Friday, June 23, 2017

Friday Afternoon

it is 2:30 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  I feel a bit strange.  I don't really have anything to do.  I did a scouple of batches of laundry, earlier.  it was mostly towels and sheets.  it was mostly covered in dog pish.  cloey, the pincher is losing her control.  when I let them out they mainly forage for food scraps left out for the cats.  tiny the oversized tiny dog, still rips up my sheets and eats the foam off of the mattresses.  charming, you might say!

I think my maytag washing machine is leaking.  in the meanwhile, it gives me the chance to wash the downstairs floors.  I can't deicide if it's time to call in a repairman.  sometimes, I think it's better to buy a small machine.  I guess I will wait until it floods to make a move.  I am having a rough time with my tooth.  I think i may have an infection.  Friday is the wrong day to have a health problem in safed.

I went to the doctor yesterday morning to start the paper work for my next MRI, and doctors appointments.  I was feeling very nervous.  I asked the nurse to check my blood pressure because I have been feeling dizzy a lot lately.  it was high.  I have always had low blood pressure.  I was really feeling doomed yesterday.  I am hoping that it was a fluke.  I know that my recent weight problem does not help.  I stopped off at the bakery to buy some chocolate balls to bring to the kids.  the granddaughter loves them.

I sat on a bench and drank an ice coffee and ate two gigantic chocolate balls.  shame on me!.. while I was stuffing my face, two horses galloped past me.  it was surreal.  they were young and quite beautiful.  they were playing havoc with the passing traffic.  I am a bit afraid of horses.  I wondered if they might like a chocolate ball.  I thought about leaving the bench but I stayed glued to it, instead.  when do I have the time on a Friday to sit on a bench and drink iced coffee?  I'm usually washing the floors, shopping for groceries and picking up the grandchildren.  and cooking for Shabbat, of course.

I woke up at 3:30 a.m. yesterday.  I had been passing out during the day.  I didn't know why I was so tired.  I kept on falling asleep and missing all of my favorite shows.  I thought that it was later so I let the dogs out.  I decided to wash the floors.  suddenly I heard a loud commotion.  tiny, the medium sized stocky, male dog, jumped over the wall.  there were three pretty large male dogs outside my gate.  they all emerged on tiny.  I, somehow, shooed them away and got tiny back into my house, unharmed.

I finished the floors around 6:00 a.m. and showered.  I rested a bit and then went to the doctor.  I paid my electric bill and picked up a registered letter.  it was from the city reminding me to pay the real estate tax.  I haven't been to town in nearly a month.  I have gone to town to pick up my grandson but never made it to the bank or real estate office.  maybe on Sunday, i'll be a little more motivated to take care of business.  I also have to pay my water bill.  my best buddy sent me some birthday cash so I hope the bank won't be harassing me this week to take out, yet another emergency loan.

I do not have a credit card and you cannot pay any bills in the post office by check.  I am forced to go to these offices and it's always a long, schlepped out wait.  I am feeling out of it these days.  the heat does not agree with me.  my life does not agree with me, either.  I still have not heard from any of 'the' family.  I guess that I was not missed very much at the wedding.  I do get pretty depressed.  my granddaughter had a hernia surgery on Wednesday.  I stayed home and took care of my grandson.

he slept over the night before and I didn't sleep a wink.  he had closed all of the windows and terrace door and there wasn't any air.  he fell asleep on my arm and I was very uncomfortable.  the dog was also on my legs.  I picked him up from school later in the day and took him to a children's' fair in the evening.  it was packed and extremely noisy.  I sat on a plastic chair and waited for it to end.  there were far too many people there to keep tabs on my grandson.  you couldn't talk to anyone because of the noise.  there weren't that many grandparents there.  I finally met up with my grandson outside near the blown up trampolines.  he suddenly had enough and wanted to leave that second.  it took a while to walk out of the parking area and find a taxi.  I stopped off at the local bakery to buy him something to eat.

by 7:30 p.m. he had really had enough of me and my home.  he wanted his parents and of course, the gift he got for being a good boy.  I spent the next day in bed.  it was like a dream.  yesterday I spent about 20 plus hours awake.  I was hyper.  I couldn't calm down.  I couldn't sleep.  I couldn't relax.  I invited myself to my son's tonight for Shabbat dinner.  tomorrow night is my birthday.  my friends wanted to do something for me but I wasn't in the mood.  I think the kids will take me out for a birthday dinner.  I am turning 66.  and no, 60 is not the new 40!

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Nothing To Say

it is 10:30 a.m. in the holy city of safed.   I am tired.  I haven't had a drink yet.   I had the kids yesterday for about seven hours.  no one wanted to use the pool.  everyone was tired and hot. the kids played with lego and watched television.  there wasn't any fighting.  we didn't leave the house to go to the park.  I went to the supermarket in the morning to buy food for Shabbat.  I thought about inviting the kids for Friday night dinner.  I spent a bunch of money.  the kids are home for Shabbat and I am invited to come for dinner.  right now I can't imagine moving.

I don't really feel much like cooking today.  I need to wash the floors but I have time.  I feel like a slug.  I need to pick up my granddaughter at 1:00 p.m.  I cooked up some non gluten macaroni yesterday for the kids.  I think it was made form rice.  it looked like macaroni but didn't much taste like it.  I ate a bunch of it with tomato sauce.  the kids ate it plain with olive oil.  they really didn't eat it.  I made 'skinny' banana cupcakes again.  I used only 4 tablespoons of brown sugar and 2 tablespoons of canola oil.  they aren't great but they do taste sweet.

I was hoping to start experimenting with almond flour and coconut oil when my sister arrived.  she decided to cancel her trip to the middle east at this time.  I don't think I can afford a trip to the health food store right now.  I had some 60 % dark chocolate last night.  I didn't binge.  the kids ate most of it.  I bought it to make a birthday tiramisu for the Sephardi grandmother.  I don't know if I have the energy to do anything like that today.

I made several hospital appointments for July. I postponed my oncological visit for a month.  I decided to go back to the brain surgeon after I do another MRI.  I usually try to double up on appointments but this time I will be going to tel aviv 3 consecutive weeks in a row.  what a drag!  I'm thinking of doing the brain surgery after the Jewish holidays in November.  we shall see if the surgeon is available at that time.  I haven't been in touch with them since I cancelled my surgery in December.

I was supposed to go over to my girlfriend yesterday morning.  she wanted to trim my wig on me. after I got off the phone with the hospital, I was feeling dizzy and of course, anxious.  I went to lie down for while.  I ran down to the supermarket and felt dizzy there. I do not do well in the summer. I can't manage the heat. my efforts to drink more and to be more active are futile.  I am so depressed.
I feel like I am in a dream state all the time.

I have managed to stop binge eating although I haven't managed to start a diet.  I am grazing all day long until I fall asleep.  I have managed to stay away from junk unless you include those awful non gluten noodles and a ton of sunflower seeds.  they are very caloric but do have a lot of magnesium.  I must lose weight.  I bought tortilla shells on sale.  they are fun to eat but definitely, not all that nutritional.  I think I will stop off at the supermarket to buy a birthday gift for the Sephardi grandma.  she is actually ten years younger than myself.  our birthdays are a week apart.  I will be turning 66 next week.  my friends are all older than me by a year or two but I feel older than everyone.

being estranged from my family in safed has taken a huge toll.  I am emotionally spent.  I cannot make sense out of it.  the more I analyze it , the more I get upset.  and the more I get upset, the more I miss them.  what a mess!

Friday, June 2, 2017

Almost Shabbat Once Again

it is 4:30 p.m. in the holy city of safed.   I've been living the life of riley all day.   I didn't wash the floors and I didn't do any laundry today.  I did sweep the leaves in front of the house and pool area.  it is warm but quite windy and chilly at night.  I had the kids with me for about 12 hours yesterday.  the schools were closed.  the kids hit the pool but it was too cold to stay in for any length of time.  my grandson was having a hard morning.  I was pretty tired myself, after the holiday.  I took them to town in the evening to buy them prizes in the dollar store.  they went with me to synagogue to hear the 10 commandments on Shavuot day.  chabad made a program for the neighborhood kids in the early evening.

I am going to the kids for dinner tonight and my friends on the 'next' block for lunch tomorrow.  I made a few hard cooked eggs for tomorrow evening and I bought some half baguettes for Shabbat.   they are wonderful with butter.  I just made some banana- prune muffins.  I was going to make a banana bread loaf to take with me tonight but then I thought about making non gluten banana pancakes.  you know, one banana and 2 eggs? I remembered that I had steeped prunes for my friend last week and ran to look up prune loaf recipes.  I found the perfect recipe for a banana-prune bread.

I was all out of milk, half a cup short of prunes and didn't have any nuts but yet, I persevered.  I cut the sugar from a cup to less than a half a cup and I substituted organic brown sugar.  I only had white flour but I would have preferred whole wheat or rye.  I threw the batter into muffin tins and managed to get a baker's dozen.  I used the wonderful butter from Holland  that I had bought for Shavuot.  it only called for 4 tablespoons.  I thought about adding some sour cream to the batter, but I refrained.  I need to go on a strict food regimen next week.  I go to see the gyn oncologist pretty soon.  I can always freeze the muffins.

usually, it feels strange when I do not cook for Shabbat.  I thought about making a noodle kugel with onions and mushrooms.  I don't have anything to serve the kids if they stop buy tomorrow to use the pool.  I didn't hit the supermarket this morning.  I don't have any tuna in the house, either.  that's why I was kind of toying with the idea of making pancakes.  i'll just tell them that my house is bare and invite them to bring their own treats if they come over tomorrow.

I just had a half baguette with butter.  I am feeling so sluggish.  I truly could use a nap.  I would be too afraid of over sleeping and not getting up in time to light my candles.  I just rescued the muffins from being burnt.  they are lovely.  they have a nice buttery flavor and they are not too sweet.  I don't know if I could have totally omitted the sugar from the batter.  it's a shame that I was out of nuts because it would have been just perfect with walnuts.  I am glad that I have something to eat before I go to synagogue in the morning.  what a great find!

