Thursday, February 24, 2011

Costumes Are Us

it is 8:30 p.m. on thursday nite in the holy city of zefat. zvi just went out to play basketball with his brother-in-law. apparently, there is a bunch of haredi guys who get together and play on a regular basis. who knew?

zvi was always a goalie in soccer. i do not believe that he ever played basketball in his life. my father up in heaven should be kvelling. when zvi was a young boy i actually took him to the local school yard to shoot some hoops. i was pretty good at it. he was not.

i was watching sahar until a little while ago until he gave me a shot in the mouth with the remote control. it is a miracle that he didn't knock out my front tooth. luckily, the bottle of arnica was nearby. it is way too cold in my house to apply ice. zvi took him back downstairs to his mom. poor guy wanted to know why his son is so violent.

i went to volunteer at the senior's today. my new thing is to dance for them. every thursday they have a half hour concert with a lovely russian lady and man. she plays organ and he plays guitar. they are totally out of sync with each other. it's hilarious. anyway, i got all the seniors to play marachas and tambourines. it was good fun. too bad, that i got winded easily. i'm really out of shape. after more than two weeks on the south beach, i only lost 2 pounds. i knew i shouldn't have all those carrots. oh well...

i get to see the homeopath next week. perhaps, she can give me a remedy to speed up the old metabolism. afterall, i've got to fit into my purim costume soon. i spent the entire day, nearly 6 hours, yesterday, creating a persian style crown for my nephew. i had bought an adult one in town and tore it apart. i hand sewed the pieces onto a large velvet kipa. i kept adding parts and more trim and even cut up a silk shirt for the colored stones.

i didn't really like how it turned out. i'm not a perfectionist but i know what i like. i had an old children's costume cape and i cut it down to size and added tons of trim. i'm still not satisfied with it. it needs for pizaz. i'm also struggling with the pantaloons that i bought for a small fortune in the second hand clothes store. i extended the waistband by adding some silver and white elastic. it still needs trim and a bit of a hem.

i also need to finish up the ballet costume for my niece. i think i should have just sprung for new costumes. i started remodelling a dress for a friend for the purim party. i haven't touched it in a week. the house is covered in bits of thread and trim and i need to make shabbat for the kids tomorrow and babysit too.

i do have a month to finish the dress but i'm anxious to get it done already. i love costumes. costumes is my life. i wanted to be a costume designer in my youth. i designed the costumes for our high school sing for 3 years. i won best costume award twice. i even beat out the seniors one year. i was going to be the next edith head.

i don't know how i lost sight of my dream. why didn't i go to fashion school? i don't really remember when it stopped being important to me. i always loved dressing up on halloween. i even won third prize in a costume contest at the waldorf astoria back in the day. i have always wanted to dress people for purim. my fantasy was a purim boutique called "costumes are us".

you can get everything for purim nowadays at the local toy stores. they even had obama masks last year. but my costumes are original. they are made from real clothes that i buy in second hand stores. i then mix it up with trims and wigs and costume jewelry. hopefully, i'll get some pix put on the blog this purim.

i bought a store made lion costume for sahar. it was relatively, cheap. it fit him just right. of course, he had no patience to wear it. i showed him how he looked in the mirror and he was quite amused. i want to create a small crown and attach it to the lion's head making him a lion king. we'll see. i don't think the clan will appreciate his being an animal. what could i do? the bumble bee and the mickey mouse costumes were very costly and there is no way that he would keep the headbands on.

i haven't even thought about cooking for shabbat. so far i defrosted a package of chopped chicken meat. i bought a lettuce and package of humus in town. i'll go to the local super with sahar in the morning and buy potatoes, carrots, and fish. i might even make some tomato relish. let's face it, my head is in purim and costumes.
i would love to dress sahar up as a chassid but the kids aren't into it.

i wish you all a shabbat shalom!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Sad News

it's 10:00 a.m. in the holy city of zefat. i jumped out of bed at 7:00 a.m. and showered for a change. unfortunately, the water was only luke warm. bummer! i quickly got dressed and went outside and let the dogs out. it seemed sunny. it was like a monsoon here, yesterday. we still need more rain desperately.

