Tuesday, April 25, 2006


For the first time since I moved to Israel, I will not be hanging a flag for Independence Day. It makes me very sad, but my husband feels very strongly about it, and his happiness is more important to me than a piece of cloth, no matter what it symbolizes to me.

He didn't, however, mention anything about blogging about it. (ah the beauty of loopholes).

Y's claim against Zionism is that the country of Israel was created for a specific kind of Jew. I'll buy that. There are a lot of dirty little secrets in the history of the country. There are stories of stolen Yemenite children, systematic removal of religion from newcomers, and more.

It's true that religious Jews were placed in non-religious kibbutzim to help them "get over all that backwards religion stuff." Last year, after our seder, one of our guests, an older man, said that he hadn't been at such a nice seder since he left Europe. He meant that he hadn't been at a religious seder since then, since he'd been placed on a kibbutz here in Israel.

So why am I still a Zionist? It's complicated. First, I have difficulty separating between the land and the country, because I know that the land I live on was fought for by secular Zionists and religious Jews alike. I know that the Zionists formed this country for some of the wrong reasons, but also for a lot of the right reasons. Since the country of Israel came into existence, any Jew can live in the land of Israel, for the first time in 2000 years.

Yesterday, I was at my niece's school for a Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremony. My niece was one of the soloist singers, and she was excellent, but what really bowled me over was hearing a hundred or more children singing "Hatikva" - the hope.

"Hatikva bat shnot alpayim" - The hope is two thousand years old
"L'hiyot am hofshi b'artzenu" - to be a free nation in our land
"Eretz Zion V'Yerushalayim" - the land of Zion and Jerusalem.

These children are growing up in the land of Israel, they have never experienced this hope, yet they are learning about it. They are learning that we waited two thousand years to live here.

And they live here.

If that's not a miracle, I can't imagine what would be.

*This post was sponsored by DrSavta.com, who provided the ride to the ceremony, as well as some of the raw material which created the aforementioned niece.


Since people have repeatedly tried to spam my blog, I am now offering sponsorships of individual posts. All you have to do is 1. pay me, and 2. have a site that is honest and legal.

So, for example, if you want to promote your widget site, I'll write all about how your widgets are the cutest widgets around on my blog and then, with any luck, you'll get some clicks.

Monday, April 24, 2006

You Never Forget How to Ride a Bike...

Well, that's the theory, anyway.

I went biking today, and discovered that while I didn't lose that nifty balance thing that took me many many years to learn, (seriously, I couldn't ride a two-wheeler until I was NINE) I did forget how to feel comfortable on a bike.

I was so stressed that my fingers almost melted into the handlebars... It's only been 16 years since I last went biking... How much can you forget in 16 years? Apparently your confidence can easily be forgotten in that amount of time. I remember being comfortable on a bike. I wasn't comfortable today...

Thursday, April 20, 2006

The Honeymooners?

Some people take a wild honeymoon to Cancun, where they lie on sandy beaches, drink cocktails, and enjoy romantic oil massages...

Some go Alpine skiing....

And some go to juggling festivals.

Guess which group I fell into?

So this week was the 13th annual Israeli Juggling Convention, which afforded me some interesting opportunities.

For example, I was given the opportunity to live for three straight days on matza, gefilte fish, and tuna. I owe a great debt of gratitude to the Trachtmans who fed me grilled veggies and matza brie (or however you spell it).

I also enjoyed learning what it's like to be a duck by waddling through pouring rain, getting soaked, and trying desperately to protect my pillow from the rain.

In addition, I had the fantastic opportunity to sleep across several curved chairs in a gym full of noisy people.

After that, I had the good fortune to be able to sleep on rocks in a tent...

Oh... and the good stuff... I got to see a world-class juggling show. I got to spend time with great people. I got to go swimming with my husband in a natural stream in a beautiful park. And most importantly, I got to spend three days with my husband away from the hustle and bustle of the regular world...

now if I could just remember the air mattress and raincoat, maybe next time could be even better!

t.c. Goodman

Monday, April 10, 2006

an interesting note...