I managed to get all of the tiny Lego pieces back into plastic baggies and off of the floor.  the kids, most probably, my grandson, will have to sort them all out.  I tried to save the diagrams inside the box.  I bought him soccer gloves yesterday.  he is an excellent goal keeper.  my son got into a lot of trouble for wearing soccer gloves in the ultra orthodox school system that he attended.  my grandson goes to a more modern school.  it was like Deja vu buying him the gloves.  I got my granddaughter, what I thought was a box of toy dolls and ponies.  it turns out that this box did not contain, any greenery, ponies or dolls.  it is simply a cardboard corral.  you have to buy the collectables by themselves.  what a rip-off!  what was I thinking for 10 shekels????

I will have to get to town on Sunday to see if I can find a small doll or pony.  I'm sure they exist.  I still have a sink full of dairy dishes to wash.  I didn't get around to them yesterday.  I really need to sleep now!

Monday, May 29, 2017

Almost Shevuot 2017

it is 9:30 a.m. in the holy city of safed.  it is almost Shavuot.  I have been invited to join the Sephardi in-law's for tonight's holiday meal.  it will be very noisy and 'lively'.  it's just what I need, I think.  as I probably, mentioned, I had a bad falling out with my sister.  next week is my niece's wedding.  my sister will not have anyone from her side of the family there.  oh well....  I need to get on with my life.

I went to the local supermarket to buy dairy products for the holiday last night.  I also bought an assortment of fruit: peaches, apricots, cherries, grapes, watermelon, nectarines, and bananas.  the prices were very high.   I didn't buy anything exotic.  I never made it to the fruit store in town.  the only fruit that I haven't had this season is apricots.  they aren't very ripe.  I think i'll let them sit on the counter until tomorrow.

I am planning on making a tiramisu, and stuffed manicotti for tomorrow's lunch with a Greek salad and a fruit platter.  I offered to bring  cheesecake to the in-law's and of course, I forgot to buy the white cheese and sour cream.  on my second trip to the supermarket, I remembered to buy soft drinks and toilet paper.  my guests went through about 30 roles of paper during Shabbat.  pretty odd! I think I have what I need for the holiday.  I bought baguettes and fresh butter for tomorrow's lunch.

I am planning on making a cheese mixture of cottage cheese, mozzarella, and parmesan to fill the cannelloni shells.  I have already shredded the mozzarella and cut up the Bulgarian cheese for the Greek salad.  I bought sliced and pitted green olives.  the kids are coming over soon.  there is no school today.  my son finally cleaned the pool and we filled it with water last night.  I woke up early and washed the floors.  I will go out later and find roses and greenery to decorate the house.  it is customary for Shavuot.  by tomorrow, the house will be covered in dry greenery.  it is dry and hot here.

I bought chocolate ice-cream yesterday and ate the whole thing by myself.  I forgot to replace it when I hit the supermarket this morning.  last year Shavuot was a bust.  the kids were hyper and my friend lost it on my grandkids.  my son was angry at me and it was not fun.  I spent a fortune and made what I thought, were, creative dishes.  I  made a breaded cauliflower with multi cheeses, a beet salad with goat cheese, a runny tiramisu, cottage cheese pancakes, a rocket salad with pears and walnuts and cheese and stuffed cannelloni with meat sauce for the night meal.  I didn't make my traditional lasagna and cheesecake and no one was satisfied.

this year I am playing it safe.  I am serving stuffed cannelloni in tomato sauce and Greek salad.  I didn't buy any goat cheese.  I did buy a package of cheese and mushroom stuffed mini ravioli, just in case the kids don't want to eat the cannelloni in tomato sauce.  my grandson likes his pasta plain these days with a drizzle of olive oil.  the kids are just coming for one meal. they can all swim after lunch if they want and rest downstairs.  I don't know if my friend will make it here for the holiday.  my other friends aren't up to coming out.  we are all tired and it is hot again.

I hope I get to synagogue in the morning.  I have probably put on ten pounds recently.  I have been food binging with a vengeance.  as if life hasn't been cruel enough, I also have the need to punish myself with overeating.  I just had a healthy breakfast of cottage cheese and fruit.  I wonder how the day will progress.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Life Goes On

it is 12:00 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  I am waiting for my grandson to come.  apparently, there is no afternoon program anymore.  school ends at the end of june but they have already suspended the lunch program for the first graders.  it gets harder every year.  you see all the working parents with their kids by their sides at the banks, health clinics, restaurants, and clothes stores.  the teachers get off but the parents have to work.  it doesn't make much sense.

my dear friends from Jerusalem, came to visit me for shabbat.  my son and family also joined in the shabbaton.  we were a lively bunch.  of course, we all ate too much and drank too much.  I was exhausted, as usual.  I haven't had much sleep lately.  my sister and I had a terrible falling out over a family secret from 20 years ago.  my niece gets married next week and I will not be there.  neither will my son and his wife.

I have spent hundreds of hours on the phone talking with my siblings and friends.  I have not received any resolution and I doubt I will get any closure.  everyone tells me to get on with my life.  I went through a severe mourning period for my lost relationship and didn't shower, dress or leave my house for about 4 days.  I did eat an enormous amount of sugar.  I finally got up one day and showered.  I went out the next day to buy groceries and spent the day cleaning my house.  I hadn't done the dishes, either.  I cleaned my house and scrubbed the floors with bleach and soap.

I made all the beds and straightened out the living room.  I caught up on laundry, too.  I didn't sleep very much on Thursday night.  I spoke with my friend to around 3:00 a.m. and then couldn't fall asleep.  I found it very hard to prepare the shabbat meals.  I made plans to pick up another girl friend and help her take her ailing elderly dog to the vets to have him put down.  afterwards, we stopped off at the large supermarket to buy treats for Shabbat.  it was quite surreal.

I managed to make Moroccan spicy fish, a tabouli salad, a potato kugel, Chinese style stir fried noodles, grilled chicken wings, stewed chicken, beets, egg salad, cooked tomato salsa, and a green salad.  I bought humus and rolls.  I thought about baking a cake but didn't.  we bought two yeast  cakes at the supermarket and the kids brought a cheese cake loaf and a chocolate mousse loaf, to boot.  we had tons of potato chips, seeds, nuts and corn chips.  it was a food bacchanal.  we had Bacardi breeze's, assorted beers, port wine and jack Daniels.  no one was feeling any pain.

the grandkids were having a ball, too.  they received lots of little toys and legos.  the kids slept with me on Friday night.  we got up pretty early.  I was with the kids from about 6:45 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.  everyone was nashing on the nuts and seeds and cakes.  I didn't think that anyone would want to eat lunch but they did and we ate at 11:00 a.m.  no one made it to the synagogue for services.  everyone went to nap on Saturday afternoon except me and my grandson.  he does not like to sleep.  he has never been keen on sleep.  I was delirious from lack of sleep.  he started to have a meltdown in the evening.  no one left the house.  it was hot outside.  the house was cool and comfortable.  we had a small third meal of leftover salads and tuna fish and then finished off the cheesecakes and ice cream.  my friend had bought a cream cake and ice cream to celebrate her dog's passing.  we had a toast earlier in the day to her dog, mickey.

my other friend was also going through a family crisis.  we have been on the phone together 24/7.  I guess we all needed a Shabbat to chill out.  but then, life goes on.  Shabbat ends and reality settles back in.  the older kids went off to the movies.  we stayed here and rapped until around 2:00 a.m. I had the television on but couldn't hear a word.  I was very concerned that I had gone deaf.  I found out this afternoon that my friend's son had simply lowered the volume on the remote control that I never use.  so, no, I hadn't suffered an hysterical deafness.

another close friend, had a bit of an emergency health crisis and ran off the clinic this morning.  I couldn't meet her there because my friends were due back from town and my grandson was supposed to come over, too.  I did most of the washing up this morning but there is lego all over the house.  I do not have the strength to deal with it today.  I am taking it slow today.  I still do not know if I will be hosting any holiday Shavuot meals this week.  I would be very glad not to do nay more cooking.  I am taking it very 'easy breezy' right now.  I do have cannelloni noodles and lady fingers if I do decide to make a tiramisu desert and a dairy stuffed cannelloni for Shavuot.  who knows.  I am still pretty traumatized from my fight with my sister.

Aftermath:  it is now 4:30 p.m.  I just got back from picking up my granddaughter from kindergarten.   my son left work early and the three of them are downstairs cleaning out the pool..  the pool was never taken down last year.  it made it through the winter but filled up a lot from all the rain we had.  it is green and sludgy now.  it didn't help that my granddaughter threw fresh oranges into the  pool.  I am staying upstairs and resting.  I have no strength to bud in to this project.  I think I may be making Shavuot meals after all.  I will keep them simple.  beef in wine for dinner with either a mashed potato kugel or plain mashed potatoes with a sweet noodle kugel.  perhaps I will prepare a green salad, string beans teriyaki and sherbet for dessert.  for the day I will make stuffed cannelloni, a greek salad, perhaps a crust less spinach quiche and a tiramisu for dessert.  I will have fruit for both meals.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Lag B'Omer 2017

it is 8:30 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  I just got back from a kid's parade and rally in the neighborhood for Lag B' Omer.  it is extremely hot here and the forecasts say that it won't break until Wednesday.  the kids and I skipped the parade part of the program this year.  we went straight to the sports arena where the program was.  this is a particularly rink a dink arena.  his is no Madison square garden.  it's a neighborhood place.

once again, my grandson didn't win any prizes, and once again he fell into deep despair.  the Sephardi family is making a late night barbecue in the large park.  I declined an invitation.  I'm wiped.   I had to get to town to pick up my grandson this afternoon and was lucky to get a ride there.  apparently, the busses weren't running very often.  we had hundreds of out of town visitors in safed right now. too.  the city is messed up.  hundreds of thousands of people ascended in meron to visit the grave site of Rabbi Shimon. Bar Yochai.  many came to safed for Shabbat.  it was nearly impossible to get a taxi this afternoon.  most of them are going to meron.  the amount of traffic and noise of honking horns was horrendous.