i saw the kids outside loading up sahar's stroller. that is how i knew that i was not on duty today. when i went to sleep last night it was still up in the air. i watched him yesterday for twelve hours. he was pretty much delightful. he did try to head butt me a few times but i was able to protect my face. he was very tired from his big trip to the big city for shabbat.

i bought him an electronic book of brachos for children. it looks like pages with cassettes. he really loves it. he kept on playing a certain bracha for bread, repeatedly, and would answer amen. i think i'll buy one for mendush in india.

i'm on my way to sign in at the unemployment office 'downtown'. i needed to stop for a moment and reflect on some very sad news that i just received. my cousin charlette passed away.

i hadn't seen her in over 40 years. she lived in california. her daughter-in-law and granddaughter read this blog. i have never met them. my sister has become reacquainted with this part of our family and always speaks of their warmness and
open hospitality. i was fantasizing about getting reacquainted too.

charlette was my father's niece. his sister mollie was my favorite aunt. i have such lovely memories of visiting her in california when i was in my colege years.

we didn't really get together with our father's family much. it was mostly at an occassional funeral or wedding, where we would meet. i grew up knowing my mother's tantes. her mother's sisters lived near us. they would come to our house to visit with my grandmother.

i regret not knowing charlette. my sister says that she was really very loving and warm. her husband mike looked strangely, very similar to my father's father, handlebar mustache and all. charlette recently gave my sister a pair of our grandmother's candleticks. how generous was that! it meant the world to us. it was a piece of our family history. we never met our grandmother chana, as she died before my parents even met. i just found out that aunt mollie lived with charlette and mike until her passing.

thinking about charlette makes me very sad. it brings up my parent's recent passing and it marks the end of a certain era. for my sister, it is much harder, having lost someone that she only just found. my sister is our family's historian and resident genealogist. she is the link to our family's story.

my niece in zefat couldn't believe that my sister and i actually had cousins. she has a ton of chabad cousins. they are all close in age and see each other mostly in new york and occassionally, in israel. we grew up without the luxury. our cousins were much older than us and already grown up.

i pray that my cousin charlette has an easy passing to the next world. may her husband and children be comforted amongst the mourners of zion! to my readers, karen and michelle, i am deeply sorry for your loss. may you find comfort in time. my offer of hospitality stands open to any of you who find their way to zefat to come and visit here with me. G-d bless!!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Still Peeved

it is 7:00 p.m on thursday evening in the holy city of zefat. i am still peeved about the kids leaving. again, it's not that they left. it's their lack of courtesy and concern for me.

in spite of this, i managed to have a good time in town before i came home. i didn't want to be home when they left, anyway. spiteful? just a bit.

i found a little pink ballet costume in my purim closet. i must have found it in a gemach, in former days. i thought that it would be just right for little baby mussie in new dehli. i bought a pink headband and a small pink crown. i'll paste the fuzzy crown onto the soft hairband. i also bought these little ballet slippers that will be way too big for her now. it's the site gag that i'm going for. it was much harder to buy something for mendush. he was a clown last year and i don't like to repeat costumes. finding kosher animal costumes isn't easy. they did have a sheep costume but it was a bit expensive.

i'll treck into town tomorrow and check the other stores. i think i'll let gal pick out her own costume for sahar this year. i'm still peeved. remember? i can't wait to get mussie's outfit together.

i also found some very cheezy ribbon that will make my friends royal dress, look more silly. it was getting a bit too serious for me. i feel like a contestant on project runway. i also found some gold crown hair ribbons. i detached the rubber bands and voila! the dress is becoming a purim statement, already.

i just ran down to the market to buy some milk. i splurged on a bottle of baccardi rum and a bottle of dewers whiskey. it's supposed to be for purim. i might just help myself to a sample tomorrow night. after all, while the cats are away, the mouse will play.

i'm feeling better already. blogging is amazing! better than pyschoanalysis any day. i wonder what would happen if zvi ever read my blog. maybe i should email him this week's blog. i'm overdue for my coffee, so i'll wish you all shabbat shalom!!

