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Aliya Rivka

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September 17th, 2006

05:25 pm: RH & YK

I still don't have a place to go for the high holidays, *sigh*. My local O shul has standing room only, and with a two mile walk and a bad back, I'm not looking forward to that being my bubble of Jewish interaction on a day spent in a goyishe household.

I finally gave in and did the all too forward offence of asking all my friends straight out if they could host me. We'll see.


Don't get my wrong, I love my grandmother and I'm very thankful for the time I get to spend with her and the opportunity to help her in her time of need. I just need my own Jewish place in order to continue on with my life as well.

My friends are helping me look into some live-in-nanny options (nice wealthy family with eight kids may be interested) while I continue to work on getting scholarships to attend a seminary. I'm also considering asking my family to hire me for pay for elder care so that I can use the money to rent my own apartment (hopefully in a more substancial Jewish community). I would like that option because it would allow me to avoid feeling like I'm abandoning my grandmother in her time of need while still allowing me to live my own life.

We'll see how it all pans out.

September 11th, 2006

07:34 am: gefilte-fishy goodness

Shabbos went well B"H. The gefilte fish, which I baked for the first time, was super super good. I like this honey recepe. Well, I like pretty much anything with honey; I have such a sweet tooth. When my auntie stopped by on Saturday, she even tried some and really liked it.

"E" enjoyed the Chinese food and kosher coldcuts and really appreciated that I got parve ranch dressing for her. She's allergic to dairy and often has to miss out on certain foods.

We walked to my shul, and this was the first time I got to show my shul to one of my friends; it was really exciting. Over the summer, I got to visit lots of friends on Shabbos, so this was my first time at shul in awhile. Three people said, "Where have you been?" which made me feel cared for. I'm glad my friend accompanied me on my return because I'm a bit shy and it made it a lot easier not to have to return alone.

I... cannot make chullent. LoL. That's what I've decided. It's hot and very tasty, but it's not chullent; it's stew. Beef stew with kishke and beans. NOt chullent. Oh well. Tasty and hot is more important.

September 8th, 2006

08:28 am: fooooooooooood

Okay, I think maybe, just maybe, I'm making a little too much food for three people.

Gefilte Fish
Sliced Avocados and Home Grown Tomatoes
Green Salad
Chinese Food (Erev Shabbos Special - four egg rolls, two entrees w/ rice, fried rice, soup)
Roast Chicken
Roast Potatoes
Cold Cuts

Meh. Better too much food than too little, eh? Baruch HaShem.

September 4th, 2006

11:58 pm: yahoo!

Hooray! "E" is coming over for Shabbos IM"H!

I'm so glad. I was kinda stressed about not having a Shabbos break when I'll be spending the whole weak doing elder care on my own with no back-up.

09:18 am: day two

Okay, it's day two. Five days left until Shabbos. Should I look for a place to go? Should I invite a friend to spend it with me (with all the kashrut problems that entails)? Think, think, think...

Okay, I think I'll invite "E" over for Shabbat at my place, and go from there. If she can come, my plans are set, if she can't, I'll figure something else out.

OH! I just remembered. I'm on duty for elder care this weekend (and all of next week). Okay, I hope "E" can come, otherwise this is going to be a really tough weekend. Nana's gotten a bit more confused lately, and it gets emotionally tiring for me sometimes. I really need the day to clear my head and refresh my energy.

September 3rd, 2006

10:57 am: Israel

Hooray! "L" finally got to Israel! She just sent me an email with her new contact info today.

She'd been having such tension with her parents about it. They got very frightened when she started becoming observant and insisted that she see a deprogrammer - convinced she'd joined a cult. B"H she kept cool, agreed to see the professional, and compromised with her parents (one semester in Israel instead of one year) and now things seem to have calmed down.

I'm so excited for her to be in Israel; I wish I could join her. Honestly, it's the first thing I want to do after finishing my conversion. The people at Birthright told me they'd send me now, but I don't feel right about accepting their assistance when I'm not Jewish yet. I don't think it's fair to the people who donate. And anyway, if I go after my conversion maybe I can just stay, finish school at Neve or something, and see if I'm up to making aliyah.

Ahhhh, hope. If "L" can reconcile with her parents and even get them to support her going to Israel, I can finish with this red-tape and move forward with my life too B"H.

September 1st, 2006

03:52 pm: Shabbat

I find Shabbat to be the hardest time for me. When I'm at a friend's house, it's wonderful, but when I'm home, and there is no Shabbat (just me practicing) I feel disconnected and alone. I can never seem to decide whether or not to put forth the effort to make a nice "Shabbat" for myself. I tend to spend Fridays feeling conflicted and somewhat down in the dumps.

On the up side, I'm almost done filling out the very lengthy and personal application form for the Beit Din my teacher has connected me with. I'm very anxious that this all go through well. I've been working on this for such a very long time, and I want to be who I am already; doesn't that sound strange?

Also, in addition to my emotional concerns, Nana's having a bad day today, and I just don't feel right about leaving her alone in the house to run my pre-Shabbat errands. I long for the day when I can make Shabbat as a Jew, but I know I should be thankful for where I am now in my life. Kol b'Yado.

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