a neighbor who drives a cab picked me up.  he was on his way back home.  he had had enough of the balagon.   I had to pick up my granddaughter from her kindergarten and it took us about half an hour to schlepp home in the hot sun.  I wasn't ready to go back in the heat for the grand parade.  perhaps I should have gone to the barbecue.  I didn't nap yesterday and yet I went to bed after 2:00 a.m.  I was zonked this morning.  last night we took the kids to a Lag B' Omer rally in a nearby soccer court.  it was very windy and chilly.  my grandson had a meltdown when he didn't win any prizes.  I didn't really want to go.  I was tired after Shabbat. my son didn't want to go to this rally alone.

a friend came over in the evening and the three of us played a wicked game of monopoly.  I won big time.  that was a first for me.  I don't do games, usually.  I had a great time.  I really was being obnoxious and lauding it over my friends.  I was half kidding.  anyway, it broke up a very long Shabbat day.  yesterday at the synagogue, two men nearly came to fist a cuff's.  it was quite shocking.  the women were freaked out.  anyway, this heat wave is getting us all a bit crazy.

my charge, went home this afternoon.  she really is doing well and I don't perceive any real problems.  she has a support group and I promised to send over some turkey meatballs this week.  today I made her French toast from a leftover Shabbat roll.  I have been making homemade applesauce every day and I cooked enough chicken so that we were able to have a dinner each night.  I sent home the leftover homemade chumus and was happy to give it up.  I did some laundry for her and then actually did some for myself. too.  I couldn't bring myself to bathe her dog.  I wish I could.

my niece's wedding is in 3 weeks.  I really have to lose a bunch of weight.  it might just be a fruit fast for me.  we shall see.  today, I ate a ton of food.  i have to start moving.  I have my gyn appt. soon and i'll be so embarrassed to show up so out of shape.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Friday Morning

it is 11;00 a.m. in the holy city of safed.  I am zonked.  I just finished washing the floors.  the house is trashed.  I currently have 3 doggies in the house.  no, I did not find and adopt another dog.  my friend is recovering from an emergency gallbladder surgery at my house.  her very decrepit dog is here with me now.  I think she is pushing 20.  my friend went to see her family doctor.  my elderly pincher is pretty stinky, but this dog really reeks and scratches bald patches on her fur.  and she has raken to making turkey like gobbling noises.

I am still coughing but otherwise, I am doing better from last week's virus or flu.  the heat wave is intense.  I find that I cannot be out in the heat.  I easily, get dizzy and have to lie down.  I have to taxi it home with the grandchildren.  they are not so keen to walk in the heat, either.  my house is still comfortable and with the aid of fans, it's very doable.  at night, it gets cold.  is it any wonder that I'm sick all the time?  I have been 'nursing' my friend back to health.  she really isn't doing badly.  she didn't have an open surgery so she doesn't have a huge cut.  i'm afraid I became overbearing about her changing her diet now.  I read about how a high fiber diet is beneficial after this type of surgery.   my friend likes her rich food and her meat.   I know I am not a doctor or nutritionist.  I just get passionate about what I read online.  I have to buy a strong room freshener because of the dogs, now.

I know that in my own way, I have let myself go, as well.   most of my codependent behavior hang ups has led me to overeat recently.  so by my giving my friend a push in the right direction; hopefully I will also change around my lifestyle.  right now I am like a drill sergeant/life coach/dietician and cook.  I really should turn it around on myself and get myself moving once and for all.

I am planning on making a very simple Shabbat meal.   I will serve, sautéed chicken, baked potatoes, beets and chumus and spinach greens.  we will have homemade sugarless applesauce for dessert.  bye bye to Ben And Gerry's, white flour , fried schnitzel and hard cheese.  hello to whole wheat rolls, spinach and cottage cheese. 

I had the grandkids with me yesterday and they were calm and happy and serene.  we went to a local park and they didn't fight.  there were no meltdowns or shouting scenes.  it was so great.  my grandson decided to tidy up the playground and collected a bit of garbage.  my granddaughter spongered the front hall when we got home.  there is a lot of pish in this house right now with 3 dogs.  I showered them and made grilled cheese sandwiches for dinner.  they had hot chocolate  and potato chips and watched some t.v. before their dad picked them up. 

I am still really tired today regardless of the lack of aggravation yesterday.  what can I do?  I can go to the supermarket now and buy some fruit and veggies for Shabbat.  my son left be about 70 beer bottles to return to the supermarket.   he knows I like to return them and I encourage the grandkids to help recycle, too.  but I doubt that I have the physical strength today to schlep them with my shopping cart.  I always use the return money to buy treats for the kids.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Almost Shabbat Again

it is 6:30 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  it is almost candle lighting.   I was invited to join my son and family for dinner but I am quite sick and haven't been able to function today.  I couldn't get out of the house to pick up my granddaughter from kindergarten in this neighborhood, either.  I was in bed until a little while ago.  I have felt congested lately, and I chalked it up to the change in weather.  I started sneezing the day before and thought it might be an allergy.  I came down hard today.  I didn't feel well yesterday but I forced myself to get to the bank and pick up my new checkbooks.   my bank card was declined in two cash machines up here so I thought I needed a new one.  I was at the bank for a long time and did not have the patience to stay.  I walked out and returned a bit later.

I went to the oncology unit with my friend on Wednesday.  I waned to lend my support.  his wife was having a musical rehearsal for a new ladies' play.  I am not quite sure that I want to get involved in this play.  so far I've just been a soundboard and gave over my impressions; most of which were negative, i'm afraid. I spent a lot of time listening to the musical choices and adding my own.  it took a lot of energy.  I think it hurt my throat to talk so much.

last night I felt like I may drown in my own phlegm.  I couldn't really lie down because I was spitting up so much.  today I felt feverish and my back hurt.  now I'm coughing.  I heated up some soup for tonight's meal..  I tried eating a bit of couscous and potatoes and felt sick to my stomach.  my sciatic is acting up, too.  I am quite miserable.  I don't even have a headache pill in the house.  I am going to try to take a hot shower if I can stand up.

the pincher dog just came in with a dead bird and ate most of it before I could grab it out of her mouth.  I drank a cup of hot chocolate a little while ago and it made me quite nauseous.   now I am drinking a hot cup of water laced with powdered ginger, lemon juice and honey.  I hope I can get it down.  my throat is very scratchy and I am afraid that I will be in for the long haul with this infection.

my head is heavy and I think I will just go back to bed and sleep.  I left the food on an electric hotplate in case I get hungry lately.  I am really fed up with being sick.  it is going to be a hard Shabbat being alone and not seeing my friends tomorrow.  I doubt that I will make it to services at the local Sephardi synagogue.  oh well.....

Monday, April 17, 2017

Pesach Ends

it is 9:30 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  pesach ended about an hour ago.  a couple of friends came over and we shared some torah insights and drank some wine and ate some matzah.  it is traditional to drink another 4cups of wine reminiscent of the seder.   I managed to drink two.  I ate a ton of fresh fruit salad.  my body needs to detox.  I am currently a bit inebriated.  it is not easy typing.

I got to taste my friend's charoset which was made with cooked dates and a banana and I got to taste my daughter-in-law's father's charoset which had peanuts in it.  it seemed irresistible until I actually, tasted it.  it was nothing special.  it's funny how the forbidden and unknown is so enticing.

I haven't cleaned up yet and don't think I will tackle anything until tomorrow.  I do not have a lot of washing up because I used mostly disposable dishes and cutlery this year.  I have only one fry pan to scrub and of course, I have to clean the pesach stove and put the oven back into the hutch in the living room.  I have a lot of matzah left.  perhaps I will make matzah brie later on in the week.  I need to buy eggs.

I do not have any leftover food except for a bit of chopped liver and some salads.  I am proud of how I planned and prepared for the holiday.  I got to rest today, which was nice.  I went to a later minyan at the local chabad bomb shelter this morning.  I had to say the traditional mourner's prayers for my deceased parents.  I got back at nearly 1:00 p.m. and had the meal with my friend.  it was considerably, warmer today.  I slept in the master bedroom last night and today.  the bed is not all that comfortable but it was clean and airy and somehow I could not bare to sleep on the t.v. couch one more night.

I woke up with a headache.  I did drink a bit of wine last night.   sulfates are a killer.  I also had nightmares.  however, I was very comfortable sprawling out on the bed.  I must go back immediately on my diet.  my niece's wedding is in June and I got to get slim.  my friend brought over produce from a moshav that she received for pesach.  I dread looking at potatoes.  I still have some palm oil left so when the kids come over I will make more french fries for them.  the palm oil industry may be responsible for wiping out the rain forests but they do make one heck of a good frying oil.

I didn't eat any chocolate, cake or potato chips during pesach.  I  did hit those three pretty hard before the holiday.  my food last night was a big success.  everyone left stuffed.  I had a pretty hard time sleeping.  my stomach was way too extended.  I am looking forward to eating less now.  no more holidays until Shavuot when we hit the cheesecake and lasagna.  it is a bit sad that pesach ended.  we work so hard for only one week of pesach.  it should be longer.  in the states they do have two more days.  I almost miss that.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Last Night Of Pesach

it is 11:30 a.m. in the holy city of safed.   it looks like rain.  tonight is the last night of Pesach.  I invited a few friends to join me for dinner.  I made a small piece of beef.  I didn't think what I had leftover from pesach seder was enough.  I have way too much now.  I also cooked 4 chicken thighs and fried up some chicken tempura.  it's really chicken nuggets, pesach style, so I renamed it. I also made some chopped chicken liver. it is a bit salty.  I  made a small piece of a salmon fillet.  I have diced beets, carrot salad, Israeli salad, avocado and chopped eggs and kohlrabi slaw.  I made mashed potatoes.  I have a  store bought pesach cake and poached pears in white wine for dessert.  I still might make a chocolate sauce for the pears.