Home Alone Again!

it's 5:00 p.m. in the holy city of zefat. looks like i'm alone here for shabbat. i just happened to run into my daughter-in-law and grandson in town. i had finished volunteering at the seniors' day center and decided to check out the toy stores for purim costumes.

i completely walked by gal and a couple of her sisters and my grandson. if her brother-in-law hadn't stopped to say hi, i would have missed them. that's how i am in town. it's like i walk with blinders on. anyway, if i hadn't run into gal, i would not have known that the kids were leaving today for shabbat.

i actually, did have some sort of clue this morning. i heard the television and went downstairs to see if anyone was home. i had already seen zvi leave for work and he was totally mum about travelling today. i searched the baby's day room and then turned off the television. i also took the liberty of turning off the night stand lamp in the kid's bedroom. that's when i saw the packed over night suitcase. ding, ding ding!!!

i am honestly, okay with being alone. i am not thrilled that the kids didn't mention their plans, yesterday. if i hadn't seen gal in town, i would have gone slightly mad, when they didn't return tonight. i would have thought the worst. i hope i'm not being petty. i just don't get these kids, one bit.

i kind of want to pick up and go away for shabbat, too. let's face it, i hate to travel. so i will make myself; a little chicken, eat a little roll, drink a little wine, read my newspaper and call it shabbat. i almost feel like going over to the sephardi's for dinner.

maybe i'll venture to town tomorrow. it's been ages since i went into town on a friday. maybe i'll even splurge on a coffee. who knows? the sky's the limit! i'm free!!! maybe not so free. i have my laundry to do. the house is a mess and the floors need washing.

right now i have to make it back to the little supermarket to buy some milk. i already was there a little while ago. i splurged on a bottle of baccardi rum and dewers' whiskey for purim. who knows? perhaps i'll get to sample them on shabbat. when the cats away the mouse will play! shabbat shalom!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Let's Blog Again

it's 10:30 p.m. in the holy city of zefat. i'm back online again. yesterday our internet server was down. i spent countless number of hours trying to get to a technician who could speak english. i listened to the same recording on their voice mail until i wanted to scream. i was ready to cancel the new provider but i couldn't reach anyone live to speak with.

gal came up at 10:00 p.m. to ask me how to disconnect the router. i had tried that earlier in the day without any success. this time it actually, worked. i was like a junkie all day long without my fix. i wanted to look up purim recipes. i wanted to go online. i felt so disconnected from the world. i missed an invitation to go out for lunch. with my male caller.

my phone was also disconnected since saturday. i had completely forgotten that sahar had ripped out the wire on saturday morning. i simply, figured that no one was interested in speaking with me. in truth, i was too tired to speak to anyone, too.

the baby had his own frustration while he watching his favorite show. for some reason we lost the picture and only had the vocals. he was losing his little baby mind. thank goodness, it came back on right away. what did we all do without cable and internet in the good old days, anyway?

the weather has been cold and rainy and we're all feeling a bit pent up. it was warm for a bit today so i took sahar for a little stroll to the grocery store. it turned cold a short while afterwards. we went out without our coats. it got warm again so we stayed outside in the garden for awhile. the dogs were having a ball and sahar was putting his socked feet in the high grass. i was sitting on the warm ground.

sahar was not into napping today. he finally passed out at 1:30 p.m. and slept until 3:00 p.m. i hit the net. he wasn't interested in eating, either. i made him an omelette, i heated up some macaroni and cheese, i made a fresh chicken in wine, i cut up some cheese, i opened a can of tuna, and i opened a vanilla pudding. he wasn't having any of it. he did drink a few bottles of milk.

i have been back on my low carb diet this week. i've eaten tons of carrots and beets which is forbidden on phase one of the south beach, but i don't care. i'm trying to avoid sweets and binging. i am afraid to weigh myself. i will try to be good until purim. i just don't have any physical activity, except from crawling on the ground after sahar.

i have been looking up all types of traditional purim dishes on the net. i found my poppy seed hamentashen recipe. perhaps, i'll start to bake next week and freeze everything. i'm thinking about making the chocolates, too. i think they'll stay alright in the freezer. i just remembered that i need to make up a giant batch of my traditional rum balls. i need to buy a new bottle of baccardi rum. it is quite expensive this year!

i've been remodeling a dress for our purim shtick. they are having a queen esther beauty pagent/ dance party at the chabad house for women. my best pal and i do the same shtick every year. we dress alike and then do a mock cat fight and ask the whole crowd who looks better in the outfit. we even made a recording of a purim song about vashti to the disco version of copacabana. it's hysterical! we do it every year.

