Wednesday, August 29, 2007

And Now A Word from Our Sponsor

"....and last but not least, here's helpful hint # 99:

When you wear eyeglasses that have protective coating on the plastic lenses, never, NEVER open the oven door and stick your head closer to remove some hot food. That GUST of hot air has a way of damaging that eyeglass coating and eventually you see these very fine spider lines on the lenses of your glasses.

It happened to my husband and his optician explained the fine "spider veins" to him.

My husband warned me.

Wouldn't you know it! I put my head in the oven...once...another time...and another time.

My eyeglasses are new, and maybe only a month old. They are already damaged...showing very fine lines...perhaps like this 45-soon-to-be-46-year-old skin of mine!
By the way, my eyeglasses were ordered online by a Winnipeg optician; the sample frames were sent to me in Toronto. The frames came from Denmark, and the sunglass lenses came from Quebec. I'm wearing an international pair of eyeglasses.
See this link. My glasses are the exact ones shown in this post -- Model 1641, collection 5132.
I guess if I keep sticking my head in a hot oven, I will have to begin "reading between the LINES!"

Thursday, August 23, 2007


After my last post, I went grocery shopping.

I have a tendency to go late at night, within the last hour that the supermarket is open, and I like to "close up the place." ie. be one of the last, if not THE LAST, customer. Maybe it's a subconscious power thing:

"You can't close up the store until I'm all done... You can't start to count what's in your till until you've finished with me."

There are two supermarkets nearby with a large Kosher selection of just about everything. I often go first to one, and then to the other. On Thursday nights, I luck out because one of them closes at 10 p.m. but the other closes at 11 p.m. Often I see the same people I saw shop in the first store then shop in the second me.

Tonight I went to the first store, which closes at 10 p.m. and then I headed to the second store, which closes at 10 p.m. But I had about a 20-minute window to get what I needed at the second store, so off I rushed.

I was NOT the last customer, but it was about 10:07 p.m. when I was at the checkout.

As I left the store, there were two employees just outside the front doors. I said good night to them, figuring they would lock the doors after the last customer left and then go back inside to deal with the closing procedures.

I was already at my car nearby when I heard in a booming voice: "WE'RE CLOSED!!!"

I didn't look back, but figured that someone thought they might just manage to get in and attempted to do so, only to be met by the "door police." It then hit me in a funny way that these store employees were actually serving as bouncers.

And then I realized that most stores, primarily Jewish ones where customers like to bargain, sweet=talk, insist, DEMAND, rant, and KNOW BEST, could stand to use bouncers like these men. Guards. De-motivators.

I can picture a couple of burly, musclemen, with stubble on their faces, staring down a little old Jewish lady with a shopping cart.

"No, the store is closed... No, you can't just check one more thing... No, the manager has already left... No, you can't park yourself here till morning; come back at 9:30 when the store re-opens."

Before going grocery shopping, I was in another department store, looking for a gift. Over the loudspeaker, I heard, "The time is 8:45; Winners will be closing in 15 minutes. .." "The time is 8:55. Winners will be closing in 5 minutes. Kindly bring all your purchases to the cash.... "The time is 9:00. Customer service is closed. Please bring all purchases to the cash. The store will re-open at 9:30 tomorrow."

Now, wouldn't you think that after listening to that series of announcements over a 15-minute time span that I would get the hint and get my butt over to a cashier with the gift I'd found to buy?

Nah...I'm at the far side of the store, but scanning over the aisles to see if any cash registers are free.

No such luck. There are lineups at each cashier's counter.

So I continue to browse in the housewares.

"I'm's 9:00. This section is closed. The store is closing, " is what a store clerk greets me with.

So you think I'd take a hint then?

Nah... "I know, but there are lineups at the cash anyway," I explain -- and continue to browse. I see that I am not the only customer in that section seeking some last minute purchases. I even think that to myself, "Hey, if you [Winners]throw me out, you might lose out on some customer cash. Maybe I'll find something else to buy in the last minute..."

I guess that all stores where I shop might also stand to use the services of a good bouncer to...put me in place...OUTSIDE THE STORE!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

From the Sidelines, aka Some Observations....

I'm still here on the periphery of the blogging world, checking in with many or most of the blogs on my blogroll. I might be negligent about doing so equally or regularly, and I apologize for that.

Even if I don't visit often -- and post even less -- I still have a soft spot for you all, and admittedly some bloggers more than others.