I washed the kitchen floor with bleach and water.  I was too tired to go downstairs to retrieve my bottle of floor cleaner.  it is cold in the house.  the bank called this morning to tell me that I had gone over my overdraft.  I couldn't really fathom the extent of the rapid fire Hebrew conversation.  I think I took out a small emergency loan.  I really thought that I made it through the month okay.  the telephone bill will be the death of me.  with the family wedding and henna gifts, and the cost of making the sheva bracha and Purim seudahs and the pesach seder, I incurred a lot of expenses. hopefully, the next month will be easier.

yesterday, I went to my sister's for lunch.  I wanted to visit my nephew and family who live in the Ukraine.  I got to see his daughter for the first time.  she is around 16 months and was a bit afraid of me.  his son,who just turned three, was quite content hanging out with me and discussing his puzzle.  I had gone to synagogue at 8:00 a.m. and returned home around 11:00 a.m.  I ate some silver dollar banana pancakes and matzahs and drank white wine.  I drank a cup of hot chocolate and a couple of cups of tea and rested a bit.  the weather was horrid.  it was cold and rainy.  by the time I left in the afternoon, it had turned sunny and warm.

I got to my sister's after the meal had finished.  most everyone had left the table.  I was offered some salmon and I, happily, ate a lot of fruit salad.  everyone was tired and ready to nap.  I hung out with my sister for awhile and left in the early evening.  I walked over to the Sephardi family.  they were having their main meal and most animated.  my grandkids ran over to say hello and then returned outside with their cousins.  I wasn't hungry but I drank another cup of tea.  I stayed there until Shabbat ended and got driven home.

I think that my family, although not very communicative, was happy to see me.  we are just very disconnected.  I am much closer to my daughter-in-law's family.  I guess, I am a bit of a stranger to both families. I don't think anyone really gets me. however, I do share grandchildren with the Sephardi family and we remain close.  I find it hard to relate to my sister and her family but I love them all.. 

epilogue:  it is 3:00 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  I just made the chocolate sauce.  I didn't boil it for as long as 12 minutes as stated in the recipe and I got a runny dark liquid that tastes like chocolate that doesn't harden.  it's not very attractive.  I threw walnuts on top.  I plan on pouring the remainder of the wine sauce.  I don't have any dessert dishes left.  I may have to place them into plastic drinking cups. oh well.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Nearly Shabbat

it is 5:45 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  candle lighting is in less than an hour.  I am home alone.  the  leftover chicken soup and orange ginger chicken is warming on the electric hotplate.  I couldn't move yesterday.  I stayed in bed sleeping and watching television.  I went with my son and grandkids to an indoor amusement park in an Arab village near karmiel on Wednesday.  it is usually, a 40 minute ride.  it took us 2 hours driving through unknown long and winding Arab villages.  we were relying solely on the GPS system and it took us for a ride, literally.

my poor grandson got car sick and threw up 3 times.  we had a late start due to the fact that my one and only front door key went 'missing'.  I got into a foul mood and decided not to go to the park.   I felt violated.  my son was on route to drive me home when I decided to go to the park.  I decided to make the best of a bad situation.  luckily, my son had one of my keys in his home.  we got to the park after 5:00 p.m. and it was huge, packed and very noisy.  my head was spinning.  I hate mauls and amusement parks are not my thing.  I wanted to share a holiday experience with the grandkids and have those memories.

the kids brought over steaks, liver, and chicken wings at noon.  I had franks in the freezer.  my son struggled in the wind, to make a barbecue.  I had already eaten two huge round natzahs with the remainder of the charoset.  that's a mixture of chopped apples, pears, almonds and walnuts to any novices out there.  I made a ton of French fries and I ate way too many of them.  I was beyond stuffed when we went to the park.  I brought potato chips and apple juice for the trip.  thank goodness I had plenty of wipes and plastic bags with me.

I went on two rides with the kids.  the grandson preferred to ride alone.  I sat next to my granddaughter and screamed the entire time.  I suffer from motion sickness and cannot take carousels or anything that moves much.  I played my hand at some of the video games.  it's not really my thing.  the kids took a trip to Jerusalem yesterday.   thank goodness, they did not include me.  I can't take the crowds, the lines, standing too much, or being out of town.  they made the right decision to leave me home.  I was so tired yesterday that I forgot to worry about them all night.  I think they made their own memories yesterday and I hope the grandkids will cherish them.

I invited 3 friends for Sunday night's holiday dinner.  I have some leftover beef in wine in the freezer and I made some more orange, honey and ginger chicken thighs.  I had a lot of barbecued liver that we never ate so I made chopped liver.  I made poached pears in white wine and orange juice.  the pears I made in the sweet red wine with ginger root were not a success.  the kids said it smelled weird and tasted like medicinal cough drops.  I have to say that I liked it very much and ate all 4 pears.  the kids left a bottle of light port here so I might just indulge with my friends.

I made mashed potatoes instead of kugel.  I only have a few eggs left and I might need them.  i'll probably make avocado and hard cooked eggs on Sunday.  I ran to the small supermarket to buy a few veggies.  I had leftover grated carrot and apple salad so I added a couple of new carrots, some walnuts and dates and fresh lemon juice.  I also have some leftover beets.  i'll make a kohlrabi slaw on Sunday.  I wanted to fry up some eggplant but forgot to buy one when I was in the supermarket.

I have two sweet potatoes that I can slice and bake and i'll see if I want to schlepp back to the store to buy an eggplant on Sunday.  I don't know what my schedule will be like and if i'll have the kids or not.  I poached some fillet of salmon in white wine and lemon juice.  I can serve it with my homemade lemon flavored olive oil mayonnaise.  it is quite thick.  my grandson whipped it up for me with my electric beater.  it was like a loose dressing.  it tasted  a bit bitter.  the grandson told me to add a bit of sugar and some fresh onion.  he is a 7 year old savant cook.  I added a bit of honey and more lemon.  it is the texture of lemon curd now.  it is quite tasty.

I plan on making a chocolate sauce for the pears on Sunday.  I think I tried this out last year.  you have to pour it onto something right away before it hardens into something unusable.  maybe I can pour it over walnuts.  it's made with cocoa, sugar, oil and water.  I also had a recipe for mole barbecue sauce to try but I chickened out.  I think I will have enough food for Sunday.  I have one store bought pesach cake left.  I might make some brownies.  I didn't think I would do anything today.  I was so tired.  I guess I got my second wind.  the weather turned cold and rainy.  my nephew and family are in from the Ukraine.  I'm hoping to join my chabad family for lunch tomorrow.  it is about a half an hour walk.  my grandkids are going to their Sephardi family for Shabbat.  I can't really eat at their home because of my Ashkenazi and chabad dietary customs for pesach.  oh well.....

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Sunday Night

it is 10:00 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  one of the grandkids is fast asleep and the boy is watching television.  the parents are out getting groceries for pesach.   the daughter-in-law had to work last night until 1:00 a.m. and had to clean the house after work today.  I kept the kids here.  I made two rounds of French fries.  I did all my cooking during the day and did some elements of the seder.  I made a pretty tasty charoset with apples, pears, almonds, walnuts and fresh ginger .  I don't use cinnamon on pesach.   last year I bought filberts and it was the worst charoset I ever made.  perhaps the nuts were rancid.

I made my moussaka and it came out pretty tasty.  the chop meat turned out to be hamburgers but I sautéed them into little pieces with fresh ginger.  I made a tomato sauce with fresh tomatoes and onions and red wine.  I topped it with mashed potatoes and beaten eggs.  it looks good and cuts nicely into serving pieces.  I made my usual beef in sweet red wine and I made honey orange ginger chicken bottoms.  I was going to make a kugel but I ended up going with mashed potatoes.

I had some tomato sauce left over so I made poached eggs in the sauce.  we call it shakshuka here.  I had some French fries, as well.  I made poached pears in sweet red wine and ginger.  I even made banana pancakes.  tomorrow, I will make the fresh salads.  it was a pleasure being able to cook today.  it is the first time in my life that I finished pesach cleaning early.  I am usually scrambling to wash the floors at midnight.  I was able to do the traditional search for chometz at 8:00 p.m.  I wrapped 10 small pieces of pita into little baggies.  the pincher dog ate one of them so I had to let them out until we finished the search..

I stayed up to 4:00 a.m. watching season 7 of  'the good wife'.  I didn't think I would be able to function this morning but I was fine.  I washed down the kitchen counters with a rag and bleach and covered them with tin foil.  I had exactly enough to finish.  I did have to take a large piece off of the oven but I covered it with a disposable table cloth.  I took out my mini food processor, my hand mixer, and an electric juicer I found in the closet.  I let the kids shell almonds and walnuts this afternoon.  it kept them busy for a bit.  I also let them juice some lemons and made a pitcher of lemonade for tomorrow night.  my grandson and I just made some olive oil mayonnaise.  it is a bit strong so he suggested adding a bit of sugar and a pinch of chopped onion.  he was right on the money.  it isn't exactly thick like mayonnaise but it is like a dressing.

I made the chopped beets.  I boiled the eggs in tea because a I read online that it gives them the look of roasted eggs.  it turned the eggshells brown but the eggs were still white inside.  I want to make avocado and hard cooked eggs tomorrow.  I also want to slice up some kohlrabi.  I will make an Israeli salad too.  I peel all of my veggies on pesach.  so I had to peel the eggplant, beets, tomatoes, carrots and onions before I cooked.  it's a lot of prep work.

tomorrow, I will burn the leftover pita downstairs. I found a slice of bread in front of my house. I will throw it down the sewer drain.  it will take forever to burn it.  I roasted/burnt two chicken necks over the gas stove.  it took forever.  I  still need to make the salt water and to grind the horseradish.  the romaine lettuce is already washed and draining in a colander.  I need to set the table and take out the matzah.  I had a large ant infestation the last two days.  they are coming out of my electric outlet over my kitchen cabinet.  what a drag!  looks like the kids will stay here tonight.

happy pesach to everyone!

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Almost Sunday

it is 10:00 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  I was hoping to finish up the pesach cleaning tonight.  actually, the house is clean.  I need to wipe down the kitchen counters with bleach and cover them with heavy duty aluminum foil.  I don't think I have enough foil to finish this.  I don't have any cash on me and I ran out of checks.  the kids are supposed to be here tomorrow morning so I doubt that I will have enough time to make it to the cash machine and large supermarket.

