The Value of Time

To realize the value of one year, ask a student who failed a grade. To realize the value of one month, ask a mother who gave birth to a premature baby. To realize the value of one week, ask the editor of a weekly newspaper. To realize the value of one hour, ask the lovers who are waiting to meet. To realize the value of one minute, ask a person who missed the train. To realize the value of one second, ask a person who just avoided an accident. To realize the value of one millisecond, ask the person who won a silver medal in the Olympics. Treasure every moment that you have…! - Anonymous

Post Pesach Paunch

By Shirley Norman So Pesach is over and you're feeling bloated and uncomfortable. All that refined white flour has clogged your system and you’re downright constipated. Never fear! There are ways of managing this distressing problem: First and foremost my formidable Breakfast-Cleanser: Take a half a cup of High Fibre Bran. Add a half a cup of yoghurt with a high probiotic count e.g. Activia. Mix in 3 to 4 prunes which have been soaked overnight in boiling water. Use the prune juice too! Sprinkle with a tablespoon of crushed linseeds. (They must be crushed to release omega 3 fats.) Eat this breakfast daily and it’s sure to do the trick. Additional measures to combat constipation include drink

Personal Freedom

By Dorianne Weil ‘Dr D’ Over Pesach we have reflected and celebrated our freedom. Freedom from bondage and slavery. Freedom from oppression and control. Have you ever considered that at times we inadvertently become slaves to our own thoughts, feelings, self imposed limitations, assumptions and harsh internal directives? As women, we are reared to be nurtures and care givers. What a privilege! How magnificent! But is there a price? The answer is categorically ‘no’. There is reward, not cost – provided you do not loose yourself, your psyche and your own needs in the process! Saying ‘yes’, on a continual basis but feeling ‘no’ inside, results in using energy that turns inwards rather than reac

Be Beautiful

She is said to be one of the most exquisitely beautiful women of all times. In fact her name was ‘Princess’ and her beauty was obviously important. She was Sarah, foremother of our nation! But can you be attractive and not vain; striking, yet still pure and holy? And anyway, didn't King Solomon say: “Charm is deceptive and beauty is naught; a G-d-fearing woman is the one to be praised.” So should we take time and energy to be beautiful? Beauty is like a zero. When that’s ALL you care about or think about, it’s worth little or nothing. Charm, too, is deceptive when all you care for is the impression you make on others. Another zero. But ‘zeros’ transform to big numbers when you put a meaningf

My Safe Waters

By Sarah Newstead I went to the Mikvah for the first time 18 months ago as a bride and since then I have truly appreciated my monthly immersion as it renews and reignites that excitement from the first time I went. The Mikvahgives me time to really reflect on myself, my relationship with my husband and Hashem. Through the physical preparation, I not only feel spoiled but that my body becomes a spiritual vessel through which I transcend from the outside, often chaotic, world I live in back to the essence of life and love. Having a long bath, getting into a warm gown and saying prayers before immersion centers my soul, calms my mind and reconnects me again to my marriage and spirituality. The

Why Dairy?

(Each year we count the days leading up to the Receiving of the Torah - - and to partaking in an array of mouth-watering dairy foods. While dairy foods are highlighted on Shavuot, dairy products deserve out attention all year round! ) We are all well aware that children are notorious for not eating well and being fussy (especially between the ages of one and five years old). Dairy is an essential part of a balanced diet as it contains many important nutrients including protein, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, zinc and B vitamins and luckily most children enjoy dairy products! The most important benefits of dairy for children are: bone health and teeth health, hydration (milk not o

How to Manage Feelings

By Lorian Phillips Many of us grew up in an age where our parents emphasized being polite, putting others’ feelings first, and being obedient without questioning. While this is important for a civilized society to function, it also has many drawbacks. Kids brought up in this way may lack skills in conflict management and not trust their feelings as valid. For boys this often comes out in not allowing themselves to cry or be vulnerable as it is seen as a weakness (‘cowboys don’t cry’). Today we live in a very different age and we focus on listening to children’s views and giving them a lot of airtime. However, many kids still don’t know how to manage their feelings and deal adequately with di