we are going for the english queen look this year. nothing jewish about it. i wanted to wear grey wigs and huge plastic gold crowns. my girl pal wants us to wear our signature blonde page boy halloween wigs uder the crowns. we are wearing these very long poka dot dresses with long black nettings and trains. i bought them a few years ago, in the second hand clothes stores in zefat. the scary thing is that these were real dresses, not costumes. my dress could pass for the queen of hearts' dress. i'm trying hard to make the econd dress look like a knock off copycat version of my dress. hence, the cat fight.

i have my grandson with me again, tomorrow. i'm 'off' on thursday. i need to sign up at the unemployment office and i really need to sort out my water bill. i'll go the the unemployment office before i hit the seniors' in the morning. i'll have to deal with the water office later on. i heard that it will be very cold tomorrow so i don't think i'll drag the kid out to town with me.

i want to buy some kids costumes and send a couple to india for my niece's kids. i also want to buy some silly trimmings to add to the look alike poka dot dress. i may have to buy a pair of long white gloves, too. i'm not even thinking about pesach cleaning. i can't go there yet.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Just Another Sunday Morning

it is 1:00 p.m. on sunday in the holy city of zefat. i have been in bed watching old love movies all morning long. i didn't have to take care of my grandson today. it was quite fortunate, as, i never fell asleep last night. i did nap for a bit on shabbat but i just couldn't nod out last night.

i have been heavily binging on sugar again. this is the worst that i've been in years. i practically, devoured an entire cheesecake by myself over shabbat. i made a lot of salads and cooked a lot of beets and carrots but i don't think that i had any.

the kids took sahar out for a walk after lunch yesterday and he passed out in the stroller. luckily, he stayed asleep with me for nearly three hours. i nodded off for a bit with sahar in my arms. my friend said that it would have made a lovely photo. why is it always on shabbat that we wish we could have taken the really good shots?

i started looking on line for purim recipes. i want to have a huge bash here. our new religious internet carrier was filtering many of my recipe sites. how frustrating was that!

i'd love to call my son to complain and enlist his help in turning off the filter. unfortunately for me, he is out of town today at a wine show. i am helpless. i don't know if i'll have the patience to make hamentashen this year. by the way, the price of apricots and prunes is sky high. if i do make any hamentashen, it will be out of
poppy seed filling. the oranges and lemons on our trees are finally in abundance now.

the sephardim make 'folares' which are kind of like colored easter eggs in a barekas like dough basket. i can't imagine being that industrious. perhaps, i'll buy the prepared dough and give it a go. it would make for a nice purim gift.

last year, i made chocolate CDs and put them in the plastic slips that i bought at the computer store. i would love to start now but it is way too cold in the house to function. i already bought two packages of the block chocolate to make the purim clown lollypops.

i started reading about traditional purim foods. i have never made kreplach. perhaps, i'll buy a package and fry some up. lentils and chick peas are also in style. i could buy a mix of rice and green lentils. i have already bought chop meat, turkey parts and tons of chicken wings. i found a poppy seed cookie recipe but the comments were very negative against it. apparently, the recipe called for too much flour.

i guess, if i'm going to potchke, i might as well make the poppy hamentashen. i already started on the costumes and purim shtick. i just can't seem to follow through on anything. maybe it's all the sugar. ya think?

i took sahar with me to visit my sister last week. her computer was dying but we managed to make a skpe visit to my niece in india. she was so happy to see sahar. her son mendush wasn't so happy to see sahar sitting on his bubbie's lap. i started trying to get sahar to call me bubbie but it was a no go.

our little monkey climbs up the little play slide at the end of the street now. he also, slides down, head first. he is fearless! he nows rides his little red plastic donkey quite vigorously. he also climbs into his stroller and stands on it.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

What A day It Has Been

it is raining. it is 9:00 a.m. on friday morning in the holy city of zefat. i wanted to blog my day for you yesterday, but i ended up with sahar, my grandson, for a few hours until almost midnite. i answered some emails, watched a little t.v, had some cottage cheese, and finally konked off to dreamland.

i actually remembered a dream yesterday. i should have written down all of the details for my homeopath. it's been ages since i dreamed or at least, remembered one. i tend to dream in color. my last couple of dreams have been about people dying or being taken to the hospital. how cheery!

