Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Spring Break

Sparkly Vacation Fingers
The sun is shining, the birds are back, and I just walked through midtown without a jacket and without freezing to death.

Spring is finally here, and that can only mean one thing. Passover is on the horizon.

While not my most favorite holiday on the Jewish calendar, Passover does have a special air about it. Things that are green are coming back, the world is a little bit warmer, and we are being released from winter's icy grip. We can finally leave our houses and enjoy the world that has been covered with snow for much of the past six months, and look ahead to summer fun.

For me, Passover is also about family. It is about getting together and being together for days at a time. About celebrating a holiday with my people; the ones I come from and the ones who only became mine later on. For eight days we will take a breath and give thanks as the seasons change, the world keeps on spinning, and we move ever forward.

This year, I will be dividing Passover in half to spend it with both my family and David's family. And even though the holiday doesn't start until Monday night, my spring break starts tonight.

Because tonight, as the clock strikes midnight, we will be boarding a plane bound for Israel, where we will spend an amazing week on the beautiful beaches of Tel Aviv with David's family before heading to Ohio to spend the second half of the holiday with mine.

I'll be in and out of here sporadically over the next two weeks, but I already can't wait to be back with what I'm sure will be epic vacation tales to tell and many, many pictures to post.

My bags are packed, my beach books are stacked, and my fingernails are painted with silver sparkles.

Vacation, I'm coming for you.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

On Standing Up and Moving Forward


This thing we call life isn't always easy. It isn't always fun.

It's hard and murky and messy and complicated and beautiful and filled with moments, both of sadness and exquisite joy.

Sometimes we feel shrouded in darkness, like we don't know where to go or which way to turn. We can't see what's ahead, and we feel fixed in place, afraid to move forward, afraid to step back.

Stuck.

But we're braver than we know, and more resilient then even we thought possible.

So we don't stay stuck. We don't still.

Instead we stand up, take a deep breath of the brand new spring air, lift our heads, and move on forward.

Because up ahead is where all the good things are.

Just waiting to be discovered.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Memories of a 24 Marathon


Surrounded by soda cans we sprawl on the couch, eyes glued to the TV.

We speak only to say, "just one more."

We can't stop watching. We can only hold our breaths. Until Jack finds out who gave the terrorists the bomb.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Good Books


"All good books are alike in that they are truer than if they had really happened and after you are finished reading one you will feel that all that happened to you and afterwards it all belongs to you: the good and the bad, the ecstasy, the remorse and sorrow, the people and the places and how the weather was. 
                                                                -Ernest Hemingway 

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

A Cold Winter, A Flower, and The Possibility of Spring

I walked out of my house and immediately started shivering.

I couldn't believe how cold it was and even sneaked a look at my phone to confirm that it was, in fact, still March and we didn't somehow Back-To-The-Future it back to January without me noticing. Not that I have anything against time travel, it's just that if I'm going back in time, I would prefer to head back to my Bahamas vacation of a few years ago where the sky was blue, the ocean crystal clear, and the air warm.

Warm.

I felt like I hadn't been warm in months.

The snow started in November, the Polar Vortex took hold sometime around New Years, and we had been cold ever since. Winter is generally my favorite of all the seasons, but even this Pittsburgh girl was worn out.

Four months of hauling bags of salt, shoveling the snow that seemed to never stop falling and sliding my way to the train station had taken its toll.

I couldn't even remember what warm felt like. For months my life had consisted of bundling up into sweaters I hadn't worn since my college days in the frozen tundra that is winter in Boston, a puffy coat, and the wooliest winter accessories to get to work, only to peel off the layers once I was sitting in my office, where the entire building is a sauna and climate control is a dirty word.

I thought that if I tallied up all the time I spent dealing with winter clothes and accessories over the past four months it would rival the time that summer where I watched all of 24 and The West Wing in approximately ten weeks. Assuming every show is about 42 minutes long without commercials (and I certainly didn't watch commercials), that is, conservatively, 242 hours. All in all, I'd rather be watching TV.

Which I did, a lot, this winter, because when it's so cold that your face freezes before you can make it to the car, there's not a whole lot of motivation to go out at night unless you absolutely have to.

I locked the door, glared at the snow shovel and salt spreader that had taken up permanent residence on my porch, and considered kicking them both until they were broken, but cooler heads prevailed when I remembered that at the rate we were going it would probably snow more still before winter finally released its icy grasp.

As I swung into the driver's seat of my car, eager to warm it up and get the heat going to ward off the chill, something caught my eye. On the side of the driveway, almost hidden by the damp and still frosty leaves, a tiny purple flower poked out of the ground. It was the only one of its kind, and barely visible, but it was there, its color a pop of cheerfulness on the cold, grey day.

And I thought that maybe spring isn't too far off after all.




Tuesday, April 1, 2014