It was our job not theirs to take care of the babies. Tough if we wanted to rest. We were all very shocked at this attitude from them. It was very sad b/c we wanted to rest. Oh well. Next time I'll have to try out a different hospital. The food on Yom Kippur was terrible leftovers from the day before. I ate b/c I was so hungry and b/c I had given birth just one day before. There was a group of frum women and about 4 English speakers. It was a nice crowd. After Yom Kippur I nudged the nurses to call the guards to open the safe. It took them a few hours to come but once they came it took 2 seconds to open it. I stopped locking my stuff in the safe and ignored the paranoid lady.

On Friday morning paranoid lady was very happy to be leaving. I was also after the nasty nurses kept hocking me. Around 11 I was released. Alll was well with baby. On motzei Yom Kippur the nurses said baby was yellow but in the end all was okay. We had to arrange for the shalom zachor. Life was crazy but I tried to stay calm. Thank goodness the nice anglos arranged all the food. Everyone brought tons of stuff for the shalom zachor and for shabbos. We had plenty of food. The neighbors helped us get everything set up. Baby behaved very well as did the guests (with the exception of the man who ate all the popcorn and then asked if we had even more). I was exhausted by the time it was over.

My dad arrived from NY on erev chag, Monday morning. He spent sukkot with us. When it was second day for him, we had the bris. The night before we had decided on a choice of two names. Only the morning of the bris did we decide the second name. My dad was the sandek. Nobody from my israeli fam showed up. My dad's two friends showed up. A few of my friends showed up. It was nice but of course stressful for the mother.

And now, for the moment you've been waiting for............and the babies name is

Uriel Yona

May he grow to merit Torah, chuppah and maasim tovim!
He is a big cutie with yummy cheeks. Holy Bagel did the bris and we had lots of food left over. No dessert however. When we got home we had to put it all away. Luckily my neighbor helped with all of that.

My dad has been here trying to help out with the kids. On Wed. hubby stayed home. On Th. hubby worked and dad hung out here. On Fri. everyone except for me and Uriel went to Jlm. Shabbos we had leftovers. Sunday hubby worked half a day and then dad went to friends. Monday, dad came back and people delivered food for us. Tuesday was Simchat Torah. Mom and baby stayed home while everyone else went to hakafot. On Wed. mom and 3 kids walked across the yishuv to hubby's shul. Hakafos were nice. Then we exhaustedly walked home. We ate lunch so late. Today dad is keeping second day and hubby went to work. Tomorrow, b"H kids will be back at gan. Hopefully then I'll get to rest. I can't wait for the quiet and the chance to be alone.

Monday, October 6, 2008

More Updates

I should start of by saying thank you to Doron the fix it man who came by last night while I was at another Miriam Adahan shiur. On Thursday he tried to fix the leak and said the faucet had to be replaced. On Friday we drove to Jlm to give the broken faucet to the owner to get it replaced b/c it had a warantee. He got it replaced (or so we thought). Then it was too close to shabbos for Doron to fix it. Motzei shabbos he was busy. So on Sunday night he came by to fix it. After trying to install it he said that it was the same leaky faucet that we had given them to replace. My hubby called the owner. They decided to get a brand new faucet from the Kol Bo. They split the pay. It's a really nice one. Yay. Anyway, so thank you Doron for allowing us the luxury of running water in our kitchen. I was too tired to wash dishes when I got back from the shiur.

On Sunday I tried to get an appt for an ultrasound. So after trying to book an appointment for Tuesday for an ultrasound I gave up and decided to go local on Sunday. It was way more convenient. Unfortunately, the technition told me that my water was kind of low. She did me a favor and said that I shouldn't go to the hospital right away. She made me an appointment at a place in Jlm to get an ultrasound for Monday at 11. Unfortunately I had to teach a class this morning. I got there ten minutes late and they all decided that they had finished davening already. After trying to argue with them I gave up and told them that it's between them and G-d and after all it's aseret yimai teshuva and this was their choice. I gave them a lesson on sukkot words in English. After the lesson I went home to get ready. I gave my neighbor the clothes for the kiddies and packed and left. I left late, picked up the hubs and went to the ultrasound place. We got there and had to wait. The water level was considered low but not low enough to induce me. Then I was sent to get a monitor reading. We had to wait a while. Monitor was okay. Dr. said that since baby is a good size and I feel movements I don't need to return until Sunday. Of course I think I'll give birth after Yom Kippur if I fast. I was kind of hoping to give birth before YK. Well this dr. kindly offered to do stripping for me which I kindly declined. No thank you. I don't like to inflict pain on myself. She wasn't too happy that I declined and told me that if I change my mind I could come back. No thanks. So then we went to the mall and ate lunch. I bought a hat for baby and then went home to the kiddies. They were happy to see me.

