19 Oct, 2017

Jewish Encounters in a Non-Jewish Land

October 19th, 2017|Tags: , |

  Today I'm happy to share my essay "Jewish Encounters in a Non-Jewish Land," published recently in the brand-spanking new Sasson Magazine. Please head on over [...]

22 May, 2017

Book Companion Post: Filling in the Blanks on Family History

May 22nd, 2017|Tags: , , , |

These past few days I have been able to do what I love best in my writing life: rummage around in family history. I've been rewriting an essay that O [...]

11 Apr, 2017

Book Companion Post – Chapter: Haselnusstorte (or: A Flourless Hazelnut Torte for Passover)

April 11th, 2017|Tags: , , , |

  "The next time we visited her, a hazelnut torte would be waiting on her kitchen counter, glazed in glistening dark chocolate." Story and recipe on page 166 of Jumping [...]

6 Apr, 2017

In Defense of the Small Seder

April 6th, 2017|Tags: , |

  "So how many people are you having?" - For sure I am going to be asked this question today when I chat about Seder preparations with my coworkers. Read [...]

10 Mar, 2017

Purim Costumes from Home Depot

March 10th, 2017|Tags: , , |

The mermaid and the astronaut mentioned in the story... This Sunday is the Jewish holiday of Purim. I used to dread the arrival of Purim because that meant I [...]

4 Dec, 2016

8 Days of Chanukah Emails

December 4th, 2016|Tags: , |

  I've got a new little project--not that I'm lacking for work or busy-ness, but holidays happen if you want them to or not. So this year, since Chanukah is [...]

20 Oct, 2016

A Visit to the Warsaw Jewish Cemetery

October 20th, 2016|Tags: , , |

The Warsaw Jewish Cemetery is a forest of its own. (Photo by Rivka Schiller) I have a certain fascination for cemeteries, and when my friend Rivka Schiller recently shared her [...]

25 Jan, 2016

Happy Tu Bishvat!

January 25th, 2016|Tags: , , |

Today is the Jewish festival of Tu Bishvat, the New Year of the Trees, and in honor of this celebration that seems out of place here, my article How My Kids [...]

22 Sep, 2015

Kol Nidre

September 22nd, 2015|Tags: , |

Women praying at the Wailing WallJerusalem, August 2015 Yom Kippur begins tonight with the Kol Nidre service. My essay on Kol Nidre was published two years ago, and it still captures, probably [...]

2 Apr, 2015

Happy Passover with my German Grandmother’s Hazelnut Torte

April 2nd, 2015|Tags: , , , , |

I'm in the midst of getting ready for Passover, but I wanted to share that my grandmother's signature Torte made it to Tablet Magazine. Story and recipe here.

8 Mar, 2015

Sunday Sentence

March 8th, 2015|Tags: , , , , |

Another Sunday in which I participate in the Sunday Sentence Project(#SundaySentence on Twitter): "I held my breath at the miracle of my mother forgetting herself." from Sheymes, A Family Album [...]

24 Feb, 2015

Interview with Sarah Wildman

February 24th, 2015|Tags: , , , |

In December I interviewed Sarah Wildman about her book Paper Love. This was a particular privilege because Paper Love is my kind of story: figuring out what happened in a [...]

17 Dec, 2014

Happy Chanukah!

December 17th, 2014|Tags: , , |

Yesterday was the first night of Chanukah, quite appropriate for my family's annual visit to Chicago's Christkindlmarket downtown, thanks to Chabad Lubavitch's giant Menorah. At the Christkindlmarket we stock up [...]

23 Nov, 2014

Sunday Sentence

November 23rd, 2014|Tags: , , , |

Another Sunday in which I participate in the Sunday Sentence Project (#SundaySentence on Twitter): "There is no collection that documents a person's life from moment of birth to moment of death. [...]

3 Oct, 2014

In Awe of Kol Nidre

October 3rd, 2014|Tags: , |

Stained glass window front at Chicago Loop Synagogue My essay on Kol Nidre was published a year ago, and on the eve of another Yom Kippur it is as relevant [...]

24 Apr, 2014

Joy is…

April 24th, 2014|Tags: , , |

Detail of our Passover Seder table before the festivities begin ...singing the traditional silly folk songs with my kids at the end of the Passover Seder. We have our own [...]

