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In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Nov. 30, 2005 / 28 Mar-Cheshvan, 5766

A nice normal day

By Yaffa Ganz

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Email this article | It started out as a regular, quiet, nothing-much-to-do kind of day. It was deliciously cool after a long hot spell. There were even rain clouds floating across the sky, a rarity in Israel's summer months. It was a perfect time to sit down and work on an article which was due.

Unfortunately, my computer developed a quirk (don't we all at times?) and my trusty computer expert announced that he'd have to take it away to work on it. Too bad, I thought, but OK, it's still a nice day, with even less to do. I wondered if it wouldn't even be a bit dull, but not to complain. Even boredom can be a good thing once in a while. It relaxes the brain.

I called a daughter-in-law to ask what she was doing. Nothing special, she said (an unusual situation for her). She was considering going for a leisurely trip to the shuk (open-air bazaar). She enjoys seeing the rich produce of the Land of Israel on colorful display in the stalls. In the midst of our conversation, her phone rang call-waiting. "That's strange," she commented. "It's from the kid's school. Hang on a minute while I take the call." I waited patiently, albeit a bit anxiously, until she returned to our connection. She sounded distressed.

"Gershon fell off a chair looking out the window at the rain (a sudden shower had surprised Jerusalem). He got a bad bump on his head and is throwing up. I'm going to get him." Half an hour later she was on her way to the emergency room. So much for the beginning of a nice, quiet, slightly dull day.

It reminded me once again that a quiet, dull, normal, nothing-special day is the greatest of blessings - something we should pray for hour by hour. And so I composed a prayer of Thanksgiving for Nice Normal Days, may they multiply. Most of the items I am thankful for are included, in either a general or a specific way, in our daily prayers, but a personal, itemized version is always in order! And so……

First of all, thank You, G-d, for turning Gershon's fall into just another minor childhood mishap with no lasting damage and nothing worse than a boring day, spent home in bed.

Thank You for letting everyone wake up this morning, yesterday morning, and all the mornings before yesterday. And for allowing everyone to get out of bed in one piece. And for making it to the school bus on time.

Thank You for helping me find my glasses (the reader may insert "keys, medicine, shopping list, wallet, receipt, or whatever else you happened to misplace) which disappeared so mysteriously yesterday. I can't imagine who could possibly have put them in the medicine cabinet!

Thank You for blowing those clouds (or that sand storm - depending on the season and your location) in a different direction when I hung out four machine-loads of clean laundry yesterday.

I am grateful that Shlomo's rash was only heat rash and not German measles. What with the family wedding on Thursday, this was definitely not a convenient week for German measles.

I am so glad that the tooth Yanki knocked out during a ball game was only a baby tooth, and not one of the nice, new permanent teeth You gave him.

Thank you for helping me remember not to forget the doctor's appointment I had to wait two months to get just as I was about to turn over and sleep another half hour.

Thank You for helping me avoid that car which ran a red light this evening. No other comment is necessary!

I am grateful that I only had fifty shekel in my wallet yesterday when I went to the post office thinking I had 500 to pay some bills. But since the post office was closed anyway, it really didn't make any difference, and not having any spare cash on me, I was spared the temptation of buying a "few things" I didn't really need.

Thanks ever so much for bringing that debilitating two-week chamsin (a desert born Israeli heat spell) to an end. I don't think I could have survived another day of 95 degree heat!

An enormous, can't-be-big enough Thank You for bringing our preemie grandson up to par with his contemporaries. He crawls beautifully, sits, laughs, plays and is growing by leaps and bounds. Baruch Hashem, bli ayin harah!

Thank You for letting our kids get a night's sleep once in a while without being woken up by their kids three-four times a night. They get pretty tired!

Thank You for the dozens of pomegranates on the tree in our yard. They made for a rich Rosh Hashana harvest. Each one was a juicy miracle, full of blessing and Vitamin C.

Thank You for a refrigerator full of food, enough linen for guests, the sun, the fresh air and my olive tree. I love my olive tree.

Thank You for my family and friends. I love them too — each and every irreplaceable one.

Thank You for the daily privilege of living in the Land of Israel.

Thank You for being able to pay the monthly bills — or at least most of them, most of the time — on time. And thank you for the overdraft privileges which allow us to carry over the others until a more propitious time.

Heartfelt thanks for the laughter and smiles which grace our days, and for all the "minor" problems and troubles which come our way. Life cannot exist without smiles and laughter, nor does any life exist without minor difficulties or a few tears. As long as they remain minor and we keep smiling (in-between the tears), and as long as we can manage, solve or simply tolerate the snags, we must give thanks that they are not worse.

Last of all, but definitely a "first", thank You for the gift of Life and for having placed me among those especially chosen to try and hallow it.

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JWR contributor Yaffa Ganz is the award-winning author of more than forty titles including, the two-volume teen history "Sand and Stars --- A Jewish Journey Through Time" and the popular Savta Simcha Series.


We recommend you pick up "A Different Dimension", the author's latest.

From contemplating the complexities of candlesticks to pondering the power of computers -- with every imaginable topic in between -- this book is a delight for the mind and the soul; a fresh, original look at life.

Comment by clicking here.

© 2005, Yaffa Ganz