I have already covered my dairy kitchen island with a vinyl paper.  I took out various containers, napkins, haggadas, and machinery.  I am too tired to deal with the counters now.  I already covered the dining room table. I will probably set the table tomorrow.  I know one is supposed to showcase their best cutlery, china and finery but I do not have the strength to take anything down from the shelves.  I do not want to have to wash dishes after the Seder.  I bought a set of fancy disposable dishes.  I will use nice wine glasses.  I have my themed pesach napkins and I will try to make the table look nice.

I saw some ants on the kitchen counter in the cooking alcove.  I have my matzahs there and I am a bit nervous leaving them there.  I will have to find room inside the closet for them.  I took out the special pesach dog food and bowls.  I think the dogs are a bit confused.  I am defrosting chicken, chop meat and beef.  I hope to start my cooking tomorrow.  it may be hard with the kids here.  they were particularly wild on Friday.  I had them pick lemons for me and they were great.  my grandson washed out the dog bed for me and he was focused.

I rented the old movie 'babe' but my grandson said it was too sad.  he said everyone was being killed so he went outside.  that's when the 'fun' started.  I was screaming like a banshee all afternoon.  I didn't know where the kids were.  I was washing the kitchen floor and they were nowhere to be seen.  and of course they didn't answer my calls.  they were all over the place.  they were in the downstairs apartment and in the backyard but I had to keep telling them to come inside.  at one point, while I was washing the steps,  they started throwing lemons at me.

I got a soccer ball crashed into my spine. I let out a yelp.  I called my son to complain.  luckily, my daughter-in-law came home to get the kids.  the granddaughter apologized and gave me a hug.  the grandson started crying.  he didn't want a punishment.  I was relieved to see them go.  they called me just before Shabbat to invite me for dinner.  I was too tired to move but I went.  I didn't want to insult anyone.  the kids fought over who would sit on my lap.

I didn't make any food for Shabbat.  I had salami and turkey cold cuts, tuna fish, pickles and rolls.  I put up a hot water thermos and I was set.  I ended up having a nice Shabbat dinner with the kids and got home around 11:00 p.m.  I managed to get to services at the Sephardi synagogue and ended up at my friend's for lunch.  I schmoozed with my girlfriend and got home around 3:00 p.m.  I started reading insights of the haggada and fell asleep.  I got up at 6:00 p.m. and had a salami sandwich.  the dogs had some scraps.

I hope that the tin foil situation works itself out.  perhaps I will be able to cover part of the counter with heavy duty garbage bags.  maybe I can ask the kids to buy me some foil when they do their shopping.  I am too tired right now to fret about it.  my sister sent me an hilarious cartoon.  it shows a group of people. one person says that she loves to clean for pesach and everyone chimes in with a 'me, too'.  on the top you see the sign for an OCD therapy group session.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Almost Shabbat

it is 1:00 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  the kids are quiet and watching videos.  I am washing my kitchen chairs.   the weather is threatening.  it suddenly got very cold.  I wonder if this is the 'mud' rain they have been predicting.   all my windows have been cleaned.  it they get muddied, so be it.  I know that I washed and shined them all.

my shoulder is still sore from lifting the living room windows yesterday.  I cleaned the t.v. nook and washed the floor early this morning before the kids arrived..  it is as good as it can be.  if only I bought a new sofa.  oh well..... we made it out to the bakery to buy rolls for Shabbat.  I am planning on eating tuna, pickles and salami sandwiches for Shabbat.  I will try to go to synagogue tomorrow.  perhaps there will be a Kiddush.  I can always crash at my friends for lunch.

I have fruit and pesach cake so I'm fine.  I am trying to finish off the kitchen.  I am running out of steam.  I need to wash down the cabinets, bleach out the counters and cover it all width tin foil.  I may put it off until sunday morning.  the kids will be here on sunday so I will be under a lot of pressure..

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Down The Wire

it is 11:15 a.m. I'm scrambling to finish the house for pesach.  yes, I know that pesach is on Monday night.  And yes, I know that we have one more Shabbat to get through. I will be watching the kids tomorrow and on sunday.  I want to have the house, more or less, pesach cleaned by tonight. 

it was pretty hot yesterday and we couldn't stay very long at the playground.  both kids were pretty wild.  my grandson was shooting us with his water gun and I did not appreciate it.  by evening, it was cold and I was still wet.  I showered them both and couldn't wait for them to go home.  I was zonked fom pesach cleaning.  I hit the television couch and much to my delight, I found the seventh season of 'the  good wife'.  I watched one episode and fell asleep.  I woke up a bit later and couldn't move.  I was able to get up to fetch some pesach cake and some milk.

I entered the living room this morning and lifted out two of the windows.  I couldn't do this last year.  I quickly washed the windows and ran to my neighbor for help.  I could not put the windows back in by myself.  I felt pretty desperate.  I was afraid to leave the windows standing upright.  as soon as my neighbor left I went back to bed.  that really finished me. my shoulder took a hit.  like a gluten for punishment, I went back to the living room and took out the remaining two windows.  once again, I had to run to another neighbor to ask for help.

I quickly sponged the floor and voila! the room is done.  I have to finish washing the floors in the master bedroom and porch area.  I did the windows yesterday before the kids came over.  the bedrooms are already made up for pesach night.  I have to wash the kitchen chairs and floor today.  I will try to get to the counters, too.  I also have to give the cabinets a good polishing and I will be through.  right now I need to take a rest.  I managed to catch up on the laundry.  tomorrow, I will eat salami sandwiches for Shabbat.

I am hoping to be able to do the prep work on sunday.  I have tons of nuts to crack and vegetables to peel.  I hope the kids will let me work.  I am afraid to let them alone for too long.  they are into matches these days.  my grandson set a small fire to my couch pillow outside.  I will have to play it by ear.  yesterday, I went to town and managed to pay my elctric bill, the city taxes and water bill.  I was also able to sell my chometz at the rabbinate.  I bought two packages of romaine lettuce and a small piece of horseradish.

when I got back I found a gift package in front of my door.  I got canned corn, mushrooms, tuna fish, a bottle of grape juice and a bottle of oil.  I also got a jar of mayonnaise, a box of pesach cookies, a package of rice, some bambas and a floor towel.  I bought a kilo of square matzah for the kids and I have a kilo of round matzah for me.  I have been subsisting on tuna fish, corn and potato chips. 

I managed to strip the couch of its slip covers and washed them.  it was a synch getting them back on.  I can't understand why I never thought about doing this.  for the past 17 years, I have been dousing the couch with soapy water.  I can't afford to reupholster the couch.   I can't even swing a new couch cover but at least, it smells clean and fresh.  I am happy.  I look at the streaked, freshly cleaned windows and say my new mantra, 'it's good enough".

Epilogue:  it's 8:00 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  I just finished washing the floor in the master bedroom and porch.  I had to take a long break today.  the living room windows did me in.  someone called at around 2:00 p.m. and I couldn't get off the couch to answer the phone.  I was too tired to talk and definitely too tired to mind the kids.  I ate way too much and passed out.  I got up around 6:00 p.m. and threw tons of soapy water around the room.  I still have some clothes to put away but I will do it in the morning.  the room is mostly made up.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Countdown To Pesach 2017

it is 7:00 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  I just got back from the small supermarket.  I needed something to eat.  I have been existing on chocolate and potato chips.  not good at all!.  I just had a tuna sandwich on a pita and I feel like a person.  I also had a banana and a chocolate bar.  I won't be eating any more chocolate on pesach.  I bought some avocados and I wonder if they will ever ripen.  they are pretty hard right now.

I spent about 6 hours washing the floors in the downstairs apartment.  the kids never cleaned up after they moved out.  I spent hours moving all of the left behind sheets, blankets, towels and dishes upstairs.  I have an entire closet full of old baby clothes.  I have more glassware and coffee cups than I know what to do with.  this morning, I threw tons of buckets of soapy water everywhere.  I washed all 4 bedrooms and the enormous laundry room, which now poses as a party room.  I also did a few batches of laundry while I was sponging the floors.  sunshine is truly marvelous!

I even managed to clear away all of the purim costumes and props in the computer room and did a sponger there, too.   I just made the bed and the room is ready for pesach.  I will make the bed in the 'blue' room, aka guest room, tomorrow.  I truly need to get to town.  a neighbor asked about renting the downstairs for the Seder night.  well, now it's clean.  I even did some of the kitchen windows.  we shall see.  I think that we can all manage on my floor.  the kids can take the master bedroom and the grandkids and I can sleep together in the blue room.

I need to clean the master bedroom, next.  that's a real drag.  I have tons of clothes all over the place, the windows need washing, the porch is a mess and the bathroom is dirty.  I need to get all of the dog hair off of the bed with a lint brush.  I don't have a functioning vacuum cleaner.  I hope to get into the master bedroom tomorrow.  the front porch windows look marvelous.  they are a bit streaked from the rain but they are so clean and clear.  you can see lake kinneret from the porch now.  it was warm today but now it is chilly.  I did the floors in my fuzzy slippers and sweats.  I destroyed them.  bleach stains for days!

my kitchen outcove is done.  I washed the gas range and oven yesterday.  I covered the counters with tin foil and I took out my pesach toaster oven.  its huge.  I couldn't put the wooden board back to cover the hutch.  somehow, I lifted it to retrieve the oven but I'm not strong enough to put it back.  I will look for a neighbor to help me tomorrow.  one of my mean neighbors kicked my small dog today while he was shooing them back into my front yard patio.  I just happened to see him do it and I let out a scream.  I threatened to call the police.  I spoke in English so I don't know if he understood me.  I spent the day thinking of revenge.

my dogs keep going out scavenging for food.  they come home each night with bones.  lots of folks here are barbecuing these days.  unfortunately, people are tossing their bread all over the place and my dogs keep coming in with it.  are we having fun yet?  I need to do a quick clean up in the living room.  I already washed all of the cut-glass and polished the furniture.  it shouldn't be a hard job.

last year, I found hundreds of maggots and worms on the couch, when I took off the spread.  apparently, one of the dogs had left a fish head on the couch and I didn't see it.  that was the most horrible sight ever.  I wish I had some money to buy a new couch spread.  I just can't swing it right now.  i'll just have to wash the one I have or find something else in the linen closet.  I would love to buy a small couch for the t.v. corner but I doubt that will happen, either.  I want to go to town tomorrow to check out the local furniture store.

