Rabbi Katy Allen teaches that Hanukkah is a time to rededicate ourselves to the holy and hard work of responding to climate change. She writes that we "increase our holiness by rededicating ourselves to reducing our carbon footprint."
Forget the holly boughs and icicle lights; this Christmas, it's all about thinking outside the (gift) box. Sure, there's nothing like a newly decorated Christmas tree to get your tinsel tingling, but there's something a little magical about the unexpected.
Between office parties and family gatherings, you may find yourself in a similar panic-button situation this holiday season. By no means am I endorsing such disappearing acts, but it's important to be realistic about the likelihood you'll want to perform one.
Between school vacation, endless shopping lists, mailing holiday cards, cooking for extended family and traveling in potential winter storms, the holiday season can be overwhelming for parents. And with the hectic holiday season, the spirit of the holidays can sometimes get lost.
The day would bring no grand present opening and no homemade feast to enjoy, but there was also no stuffing to start, no breakfast for 12 to organize, no leftover scraps of paper and ribbon strewn across my bedroom floor.
Our cookie fest has evolved over the years to include more children and more adults, but some traditions remain unchanged.
The choirs are rehearsing their music, the preachers are mulling their texts and volunteers are organizing to once again deck the halls for the six services of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
Christmas morning broke clear and cold. All the soldiers waited quietly in their trenches. When it seemed that no one could stand the waiting any longer, one soldier climbed out of his trench. He waved a white flag.
If you're reading this then you know you're like me and slightly behind schedule. Ok procrastinators; let's have a heart to heart. You're way behind schedule. Can your holiday shopping be completed with less than a week to go?
And King Herod's appearance in Matthew 2 explains the context of Jesus's arrival on earth. But these and many other central facts about the Bible's narrative escape the modern Bible reader.
First he upended a 50-year U.S.-Cuban Cold War. Then he celebrated Hanukkah with 400 Jews from across the United States. He probably got a national security briefing somewhere in-between.
Washington, D.C. knows how to celebrate New Year's Eve. Here are a few of the best places to ring in the New Year, plus a few just outside the Beltway.
The most important piece of advice for a peaceful Christmas I can give you though, is something I've read in a Polish article about Christmas: "Relationships come before traditions." Which is pretty much what the whole post is all about.
To all of you who, like me, struggle through this time of year: Please be gentle with yourself. If grief visits, let it. Reach out if you need help. Set clear boundaries and don't be afraid to honor them even when you're feeling pressured not to. Don't force things.
Impulse buying has none of these elements -- you see it, it sings to you, you want to possess it, you might deliberate for a few seconds about the fact that you don't really need or maybe you cannot really afford it, and then you buy it anyway because practical factors don't really play a part in the decision.
For most people family relationships are the most challenging in our lives, so it's not surprising that if we are in a place of profound loss and vulnerability then spending time with family members at Christmas may trigger some complex emotional responses.