7 Quick Takes – 20


— 1 —

Twice in a row, I’m not even started with these quick takes till Friday afternoon! So let me start with a cheerful Shabbat Shalom! It was a full week, and still, I’m not sure how to come up with seven quick takes. I really didn’t post much this past week, but I posted a quasi review of Jen Fulwiler’s book, which I liked, but at the same time I was shaking my head a lot while reading. It is worth reading, really. I mean the book, not necessarily my 700+ word babbling about it.

— 2 —

My iPod’s mail center went crazy. It suddenly decided to index every mail I received in the last six years and mark them unread.

Now how weird is that? Anyway, trying to clean up the mess reminded me of some funny, loving, caring, wise emails that I have received over the years. Among them was the last email I got from my grandpa, and it made me smile. Thank you, iOS7 for sometimes being a pain in the @$$.

— 3 —

I am so excited! I subscribed to National Geographic on my iPod/iPad, and in addition to the year’s worth of issues, I got an example issue… one that I actually owned in print, but misplaced and wanted to use it for a homeschool lesson. A friend once told me that when she was in college (in a non-English speaking country) majoring in English, there was a second/third semeseter language mastery course that was built around National Geographic articles.  Since my kids are mostly speaking English as their second or third or even fourth language, I thought that would be a brilliant idea for next year to build their vocabulary. So I’m already collecting articles to read together.

— 4 —

Tonight (Saturday) Eli has his first recital! We are super excited. Afterwards Kevin and I will take him out to dinner. He picked a Russian/Ukrainian/Polish restaurant. We have never been there, but apparently it is popular among the local Russians/Ukrainians/Poles.

— 5 —

Wow. The recital was awesome. Yes, I am this slow with this post! Now it’s Sunday morning, and after my third trip to the ENT I’m just sitting at a local coffee chain’s shop, drinking water and eating their fabulous Israeli salad for breakfast. But back to the recital.

It was about 90 minutes, and it featured three students. We had no idea what to expect, because Eli kept it a secret, but it turned out to be pretty awesome. It was made into a real entertaining and great show. Eli got quite a bit of stage time, because as the only one of the three students playing the piano he was accompanying not only himself, but the other two as well! One of the songs Eli sang and one of the solo pieces he played were “exam” pieces by a composition major at the music academy in Jerusalem. They were both pretty difficult pieces, and the composer said Eli played them without any glitches! We are very proud of him.

At the end of the recital the three of them sang a medley from this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, finishing with an awesome cover of Rise Like A Phoenix. It was really great. All three of them did really well.

— 6 —

Just in case anyone missed my last three posts, this year’s Eurovision Song Contest was won by one Conchita Wurst representing Austria.

Of course people are butthurt over a drag queen winning (like they were butt hurt over Dana International, a transgender singer from Israel winning in 1998). They claim she only won because she has a beard and people were only voting for her because it was weird. Well, it’s true, the show and the shock factor are all part of Eurovision. Just remember Lordi winning for Finland in 2006.  Plus if shock factor would be enough to win, Dana would have made it to the final again in 2011, but she didn’t.

Also people claim they can’t decide what Conchita is. They can click on all the how awful, how do I explain it to my kids, where are the European values mouth frothing posts, but they can’t click on the one that simply explains: Conchita is a she. When not in drag, Tom Neuwirth is a he. He is a cute he, and a beautiful she. But here is the thing. Matisyahu shaved his beard off and it worked for him. I think it would work for Conchita as well!

That said, I had had doubts about her in the ESC. I remember seeing her singing My Heart Will Go On for an Austrian talent show, and it was obvious she could sing… but yes, I had to change my mind after first hearing the song for ESC. My very conservative brother was just listening to the show with his back to the TV, working on his computer. When this song came on, he was telling me, “Finally something I really like”. Then we told him to look at the TV. 😀

Also, I read somewhere that 60% of the people who actually vote for the Eurovision finals are gay males. It could be right. And yes, we tend to vote for “our own kind” if they perform equally well as someone else.

— 7 —

If Matt W@lsh is a correct representation of being a Christian, well, then I’d rather be anything but Christian. He is a prime example of religion and identity built on hate and holier-than-thou attitudes. And his fans… do they need so much validation that they are so much better and oh so persecuted to keep reading his absolutely negative blog that looks down on everyone who is not Matt W@lsh? (Yes, I would not type his name. First of all, it’s to the level of a non-appropriate word. Second, I don’t want to give him potential SEO and advertisement benefits.)

There are awesome Christian bloggers out there. Somehow they don’t need to reflect on every current event with hate. Somehow they can be more about building other Christians up without tearing other groups of people down. Not all of them are pre-LGBT, but they know how to treat the topic and the people with love and respect.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

7 Quick Takes – The First in 2013!


7 quick takes sm1 Your 7 Quick Takes Toolkit!

