Categories
Jewish Spirituality Rabbinic spirituality

Is this Shabbat?

I’m getting ready for my weekend, which includes shabbat. In this case, that includes a double bar mitzvah at services tonight and Saturday morning. You might think this would mean less work for the rabbi, since the bar mitzvah boys will be leading much of the service. Somehow, however, the anxiety of being the cheerleader for those leading the service outweighs the reduction in workload from actually leading the service.  I know they’ll do fine, but it always is a little bit stressy for everyone involved.

The preparation is largely done, though I am still polishing the two sections of Torah I’ll be reading tomorrow morning. I have my “sermons” (really more like speeches to the young men) ready for tonight.

For Sunday, I’m beginning an adult Hebrew class.  I’m putting together my own curriculum and materials for the class.  This will either work really well or really poorly (or something in between). The basic idea is that I’m going to be teaching vocabulary in a less systematic way than formal language instruction normally would, with the emphasis on words that come up frequently in prayers. This week will largely be about separating out the prefixes and suffixes from words, and a few very basic words.

Even on a shabbat when I’m working, I prefer to head into it with a feeling of mindfulness, that I feel like is missing this week. Somehow, this feels more like, “once more into the breach…” than focusing on each moment and aspect as it arrives. However, shabbat is still a good 6 hours off or so, and perhaps I’ll have transformed by then.

In the meantime, a photo from yesterday:  driving-dog.jpg

Categories
knitting Rabbinic

Back in the Swing

I am beginning to be recovered from last weekend. I feel significantly more functional than I had been, which is good because tomorrow begins another full weekend. This time, a bar mitzvah Friday night and Saturday, followed by religious school and adult education on Sunday. But it’s not nearly as draining as it was.

Things are adequately back to normal that I’ve had some time to do some knitting. My primary project at the moment is working on Eva’s socks, which  are good, but a little bit fussy. I’m working from the toe up, and the top of the foot as a k6p3 ribbing pattern that I’m going to turn into a spiral once I hit the leg. At this point I’m about half way up the foot or a little more.

These socks have taken a while because I had to rip them  out the first time once I was about 3″ in because I didn’t like the fabric: it was a bit too tight, and thought it might stand up on its own without a foot in it. That seemed bad.  So I upped my needle size from 00 to 0, and I like this fabric much better.

This pattern is basically my own, and once I have it a bit better established, I will probably go ahead and post it (assuming I like it once it’s done).

In other news, I’m distinctly pleased to be feeling human again, to have a little bit of time for knitting again, and to have the brain power to be knitting something other than straight stockinette.  I’m even back to using polysyllabic words.

Categories
General

Pictures of Spring

As previously promised, pictures of spring:

daffodils.jpg

This is a daffodil. I’m rather fond of it, and there are a number coming up right now. Daffodils are pretty, and I’m pleased by that.

forsythia.jpg

Above, you will note forsythia. As previously mentioned, forsythia are exuberant in color, which I find distinctly lovely at this time of year. Go forsythia.

camellia.jpg

Our camellias are pink, which would not have been my first choice, but at this point, I’ll take flowers in almost any color.

As you can (hopefully) tell by my captions, I remain tired and a bit on the punchy side. But it will get better.

Categories
Rabbinic

I'm Toast

I’ve been running too hard the last week. Over the course of the weekend I led 2 shabbat services for the congregation, performed a marriage, taught Sunday school, had a ritual practices committee meeting, tutored folks for a bar mitzvah next week, conducted a funeral, led a shiva minyan and drove about 400 miles in the process. I’m tired.

On the other hand, I feel very fulfilled as a rabbi. This isn’t a pace I can keep up, but I feel like I’m really making a difference in people’s lives, which is why I became a rabbi.

  dscn1005.jpg

A photo of the driving this weekend, which for the most part was pretty bad. Lots of rain, some incredibly thick fog, lots of darkness. Have I mentioned I’m tired?