Shabbat Shalom!

Love this picture that my daughter took in Israel of the Challahs for Shabbat. 


So fresh and delicious. 


Plenty for all. 


G-d’s blessing for a restful Shabbos.


Thank you for sanctifying us with your mitzvot. 😉


(Source Photo: Minna Blumenthal)

Take Off Those Shoes

So this was pretty funny. 


We have a sign in our house that people should take off their shoes when they come in. 


Heck, it’s part of being a neat freak and somewhat germaphobic.


But of course, the kids invariably don’t follow the house rules and we get the shoe dirt all over. 


And guess who has to always clean it up?  


Well the other day, my daughter was looking to purchase a condo, and when she found a place she liked, she was walking around the apartment and saying:

When I have my own place, everyone is going to take off their shoes.


Hmm, when the place is yours and you have to clean up the messes, all of a sudden the house rules are in effect and big time.  😉


(Source Photo: Dannielle Blumenthal)

Upside Down Bird, Black Sheep–Same Thing

I thought this art was funny and accurate:

There’s always one in every family.

Really, it should be there is always one (or two) in every family, group, and organization. 


Whether it’s the upside down bird or the “black sheep”–I think we call it that person a troublemaker!


Is it the attention they crave? 


Is it a good fight or argument they are after?


Are they just different and that’s okay.


Listen, we are all the same, but we’re also all different. 


Imagine being completely the same and how boring that would be. 


So being the upside bird isn’t necessarily a bad thing. 


The other birds may look at this upside down bird as cuckoo.


But the bird may not be a cuckoo bird at all.


He may just be acting himself. 


To the upside down bird, he probably thinks of himself as being right side up bird, and that it’s the other birds that are the cuckoos.


From my experience, there is being different and then there is being cuckoo for real. 


There really are one or more cuckoos just about everywhere you look.


Worse yet, if the other 4 birds are sane, then watch out because you may be the cuckoo bird.


And then there was the movie, “One flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest.”  😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal) 

Two Brothers Survival From The Holocaust

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, “It wasn’t a Final Solution.”

My Uncle Freddie reached high up to the tippy-top of a tall bookcase in his small, but cozy room, and pulled down an old book. It had accumulated years of dust, and we had to wipe it off. The book, published by the Germans themselves, was one that I was familiar with having seen my own mother with a similar one documenting what happened to her family in the Holocaust. It had lists and lists of Jews that had been deported by the Nazis from my uncle’s city as well as where they sent them for liquidation. 

Hope you appreciate this true story of survival amidst the horrors and death of the Holocaust. 


(Source Photo: Dannielle Blumenthal) 

@Tree Top Park, Davie, Florida

It’s funny that just as I am expressing gratitude for the peace, mindfulness, and zen good feelings, a plane is loudly flying overhead in this Florida park.  


No winning even in nature anymore! 😉


(Source Video: Dannielle Blumenthal)

Loneliness Is Death

There is a very important article in the Wall Street Journal today on the link of loneliness to death. 


Frightening loneliness statistics:


– One in 11 Americans over age 50 “lacks a spouse, partner, or living child.”


– More than 1 in 4 baby boomers is divorced or never married.  


– 1 out of every 6 people lives alone. 


Research indicates that loneliness leads to early death. 


The impact of loneliness is equivalent to:


– Smoking 15 cigarettes a day


– Drinking 6 alcoholic beverages a day


Loneliness is worse for mortality than:


– Obesity 


– Physical activity


“The effect of isolation is extraordinarily powerful…we have to address loneliness,” says the former administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. 


Whether you are extroverted or introverted, we all need human interaction, sharing, caring, touch, and love.  


Truly, no man is an island!


Those that are stranded on loneliness island need to escape it and make their way back to human civilization.


Alone our lives are dull and stunted; but together, we have the inherent social dynamics to be able to experientially learn, grow, change and mature. 


Alone we die–together we live. 


It’s not just power in numbers, it’s life itself. 


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Happy Friendsgiving

So I learned a new holiday terms today. 


Of course, you know about Thanksgiving–when we celebrate with our family all the wonderful things in life that G-d has blessed us with. 


Well now there is “Friendsgiving.”


This typically occurs on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, and is enjoyed with friends (instead of family). 


We are still grateful, but we just are thankful with a different set of significant others in our lives. 


To me there is nothing like my family–as my father taught me:

Blood is thicker than water. 


But friends are important in our lives as well, and good and true friends are so hard to come by–so we should celebrate them and with them whenever possible too. 


Finally, I choose this flower, “Bird of Paradise” for this blog, because I love it and it is something wonderful from G-d that I am grateful for. 


Happy Thanksgiving and Friendsgiving to All!  😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)