Now that the Passover dishes, knives, pots, haggadahs, cookbooks, sippy cups and baby bottles have been packed up and securely sealed until next year (unless we all end up in Jerusalem) I finally have some time to reflect.
First of all, I’d like to give a much needed honorable menschen to my DH; he really helped me out this year. Not only does he work his tushie off to support his 3 girls and 1 boy, he comes home after that and cooks up a storm. And he’s got some incredible recipes up those sleeves, let me tell you. Secondly, to my friends and my daughter’s friends. We all took turns hosting the playgroup; all homes were kept somewhat cleaner using this plan.
The first night we organized a Communal Passover Seder for singles and families at our shul. The Rabbi and his family led the Passover Seder while 51 adults participated. The food was delicious and plentiful (thank you Supersol) and the waiters kept our plates full. The second night (yes, we actually have two nights of all of this eating and drinking) we hosted 5 adults and 4 kids. The kids participated and read from their individual Haggadahs they made in school. That was the most memorable, and worth every penny of their tuition.
This year, the second day of Passover ended as Shabbat began (in other words, we had to have all our meals prepared for Shabbos in advance). I was without my twitter, blogs, and facebook for almost 5 days, wow. After sundown on Shabbos, the in-between days, or Chol-HaMoed started. Chol-HaMoed actually translates to”weekdays of the festival”. A lot of families travel to amusement parks during this time, so from Sunday to Tuesday, people were on the move. We drove to our friends in Highland Park, New Jersey, Tuesday afternoon. They were brave enough to host our family of 5, along with their family of 5. That is an entire separate blog post. So, we ate our last Matzos and potato starch cakes (I think I gained at least 10 lbs. this Passover) and were on our way back home.
Before you could say Challah, our kitchen was transformed from the chometz free zone to the chometz zone. A favorite custom of mine (since I got married and learned about it) is “Schlissel Challah”. In other words, take a key and bake it into a challah, which is a Segulah (sign, symbol, or treasure that can lead to something which is desired). On Torah.org. I found this user friendly statement most appropriate for explanatory purposes:
At this time of year, right after Pesach, we ask G-d to recall how He opened the gates of sustenance for the entire nation of Israel in the days of Joshua after Pesach. By impressing a key into our challah, we are asking that we too should have the key we need to open the gates of sustenance properly placed and turned for us. The “schlissel,” which is the Yiddish word for “key,” should unlock the gates of sustenance for us just as it was for the nation of Israel after their first Pesach in the promised land.
Isn’t that a nice connection to the key in the challah? I thought so. I hope that this key will open the once known routine of napping and sleeping (my kids are so off their schedules). I’m also off my schedule, as I have not posted, tweeted, or facebooked in a very long time.
As we all have a renewed appreciation for baking with flour, I checked out an ad looking at me from Cafemom (social networking site for moms) and clicked on the link to Betty Crocker. Besides the Make A Wish contest currently in process, there is a Betty Crocker Kitchen Blog on their site as well. When I saw the word “Kosher” and “Guest Blogger” linked together, I immediately wanted to learn more about Jill Colella Bloomfield . You will love what she has to suggest for picky eaters.