16 Mar, 2014

Happy Purim!

March 16th, 2014|Tags: , |

Today is the holiday of Purim when Jews make merry to celebrate the deliverance of the Jewish community in Persia in the 5th century B.C.E. by Queen Esther and her [...]

27 Nov, 2013

Happy Chanukah! Happy Thanksgiving!

November 27th, 2013|Tags: , |

  Walking through the preschool building at my son's school always lifts my spirits because I will come across funny and cute creations like these Menurkeys (= Menorah Turkey), created, in this [...]

13 Sep, 2013

My Ode to Kol Nidre…

September 13th, 2013|Tags: , |

Chicago Loop Synagogue Window Detail ...was published yesterday in Tablet Magazine: Kol Nidre Showed Me... Meanwhile I am looking forward Yom Kippur and am basking, just a little bit, in [...]

14 Dec, 2012

At the Christkindlmarket

December 14th, 2012|Tags: , , , |

This is why we go to the Christkindlmarket in downtown Chicago every year - to visit the giant Menorah during Chanukah, and to enjoy German delicacies from our past (My [...]

13 Dec, 2012

12/12/12 – A Quiet Day

December 13th, 2012|Tags: , , , |

Inspired by Xanthe Berkeley's challenge on Shuttersisters to create a time capsule of 12/12/12, I decided to capture this ordinary day so that sometime in the future, maybe 20 years from [...]

11 Dec, 2012

A Menorah in Karlsruhe, Germany

December 11th, 2012|Tags: , , , |

Chanukah Menorah at the Christkindlmarkt in Karlsruhe, Germany, December 8, 2012 - photo courtesy of Juergen Schlund Today I am extra thrilled to host one of my best longtime and [...]

9 Nov, 2012

In Memory of Kristallnacht

November 9th, 2012|Tags: , , , |

The "Temple of the Israelite Cultural Community" in Reichenberg, burned down during Kristallnacht November 9-10 marks the anniversary of Kristallnacht, when in 1938 in all the territories controlled by the [...]

25 Sep, 2012

My Six-Word Jewish Memoir

September 25th, 2012|Tags: , , |

I've shared Debbie Lekousis' Star of David origami work before, but I love it so much I thought I'd share it again as it is sort of fitting for today. [...]

16 Sep, 2012

My Favorite Book for Rosh Hashana

September 16th, 2012|Tags: , , , |

Eric Kimmel's Gershon's Monster is my favorite book for Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, which we celebrate tonight. I wish my kids were still small enough to read picture [...]

27 Jul, 2012

In Memory of Munich

July 27th, 2012|Tags: , |

As the Olympic Games open in London, I dedicate my blog post today to the 40th anniversary of the massacre of eleven Israeli athletes by Palestinian terrorists at the Olympic Games [...]

24 May, 2012

Reading: The Hare with Amber Eyes by Edmund de Waal

May 24th, 2012|Tags: , , , , |

Edmund de Waals' memoir The Hare with Amber Eyes was my favorite memoir of 2011, and yet I am still trying to figure out why because it defies so many of the [...]

5 May, 2012

Origami Star of David

May 5th, 2012|Tags: , |

Since it is the Sabbath today, I am taking the day off and leaving you with this stunning origami Star of David by my colleague and accomplished artist Debbie Lekousis. [...]

12 Apr, 2012

Photo Essay: Shanghai’s Former Jewish Ghetto

April 12th, 2012|Tags: , , , |

Old meets new in this view of Hongkou rooftops sharing the sky with the top of the Shanghai World Financial Center, built across the Huang Pu River in Pudong, which [...]

28 Dec, 2011

A Menorah and a Wreath

December 28th, 2011|Tags: , , , |

Today is the last day of Chanukah, so it's high time I share this picture with you, taken at the Pritzker Military Library last week. The library overlooks Michigan Avenue [...]

27 Dec, 2011

Photo Essay: Christkindlmarket Chicago

December 27th, 2011|Tags: , , , , |

Even though I don't celebrate Christmas, a visit to the Christkindlmarket downtown Chicago is obligatory - mainly because I can find favorite German delicacies there that I remember from my [...]

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