  1. I can’t believe how well this year has began as far as reading goes! I started to read Torn: Rescuing the Gospel from the Gays-vs.-Christians Debateby Justin Lee last year, I was halfway through the book as the new year began and finished that evening. While I’m not a Christian, I can see why Lee is so bothered by gays vs. Christians mentality: the gospel is getting lost in the hate. It is a good read for gays and straight folks as well, especially if they are Christians. You can agree or disagree, but the points Justin Lee makes cannot be ignored without some thinking.I am also halfway through Elie Wiesel’s book about Rashi, one of the greatest Torah and Talmud scholars. At the same time I’m reading C.S. Lewis’ “The Problem of Pain.” “The Simple Way” by St. Teresa of Lisieux and Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods” are also waiting to be read. This was made possible by my new glasses. I am really glad I listened to
  2. All this reading was made possible by my new glasses. I am really glad I listened to Kevin when he suggested I get at least two pairs of multifocals and a pair for reading only. That, and Jill reminding me that Kindle has an app for Android devices. And she and Hope Anne always mentioning free things that are available to read. Yep. They created a monster. A monster that can be fed with Amazon Gift Certificates that bring instant gratification in the Kindle shop. Mentioning that, Hope Anne is giving away one of those for her international readers, and a Starbucks and an iTunes one and some other goodies for her US readers. Yes, I know I mentioned that before, but free reading/coffee/music is awesome. All it takes is a FB share or blog shout and a comment (or only a comment!) and you can win this:
    Wow, I can’t believe the tangents in this quick take!
  3. Oxford shirts. I’m not sure I should expand on this quick take, but if I ever had a fan club they’d have Oxford shirts as the fan club shirts. 😀 What else? Of course for that I should start writing. At this point I’m too lazy to do it, but maybe in the future. I have three awesome opening and three awesome closing sentences for three novels. I only need the cca. 300 pages between them. Times three.
  4. I have Peter Pan on DVD now. I mean the production that we just saw over Chanukah. Still a riot! Unfortunately Israel is now Skaat free zone, as he is abroad, so I have to make up by watching the DVD. In the car. See below.
  5. Today I’m going to Eilat! My grandma invited me for a visit, so I’m taking Eli, who needs some homeschooling attention. Kevin is going to take us, stay for Saturday and drive home early Sunday so he can get to work on time. I hope Eilat will have some nice weather for our visit. It would be nice to have a few degrees more and some sunshine.
  6. Justin apparently mastered microwaving turkey bacon to perfection. I’m so proud. He already has college survival skills: can make Ramen and bacon. On a more serious note, I am very happy that the boys are getting better in the kitchen and other household skills. Except ironing. They are pretty good at laundry, too! I find it rather funny when they are talking about different detergents and fabric softeners! The longest time is spent in the fabric softener aisle, because the kids love to smell all the different scents.
  7. Shabbat Shalom! I’ll have my grandma’s cholent with stuffed goose neck tonight! I am also going to have a gazillion types of sandwiches the coming week. Some are pretty traditional. Some are less so, like the nut and raisin sandwich my grandma makes for tea.

Today’s 7 Quick Takes are hosted by Moxie Wife. Thank you.



From an email from Eli:
“I’m gluten for punishment.”
I’ve never been happier that we are not a gluten free family. 🙂

Skeletons in the Closet


Every family has them, right? Taking them out for Halloween to decorate? Well, we do, too. We haven’t really done Halloween because it’s a Christian holiday and not part of the local culture at all, but since Kevin’s parents really like decorating, we dug out that old box of Halloween decorations from storage. Since it was stored in one of the big containers on top of the bookshelf in the master bedroom, the kids decided that they have to all cram into the room and eat popcorn make popcorn chains for more decorations. While working they were talking about what all they can get away with. Being gay, being straight, being religious, being Christian, being a vegetarian, keeping strictly kosher, eating pork… they know they are loved.

Nirel casually remarked, “I think I quite enjoy Justin Bieber’s music.”

“I think you foudn the only thing that can get you disowned in this family,” Eli replied without a second of hesitation.

And He Is Abroad


Yep. Yonah is now in Vancouver, BC as I’m typing this, with his boyfriend Yehiel to visit his family. He called us in the early morning hours (for us) to let us know that they are there safely, and put up in Yehiel’s old room… and Yonah has the top bunk! He told me that, his voice beaming with pride, like it’s the coolest thing ever. Maybe it is.

Just before Yonah left, he sat down to have a serious talk with Harel. He explained that while he was going to miss Harel’s first birthday, but he was going to bring him some awesome present to make up for that. To which Harel replied with “duckie”. So Yonah is on a duck hunt. 😀

The thing that cracked me up? The text I got when they landed in Toronto: “The Two Little Africans Are In Canada”. That cracked me up. Yehiel, as I said elsewhere, is of an Ethiopian family and Yonah is half South African.

Yesterday after Kevin dropped them off at the airport, he drove a big box of “stuff” up to Haifa to Yonah’s apartment there. He says it starts to look like someone could actually live there. 😀 In a few days I’ll be going up with more stuff, and then next weekend, after I get back from Hungary, I will take up the tea set we painted at Made By You. I’ll combine that trip with a hospital run, and finally, just before he comes home, we’ll fill his pantry. Yonah will have 24 hours before landing back home and his first class, and he still wants to do laundry at home. I mean home. In our home. Isn’t that sweet?

We thought Eli would enjoy having the room he shares with Yonah to himself. Boy, was I wrong! After the first night alone, he already convinced Nirel to share a room while Yonah is gone! So it seems, once again, rooms will be moved in my house…

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