Wednesday, December 9, 2009

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Chanukah

it's wednesday night here in the holy city of zefat. i just got back from the supermarket. friday night is the first night of the eight day holiday of chanukah. we light festive colored candles every night and eat fried foods. in israel, we eat these awful yeast donuts that have been fried in oil and injected with a bit of really cheap jam. if you are lucky your donut will have some jam. i bought a box of frozen donuts to reheat if i have any company because i don't do anything with yeast. i also bought some cherry jam and i have to search for a plastic syringe that i have somewhere in the house. i also bought tons of the holiday chocolates that look like coins and are wrapped in gold foil to throw all around the table, for effect.

my daughter-in-law and her sister want to prepare the shabbat meals here this week. so i bought some frozen tuna steaks, and some chicken bottoms and tons of veggies to make salads. the sephardim like their variety of salads. it is customary to have about ten salads on the table. we'll probably start the meal with cole slaw, corn salad, beets, chumus, red cabbage, potato salad, fennel and colorabi, tossed green salad, avocado and egg, and fried eggplant. i'm thinking about making a greasy potato kugel. the tuna steaks will probably be cooked with potatoes and a tomato sauce. i will be making the chicken dish. i bought fresh strawberries, which cost a small fortune. and i bought non dairy whip cream for the topping. perhaps, i'll make a plain loaf cake and turn it into a strawberry shortcake.

sunday night marks the first year anniversary of my mother's passing. it is customary to visit her grave and recite some psalms. we will go down in the day time. i want to make a family meal which is also a festive chanukah meal. this will entail dairy products and some fried foods. i'm thinking about making eggplant parmesan. i'm also thinking about a greek salad. i bought some frozen french fries and fish patties if i want to go in another direction. normally, i would make my own fried fish, but i couldn't find anything suitable in the supermarket. i'm also thinking about making a quiche. my mind has been very busy lately, thinking up menus.

i decided that i wanted to start to sleep in the master bedroom once again. so i started to clean out the porch. i washed down the shutters and mopped the floor. i then put away all of the clothing that was strewn all over the bed and did some dusting. it isn't easy cleaning when the house is so cold. i put on a pair of gym pants under my skirt and i was ready to go. i put away all of the jewelry that was strewn all over the dresser. tomorrow, i will mop the floor, and make the bed with the warmest of my flannel sheets. i also have to clean out the kitchen area so that gal and orital can have a clear and clean space to cook. i have to babysit in the early hours tomorrow but i'll have the afternoon free to finish the job, i hope.

it's hard to think of mom and sometimes, i think i can't really remember her. the other night i was looking through the wedding pix on the computer. i used the mouse to touch her. it's hard for me to look at the pix, because it was before my face took a 'twisted' turn. i have aged so much in only a year. i'm holding strong to the diet and hopefully, i'll get back to my pre wedding shape. i've lost almost 5 pounds in nearly 2 weeks. i'm feeling better since i started to eat more protein. i don't really miss the carbs. but today i started craving a sweet. i am allowed diet candies, but i 'd rather not put those chemicals into my body right now. i had a plain yogurt with vanilla extract and it seemed to do the trick.

i think my volunteer program starts next week. i am taking a course in caring for demented elderly patients. hopefully, i'll be volunteering on a weekly basis at the new senior citizens' center in zefat. they have a special wing for altzheimer patients. they are mostly in the early stages and aren't heavily medicated. the social worker is a breath of fresh air. she is very motivated and concerned. it was not depressing there at all. too bad they weren't open when my father was still around.

i started to revamp my computer room, but the bed is still covered with all the additional parts. i never did get around to redoing the hallway closet. let's hope i'll get a lot achieved tomorrow. i bought a new heater at the supermarket and i hope it will keep us warm enough throughout shabbat. the kids don't want to eat upstairs. the supermarket shelves were jammed with all kinds of menorahs and colorful boxes of holiday candles. there was tons of bottles of lighting oil for the purest and tons of chocolates and gift packages for kids. i bought a gift package of assorted goodies for each of the young couples and a small one for my grandson as a joke. tomorrow, i will set up the 'family' electric plastic menorah (all the way from brooklyn) to stand in the kitchen window. i actually, bought an electrical converter and new bulbs a couple of years ago. last year i painted all of the bulbs, gold. the nieghbors really like it. it's really beginning to look a lot like chanukah! i wish you all a good shabbat and a happy chanukah.!


  1. i hope my "paragraphing" makes it easier to read. i still can't get myself to use capital letters. we can't figure out how to reinstate the spelling check. i was really happy to hear from you, wendy. i'm trying to get ann to organize a group trip to israel. i really want to meet all of you and i have the space to host everyone. all my love, zelda

  2. u r 1 busy lady!
    enjoy your holiday.

  3. Glad to see you blogging again! I check you out everyday--am always disappointed when you haven't been online. Keep pressing Ann--I'd love to come to Israel. I would love the meet you. Glad to hear you're doing well on your diet. I've lost 13lbs--I've reached my goal. I just have to maintain. In the past, once winter hit, I'd give up on going for my morning walks. But this time I'm just bundling up and going out to the track anyway. Take care and have a blessed holiday.

  4. I also check out your blog daily, it is part of my taking a breather from my blessed and very hectic life. Thank you, good luck with your diet. We might take you up on coming to your Bed and Breakfast one day...Lets know the rates for a family of 5. Chanukah sameach and shabbat shalom.