Wednesday, December 08, 2004

EN DEN DINO

The fun part about being a new immigrant mom, is that you learn all sorts of new songs. The big girl came home with EN DEN DINO this past week. Basically it is the Hebrew version of "eenie meenie miney mo".

This was better than trying to figure out why she was shouting "ink, ink" in Hebrew......later I learned that "Deeo" means giddy up.

Update: Here is a more amusing version of En Den Dino. By the way who is Yehuda Carmel?

Monday, December 06, 2004

Work Has begun

I've started working at "the Sochnut" aka The Jewish Agency. On the plus side, they are very family friendly, they are a three minute walk from our apartment, and the wages are reasonable.

On the downside, December is a tough month to start....Hanukkah parties, children off from childcare, they have weird hour needs (I could be there now (10PM) seeing MK Amram Mitzna, and it is only temporary. I'm sure it will all work out....

Monday, November 29, 2004

The words of Alon Pinkas

I'm a big fan of Alon Pinkas, the former consul-general to New York (with the exception of his comb-over). I think he was one of the best spokesmen for Israel that I have seen. There is an interesting article in the Jerusalem Post where he speaks about public relations and the US. Unfortunately I think he is right....the US Jewish community can't put the blame on Israel, but on the lack of education about Israel which has been given to the youth.

I know I wasn't prepared to deal with the "General Union of Palestinian Students" (GUPS) at UWM when I went to graduate school. I had just spent nearly two years in Israel, and still didn't have the answers I needed

(Nor was I ready for the map in the computer lab which showed the Mid-East with Israel not labeled (it kind of looked like it was part of Lebanon).
Come to think of it, how did I end up at a School of Library and Information Science which publishes this? Well it looks like it hasn't been published since 2001, so I guess progress has been made!

Any thoughts on what the American Jewish Community can do?

Monday, November 22, 2004

Gmail

Anyone interested in trying a gmail account? I have three to give away. The first three comments will get an account.

I enjoy it...I do prefer folders though.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Vidlit/Yidlit

This site is a must see! The videos are funny and great to watch. If you are on a dial-up connection, find a friend! This one is about Learning Yiddish. All of them have been great. If I had any money, I'd make a donation.

Monday, November 15, 2004

Employed at last...Temporarily at least

The job search has been an ongoing battle for me. I had a decent temporary job before Ariella was born, and since then I've done some temp work from home for the Shalem Center (they really like me, too bad they don't have any appropriate positions for moms).

I've been interviewed and offered a job by my dream company, but the hours and salary weren't feasible to also be a mom.

Then I was offered a job by my favorite former workplace in Israel, but it was only part time, and financially wouldn't cover for childcare.

Well, now I have it! A full time job which is located literally a five minute WALK from my home, which pays enough to cover childcare. The only down-side, is that it is a maternity leave position. This means currently it goes from December through March. There is the potential for a permanent job opening up, but I won't know until February. The place is called the Contact Center, and I'll give more information when I know what I'm doing.

Sunday, November 14, 2004

The three year old speaks...

This conversation took place after our post shabbat dinner of oatmeal. (Please no comments....we enjoyed it)

She: Eeema, we didn't have meat, right??
Me: That's right
She: So you can have **Milky or Ice Cream.
Me: Ummm yes I can.
She: I want Milky

**Milky is an Israeli desert which is kind of like an instant pudding. Just for the record, we don't buy Milky brand anymore because they still use Beef Gelatin (which is kosher here, but if you can get something without it,--that tastes just as good, why not.)

Friday, November 12, 2004

How to teach children about strangers?

I think it is nearly impossible to teach children about strangers in Israel. Israelis think of each other as one giant extended family as today's story points out.

I was on the bus with both of my young ladies when the woman sitting behind me offered my SIX MONTH OLD a slice of an apple. Excuse me, she doesn't have any teeth.....and I don't know you!!!! So then she handed it to my older daughter (3 1/2 years old). So do I let her have it? I still don't know this woman.

Well right or wrong, I let her have it. Sigh.

This is my only comment on Arafat's demise

Palestinian People here is a cartoon for you.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Never a dull moment

Not knowing that it was a holiday today. I took my usual Thursday shopping trip. On the way, I saw the busses and remembered is was
Sig'd, well actually I didn't know the name, but I knew there is a Ethiopian holiday where they all gather on the Tayelet. Which is around the corner from my home.

The supermarket was packed with Ethiopian Teenagers. I noticed lots were buying the cheap wine and vodka. I started wondering if there was an alcoholism problem in the Ethiopian community. There was an announcement over the loudspeaker reminding the teens that alcohol purchases are illegal to people under age 18.

I still managed to get out of there quicker than usual, but it was quite a sight.

Update: I went to the ceremony with a friend. It was spectacular. The Kes (spiritual leaders) were up on a stage shaded by colorful fabric umbrellas. The women were in traditional white gowns with bright color embroidery. The Kes lead the prayers in Amharic while the people said Amen.

When the torahs were carried away, they were on people's heads, lead by the Kes. The people crowded around, clapping and drumming. It was a beautiful sight and I feel privileged to see it. There weren't many non-Ethiopians who were present at the event.

Note:
Before they carried the Torahs away, there was a young man who got up to speak. He said he was born in Ethiopia and made aliyah at age 5. His father never came to Israel and his mother died when he was in first grade. He spoke about the problem of the younger generation, and how they were in danger because of alcohol. He said they needed to be shown that they could succeed. I know that the Ethiopians do have problems in school, and this didn't surprise me, but I was glad to see that the community sees there is a problem and are discussing it. That is the first step.


Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Voodoo Handwarmer


Voodoo Handwarmer. Yup, I made this too...it isn't so good, but it is warm. I got the pattern from Knitty an online knitting magazine.
Note to anyone with very tsnius sensibilities, the Summer 2004 might be offensive(no skin showing though). But I kind of like the idea of knitting with licorice.Posted by Hello

Update to Getting Out of Business

Update to Getting out of Business

I'm out I'm out!!!! The electricity was paid, the cleaner was paid...I have 9 shekels remaining from the money I collected.

The last insult was when I collected money from one person who did pay, his response was...it is good you aren't doing this any more...the cleaner wasn't doing a good job! This is the same person who throws his junk mail on the ground rather than throwing it away.

Hmmpf.

Playdough Packaging

This is the package information for the playdough given to my big girl at childcare. The colors were pretty cool...

Glitter..Colorful Plasticity Mud

"To keep the colour mud wetting, please put it into the any immediately after you use it, then cover it. If the colour mud became hard, you can drop some drops of water on it, then mix them in order to re-softer the mud.

Don't wash the clothes at once when they are stainde with mud, please brush them after the mud is entirely dried.

Colorful-plasticity by and mode lling compound is comptetety nontoxic and is not in tanded to be eaten as food"





Look Mom, I can Knit!!!


I knit that sweater...it is the first sweater I ever made! I don't think I'll keep it for the young lady, but I still need buttons. I learned how to make this sweater from Shoshanna...an Israeli woman in the knitting group I went to. Posted by Hello

Saturday, October 30, 2004

Getting out of the Business

Getting out of the business

Well, I've been the person in our building collecting money for the electricity in the stairwell for about 9 months, and this month that comes to a close. All buildings are required to have a "vaad bayit" (building committee) which takes care of these things, but ours doesn't. All was going reasonably well, until I decided to heed the comments by my neighbors that the stairwell really needed a cleaning. I found someone to clean, and started collecting for that. Unfortunately that lead to a very nasty run in with one of the only residents that actually owns her apartment. Everything then fell apart. I may be able to collect exactly enough to pay off the cleaner (at the most I'll be out 50 shekels...about 12 dollars). I'll let someone else be the "freier**"(aka Sucker) for the building!

** For a good explanation of the term, go to This American Life and search the archives for "sucker". Act 3 is called "Suckers in the Promised Land"

Friday, September 10, 2004

Water Water Everywhere

Sometimes I wonder...

It all started two days ago. The entrance way to our building was wet...the apartment next to ours apparently had a leak. Normally this wouldn't be my problem, but our neighbors had moved out, and the apartment was empty. I heard the landlord there a few days ago, but nothing since.

I didn't do anything about it the first day. I spoke to a few of the neighbors, asked them if they knew the landlord. They all gave the same response. No, but he is not a nice person. He owes 800 shekels ($175) for repairs when the waterline to our building broke.

So I waited another day...

Now the mail in the entrance way is getting soaked...it is just junk mail, and not my mailbox either, but this is really problematic. I need to walk down the stairs with my daughters, and they are very slippery.

I called the Municipality....their response "call the Water Department."

I called the Water Department...their response "turn off the water for that apartment"...but how do I know which one it is? They aren't labeled, and none of the meters appear to be running. No answer...

I tried calling the old number for the former tenants, hoping I would be given their new number. Nope, the line is disconnected and no new number listed.

Day three...I decide to turn off one of the valves. But which one? There are four apartments, one of top of each other (Ours is on the other side of the building). I figure...maybe they are in the order of the apartments...lowest is lowest etc? So I turn off the one I assume is theirs. I then knock on the door of the people below. The elderly woman living there didn't even know there was a leak!!! She says her water is still working...so good so far. I go to the other apartmen which has tenants. No answer when I knock, so I call, no answer.

An hour later, the mother comes home and says her son called to say there is no water. I tell her I must have turned off the wrong valve, and I try another one. Might I add that this "son" is at least 25 years old, lives at home, and probably couldn't figure out how to turn the valves on or off!

I checked again with the elderly woman--she still has water. So I think I have the right valve.

But wait there is more....

The former neighbor is a police officer, and there were a few police officers on the street this morning, so I decided to do the only thing I could think..I asked the policeman if he knew our former neighbor, and asked if he could contact him, so that he could contact his former landlord about the leak! The policeman was very nice and said he would contact him.

The real question here is why am I the only one who cares about this? There are four families whose mail is getting dripped on. There are six (additional) families who have to walk through the water to get in and out of the building. One person called his plumber (he by the way is not one of the families affected at all).

To be continued......


Sunday, August 01, 2004

Ariella has found her toes!!! She has just started grabbing her legs and feet when she is lying on her back.

She also switches from sucking/biting her right hand to her left hand...I have no idea if she is a leftie or rightie.

Sunday, May 16, 2004

American Girl in Israel
My 3 year old was given an American Girl baby doll doll for her birthday. I don't know what I think of them...they are very well made, but the cost is a bit crazy. I'm glad she can't read about the restaurant.
I'm trying to decide if I'm ready to join the ranks of the Israel bloggers. But I'll give it a shot...

Today is the one month birthday of Ariella Devora, the newest member of the family. Born at Shaarei Tzedek Hospital on Friday April 16th. Shabbat there was a bizarre experience. I'm wearing my hospital gown, and about 98% of the women were dressed in beautiful robes and had their hair covered. No one spoke to me...no loss, I enjoed the quiet bonding time with our newest princess.