i went to the seniors' day center yesterday about 10:30 a.m. i had wanted to get there a bit earlier, but i 'futzed' around the house for awhile. i washed up all of the dishes and pots that had been sitting in the sink since the previous shabbat. i then took a very long hot shower. it is freezing in my house and i needed to defrost my feet.

i searched high and low for enough change to take the bus but i couldn't come up with the 4.40 shekel fare. i called a taxi and grabbed the last 200 shekel bill that i had saved to pay a bill. of course, at that time in the morning, no one, including the driver, could make change. so we drove around town until luckily, some kiosk person gave me small bills.

everyone at the center was so very glad to see me. i got there just in time for a rosh chodesh party. i went right into action. i hugged everyone and grabbed a tambourine and started to dance. i met an old acquaintance of my mom's. we hugged and kissed for awhile. it was her first day at the center. she is a most elegant and gracious lady from france. she's had her memoirs from ww11 published. later on, i was left alone with the group for a couple of hours, while the big wigs had a conference. everyone was pretty tired from the party so it was pretty much, an easy gig.

i had made up with my new male 'friend' to meet up for lunch. he definately, aims to please. i could have been wined and dined at any of the various locations of my choice. did i want meat, journey, ambiance, history, snow, or lake kinneret?. so many decisions, so little time!

i hate to travel and i have fear of car rides. i practically, never leave zefat. going to town for me, is an event. i am, just, not used to being around men for any given amount of time. i admit that i do live a semi cloistered life but i am not a nun. having said that, i will continue.

i opted for a restaurant in rosh pina, which has a good kashrut certificate and is only about 15 minutes away from zefat. my kids eat there all the time. i had wanted to check it out for awhile. it is in the middle of a maul. it is not gourmet but it does have a varied menu and a bar. we had our choice of places to sit. did we want a small round table in the middle? or perhaps, we wanted to sit on velvetine couches in the middle? but what about the small square tables against the windows? did we want to sit outside on wicker chairs? after all, they did have huge kerosine heaters.

i let the man choose the seating. after all, i had chosen the restaurant, which was obviously, not up to his standard of bon vivant. actually, he had chosen this restaurant. i had made two suggestions. the other was a dairy restaurant in amarim, a little further away than rosh pina. we finally, sat next to the window and stared at the wicker chairs and outside patio area. the smells of the food were beginning to nauseate me. we both decided to go outside. we got up and made our move to the patio. we then asked the waiter to light the heater. after a few moments, and a whiskey, we asked the waiter to turn off the heater.

i was offered wine. i never drink in the middle of the day. wine also, gives me a headache. i already had a searing pain in my right eye and along the side of my face. i was not a happy camper. neuralgia is a bitch! i ordered coffee. i didn't have my glasses so i couldn't read the menu. i then decided that i wanted a dessert type coffee. after all, when do i get out? i decided on an irsh coffee. my gentleman caller, also decided on one. the young waiter was clueless. he never heard of such a thing. he had already put in the order for a regular coffee.

my friend had to enter the restaurant and speak to the woman at the bar. they were all out of irish cream so he brought back a shot of whiskey. we shared it. half went into my coffee. after that, i didn't feel any pain. we finally decided on the menu. we were going to share a platter of fish and chips and an order of shashuka. it's basically, a spicy tomato sauce with cooked veggies and poached eggs. this one came with eggplant. it tasted like moussaka without the meat.

the shashuka was pretty tastey, but the eggs were rubbery. i thought that i was eating cheese. the fish was also tastey but it didn't resemble battered fried fish at all. it was very much to my liking. we didn't touch the salads. i had a nice whole wheat roll. i've decided to cool it with the strict south beach diet for awhile. my last binge cost me another 10 pounds. i am now allowing myself to eat aything that i want as long as i stay away from chocolate spread and cookies. i haven't had any in 3 days now.

i was offered dessert but i declined. i was quite satiated. we left and went back to his old house to visit his daughter and have some tea. he gave me a tour of his recently built tzimmers. it was so great being back there. i have such happy memories of when we used to hang out there. that is, with my boyfriend and this man's wife. this was my life just before i became a mom and grandmom.