A Story

The inmates were playing cards, an activity strictly forbidden in prison. Sooner or later the guards would see the forbidden game and the prisoners would be punished. Indeed the guards were told of the game and came to inspect the cell, but they found nothing. As soon as the guards left, the inmates continued their game. The guards came again to inspect the cell and the inmates in it, but again they found nothing and left. Once again the cards appeared and the game continued. “How had the inmates managed to hide their cards?” wondered Reb Mendel, an inmate watching this scene unfold time and time again. The prisoners explained: “We are professional pickpocket-ers. As soon as the guard entere

What My Nutritionist Said I Need

By Sara Esther Crispe So I finally gave in and saw a nutritionist. I had been doing everything right (or so I thought), and the scale just wouldn’t move. The answer? Remarkably simple. Remarkably obvious. Remarkably overlooked. I wasn’t drinking enough water. She explained that just as our bodies are comprised mainly of water, water is essential in both weight loss and a healthy body. The water flushes out the toxins and waste, and without drinking enough, we are robbing our bodies of what they need the most. I thought about this, and realized how true this is in so many areas of our lives. It is not coincidental that just like our bodies are made up of mainly water, so too is the world. And

Peace in the Home

By Etta Goldman Shalom Bayit occurs when a couple enjoys a relationship based on kindness, gentleness, mutual respect, compassion, and understanding – all of which contribute to a loving relationship. “OK that’s the theory, but how do you get there?” is a question couples often ask. First and foremost, you need to accept the fact that marriage is not about ME. It is about WE. It is not just about having MY needs met, it is about what is good for US. Each partner needs to take responsibility for co-creating a “safe space” between them. A space in which each can openly share their innermost feelings - hopes and aspirations, fears and vulnerabilities. A space without fear of judgment or harsh c

Intimate Relations: Good or Bad?

Excerpt from an article by Tzvi Freeman There is nothing more holy in this world, nothing more precious to its Creator, than the union of a man and a woman. It is, after all, the fountain of life. What could be more precious than life -- other than the source from which life comes? And it is holy -- because the first, pristine creation of a human being was as male and female as a single whole. That is the way we exist in G-d's mind. And so, none of us can achieve wholeness until we regain that original oneness in both body and soul. Precious things are kept in sealed boxes. Roses hide behind the thorns. There are clothes you wear to work or play, but there are also treasures in your wardrobe

A Bride – 30 Years After My Wedding

By Marian Shain When I got married going to the mikvah was not something that girls did. I never knew anything about the mikvah. Then, 30 years after my wedding, my world changed. I was invited through a friend to the opening of the new mikvah at the Great Park Shul. Having never been in a mikvah I never knew what to expect. I was amazed! I began to ask questions about going to the mikvah. After wonderful, inspiring meetings to learn more, I was ready to start preparing to go to the mikvah. The day arrived. Wendy, the mikvah attendant, greeted me on arrival and showed me in. Everything I could have possibly needed was available. I prepared in my own time making sure I did everything that was

At the Door: A Reflection

By Goldie Simpson Rivka was a young mother. Like you and me she cared for her young children. Like you and me she sought a productive and meaningful life. Unlike you and me she chose to live in India, far from family and friends, far from anything modern and fashionable and Jewish. Why? So that she might help another Jew. But then she was murdered - she her husband and her family save but one small boy. It was deliberate murder targeting all that she and her husband stood for. I cannot comprehend how such a thing could happen. What I do know is that the world-wide response to this tragedy has been a resolve to do more goodness and kindness, and to reach out to others with genuine love and ca

A Story

On a bitter cold night in the city of Mezritch, she made her way to the mikvah. But, alas, upon her arrival, she was turned away by the heartless woman on duty at the mikvah for she had no money to pay the nominal entrance fee. With a heavy heart she made her way home. Suddenly, a carriage drew up alongside her. Four royal women sat inside. “Why are you on the road alone at this hour?” they asked. Weeping, she related how she had been turned away from the mikvah. “How lucky!” they exclaimed. “We are on the way to the mikvah ourselves. Come with us and we will be happy to pay for you as well.” Trembling with gratitude at this unexpected reversal, the woman accepted their kind offer and climbe

What is Love?