Danny never ceases to amaze me with his entertainment knowledge and his journey through family history and family photos.
Neil, the funny rabbi, is always so eclectic and enlightened in his writing.
Neil, the funny non-rabbi, continually makes me smile with his wonderful wacky world and words. HE IS ADORED BY MANY, IT SEEMS.
Oriyenta brings her daughter's life -- and her own life -- to life for us.
Old Old Lady of the Hills captures spectacular photos and wonderful stories of the natural world around her...both in the Hollywood Hills and outside them.
Fancy Maven is anxious...and funny...and pretty blunt.
Shalom from Jerusalem is simply a wonderful and warm and down-to-earth person who welcomes everyone into her blog, as if it were her home.
{Cruisin' Mom...we miss you!}

Last week I ran into a professor, who was also a fairly well-known blogger in the Jewish blogging world. I asked if he's still partaking in blogs and in the conversation he said that he thought blogging, especially in the Jewish blogosphere, is not as popular as it was a couple of years ago. He thinks it peaked after a couple of years and then slowly, people pulled out.

I believe it's true, although there are always some new people jumping aboard to replace the old people.

The blog is not as "essential" to my life as it truly was between late 2004 and early 2006. I don't spend as much time or effort on my own blog. In Hebrew, I'd say that the "cheshek"/desire isn't there; in fact, it's been lost.

But I can't pull myself away completely. The blog -- mine and reading others -- has continually been a source of inspiration, emotional strength, interest, etc. I can't just go "cold turkey."

If you've been blogging for more than a year already, do you feel strengthened by your blog? Do you think your blog has developed into "a crutch" of sorts? ( mine had been one for quite some time. I'm pleased to say it no longer is.) Has your blog evolved in any way?

When I think of something to blog about, it's usually lately about my weaknesses, my fears, my flaws...and I wonder why I feel I need to share those with you. Do I have to air my laundry, just so you can gather up that laundry, fold it for me and put it in its place?

Maybe I've outgrown my blog in some ways--the dimished posts and visitors prove that--but I certainly haven't outgrown yours. So do keep writing, and I'll continue to read, and comment if moved enough.

Thursday, August 16, 2007


My middle child, Adina, celebrates her tenth birthday today. Her Hebrew birthday was on Shabbos Nachamu.

Everyone always says truthfully, "Where did the years fly?"

As I wrote her a birthday card message today, I reread my words. They sounded more appropriate for her birthday card for when she'd turn 12, bat mitzvah age. I talked about her father and I being proud of the young lady that she's proving to be, and I thought that even though "10" is not really yet equated with a "young lady," it was certainly appropriate for Adina.

She is feisty, she is loving, she is creative, she is sensitive. Simply, she is adored.

"Adina": noble, gentle, delicate.

A perfect name for an "almost-perfect"...young lady!

Happy Birthday, Sweetheart!

(Adina is my kind of girl; she read the birthday card I gave her BEFORE she opened her present!)

Monday, August 13, 2007

Keeping a Low Profile

Are you taking attendance? Have I been missing blog class?

I'm still around, just without any blog posts due to several reasons:

1. I'm now back in the workforce (since mid last week), have no access to personal use of the computer during the daytime and am pretty wiped by the time I get home (I've forgotten what that's like, with commuting and dealing with the family afterwards). Am learning many new things on the job and find it a bit overwhelming in these early days. Thus "brain drain" takes hold of me. Thus...
2. I can't think of too much to write about
3. My dad just came home on Friday after another 10-day "sojourn" in the hospital -- 10 days in July, 10 days in August. Needless to say, I was busy with that.
4. Dealing with the kids and their camp pick-up and drop-off schedules have kept me busy
5. Editing shul bulletins for the High Holidays
6. Volunteering and helping with suggestions for children's/YA book selections for the upcoming Toronto Jewish Book Fair
7. A couple of weddings to attend

So I guess you can see that I'm pretty busy with...LIFE.

But when the muse hits -- hopefully soon enough -- I'll be typing away and hitting PUBLISH !

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Leave the Porch Light Burning

Just as I've always had a "thing" for the Ner Tamid (Eternal Light found in every synagogue ), I've always had a "thing" for a porch light. Not just any porch light, really but one that's on -- a beacon in the dark. If it has a yellow bulb or yellow glass encasing the bulb, even better.
I've always felt that the yellow bulb is warmer and more welcoming.
I know my neighborhood rather well, thanks to being a dog owner who has to become a dog walker. As I pass each home, I determine if they appear to be welcoming. Sadly enough, no.
So many of the homes in the area do not even leave on outside lights, much less yellow-coated lights. They appear to be cold-looking, giving a "leave me alone and stay away from me" attitude with the lack of illumination.
There are homes that might not have a porch light on, but they have statuesque coach lights lining their walkway, beckoning the way to the front door with their bright, white light. Other houses have some feeble lighting lining their bushes and driveways, relying on the light of the sun to light up the way.
Other homes have glaring spotlights poking up from beneath bushes and greenery enhancing their front yards. Sometimes these spotlights are colorful with red, green or yellow hints of color to guide visitors to the front door.
Conservation of energy -- is that what keeps people from keeping their outside lights on? Or is it simply that if they don't illuminate the exterior of their homes, nobody will bother them after dark?