he offered to drive me home. i think i should have just jumped in a cab but it was raining rather hard. he showed me a house in my neighborhood that he had designed. i wanted to say goodnight. he wanted to come in for coffee. my house is cold, and the dogs have been using the foyer as their personal bathroom. i was tired. i had been on this date for 6 hours. i think that is a lot of time for a first date. i had also been out of my house for about 9 hours. i was done.

as we pulled up to my house, i saw gal taking sahar out of the car. we made a turn at the corner and then parked. a little later, i caught the sight of gal leaving. i wanted to get out of the car and ask her where she was going, but i din't want to be a busy body. i also, didn't want to announce to her that i was on a date.

i went inside after a very heavy conversation. my gentleman caller wasn't so pleased that i refused to have him in for coffee. i called down to zvi to ask if the kids were coming for shabbat. i got a tirade! apparently, gal had been locked out of the house for half an hour with sahar. i had left my key on the window sill but she couldn't find it. how exactly, i was to blame for her being locked out of her house is still a mystery to me.

she was mad at me, too. how dare i have a life. i felt like a dog. i was so guilty. first, zvi was knocking on my door and i didn't answer. how dare i sit on my computer and not hear his knocking! how could i allow my daughter-in-law and grandson to sit in a cold car for half an hour? how could i not leave my front door key on the window sill for them?

i took this as a sign from above to cool it. after all, everyone knows that bubbies aren't supposed to be meeting men and drinking whiskey in the middle of the day.

chodesh tov! and shabbat shalom!

i will be eating left over noodles and chicken with the dogs, this shabbat.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Been Awhile

it's midday here in the holy city of zefat. i haven't been out of the house in over a week. yes, it's been awhile since i got dressed, got into town, saw any adults, and ate properly. i'm a mess! it's also been awhile since i blogged.

my son switched to a new internet provider. it's a religious company. he got tired of seeing scantily clad women pop up when he watched sports. while i commend his efforts, i wasn't able to get into my blog site. he called up the company and explained that my blog was 'kosher' so they removed the filter and now everyone is able to read my blog, again. yeh!

i have been emailing an old friend. he's actually, the widowed husband of an old friend. i think he's courting me. i don't know, exactly, how to take this. i've also heard from my first love again. he sounds pretty clinical, though. he is the dean of a college, after all. i am in a funk! what exactly was i thinking after 44 years?.

i thought about going to the seniors' center a few hours today. i actually, got up and showered. i tried trimming my bushy head of hair because my head coverings were all slipping off. i had thought about getting a real haircut, for a change. haven't had one in scores of years. i didn't even have a proper pair of scissors in the house. i managed to hack off most of my hair with a nail scissors. i figure, that when it grows back, i'll get a nice do. someday!!

it's amazing to me that i actually took some time to trim my toenails, too. i can't believe how i have let myself go. no hair dye, no exercize and no cosmetics. and to boot, i have been binging on tea biscuits and chocolate spread, lately. what is the matter with me???

it is rather cold in zefat. i took my grandson out for a stroll yesterday, while we had a bit of sun. i felt sorry for his being cooped up in the house for a few days. he was loving his ride on his little bicycle. it has along handle that i push him with. i know that he is precocious, but still, he is not able to ride a bicycle at only 17 months. he does seem to be able to do everything else.

i've taken to lock my doors lately because sahar can get out now. i even locked the hall door that leads to the other floors, because sahar figured out how to open the door. his young mom couldn't believe that he could reach the handle until she saw for herself, exactly what he's capable of. are we having fun yet?

on sunday we had two funerals, back to back. both ladies were zefat residents for many years. i had to watch sahar in the morning. it became too much of a hassle for me to bring him over to his other grandmother so i could atend the funerals. it was freezing and pouring for most of the day and i didn't have the cab fare, either.

i have been to the cemetary, way too often, lately. there's got to be something else for me to do. i could go to the wedding of a former work mate tonight. i did go to the cemetary last week for his wife's first yirtseit. i just can not bring myself to be around a bunch of people. i also can't fit into any of my nice clothes, at the moment.

i think that i have forgotten how to act around adults. i spend most of my time playing with a toddler. he is a hand full! but i can't imagine my life without him. what is the matter with me?? i have a live suitor and i can't imagine making a move.