Recently, I read an article about how Chanukah has become “merchandised” and “Christmasized.” The blogger, Nina Badzin, describes Chanukah as a relatively to-the-point holiday where we eat potato pancakes and donuts, give presents, light the menorah, sing beautiful songs, and say some special prayers. In her article she expresses how she cherishes Chanukah. And she observes with some displeasure, that these days, folks (mostly stores and businesses) tend to over-sensationalize the holiday with extra decorations and fussy products, as if to “compete” with Christmas.
I agree with Nina. I don’t like competition. I – as a Jewish person and as a women — like to be myself, do my own thing, what I know and believe to be correct, and do it all as best as I can.
You see, I am a Middle Child. There’s my confession. Continue reading
Holidays are an exciting time. Many look forward to getting together with family and friends and celebrating the winter holidays, whether they are Chanukah or Christmas. People want to be happy all the time, but during the holidays, they expect to be happy. During the holidays, many of us feel entitled to be happy. After all, “everyone” is happy, right? (remember we said that to our parents: “Everyone has that toy, everyone has those shoes….” Remember the answer our parents gave us?)
Lots of scholars have written about what constitutes happiness. In fact, Dennis Prager, renowned radio personality devotes an entire show to that elusive feeling called “happiness.” He calls it “Happiness Hour.” Some people are forever chasing happiness, and others find it right within their self. They are satisfied with their lot. No expectations. Continue reading