When I got home I couldn't stand the mess I saw so despite being on my legs for a large part of the day I began to clean. I couldn't stand the way the kitchen looked after a week of no dish doing. I did some dishes and actually cooked dinner for a change and then we ate. Meanwhile lots of family members called to see how I was doing. They all wanted to know if I'd given birth yet. The answer of course was NO! So that's where we're holding.

I called someone to ask about natural induction methods. I was told that it only helps if you are dilated a little. I have no clue if I'm dilated b/c my doc won't touch me other than to do an ultrasound. So for now I'll try some methods and we'll see what will happen. I so don't want to give birth on YK. I really wanted to give birth on Tuesday but that will also mean having a Yom Tov bris. Oh goodness, please let everything work out for the best. This is not an easy time to be preggy. Maybe next time I'll try to have a little more foresight.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Emotional Preggy Lady

Yup. That's me. Maybe this post should be entitled over-emotional pregnant lady. My poor husband has to deal with his worst nightmare-an overly sensitive female who cries for seemingly no reason. This month has been quite a ride. I've found about a thousand reasons to cry. Anything anyone says to me makes me cry. I cry after every doctors visit. I had such a bad day. Of course speaking to my hubby about this wouldn't yield any results because I really need a female to listen. He just isn't playing the part. My day started off with me getting my kids out of the house late. Then I didn't get enough done during the day. I layed down to rest and only after I woke up realized that I was supposed to pick my son up early because today is a fast day. I drove like a maniac to pick him up and like the good boy that he is, he was waiting for me patiently near his gan. He had been crying but wasn't crying when I picked him up. I apologized profusely and asked him if anyone saw that he was waiting there. One girl asked him where he lived and what his name is and said she would call me. I never received any calls. I don't understand how only one girl could see my son crying. Aren't any mothers walking their kids to and from gan? Aren't there any adults around? Apparently not. So my hubby suggested that I go and buy him a treat to make it up to him. I bought him one and me one. Only after getting home did I realize that mine wasn't mehadrin. So I didn't get to eat anything.

When I picked up my daughter her ganenet told me how she started off the day so nicely until it was time to try to make on the toilet. From that point on she was the enemy of the ganenet. So we got home and my son asked if he could clip thorns in the yard. He's been patiently waiting til after shmita to do that. I gave him the clippers. This meant though that neither he nor his sister ate a normal lunch. Then the repairman came over to repair our leaky sink.

I had noticed before Rosh Hashana that there was a lot of water on the floor near the sink but I figured that it was b/c my hubby was washing dishes. On Rosh Hashana I had the brains to open up the closet under the sink and there I found a wonderful flood. I removed all of the plastic bags and spilled out the water in the ones that were full. Fun Fun! After the chag we called our owner and the repair man. The repair man came over and said that he thinks he needs to replace a thin pipe. Today he came over in the early afternoon to replace it only to find out that no, it's not the pipe. It's the faucet. So he spoke to the owner who said that the faucet is still under warantee. The owner wanted us to drive to Jlm to give them the faucet so that they can utilize the warantee. Never mind that we don't have a faucet in our kitchen. Never mind that we never did the dishes from Rosh Hashana. So now we made up that tomorrow, Friday, my hubby will go in Jlm at 11:45 or so and will give the faucet to the owner. The owner will get it replaced and then the repair man will magically replace it all before Shabbat. All this of course means that we will have a very hard time cooking. I told my hubby that I'm sure I'm having the baby because of all of this. I tried not to get stressed out but let's face it, I'm stressed.

So my hubby has to go to Jlm tomorrow. My house is a mess and my hubby resents me saying so. I'm not sure why though because it's not like he's tried to clean it. If you ask me, he's still not recovered fromt he fast. Anyway, after the whole thing with the repair man, I had to go to the OB/GYN. I got there early because I know that in the past when I don't there is a huge line and everyone and their five or ten kids is there. I did the blood pressure, weighing, pish in a cup thing and then waited for the doc. My kids however didn't wait so patiently. Well my daughter woke up suddenly and realized that she hadn't eaten lunch, not at the babysitter and not at home. She was starving and cranky. This allowed for some nice temper tantrums and screaming. All in public of course. My son was actually much better behaved. He took a sefer tehillim to read and I showed him some perakim that were good to read. The doc came about 45 minutes late. Some lady asked to go in front of me and stupidly I let her. She had no kids with her. I had two cranky hungry ones. Luckily b/4 I went in my hubby called to say that he would be there in a few minutes. While I was inside with the doc my hubby came and took care of the kiddies. yay!

