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Mama Deb
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Mama Deb [userpic]
Rosh HaShanah

It went very well.

1. My seat. For reasons of both practicality and fund-raising, synagogues sell seats during the High Holidays. This is done to ensure that one gets a seat, that it is reserved for you. Otherwise, it's possible you won't get a place to sit down. My seat is in a section that faces the mechtiza, the partition between the men's and women's sides. It's fifteen seats - three rows of five. My seat? Middle seat of the middle row. And everyone sitting around me is a friend of mine, from the Rebbitzen (who works with autistic children and who loved Elizabeth Moon's The Speed of Darkness, which I gave her) to this summer's bat mitzvah girl, who is One of Us - she reads fantasy novels and writes fanfiction. And she's there with her mother and her grandmother - three generations of women. Another mother-daughter pair sit behind me. I went to the daughter's wedding. It's ... just nice. Warm. Comforting, almost. And I know they'll all be watching me like hawks this Yom Kippur, too.

2. My guests. We had three meals with guests - one pure shul, one family plus a friend and one...well. Family and chosen family is the best I can describe it. We had two first-time guests the first night, and they were smart and funny and got all the weird jokes. Our friend the second night is studying the same field that employs my brother, and they had things to talk about. And I knew Michael wouldn't care that my family drove or my mom wore pants. And lunch yesterday. Ten people - eight adults counting the other bat mitzvah girl of the summer, plus a six year old and a three month old. My brother-in-law ate meat. The six year old said my casserole was "yummy, yummy", and the picky twelve old who hates chicken ate mine. And we had a nurse, a physical therapist and two college professors at the table. We had no problems with conversation.

3. My rabbi, who gave two inspirational speeches. I'm thinking seriously of doing something he suggested and actually A. learning the parashah before Friday night and B. posting what comes to mind from it. It can't hurt, right?

4. Very little politics and economics and news. YAY!


At one of the many holiday feasts my parents hosted with friends and their kids (2 families who had kids the same age as my brothers), my mom had the kids in the dinette and the adults in the dining room.

She set a platter of chicken in the center of the kids table, but asked each kid which piece they wanted. One mom was passing by and said not to bother asking her son since he doesn't eat chicken.

My mom asked anyway. The kid asked for white meat.

Apparently, the mother only served dark meat which the kid didn't like so he never ate chicken at home...

"Jim never has a second cup at home."

*snorts* Now I'm gonna have to pull out Airplane...

I take it black...like my men.

Chaya Raizel has a tradition of this. She has allergies to nitrates but likes spicy foods.

This was NOT spicy but there was a lot of flavor. Honestly, I love her mother, but since we've developed a thing of always eating my food (either at my house or taking it to theirs), it's been, well, better. On the other hand, her son has taken over a lot of the cooking, and we haven't tried that yet.

#3. I'd say go for it! It sounds like an interesting thing to do...

Okay, then. :)

I'm glad you had a good start to the new year.

I think I'd go nuts in the middle of a section; I used to be in the middle of the second row and moved at the first opportunity -- every year, the yakkers steadily stripped away all of my good holiday cheer. Now I've got a location I prefer (quieter, more room, can fidget without worrying about bothering others) and while there are some disadvantages (near the door), I am most grateful for it.

One of the many, many, many good things about my synagogue is the quiet daavening. People *don't* yak, and even newcomers get that. Also, there is plenty of room for people to come and go between the rows. Instead, some of those ladies daaven with great kavanah, which spreads to the rest of us.

I'm so glad you had a good holiday. I spent mine getting to know a new community, and it was lovely.

On the second day our rabbi gave a good drash leading up to the idea of Heksher Tzedek. http://hekhshertzedek.org/