My dog started barking as if someone were at the door, so I went out to check who was there, and overheard my neighbor saying "this dog doesn't stop barking"

I was home most of the day. The dog only barks when someone's at the door or when she takes her dog out.

so yes, every time she's in earshot, he's barking.



Pesach cleaning is upon me, which means that I'd like to whine a lot.

However, my mom claims that whining makes a blog boring.

So I will spare y'all the details, and just say that I worked hard today, and it barely made a dent. Tomorrow will certainly be fun.

In other news, Yaakov and I spent Shabbat alone for the first time. It was very nice being able to just be together with no real responsibilities. I made yummy food, and it was a nice Shabbat overall.

Sunday, I got back the pictures from the photographer, and they're really great. I will hopefully post pictures soon, but right now, it's low on the priority list.

The video isn't back yet. I'm looking forward to it. I hope it'll be done soon.

Over Pesach, Yaakov and I will be at the Israeli juggling convention, and after Pesach, I will, G-d willing, be starting a job working from home for a company where a lot of my friends currently work. It'll be nice to have a salary again. I'm looking forward to it, although it will cut into my sleep time... It's frustrating to need so much sleep. I'm practically living on cappucchino, and it's barely making a dent.

I got back blood work, and it's not telling me much. Other than finding out that one test tube got messed up... All the usual suspects are in order. If anything, I should be feeling much better than usual, not worse. My cholesterol is down, my triglycerides are down... even my thyroid seems to be behaving.

So, when can I have a caffeine drip put in???

Anyway, I've degenerated into whining, so I'm going to cut this short...Happy Pesach all!

t.c. Goodman

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

On macaroni and popsicle sticks

You always know who your best friends are. They're the ones who are at your side at your best and worst.

Yesterday, I was reminded again who one of my best friends is. I went down to my mailbox, and there it was, exactly what I'd asked for, a popsicle-stick picture frame, complete with a great picture of Yaakov, me, and a whole family full of friends.

It's true that Yaakov's never met those friends, and the paste job was more amusing than professional, but the accompanying letter which said that she was including a picture from that time we all went out together really touched me.

On the macaroni end of the spectrum... my neice said that if we return her gift, she'll replace the macaroni with something that isn't chametz! :)

We're so grateful for all the gifts, all the little notes, and all the words of wisdom and encouragement from all our friends.

And if you're still looking for the perfect gift for us, please, no challa boards...

t.c. Goodman

Sunday, April 02, 2006

more and more blessings...

Tomorrow is the last day of our first week of marriage. This week has been incredibly full with Sheva Brachot, the 7 blessings of marriage. Every day, we have had at least one meal with a minyan, a gathering of ten men.

After the meal, following the grace after meals, the blessings are recited. In addition, it is customary that the meals be provided by others as a gift for the newlyweds.

Which means we've done a lot of eating, I haven't cooked anything, and Yaakov and I haven't yet had an evening to ourselves.

That's okay, though. The nights have been wonderful... Everyone wants to know how we spent our wedding night... We pulled all the bobby pins out of my hair. After about three hours of that, we fell asleep. Yaakov made it as far as the bed, but I collapsed on the floor... no, not really... it only took about 25 minutes to get the majority of the pins out. I only found a few more when I washed my hair.

Other nights have been spent doing such exotic things as: calling Yaakov's relatives in Canada(5am is a great time for that); washing dishes; folding laundry; and discussing how to discipline the dog when he pees on the floor.

But really, we are blessed. This Shabbat, we had the great honor of sharing a real joy with my sister. Yaakov was called up to the Torah in honor of being a groom, and shortly thereafter, Ohad, my sister's husband, was called up to the Torah to name their baby girl, Naomi Hallel. (to be called Nomi.)

Almost as exciting is the fact that we were informed today that we will soon be grandparents... yes, that's right...

About a month ago, I hosted a dog named Barbie, who was in heat, at my house. Poofy seemed to be very cozy with her, and now, she is pregnant, expecting very soon. Yaakov and I are still in disagreement over whether or not we will have a grandchild live with us. Yaakov is apparently not up to the responsibility of handling two dogs, and he doesn't believe I am (or should be) either.

So we're very very blessed. Now if we could have a few less blessings and a little more quality time with the pillow...