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Chanukah

The Secrets to a Stress-Free Holiday: 5 Tips for Survival from Author Madisyn Taylor

in Potpourri by

For most of us, when we think about the holiday season it evokes a feeling of excitement, anticipation, peacefulness, beauty and more. As the holidays get closer, we often begin to fall into our old patterns that have plagued us for our adult lives. The feelings of needing to buy gifts for everybody, having a ready supply of hostess gifts, dealing with family members, hosting the perfect party and the ever mounting list of expectations. When overwhelm sets in, it’s time to take a breath and find a remedy for these problems. In your own life, you can make a list of what stressors you are reacting to. On a piece of paper on the left hand side write down everything…

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3 Books That Would Make Great Movies for Hanukkah

in Fiction by

One of my favorite parts of the holiday season is watching the multitude of Christmas movies we’ve spent our lives with. I love A Charlie Brown Christmas, I cry like a baby at the end of It’s a Wonderful Life, and each year sparks a new debate over which is the best version of A Christmas Carol. For me, holiday movies are as much a part of the season as eggnog and lights on the tree. The problem, however, is that I have a son who’s Jewish. And while he celebrates both holidays, I always feel bad that there are so few quality movies that help him celebrate Hanukkah. Sure, there’s Eight Crazy Nights, Full-Court Miracle and even The Hebrew…

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Donuts for Hanukkah? The Festival of Lights is more than latkes

in Non-Fiction by

The donuts-for-Chanukah thing caught me by surprise, and now, having read Michael Krondl’s The Donut: History, Recipes, and More from Boston to Berlin, I understand why. When I was growing up, nobody in my Ashkenazi Jewish family ever mentioned Chanukah donuts. Potato latkes, yes—fried in oil to recall the time when the victorious Maccabees rededicated the Temple in Jerusalem in 164 BCE; according to the story, the meager supply of oil there lasted for eight days, until more could be procured. But donuts for Chanukah? Nobody in my family knew from that. Then, some years ago, I noticed people talking about sufganiyot, donuts fried in oil—for Chanukah! I wondered how I had missed this tradition. But Krondl’s book explains that…

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