Ki Yachol Nuchal!

New olah; mom and wife. In small ways, every day, trying to rectify the error in judgement of my zaydies, the meraglim. "See these big grapes? We can make really big wine!"

Archive for the ‘Neve Daniel’ Category

Seeking a colorful life among friends in the Holy Land.

Posted by rutimizrachi on 08/03/2009

Yom rishon, 12 Adar 5769.

The sign says “Please stop at the gate and say hello to the guard.”

There are a lot of reasons to love Neve Daniel.  There are a lot of reasons to love the LNO (one of the local online chat lists).  And there are a lot of reasons to love Purim.

Here’s what it looks like when all three get delightfully together.

Does anyone know of a costume store or Gemach in the Jerusalem area?

Does anyone have native American squaw moccasins size 8/40 women?

Anyone have a man’s necklace we can borrow for Purim? And/or a devil’s
pitchfork? Red trousers for a 13 year old boy?

Does anyone have a pirate patch we could borrow please?

I need a cane for Purim — does anyone have one to loan?
Oh — will whoever borrowed the pirates and Indian costumes last year please let me know who you are — I did not write it down, and though I do not need them, several people have asked to use them this year. May we all have a great PURIM!!!

Does anyone have a revolver or gun I can borrow?

Oops!  Forgot the most important word:
Does anyone have a TOY revolver or gun I can borrow for Purim???

I’m still looking for a chickie or duck costume for a 1 year old.
Anyone have one to lend?

Anybody have Chinese or Japanese costume materials for an eight year old girl to borrow?     

Don’t forget that today in the Ulam Semachot from 4pm is Ipur-Purim.

There will be make-up artists to make up the kids’ faces, and other activities such as costume and gragger making.

Does anyone have a turtle/tortoise costume that I can borrow for this
Wednesday? (Size 10/12)

Anybody have a Minnie Mouse costume for an eight year old? Or maybe pieces of a costume?
Mickey Mouse ears?

Anyone have a size 4/5 or a size 6/7 lion costume (or a 6/7 monkey costume)
that we could borrow?

 looking to borrow fireman or cowboy costume for an almost 5 year old boy

Yonatan wants to dress up as a chassid or Matisyahu.
Have you got square glasses or a jacket/coat thing that will look like a bekeshe??

Does anyone have a costume that we can borrow for Purim…about 12 month size?  Nothing hazardous or too uncomfortable.  If anyone has a lion or bear costume, that would be ideal.  Alternatively, does anyone have ideas for a simple home-made baby costume?

Last minute costume request – nothing in my shoe collection seems to fit the classic, conservative look of early 1900’s England, go figure.

If anyone has a size (US) 7-8 pair of semi-heeled, closed dressy shoes (not sandals)  that I could borrow for the week it would be much appreciated.

I’ll take any color – gray, black, red, white – somewhat desperate here.

It is my prayer that everyone found what he or she needed to complete these no doubt interesting and colorful ensembles.  And that I may be blessed to watch this delightful costume parade every year, for many years.

Gemach:  “store” offering free or very low-cost items or services, usually for special occasions or purposes
Ulam Semachot:  “Simcha Hall”; community meeting hall
Ipur:  make-up

Chassid:  in this case, a Jew dressed in traditional Eastern European garb, consisting of a long coat, hat, and side curls
Mattisyahu:  important character in Jewish history
Bekeshe:  long black coat worn by various sects of Jews of European descent

Posted in LNO, Neve Daniel, Purim | 6 Comments »

How do you know when you’re home?

Posted by rutimizrachi on 27/01/2009

Yom revi’i, 3 Shevat 5769.

It started with a loaf of warm challah wrapped in parchment paper, delivered with an even warmer smile, and a love note.

 To [your dear family],

With you in our prayers that [your son] should return safely very soon…

It ended with a prayer that Hashem will create a peaceful and speedy settlement of our Land.

More than the delicious challah and the love note, I think it was the love and empathy in Shani’s eyes that said to me “Welcome to Israel, where we are better because you are here, and where we understand to the core of our being what you are going through.”

The next week, a man I only know in passing came to my door.  “This is for the chayal (the soldier),” he said, “from the Yishuv.”  From the whole community.  Inside, a soft, warm hat, scarf and set of gloves were waiting to wrap a soldier in love, inside the hell of Gaza.  And another note, written to the dear soldier directly.   

“Yasher koach on the courage and sacrifice for the sake of the Nation.  We are very proud of you, and pray for peace for all the soldiers.  We wish you success and health.  Return in peace!  Strength and courage!  The families of Neve Daniel.”

The note matters to our son even more than the presents.

Throughout the three tense weeks, we were reminded every day that we were not alone.  On a particularly nerve-wracking day, I had a pleasant encounter with new young friends at the makolet.

One young mother turned her attention briefly from her son in his stroller.  “How is your son?  Have you heard anything?” 

From a short distance, her husband said, “Oh, don’t worry about her, ” he nodded in my direction.  “She was an army chick.”