So how did the dr. visit go? Well I gained weight and so did the babe. It's now 3.3 kilos. The doc checked it's size and said it was a good size-belly, head, leg. Then he checked the liquid and said it wasn't so much. He told me that I should go to Jlm next Tuesday to have an ultrasound in case I'm losing fluid. He also told me to be careful to count the fetal movements. I need to feel 3 a day. That shouldn't be a problem. I'm feeling way more than that. I asked if there's anything I can do to speed up the due date. He told me to drink caster oil and O.J. We'll see what happens but boy do I want to give birth within 72 hours of Yom Kippur. I was reading in a book about the halachos and basically within 72 hours she can eat on Y.K. but if the baby is born before the 72 hour mark she can only eat in shiurim. That's not fun! That's why I'm hoping to hold out until early next week and then to go into labor naturally. I hope the One Above is listening to my requests and answering in the affirmative. Anyway, so that's why I keep saying to my hubby that I think I'll be giving birth really really soon.

As I see it, it's the perfect time for me to give birth. My house is a mess. I have no faucet in the kitchen. I haven't cooked for Shabbos. It would so be the ideal time in terms of stress to give birth. If I survive this Shabbos then I guess I can survive anything. I'm supermom! Ok, so now I'm going to talk to my hubby only to have him say something that I will perceive as insensitive and cry. Yay! So fun having an overabundance of hormones.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Rosh Hashana Menu

Since I am nine months pregnant I feel entitled to post this after Rosh Hashana. Hope everyone had a good holiday. I for one spent a lot of time preparing with the "help" of my kiddies. Then once the chag came I didn't have a very restful time. I put my daughter to sleep before my hubby got home from shul and then let my son stay up with us. This proved to be a challenge since he was overtired. He did enjoy the simanim but refused to sleep before the meal was over. The next day we all woke up late and had to eat and get to shul to hear shofar. We just made it b"H. In the afternoon I didn't get to rest due to an overabundance of youngins inspiring to be baalei tekiya. I wasn't too happy about the lack of sleep. The second night, I decided to try to keep both kids up. We put them to bed right after the simanim. Then we ate the rest of the meal alone. That was particularly nice. It's probably one of the last times we'll be able to do that. Soon we'll be changing the clocks and then the kids will be up for the meal with us. Fun fun. So I went to sleep as soon as I could after the meal. Then I forced myself to get out of bed at 7 knowing that the kids would sleep late and that it would give me enough time to get everything together so that we could get to shul on time to hear the shofar again. I ate breakfast by myself and got the snacks ready. Then the kids woke up and I dressed them. We walked to shul and they were actually running late. The kids ate their breakfast bags nicely while I listened to Torah reading and the haftorah. Then we heard the shofar and were free to go play. We had a little preggy pow wow on one of the benches outside the shul. There are a lot of us due around the same time, b"H.

And now, for the main reason of this post.............. our Rosh Hashana Menu:
We made brisket in a tomato and cranberry sauce, baked breaded shnitzel, carrot kugel, cranberry crisp, veggie soup with matzah balls, gefilte fish, chocolate chip cookies and peanut butter squares. Out of all of that food we have a tiny bit of soup left. We have some fish left for Shabbos, no brisket, a few pieces of shnitzel, 3 pieces of carrot kugel, a few cookies and three p.b. squares. I'm so not looking foward to cooking for shabbos. My hubby ususally does the chicken b/c I can't stand the look and smell of it when I'm preggy. I'll probably make some sort of rice and be done with it.


For our anniversary my husband and I went out to a great steakhouse in Yerushalayim. We had been there once before and one thing I loved (besides the yummy food) was the wonderful music they played. I never asked them what it was but today when I dropped my daughter at her babysitter, she had the same music playing and I immediately got the name of the musician. His name is Eliezer Rosenfeld and he plays popular Jewish music songs mostly on the flute. His music is beautiful. Being someone who played the flute for many years his music speaks to me. The greatest part is that he's playing songs that I know. Some are upbeat and some are slow. So this is going to be my new obsession. I must get my hands on some of his CDs.

Since we moved into our house about half a year ago, we haven't hooked up our stereo. This is because the place we'd like to put it has no outlet. The only other piece of furniture where we could put it is right opposite the door and I felt that it wouldn't be nice to see that right when you walk in. So, our stereo is sitting in the box in our living room. Hopefully we'll find a satisfactory solution. For the time being, I've been listening to Radio Kol Chai like all day every day. I love their shows and their taste in music (mostly). Now that we have our new computer maybe I could buy E.R.'s CDs and play them on the computer. Woo Hoo! I'm so excited.

Shana Tova to all!