Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Ugh. No words.

As Seraphic Secret suggests, you must see this: an adorable play put on by adorable children in Gaza.


You don’t really understand human nature unless you know why a child on a merry-go-round will wave at his parents every time around - and why his parents will always wave back.

--William D. Tammeus


Ada's into the stage where she loves to reminisce as in, "'Member when we went on the train and we went 'round and 'round and I had a buckle...?"

"Dreh-fis" = breakfast in Adaspeak.

p.s. I packed my first box of dishes! This move is really going to happen.

p.p.s. Anyone want to donate a high riser or twin beds to the Cuties?

p.p.p.s. I was just remembering how we used to think it was the epitome of cleverness to add numerous post scripts to letters. (How 'bout the kids that did it wrong by writing p.s.s.s.?)

Sibling dynamics

It's so not fair for Sari. She's at an age when hearing "I won't be your friend if you won't let me have your (insert toy/candy/article of interest)" from Mordechai leaves her with no be'chira (choice). Meanwhile, she could say the same thing and Mordechai responds with a shrug and a smirk. It irks me so. And I hate when Mordechai devises a "trade" agreement to swindle her out of her property. I've instituted a no-trades-allowed-without-maternal-approval rule which also includes an all-trades-can-be-reversed-if-regretted clause. Is that silly of me? I'm just trying to level the playing field.

Speaking of little parenting questions, let me run this one by you. Say, for example, Mordechai wants to lie down in Daddy's bed. If he gets permission, then everyone wants to lie in Daddy's bed. (Yes, this does get ridiculously out of hand too many a time. I told Dovid this was going to happen years ago.) So sometimes he asks if he can go to Dad's bed after the girls fall asleep. Since this is really not a problem for Dad, it seems like the perfect solution. Obviously, though, there is that element of deceit. So, good or no good? Or how 'bout the simple, "You can have another cookie but don't let Ada see it."? (Ack! What is up with that punctuation? I'll research it some other time when I get a round tuit.)

Friday, May 25, 2007

Just a sampling

Mordechai's rebbe talks the yeshiva talk with the kids which they love. They feel like they're in really serious shiur. Mordechai tries to insert these "learning" phrases into his vocabulary whenever appropriate and it's adorable. At one se'udah on Shavuot, we had the whole Queens branch of the May Fam over. There was some lively conversation going on and I was agreeing with my bro-in-law, Yoni, about something or other, and said, "That's exactly what I always say!" Mordechai made a mock show of being very impressed and said, "Ooooh. Yoni was m'chaven to Mommy!"

For the last se'udah we ate out (after three meals hosting numerous guests, baruch Hashem). After the meal, the kids were all enjoying way too much candy while I was lounging in the other room flipping through books. I called out to the kids that that was enough junk food for the day. Just a few minutes later, Dovid found Sari and her friend Shayna, sitting hidden away at the bottom of the backyard stairs. He asked her why she was hiding there and she replied with a twinkle in her eye and her irrepressible smile, "I'm hiding from Mommy because I got another taffy!"

Ada has a wonderful method of self praise. As she's cleaning up a game, she sings, "I like the way Ada's cleaning..." Today she requested some participation from me. She turned to me and said, "You say 'Nice job Ada'."

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Who is rich?

The conversations during carpool are so amusing - when the kids are not arguing at the top of their lungs, that is. A snippet of today's discussion:

Mordechai: My father is so rich. He's probably the richest in the class!

Friend: Oh yeah? How much money does he have? A hundred? A thousand? A million?

M: I don't know exactly but I know it's a lot.

F: My father is so rich. I know because every week, when he pays the babysitter, he gives her a hundred dollars.

M: Yeah. Well my father pays my babysitter two hundred and fifty dollars!

Well that settles it then, doesn't it?

Friday, May 11, 2007

Oh, brother!

Mordechai was wondering about Mothers' Day and about how the whole thing got started. I explained to him the whole Hallmark thing. He then asked, "Why don't they have Brothers' Day?"

"Well, um, I don't really know," I replied.

Mordechai shrugged and said, "It doesn't matter anyway because one day I'll be a father."

UPDATE: I was telling the story over to Dovid when Sari piped up to say, quite matter-of-factly, "On Mothers' Day all the non-Jewish fathers take the mothers to a fancy restaurant."

Got that Dovid?

Tuesday, May 01, 2007


Ada has been walking around telling everyone she meets that she's going to "Acamy Palm Beach" and she's getting a "napsap" in which she'll put her "shtraw cup with milk" and a notebook. For those of you who haven't yet heard the BIG news, here it is:

We're moving to Palm Beach!

You heard right. We're headed down to sunny Florida, to the island of the palm trees. Dovid has been appointed by the Judy Steinberg Hebrew Academy of Palm Beach as head of school. (That is the "acamy" to which Ada refers.) There is currently a preschool and we plan to open Kindergarten and Grade 1 for the coming school year. And so, a new Jewish day school is born in an area that has the fourth-largest Jewish population in the U.S.! Sadly, only about 32 percent of the county's Jews are affiliated with a synagogue. And with the number of Jewish children there having increased over 60 percent in the past ten years, we have our work cut out for us. I will be Director of Curriculum Development and will be splitting my time by teaching our first grade class.

So how do I feel? Thrilled and excited about this wonderful opportunity and the purpose we aim to fulfill. Happy for my family to be living in a place that is more laid back. Sad for my family to be living so far away from our family (grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins) in New York and Pennsylvania. Proud that my family will become a living kiddush Hashem, with His help. Nervous about adjusting to living on my own without the huge support system I currently enjoy and about managing the logisitics of a long-distance move almost single-handedly (Dovid is going into seclusion as soon as yeshiva lets out in June to cram for his semicha test this summer.)!

Thankfully, with all these powerful emotions threatening to turn me into a pile of useless overwrought nerves, I have very little time to feel or even think too much. I have been so insanely busy working for the Hebrew Academy, I have little time for anything!

One thing I do know: The Hebrew Academy of Palm Beach will be the most awesome school in the county. We're aiming for - and will stop at nothing less than - academic excellence and character-building. We care about each individual child and working with families as partners in each child's Jewish and secular education. I am quite confident that our children will love to learn and learn to love their rich Jewish heritage.

I'm off to Palm Beach next week for a few days. Don't miss me too much while I'm there. Ha! As if! ;)