I need to pay my electric bill, water bill and city tax bill.  they are all way overdue.  I need to buy a bedikas chometz set, a new afikomen bag, and I need to sell my chometz at the rabbinate.  I better get out early before I tackle one more bedroom.  once I start cleaning I can't stop.  and then I get so tired I can't do anything else.  I  am quite lucky that the grandkids are in day camp.  I can't imagine having them here while I'm working.  I also have to take my new peeler to the mikveh.  it's just finding the time and doing it.

ever year I hope that I don't come down to the wire.  every year I hope that I can start cooking the day before the seder.  I think that I just might be able to cook early this year.  wouldn't that be a hoot!  I just have to buckle down and finish the house.  I have been working on this for weeks now.  I am not planning on making Shabbat food.  I  have my bags of pitas and my cans of tuna fish.  I can always shnoor a meal with my friends.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Raining

it is 8:00 a.m. in the holy city of safed.  it is pouring.  there go all the windows!  it is a week before pesach.  I saw a neighbor do all his kitchen windows on Friday.  o well....  I need to do errands today. I got to sell my chometz at the rabbinate, pay my electric bill, go to the water company and city tax office in town.  I had an umbrella but I guess someone took it.  I stayed home this weekend because I was exhausted after the sheva brachos.  I couldn't stand up.

I ate leftover meatballs , rice and corn salad for dinner and a salami sandwich for lunch.  I slept all Shabbat long.  I didn't have the stamina to get dressed and go to the local synagogue.  I ate two chocolate bars and 2 bags of potato chips last night.  I guess you could say I was on an official food bender.  what a shame to blow up right before pesach.  I let loose at the wedding and after the sheva bracha.

my shoulder hurts and my back is tight.  I heard that there was a dirty rain coming but I thought it would pass over like the name of the holiday.  of well...  it is a bit depressing.  there are so many things I need to do.  I wanted to finish the kitchen today.  I managed to do one counter and cover it with heavy tin foil. 

I still need to put away the Purim costumes in the computer room and I need to clear the bed of all my clothes in the master bedroom.  I decided to not clean the downstairs apartment as well as the roof top apartment.  I am planning on locking them both for the week of pesach.  I couldn't stop thinking about all the work I should do during Shabbat.  I even took out recipes to plan my menu.  I didn't fall asleep until after 3:00 a.m.

I do the same menu every year.  I make orange and honey stewed chicken, mashed potatoes, beets, beef in wine, eggs with fried onions, and pears poached in wine.  I don't bake. I buy pesach cakes and cookies.  yesterday, I thought about making moussaka.  I had a recipe for eggplant roll ups.  I decided how to simplify the recipe and couldn't wait until Shabbat ended to get online.  I will have to pull out my pesach oven from a hutch in the living room.  this entails lifting a huge and heavy wooden panel.  I don't know if I will have the physical strength to do this.  I also don't know if anyone would even like this dish.  I don't use spices on pesach.  I stick to salt and peppercorns.

I wonder if the little kids will eat the orange chicken.  they tend to want barbecued wings.  I plan on making chicken nuggets.  I bought pesach ketchup.  I want to start cooking on sunday.  that entails finishing the kitchen.  that entails my feeling stronger.  the weather isn't conducive to work.  I don't even have cab money.  I want to throw my little couch away and buy a new one.  I doubt that I can swing this financially.  I can't imagine cleaning the couch. it is a mess and ripped everywhere.  the dog has eaten a lot of the leather.

what a miserable day!  I painted the guard rail in front of the entrance to the house.  I was planning on washing the large porch windows but I saw the rust.  I didn't have the strength to do the windows.  I truly over did it on the post bridal meal.  I set the tables alone and ran around dragging the chairs.  I stood on my feet for hours making the salads.  I spent two days on this.

I made a vat of turkey meatballs Sephardi style, a gigantic mashed potato and mushroom kugel, a fair amount of liver teriyaki with peppers and onions, a bulgur salad with minute pieces of tomatoes and cucumbers, corn salad with mayonnaise and minute pieces of red pepper and pickles, green cabbage slaw with dried cranberries, chopped apples and toasted walnuts, string beans in a Sephardi tomato sauce, and an american green salad with thousand island dressing.  the American salad didn't really go over well.

I finished setting up at 5:00 p.m. and put the food on two electric hotplates.  I made a mad rush downtown to see my grandson's play and party that started at 5:30.m.  I didn't have time to put on makeup.  we got back at nearly 8:00 p.m. and no guests were yet in sight.  earlier in the day, I managed to bake a huge chocolate cake.  I covered it with cherry pie filling and then whipped cream.  the cream didn't hold its shape and I couldn't pipe it on, so I covered it with chocolate shavings.  I had bought two cans of pineapple but the light syrup had a funny taste.  I added fresh ginger and some honey and refrigerated it for two days.  that seemed to do the trick.  I also bought some lemon and raspberry sherbet. 

I ran out to buy more assorted roasted nuts and rolls at the bakery.  I showcased the chocolate bride and grooms and white and black jelly beans on a three tier silver-plated platter.  I set up a table of desserts and hot drinks.  it looked amazing.  the Sephardi grandma brought a vat of rice and some Sephardi cooked dried fruits and nuts.  it was truly a feast!  another lady brought some homemade treats, too.  I  still haven't cleaned up the downstairs.  I struggled to get the upstairs kitchen, more or less, cleaned for Shabbat.  I washed up the serving containers and utensils.  I am hoping to put it all away today.  my back is very stiff. and my hands are very swollen.  I washed a wall with bleach and didn't bother to wear plastic gloves.

I had hoped to do laundry today.  oh well....  now I see why most of the neighbors haven't done their windows yet.  this happens every year.  I got to just go with the flow.  if I don't have the kids today, I should just rest until I feel stronger.  I'm really not in bad shape pesach cleaning wise.  the master bedroom is always the hardest challenge because it is so cold in there and I have all of my clothes scattered all over the bed and other furniture. my shoulder is killing me.  I think I have to count this day out.  at least for now.  I am mentally planning the menu for my niece's sheva brachas in june. 

it will be too hot to make the chocolate molds.  it may be too hot to have the meal in my apartment.  it may need to be upstairs in the rooftop apartment where I have air-conditioning.  that will demand a lot of schlepping of tables and chairs.  I also need an Ashkenazi menu.  I might make beef meatballs but it will have to be Italian style.  no cilantro or hot sauce for this crowd.  a stirfry or chicken teriyaki is always acceptable. so are string beans and almonds, sweet cabbage slaw, broccoli kugel as well as a sweet noodle kugel with pineapple and raisins.  perhaps a potato kugel, too. I guess I would put out chumus and I might go with a bulgur salad.  Israelis like this too. 

hopefully, my older sister will be here to help me make it look attractive.  I might go with the chocolate cake and cherry pie filling again.  I think it was a success.  at the engagement party, there were very gorgeous looking desserts.  a lot of them didn't taste that good.  the icing also had artificial colors that did not wash off the kids' faces. I will buy non dairy ice-cream .  I won't make any bridal decorations.  I doubt that it would be appreciated.  the young Sephardi bride loved the vase that I decorated as well as the white silk bridal bouquet that I bought.  my niece is more sophisticated.  I think i'll skip the bridal napkins, salt and pepper shakers, etc.  i'll go for elegant. 

I remember when I made the engagement meal for my other niece, nine years ago.  I ran out to buy a specific chabad heksher and all they had was turkey.  it turned out that the majority of the guests didn't eat turkey for a number of reasons and it was a bit of a balagon.  maybe I should hold off with my plans until I know for sure that they want me to do a meal.  this crowd is more uptight than the Sephardi clan.

Epilogue:  it is now noontime in the holy city of safed.  I never made it to town.  the kids are in pesach day camp and I am alone.  the sun came out for an hour and it was warm.  I washed the porch windows.  they were totally shiny.  then it began to pour. oh well.... perhaps, it will save the lives of a few of the birds, who every year, after I wash these windows; crash into them . and I won't have to dispose of the bloody carcasses and wash the floor after the pincher dog devours them. it's a win win!

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Super Tired

it is 9:00 p.m. in the holy city of safed.   I have been working all day to get the sheva bracha together.  we got back from the family wedding at 2:00 a.m.  I ate way too much.  before I went to sleep I munched out on 2 large whole wheat baguettes.   I was so tired and wasted.  I didn't even drink anything.

I had a virus or flu on sunday.  I couldn't function in the morning.  I wanted to glue a few sequins onto my new dressy moccasins.  I couldn't coordinate my hands.  I could hardly focus.  my eyes were very googlely, as we used to say.  I had some chest pains and I thought to myself, at one point, that I might be having a heart attack.  I knew I had to rest a bit.  I made it to town and helped pack up the costumes and props for my friend's play.  unfortunately, she planned the date of the play on the night of my family wedding.  I came for the dress rehearsal and hung out for a few hours.  I was really tired.  the cast was bummed that I couldn't make it to the show.

I made it out of the house at 2:00 p.m. and searched the town for a better dress shoe for the wedding.  between my two wide feet and the bunyan on the right foot, I have a very hard time finding nice looking shoes.  I can only wear square shaped kid leather shoes.  everything else presses into the bone and I suffer.  I found an orthopedic pair of beaded moccasins which definitely, pressed into the bunyan.  I told myself that it was just one night of suffering.  they actually were comfortable until the end of the night when I had the most excruciating pain.

