Some important updates:
1. Happy Mother's Day to all of my Loyal Reader mothers! Mother's Day, as many of you know, is not celebrated here in Israel. And trust me, it's not because "every day is Mother's Day." I'm not actually sure why we don't celebrate it; Israelis love any excuse for a vacation day and a barbeque. Maybe it's because the greeting card industry hasn't really made it to Israel yet, and what would Mother's Day be without some good old fashioned Hallmark? And, I might add, the lack of greeting cards makes trips to the drugstore much less fun. 'Cuz you know when you go to the drugstore you end up spending half an hour reading all the cards. Well, at least the funny/inappropriate ones - no one I know actually spends time reading the drippy ones involving pastels and sunsets and flowers and true love and bad poetry. ("Husband - From the moment I met you I knew that we two were destined to be one/Although I wish you would use your own toothbrush/Love, Your One and Only.")
ANYWAY, the point is that we Israelis are much more productive as a people because we do not while away our working hours reading greeting cards. (We while them away blogging.) The only thing you can do when you go into a drugstore here is buy drugs. And makeup. Although you need to create a diversion when purchasing makeup in order to fend off the advances of the Makeup Ladies. You know the Annoying Mall Makeup Ladies? Well, in Israel, they take the form of Annoying Drugstore Makeup Ladies. They have taken over NewPharm and SuperPharm and HappyPharm. There is no such thing as just picking up a bottle of nail polish - you need to engage in conversation with the Makeup Lady. I hate that. So I lurk in the aisle, overturn a cart of overpriced BandAids, and then, while Makeup Lady is temporarily distracted by the noise, I grab the first bottle I can find. Which is why my toenails are blue now. It was the first thing I could reach.
2. I was able to finally meet Merav Balsam in person, and let me say, it was an emotional greeting for us both. I snapped pictures and Merav slept and made some unintelligible noises. Today, when I called the house, I heard her crying in the background. She misses me. Anyway, she is quite cute and tiny and we are looking forward to spending more time with her.
3. We had a lovely Shabbat with my cousin Talia and her friend Shoshana, who are both here for the year. Apparently I was Shoshana's counselor back in the day at Shoresh. I feel old. We also had company for lunch, which means that I actually cooked this week. First time since Pesach. It was an odd sensation, like getting back on a bike after a long absence. (That was for you, Dadz.)
4. I went to a shiur Shabbat afternoon at our shul given in Hebrew! I know, you're impressed - a shiur? Me? I haven't cracked open a holy text in many years, except to listen to Donny layn and find the answers to Ariella's parsha questions. It was an odd sensation, like getting back on a bike.... Anyway, I would say I understood about 80% of the shiur. It got hard during the back and forth among the ladies in the crowd, but I pretty much followed. At the end, I realized that I totally got the introduction and the question, but was a little fuzzy on the answer. In other words, exactly like I feel after a shiur in English! So I felt good. We discussed the cheery topic of a kohen's dead relatives, focusing on his dead wife. Fun times!
5. Finally, to underscore the point that there is NO Mother's Day here, Yaakov has presented me, not with breakfast in my bed, but with puke in his bed. And Ariella might have strep. They are now both temporarily resting. Ahhh, the joys of motherhood....