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Sunday, September 13, 2015

Shana Tova - Happy New Year!

I want to wish all my Jewish readers a shana tova, a happy new year. I'm about to start cooking for the holiday, but wanted to share a post from the past, with some links and explanations for the holiday!

If you're not Jewish, the holiday of Rosh Hashana may be something of a mystery. It's the Jewish new year! Instead of blowing party horns, we blow the shofar, a ram's horn, to wake us all up and make us look at our lives and how we are living them. It's a time for reflection and change - for the better.

Between Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, the day of atonement, we're supposed to be introspective and figure out how we want to improve ourselves. We give more charity. We ask others for their forgiveness for anything we've done wrong in the past year. We start the year with a clean slate and part of that is making sure we've worked out any issues with other humans.

Rosh Hashana is a joyous holiday, known for apples and honey. We dip apples - a fall fruit - in honey, symbolizing the sweetness. Challah, the traditional egg braid, is not served in a braided twist, but rather in a circle - symbolizing the circle of life. It often has raisins baked into it - for sweetness.

We spend the holiday in services and eating festive meals. Kids don't go to school and adults don't work on the holiday. Rosh Hashana begins tonight (Sunday) at sundown, and goes through Tuesday night (though many Jews just celebrate through Monday night).

I want to wish my Jewish readers a Shana Tova - a happy new year. May you be inscribed for a blessing in the book of life.

If you want to do some simple Rosh Hashana crafts or activities, here are some links:

Make a delicious apple cake (it's on my menu)

Go apple picking

It's traditional to eat apples and honey, but making caramel apples is good too.

Rosh Hashana coloring pages and apple print cards (it's traditional to send new year's greetings)

"Ecocrafts" like a paper shofar, napkin ring and foam apple core (not sure how a foam apple is an eco thing, but...)

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