I actually obsessed about the shoes.  I had found a pair of shoes a month ago, that looked like my weekday square shoe with shiny beads.  they had it in silver but not in my size.  I had the sales person order them for me but I never made it back to buy them.  an hour before I was supposed to be picked up, I was in town near the shoe store.  they were closed.  I was devastated.  I spent hours looking for a dressy head covering.

I didn't want to wear the raggedy ann look alike synthetic wig that my friend gave me.  it was bright red and very straight.  the crowd I was being with doesn't wear wigs.  I tried wearing the wig with a netted snood but I felt silly.  I wanted a turban.  I searched the entire town to buy a simple turban.  half an hour before I was supposed to be picked up, I found one.  it was silver with black splotches.  it was very shiny.  it was easy to throw on.

the wedding was very lovely.  it was like a Deja-vu experience being there again.  I married off my son there 8 years ago with my dying mother present.  I looked at the wedding pix and I have aged terribly.  8 years ago I was one hot mama.  I still had eyebrows, a decent figure and a decent wig.  I wore the same dress last night.  somehow I fit into it.  I was a good twenty pounds thinner then.  I looked elegant yesterday but heavy and old.

I had a hard time getting up today.  I finally went downstairs to start setting up for the meal tomorrow night.  I set one table to see how it looked.  I realized that buying the super cheap disposable dishes and cutlery was a mistake.  I should have gone for the designer disposable.  everything else looks good.  I heard all about last night's show.  apparently, it was a great success.  I am happy for everyone.  I can't believe they thought I should ditch the wedding to be at the play.  family comes first.  no play is that important.

I didn't get a chance to dance with the bride last night.  as usual, the granddaughter fell asleep in my lap.  I spent the first part of the wedding feeding the kids.  it was freezing there and I kept myself wrapped in my jacket.  I was very melancholy.  I thought to myself and then made a silent prayer to the 'man' upstairs to let me live to see my grandchildren married.  I am 65 and my granddaughter is 5.  I am a cancer survivor and I still need to have a brain tumor removed. what are the chances?

I washed the lettuce and salad greens and sliced the red cabbage.  tomorrow I will assemble it to make a salad with thousand island dressing.  I have a green cabbage that I want to make into a sweet slaw with walnuts, apples and cranberries.  I made a vat of mashed potatoes yesterday and I just fried up some onions and mushrooms.  hopefully, tomorrow, i'll make a mashed potato kugel.  I ran out of eggs and was too cold and tired to run to the store.

I made some liver teriyaki for my daughter-in-law and her sister.  I made 4 1/2 pounds of Sephardi turkey meatballs and kept pretty much to the recipe.  at the last moment I went renegade and added a teaspoon of allspice.  I think I blew it.  the recipe also calls for frozen peas.  I didn't have any.  I guess tomorrow morning, i'll run out and buy some.  I still have 2 pounds of frozen string beans to make.  I bought chumus and a spicy tomato salad.   I opened 2 cans of diced pineapple.  it had a strange flavor.  can canned fruit go bad???  I added a bunch of desiccated coconut and some honey and ginger.   hopefully, it will taste better after refrigeration.  I have no idea how many people are coming tomorrow.

my grandson has his party for receiving his first prayer book tomorrow.  we will literally come back from the party moments before the guests arrive.  I will have to leave everything on the electric hotplate before I leave for the party.  I don't enjoy the stress.  I haven't had any caffeine today.  I need to get to the store to buy tea, too.   I have to bake a chocolate cake tomorrow.  I am making a variation of a black forest cake.  it will only be one layer smothered in cherry pie filling and covered with chocolate pudding and whipped cream.  something tells me that the Sephardim aren't going to like it.  I ask myself, why do I bother?  they'd be happier with just plain chocolate cake and whipped cream.   why did I have to add so much allspice to the meatball sauce.

this is no time to have leftovers so close to pesach.  I don't have any more freezer space.  I will finish  setting up the downstairs tomorrow morning.  I am beat.  I still haven't bought my matzah and I am beginning to panic.  I  would love to call it a day but I have to stay up because my son is bringing another table for the party after tonight's party.  the bride and groom are having a small 'moving in' party.  it will be cold cuts and salads thus, I won't be serving the cold cuts and pickles that I bought for my party.  I froze one package and will save the other for pesach.  maybe the grandkids will want them.

I made some bulgur and will turn it into a tabouli salad tomorrow with chopped cucumbers and tomatoes and cilantro.  the Sephardi grandma is binging a 'pot' of rice tomorrow so I didn't make a bulgur pilaf.  I hope the meatballs will get eaten.  this Sephardi grandma doesn't use allspice.  what was I thinking?

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Who's Got The Liver?

it is 7:00 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  just got back from the small supermarket.  I ran down to buy some chicken liver.  the daughter-in-law wants some of my yummy liver teriyaki at the sheva bracha.  I wasn't planning on making any.  I made a small amount on Purim.   the daughter-in-law's married sister liked it.  l don't know about the rest of the clan.  anyhow, there wasn't any liver to be found.  perhaps some will come in tomorrow.  they are having their 10 shekel sale so I bought a package of dates, a 3 pack of 60% dark chocolate, 3 cans of Italian diced tomatoes, 2 cans of pickles and three gift items for my neighbors.

because they were so inexpensive, I need to buy something to supplement the gifts.  for example, a package of herbal tea to go with the 2 ceramic mugs and  a package of some exotic spice mix to go with the spice jars, etc.  I don't know why I keep on buying chocolate. I'm on a diet and my 7 year old grandson has temporarily sworn off chocolate.  I started my morning with banana pancakes.  one mashed banana and two beaten eggs and voila!  they were actually very filling and had the consistency of real gluten pancakes.  I will make them on pesach and serve them with honey.

the repairman came over with my new plastic toilet tank.  I entered the guest bedroom and decided to put up the new wallpaper border.  I ripped the old one off last week.  this new one is a cheap contact paper kind.  it actually ripped in a few places but who's starring up at the ceiling, anyway?  my new self, who doesn't strive for perfection anymore, was delighted with the results.  I was quite frightened to climb the ladder.  I couldn't make it to the last rung.  the task ended up being very doable.  I am glad I pursued.  while the plumber fiddled in the bathroom, I put up the border. 

when he left the bathroom was trashed.  I decided to clean the bathroom and the guest bedroom with buckets of water and bleach.  I managed to take out the bedroom windows.  putting them back in was a bit harder.  I wonder how much longer I will be able to do this in the future.  I took down the curtains but didn't wash them.  no one eats in the bedroom.  a friend uses it when she stays over on Shabbat and holidays.  I store sheets and blankets and old baby clothes in the closets.  the room is usually vacant.  recently, the kids played havoc in the room; sliding off of mattresses and hanging out of the windows.  my screen got tossed out of the window and I couldn't put it back without removing the heavy windows.

I need to strip the bed and do a lot of laundry. it is supposed to rain for the next few days.   every year I do my windows and it rains soon afterwards.  I don't really care.  I don't feel like waiting to the last minute to do the windows.  so now I have to put away the Purim costumes and props and wash the floor of the computer room.  I have already done the windows.  I still have the master bedroom to tackle.  that's a hard one.  I have tons of clothes strewn all over the room.  the bed is covered with dog hair and the dog ate part of the foam mattress.  I don't have a functional vacuum so I use a lint brush.  I'm not looking forward to this task.

the main part of the kitchen is done.  the closets have been wiped clean.  all of the candlesticks and most of the Judaica collection have been polished as well as the silver spoon collection.  the 1939 world's fair spoons have never looked shinier.  I didn't do the living room windows last year.  I can't lift them anymore.  I doubt that my son will have time to help me.  the room is basically clean.  the cut-glass and fake flowers have been washed.  the wooden furniture has been polished. 

when the grandkids are not here I can get a lot done.  it took me about 6 hours to finish the bathroom and guest bedroom.  yesterday, I spent the afternoon out in the playground with the kids.  I was quite tired and decided to spend 'quality' time with the kids.  when I try to do tasks in another room all hell breaks out.  it was warm yesterday and the kids had the playground to themselves.  I guess the rest of the moms were cleaning.   I bought myself a lovely salad at the bakery and got the kids some barekas.  I bought some gnocchi but the kids just picked at it.  I ended up eating a huge plate full and didn't feel all that great afterwards.  I wanted to eat a chocolate bar or two but luckily, I fell asleep before I could do more damage to my body.

my new, non perfect self, will wear a dress that I wore 8 years ago to my son's wedding.  although I weigh about twenty pounds more, I cannot afford to be vain.  I cannot, also afford a new outfit, hat ,wig or pair of shoes.  my new motto is 'it's good enough'.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

So Tired

it is 12:15 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  the grandkids are coming over at 2:00 p.m.  yesterday they nearly killed me.  the granddaughter gave me a few sharp blows to my lower back which started the sciatica acting up.  I took them outside to play on their scooter.  they go coasting down a hill together and it lets out some steam.  the weather is threatening.  the sun comes out for a while and then it rains.  I herded the kids and dogs back home when it started drizzling.  the sky was black and looked ominous.  back at home, they were both being aggressive and taunting me and the dogs all evening.

they finally settled down after I showered them.  luckily, one of the aunts came at 8:00 p.m. to take them home.  it's much better for them and myself, that they fall asleep in their own beds.  they are always happy and very affectionate when they go home.  while they are here, they are wild and do not listen to me.  I find myself telling them that I do not want them visiting me again.  we all feel bad afterwards.  how much patience am I to exhibit?  I am tired and worn out from pesach cleaning.  I feel very pressured.

next week is the family wedding.  I still haven't coordinated with my daughter-in-law which day to host the dinner for the bride and groom.  I still haven't fully planned the menu, either.  I am going with turkey meatballs and a bulgur pilaf.  I have cold cuts, chumus, and possibly, hard cooed eggs for appetizers.  this group does not know from devilled eggs.  I bought a huge bag of string beans and I have some canned mushrooms.  originally, I thought about making a mashed potato kugel to go with the cold cuts.  I just don't know if I want to bother.  I'm thinking about buying frozen barekas.