By Slovie Jungreis-Wolff ‘Ahava’, the Hebrew word for ‘love’, comes from the word ‘hav’ which means to give. Love grows when I invest in my relationship by giving. We forget that one little gesture shows our spouse that we do not take them for granted. It is our way of saying daily ‘I love you and appreciate you. You are important to me’. A recent study found that small acts of kindness boost marital satisfaction and that people who put their spouse’s needs first felt happier themselves. Do not let a day go by without doing something nice for your spouse. It does not have to be big or expensive. A text expressing appreciation, preparing a favorite snack, warming up the car, taking over child

A Relationship with Me

By Janet Goldblatt Time and again it has struck me: the importance of a good relationship with the self. Through my experience over the past ten years in working with people in groups, schools and community centres and mostly on myself, I have come to realise that if you do not have a decent loving relationship with yourself you cannot expect to have one with someone else. Often the very thing we resist in others is a deep routed part of ourselves. But when we are able to forgive ourselves and others, take responsibility for who we are and ultimately find a connection to ourselves, we may quicker be able to move forward with our relationships. How we see ourselves colours how we see the worl

Fasting Tips

Adapted from "Jewish Life... Organized" • Up your intake of water for at least one day before the fast. Drink 8-10 cups the day before. • If you suffer from caffeine withdrawal, start cutting down 1 to 2 weeks in advance. Start by cutting your caffeine intake by half and then the last week, cut it out altogether. To prevent a caffeine headache, drink or eat something with caffeine during the pre-fast meal. The adverse side of drinking caffeine is that caffeine is a diuretic, and water loss will thus occur, increasing your body’s need for water. • I had always been told to eat noodles and grapes before a fast. Why? Becausecomplex carbs holds the water that is in your body, preventing dehy

G-d Needs ME?

In a small Russian town, the kids sat around their teacher days before the High Holidays. ‘Do you know what Rosh Hashanah is?’ asked the teacher to his students, ‘The night of Rosh Hashanah is ‘Karanatzia Nacht’ (‘Coronation Night’). Do you know whom we will be coronating?” One child responded in jest: “Nicholas”. (This was when Nicholas still served as the Russian czar). Said the teacher: “Nicholas? He was coronated years ago, why do we need to coronate him again? Besides, he?! He is not a real king.....Tonight, my dear children, we coronate G-d; we place a crown on G-d… And do you know who places the crown? Yankel the Tailor, Berel the Shoemaker, Zalman the water-carrier, Yossel the painte

Quality is Not Enough

There are some who pride themselves on living separate lives claiming that they make up for it with quality time on the weekends or big vacations. Don’t think that working long hours or throwing yourself into extracurricular activities and rarely seeing your spouse will endear you to him/her more. In fact, it often leads couples to live separate lives where they learn to coexist as roommates… While you don’t need to be attached at the hip, and quantity should not be a substitute for quality, regular meaningful connection is crucial to nurturing your marriage. From an article by Shlomo Slatkin posted here. So many believe that love is a romance; that it is something into which you fall, sudde

Women and Light

It was the early 1970's, the height of the Feminist Movement. Women struggled for equality and fought for an end to discrimination and sexism. Many sought out a meaningful response to a tumultuous era. It was at this very time that a worldwide campaign was initiated to encourage women to light Shabbat candles, placing women at the fore-front of a powerful and courageous mission of impacting the world by spreading light. For the Shabbat candles represent the light within and the power we each have to share light and warmth and joy, impacting our own lives and the lives of others in a very real way. In fact, the word ‘Neshek’ – the acronym for ‘Neirot Shabbat Kodesh’ is also the Hebrew word fo

© 2016 by Goldie Simpson

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