celebrating multi-cultural holidays

All I Want for Christmas Is…Chanukah?

IMG_7794Where is my Jewish grandmother? That’s the problem: my grandmother wasn’t Jewish and neither am I. Neither is my husband, for that matter.

So you might ask why I am looking for a Jewish grandmother. Because my kids are Jewish – at least I think they are as they were born to our wonderful Jewish surrogate. Quite honestly I’ve not broached the subject with a Rabbi so I don’t know technically if they are. But, according to Jewish law, children born to a Jewish woman are Jewish. The technicality doesn’t matter to me really. I’ll address that some other day.

So, on the cusp of the upcoming holidays, Christmas and Chanukah, I am ruminating about what I find important in my life and the lives of my children, and why. I am thinking about the fact that I was raised in an entirely different religion. And, that this one act: the act of having my twins via a Jewish surrogate has turned our world upside down in more ways than I can count and forced me to question everything about my life. [Read More…]

Fond Memories and Holiday Traditions

Chanukah - ChristmasDoesn’t it seem like we celebrate Halloween and then all of a sudden it’s the New Year?! Where does the time go? Trying to stay ahead of the game this year and get most of the holiday shopping, at least for relatives, completed well beforehand…at least that’s the hope.

As we near the Christmas/Hanukkah holiday, I often reminisce about what my Christmas tradition was prior to getting married. I am Jewish, but grew up celebrating Hanukkah and Christmas, Passover and Easter. Mind you, Christmas and Easter were solely celebrated for Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny. My mother loves Christmas and all the cooking and decorating that goes along with that. My more religious Jewish friends never understood why we celebrated Christmas.

I love decorating the Christmas tree, aligning the ornaments in the correct positions to achieve maximum glow from the colored lights. There is an art to it. Reaching into the tree near the trunk to place ornaments providing depth and greater reflections of light. It’s fun, and I’m excited to carry on this particular tradition with The Littlest E who is now 6 and can be trusted to not topple over the tree. [Read More…]

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