Why You Should Consider Starting Your Family Earlier Than You’re Planning

Embrace pregnancy, embrace glamour and posterity (dailymail.co.uk). This is part four of my series on fertility challenges within the American Jewish community that started in the now shuttered altFem magazine. It is also the second part of my deeper dive into options available to younger Jews (high school and college students, in particular), who may … Continue reading

5 Ways to Help Jews on Fertility Journeys

Fertility can be complicated, but the community can help (healthimpactnews.com).   Jewish continuity is the idee fixe of American Jewish communal discussions. We talk about it. All. The. Time. We debate whether the best route forward is investing in Jewish camp, Jewish day school, or Birthright trips. Interestingly, these discussions typically don’t touch upon Jewish fertility. Yet, they should, because it is … Continue reading

Does “Downton Abbey” Have a Jewish Problem?

Lady Rose seems to specialize in dating men who raise her family’s hackles. Men who represent the edge of polite society in some sense. Last season, it was a charming African-American jazz singer, and this week, it was Downton Abbey’s first Jewish character, Atticus Aldridge. Aldridge’s name sounds quintessentially British and not at all Jewish (being … Continue reading

The Insanity of Taking Selfies at Funerals

Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Religion teaches us to expect certain things from life and death and offers us customs for both. Yet, sometimes people innovate, and not always for the better. Case in point: funeral selfies. According to Clive Thompson, the author of the new book Smarter Than You Think: How Technology Is … Continue reading

Rosh Hashanah Resolution: A Wish for the Community

For 5774, I resolve to be better about going to bed early and always getting enough sleep. When I’m well rested, everything seems to fall into place. But when I’m underslept, I’m less patient and less likely to be the person – and parent – I aspire to be. I’d also like to offer a … Continue reading

Repairing the World Means Helping People

Joining PJ Library is one of the best things we’ve done as parents. Every month a new Jewish book arrives at our home and Lila learns about a Jewish holiday or concept through a story that’s meaningful to her. Several PJ Library books–like the Hanukkah counting book and the “Dayenu”-centric Passover book–have become diaper bag must-haves, genuine … Continue reading

The Jewess and the Frum Christian

Testing Out the Intermarriage Waters It didn’t sting this time. Watching Meet the Parents, that is. I watched part of it with my husband and father-in-law after Thanksgiving dinner, and it’s actually a pretty funny movie. I first saw it in a Texas theater 12 years ago. A new college graduate, I had recently moved … Continue reading

I Have Sinned

Fifteen Parenting Sins I Committed Last Year Ever since elementary school, I’ve hated collective punishment. I remember my teacher explained that she was punishing our whole class to incentivize us to police one another’s behavior in the future. I thought that was nuts. I was mad at my badly behaved classmate, although I didn’t tell … Continue reading

Judging Ourselves as Parents

The Jewish New Year is a time for judgment and reflection, not celebration. We gather to take stock and consider all of the ways we have fallen short, sinned and transgressed. We beat our chests, and each pounding represents a sin that either we — or some other member of the community — committed over … Continue reading

Quitting Coffee

The end of summer is nigh. Labor Day beckons. In the secular world, that’s the signal to squeeze in a few more beach days. For Jews, this is the cue that the High Holidays are right around the corner. And for me, it was always the reminder to start tapering down my caffeine intake. You … Continue reading