“An ‘army chick’?” I responded.  “Yeah — a thousand years ago, when the expression ‘army chick’ was actually ‘hip’.”  Eight people standing in line shared the laugh with us.  Somehow, this little exchange made me feel strong and cheerful again.  Because I wasn’t alone.  Because they all were paying attention to the same news I was, and cared enough not to let me have the blues.

Dvora and I shared our worries for our sons over tea and Tehillim.   We agreed to keep each other positive, and to avoid dwelling on the depressing or terrifying aspects of the situation.  It was comforting to know that she was thinking the same things about her precious son that I was thinking about mine.

Throughout the weeks and days, individuals would call to ask how we were doing, was there any news, could they help us in any way…

When the cease fire was declared, relief spread throughout the yishuv.  On Shabbat, there were gatherings at various houses, welcoming home soldiers.  The soldiers were happy to speak, to tell over to friends and family the funny experiences, the miracles.

There was a shalom zachor, welcoming a new baby boy into the community.  And time was taken by the father and grandfather to speak of the sacrifices of the soldiers.

There was a bar mitzvah.  The proud father of the young man took some time from his family’s celebration to praise and thank the soldiers.

I think that this is some of what the solidarity of community is all about. 

Thank you, Shani and Keren and Karyn and Hillel and Dvora and Marcia and Romi and Josh and Miriam and Marc and Yarden and Stella and Sara and Shoshi and Merav …  Thank you, Neve Daniel.  It’s good to be home.  May we share good news, smachot, and happy endings.

As requested by someone I love, a short glossary:
Yishuv:  outlying community; “settlement”
Yasher koach:  Way to go!
Makolet:  corner grocery store
Army chick:  heh-heh-heh
Tehillim: Psalms
Smachot:  joyful times, often celebrations

Posted in chayalim, community, Neve Daniel | 7 Comments »

Winter Colors, Created By Kids

Posted by rutimizrachi on 09/12/2008

Yom revi’i, 13 Kislev 5769.

May I share with you the beauty that is wrought by the hands of kids with paint?  Hardened city-dwellers, don’t be afraid.  This is not the graffiti we have come to know and love tolerate, with deep sighs.  This is what happens when kids in the Bnei Akiva movement in Israel “show their pride” by decorating their snif (branch) for their particular shevet (tribe — in this case, a group of kids of the same age).  Each shevet receives a special name when the kids reach 14 years of age — and they can connect with each other by that name throughout their lives.  (The “old boy” network starts very young in Israel.)  The yearly renovations happen with little or no supervision.  Part of Bnei Akiva’s genius is that the big kids guide the little kids; and the grownups go to work, where they belong. 

When I was much younger, I was privileged to work with little kids, to try to help them to improve their reading.  The kids taught me great things about the relationship between their use of color and their self-value, and ultimately their ability to believe they could become better people.

The kids of Bnei Akiva, Snif Neve Daniel, give me a lot of hope in the future of our people.

Posted in Bnei Akiva, Jewish kids, Neve Daniel | Leave a Comment »

Nineteen degrees is nice in Neve Daniel. I’m just saying…

Posted by rutimizrachi on 24/11/2008

Yom sheni, 26 Cheshvan 5769.

Today is one of those days that reminds me of some of the physical aspects I love about living here in Israel, especially on “my mountain.”  (Even though there are no Cascades or Rockies here, Neve Daniel — at 997 meters above sea-level — is the highest-elevation community in the country.)

At a crisp 66.2 degrees Farenheit, it is a good day to have a bite of breakfast outside. 

Dear Baltimore Homies (who have not yet decided that it’s time to be moving to warmer climes):

Is that YOUR house going up in my back yard?  Looking forward to seeing your name beside the door.

 Time to sit outside and learn a little Mesillat Yesharim with my best friend.  Join us for coffee and a learning seder soon?

Posted in aliyah, Israel, Mesillat Yesharim, Neve Daniel | 7 Comments »

Shana Tova u’Metuka, l’Kulam!

Posted by rutimizrachi on 28/09/2008

Yom rishon, 28 Elul 5768.    

May the cooling, gentle Shabbat rain be a siman that Hashem has so much bracha for the year 5769 that He is giving us an early taste of overflowing blessings to come.  May this year be a year of simcha, spiritual growth, success, and good health for Klal Yisrael, here in this Holiest of Lands, and everywhere in His world.


To our new friends —

We have now lived here for nearly a year. If we were to make a slogan about the Neve Daniel kehilla, based upon our experiences here, it would be “Always Ready to Help a Jew.”

People to whom we give rides say that Neve Daniel residents are famous for offering rides more frequently than any other community.

Whether you need a date, a beer (not for your date), an Ace bandage or a mini-trampoline — you can usually receive offers for several within minutes of posting to one of the on-line lists.

And if you need to know the wind speed, where to get a Canadian passport, or how to say “chicken pox” in Tamil or Sinhala, you can get the answer from one of the residents.

We love this town!  

May each and every resident have a 5769 filled with simcha, bracha, spiritual growth, and success — in good health! (Next year, bs”d, we’ll be able to say this b’Ivrit.)

With love, from Ruti, Avi, Aryeh and Dani

Posted in 5769, aliyah, Neve Daniel, Rosh Hashana | 5 Comments »