I'm still not sure about the dessert.  I have a recipe for a black forest no bake cake with chocolate mousse and cherry filling.  there is only one place in safed that I know of that sells cherry filling in a can.  I don't know if I want to bother.  I do have a package of lady fingers that I would love to get rid of before pesach.   I still need disposable serving dishes.  I do not see myself dragging china platters to the downstairs apartment.  I am also trying to get rid of my dirty laundry.  I have tons of towels and sheets but we don't have any sunny days to hang them outside.  I dismantled the hose from my dryer.

when I'm not cleaning for pesach, I feel guilty.  and as much as I tell myself to abstain from doing spring cleaning, the polishe clean freak comes out.  I have managed to do the windows in the computer room and in the kitchen.  I know it is unwise to do this now because we are having storms and they will get muddied once again.  I can't help myself.  I can always windex them from the outside.  I haven't used any chemicals yet.  I ran out of windex and just used a rag and soap and water.  I wiped them dry with newspaper.

I shined the silver with toothpaste and I shined the brass with lemons from the tree.  I  haven't used the heavy duty oven cleaner yet.  next week after I throw the dinner party, I will finish the kitchen.  I still need to put away the purim stuff.  at least it's confined to just one room.  it's all on the bed in the computer room.  the closet doors are stuck so it is hard to fully open the closets to clean.  just one more expense I have that I can't afford right now.  the local yokel handyman couldn't fix the closet.  he probably charged me for it but made it worse.

I need to replace the toilet tank in the main bathroom.  the handyman is dragging his feet about taking care of this.  it will be a small fortune .  it is very hard without the use of the toilet.  even though I have another two toilets, this is the one we use the most.  it's hard for the kids to run to the hallway to use the new toilet there.  it's also hard for me.  in the middle of the night, it's a bummer to run into the hallway to use the toilet there.

I have been trying to drastically diet for Monday's wedding.  I am out of cabbage soup and I ate 4 eggs yesterday.  I bought pesach cookies for the kids to munch.  I don't want real cookies in the house now.  the kids didn't really eat much yesterday.  I opened cans of corn and mushrooms but they didn't want tuna fish.  I made eggs but I ended up eating them.  I didn't feel so well later that night.  I ran out of cash and am saving the rest of the shopping until I can write some more checks. 

I think that I am finished with cleaning today.  maybe if I give the kids more attention they will act better.  I do not want to be an ogre.  one of the actresses in my friend's play quit this week.  she is in the middle of a psychotic break.  she actually believes that she wrote the script and that my friend stole it from her.  so much for my props and costumes.  I worked on these since the end of the summer.  I schlepped home a kid's plastic pool from the garbage, went shopping for long john's and bathing trunks, made a slip not tutu, sewed blonde curls to a swin cap, spent hours in the purim shop, and searched for dresses.  I also made cake, cookies, quiche and a steak from sponges.  oh well.......

Friday, March 17, 2017

Almost Pesach 2017

it is 5:00 p.m. in the holy city of safed.  candle lighting for Shabbat is in a little while.  the kids are away for Shabbat.  another family wedding took them out of town last night.  my daughter-in-law's sister gets married on the 27th.  I am feeling the pressure of making the sheva brachot already.  I have been watching the kids a lot lately, as family members go searching for outfits.

I have two possibilities, myself.  the dress I wore for my son's wedding eight years ago, and another black skirt and top.  I can fit into both but my stomach is enormous.  I have been food binging the last couple of days.  I have been working on pesach cleaning , costumes for the play and taking care of the kids.  I still haven't put away the Purim stuff.  I ate a half kilo of m&ms.  I was supposed to serve them at the after the wedding meal.  oh well......

purim came and went pretty fast.  there was such a build up before hand.  I had a terrific headache the night of the adult purim party and could not enjoy myself.  in fact, I had the headache all Shabbat.  the weather here changed to cold and rainy again.  my head was throbbing for days.  I drank sangria for relief but it didn't really do any good.

I spent a lot of time on my oompa lumpa costume and it felt like it was all in vain.  I even sprayed a small wig green but I didn't have any satisfaction from the look.  I rushed to town after the megillah reading and the grandkids were up here at the synagogue for a family party.  they were bummed out that I wasn't there and I also was bummed out at my old city party.  li felt all alone.  everyone was families and couples.

the meal and house party was great.  everyone was in a great mood.  the music was blasting so you couldn't have a conversation.  everyone was dancing,  everyone kept going into my costume room and reappearing as something else.  there was tons of spray paint and everyone, except myself, ended up with green hair.  the Sephardi grandpa sprayed his beard green, too.  there was tons of food and sweets.  Johnny walker black and jack daniels made the rounds.  I stuck to my cheap vodka and fresh squeezed orange juice.

I brought a friend from synagogue back to the house.  it was nice having another English speaker around.  we stopped at a neighbor to give a food package and I had a cup of pomegranate wine.  it quieted my headache a tad.  the kids got this enormous package of sweets.  this year I didn't make chocolates.  I bought a small box of hamentashen form the supermarket, too.

I polished my silver spoon collection, assorted chanukiahs and other judaica.  I will try to do both my silver and brass candlesticks on Saturday night.  I cleaned out all of my kitchen closets and drawers and did the freezer and fridge.  I even bought chicken and beef for pesach.  I also bought chopped turkey and chicken fillets for the after wedding meal.  I plan on making meatballs and a stir fry.  instead of kugels I am going to make a bulgur pilaf.   I would like to do the meatballs next week and freeze them.

my daughter-in-law will have to do the salads and desserts.  I am clean out of ideas and money.  I bought the paper goods and drinks and plastic cutlery.  I made a couple of bridal centerpieces and 50 chocolate bride and grooms and 40 sackets of white and black jelly beans.  I would love to get the room set up in advance.  it all comes down to the kids' schedules.  aas for me, I am trying do get as much pesach cleaning out of the way when I am alone.

I have some leftover turkey black-eyed pea stew and fish fillets for dinner.  I already ate a ton today.  I am planning on going on a cabbage soup routine all next week.  I hope I can shed a few pounds before the wedding.  famous last words.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Almost Purim 2017

it is 11:00 a.m. in the holy city of safed.  I got up at 6:00 a.m. and ran to the kitchen to make a pitcher of sangria.  I bought a cheap bottle of rosé and picked the last of the oranges off the tree.  I didn't have the strength to run to the store to buy some brandy so I poured the last few tablespoons of the tequila bottle.  I added a cup of fresh squeezed lemon juice and some organic brown sugar.  tomorrow night is the annual purim party at the mystic mountain brewery.

this year the skit is "Willy Wonker And The Cholent Factory'.  I like to dress up according to their theme.  last year I was a dead rock star and a bearded transvestite the year before that.  this year I am going as a female umpa lumpa from the original gene wilder movie.  I checked online to find a look.  I couldn't find a green wig in town so I spray painted a short platinum page boy wig.  it didn't take to all of the wig so I have a greenish platinum wig.  I didn't bother buying suspenders.  I made a pair from some wide white elastic I found hanging around.  I covered it with striped ribbon and glued brown buttons on it. I did buy a pair of brown and yellow striped stockings.  I don't own a pair of pants so I am wearing a long white skirt.

I spent a fortune on purim, props, art supplies and bridal decorations for the upcoming bridal celebration dinner.  I have been multi tasking lately.  I am truly grateful to my psychic sister and my biological sister for helping me out financially lately.  it has been wonderful to feel like a person again without fretting about money.  I shopped for Purim food with a free mind.  I bought some meat and chicken fillets but decided to save it for Pesach.  I bought a package of frozen stuffed meat pastilles and a package of potato filled cigarettes.  I also bought a small package of hamentashen.  no baking for me this year!.

I am having the clan over for Purim.  I wasn't planning on cooking this year.  I really wanted to be low key but the kids wanted to come here.  since they moved out they appreciate me more and we all get along better with some distance between us.  I have had the grandkids here a lot lately.  I have let them make Purim decorations and pictures galore.  the kitchen looks quite decorative.  I am in the process of straightening up the house.  i can't explain how dirty and messy it was.  I finally cleared up the living room and washed the floor.  I still had loads of bags left over from the kids' move.

I finally got it all sorted out.  some things were stored here and others thrown out.  I even managed to take some clothes over to the second hand charity store.  I know the house will be thoroughly trashed on Purim so I won't go too crazy.  I cooked a couple of dishes for Purim this morning.  I made a pot of beef meatballs with a  'middle easterny' tomato sauce.  I also made a pot of super, spicy turkey stew with black eyed peas and chickpeas.  I read somewhere that it is a traditional Purim dish.

my daughter-in-law invited me for dinner so I don't need to cook.  I will just make some salmon for lunch.  on Sunday I will broil up some barbecue chicken wings, make a green salad and a cole slaw.  I was going to make a chicken stir-fry but I think I will not have time.  I will probably be hung over from the party and I won't sleep at all.  I have to hear the megilla in the morning and get the table set up.  luckily, I found paper plates that I had bought for my son's birthday.  they were color themed after his favorite soccer team.  the daughter-in-law passed on them.  oh well, their loss, and my gain.

I have soft drinks and my son will provide the wine.  I spent a small fortune at the open air market buying jelly beans and little m&m lookalike candies.  I made 25 little cellophane packets of the 'm&m's' and placed them in a huge wine glass to make a  centerpiece for Purim.   each bag has a Purim sticker.  I will take an additional 25 packets to use as cholent beans at the Willie Wonker party.  we will probably end up on stage and I will throw the beans into the audience.  I made 40 little bridal packets with the white and black jelly beans.  each cellophane bag has a different bridal sticker. I searched high and low for black and for white jelly beans.  I didn't make Purim themed chocolates this year.   I made over 300 for the engagement party.  I have 50 chocolate bride and groom ones in the freezer.  I have my yellow and blue plates, and two types of clown napkins to match.  I bought clown lollies to give to the small children.

I bought canned fruit cocktail for dessert.  I may throw some apple slices into the mix.  the Sephardi grandmother is making pitas, cake, couscous and meat.  I have it easy.  happy Purim and a good Shabbat!!