Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Can you top this?

Job description with most jargon I've seen to date:

Job Description

Maintain and expand a corporate data model/taxonomy with goal of companywide semantic interoperability in the context of the move to file-based workflows. Create documentation for managing and maintaining taxonomies and associated thesauri. Participate in the deployment of enterprise-level content management tools and strategies.

Skills

•Advanced degree in Library Science, Museum Studies, Linguistics, or equivalent knowledge management experience
•Experience in the development of taxonomies, formal ontologies (OWL), thesauri and other types of controlled vocabularies
•Familiarity with media asset management and taxonomy tools and technologies
•Familiarity with relevant media and broadcast metadata and file formats and standards (e.g. PBCore, EBU Core, MPEG21)


Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Silver Menorahs

After reading Orthonomics: Auctions and Gemachs (Free Loan Societies) I was prompted to write the post I had been thinking about since Sunday, see it at http://www.examiner.com/jewish-bridal-in-new-york/reflections-on-polishing-a-menorah
Also see http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2009/11/hillels-approach-for-chanukah-and-for.html

Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Thursday, November 25, 2010

You may look at buying shoes in a new light.

Divrei Chaim: The Midrash interprets the pasuk in the hafatarah,...: "The Midrash interprets the pasuk in the hafatarah, “Al michram b’kesef tzadik, v’evyon b’avur na’alayim,” as referring to the sale of Yosef ..."

Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Do learning men make the best husbands?

This post was inspired by the two extremes: the people who think that asking whether a young man learns is irrelevant for someone considering him for a shidduch and those who think that it is important -- but for the wrong reason.  The first is fairly obvious.  That view is a rationalist one that would see learning as something that goes on outside the relationship and so not pertinent to it. The opposing view maintains that it is pertinent, but uses an argument that is subjective. I quote from a comment on a blog:


"You really don’t believe that if the husband learns, he will have a positive affect [sic] on his family? You don’t think that he might just end up being a better husband or father?" 


You know, he might, but also might not.  Learning Torah on a regular basis does make one a better Jew, but it doesn't always follow that they will also then be the kind of husband one dreams about.  There are some men who learn who do end up divorced or who have very little time for their children.  The reason to be concerned with whether or not he is kovea ittim is not really to improve quality of life -- in this world, that is.  There are, however, two very compelling reasons why women would want a husband who is careful about setting aside time to learn regularly.  


The first would be concern for his afterlife:
(Shabbos 31a) Rava presents the 6 questions that a person is asked upon arriving at judgment.  The first 3 are as follows:

 1. Nasata v’natata be-emunah? — Did you deal honestly in business? faithfully?
 2. Kavata itim la-Torah? — Did you set time for Torah learning?
 3. Asakta bifria ur’viah? — Did you engage in procreation?
Do note that honesty in business dealings comes first, so the assumption is clearly not the one made in so many shidduch circles today that earning a living and regular Torah learning are mutually exclusive.

The second reason why a woman would be concerned about having a husband who learns is for her own afterlife: "
How do women merit a greater reward than men in the world to come? They catalyze their sons and husband to study Torah, shepherd the former to school, and patiently await the latter whom they have permitted to travel to study Torah in another city." ( Berachot 17a, Sota 21a). 
Conclusion, a utilitarian explanation for asking about a man's learning does exist, but it's not what the young women seem to think it is.


Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Sunday, November 21, 2010

A whole new life - New York Jewish Bridal | Examiner.com

A whole new life - New York Jewish Bridal | Examiner.com

Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

You would think a lawyer would be more careful of his wording

especially when addressing a woman judge.  See the way he described anticipating the birth of a grandson versus that of a granddaughter .. and the judge's idea for the latter:http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2010/11/19/if-its-a-girl-judge-kimba-wood-will-celebrate/?blog_id=14&post_id=35957

Credit to my husband for finding this and sharing it with me.

Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Friday, November 19, 2010

Alaska

I'm wondering who there is reading my blog.  According the stats, I get, my audience extents to that far off state. If you are reading this post in Alaska, I would appreciate knowing who you are.  Are you related somehow?

Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Monday, November 15, 2010

Public Service Announcement and an Option for Motzei Shabbos

Great Miracles Happen Here

 

If you have ever seen a dreidel from Israel, you know that it has a letter pey in place of the letter shin that the ones we have here feature.  That is because while we refer to the great miracle that happened there, in Israel, they can say it happened here.  A miraculous victory – against the odds - was followed by the wondrous discovery of pure oil that miraculously burned for 8 whole days.  That happened over 2,000 years ago, but miracles still happen every Chanukah.  Sick children and their families gain hope that they may beat the odds in their battle against cancer.  Pure joy, which seemed to have disappeared forever, is miraculously rediscovered.  And the light of kindness dispels the gloom of sadness for a truly happy Chanukah. 

How does such a miracle happen?  It happens through the dedicated efforts of the Ossie Schonfeld Chanukah Toy Fund in partnership with Chayainu and Lev Leytzan, a volunteer medical clowning group.   Before the holiday, children with cancer, as well as all their siblings, in Israel put down what they wish to get.  The toy fund purchases the requested items, and ships them to Israel. They come to the children through a most special form of delivery – the clowns of Lev Leytzan.  These volunteers hail from area schools, like Mesivta Ateres Yaakov, Rambam, Darchei Torah, Yeshiva Far Rockaway, Tifereth Moshe, DRS, SKA, and Central.  They devote the days of Chanukah to travelling throughout Israel where they visit hospitals, orphanages, and private homes to deliver the delight of opening up a present of a wished for toy to children.  These children whose lives otherwise revolve around cancer and its arduous treatments get a respite from sickness as songs, dances, and juggling bring in the light of laughter and the radiance of smiles.  When these children finally break into a smile, their parents can, too. 

As anyone who has seen this sight can attest, each one of those smiles is a miracle in itself.  Dr. Neal Goldberg, the founder of Lev Leytzan, explains, “It’s not a one time occasion for them. These gifts and the warm memories of the funny clowns helping them play as children should keep them smiling for months, if not through the whole year.”  In addition to the spark of joy, the laughter dispensed by these clowns can prove to be the best medicine.  In one dramatic case, a young boy had lost the ability to walk on his own as a result of being physically and emotionally depleted by a serious case of cancer. Then he got the thrill of a visit from Ossie’s and Lev Leytzan.  His parents identify the time they came to his house as the beginning of his recovery.  That Chanukah visit brought the boy such joy and hope that he felt strength return to him.  He is now in remission and no longer needs a wheelchair. Here’s a victory that beat the odds of illness, another Chanukah miracle!

In 2003 the Schonfeld family established the Ossie Schonfeld Chanukah Toy Fund in memory of their father, Yosef, affectionately known as Ossie. Bringing happiness and light to children whose lives are overshadowed by illness is the most fitting way to honor the memory of a man who lived and breathed chesed and especially loved children and the land of Israel.  While the need has, unfortunately, increased, Judy and Robbie Schonfeld remain committed to spreading the light of joy to these children and not to disappoint a single one.  For that they need support from the community. Tax deductible contributions can be made to Ossie’s Toy Fund.

You can also show your support by attending the melaveh malkah to benefit Ossie’s Toy Fund.  It is to take place, iy’H, on November 20 at 8:30 p.m. Rachel Pill, LCSW is the featured speaker.   You are welcome to come and enjoy a sushi bar in the home of Judy and Robbie Schonfeld, 850 Broadway in Woodmere.   For more information, contact 516-791-2158 or e-mail ossiestoyfund@aol.com. Let’s keep up the tradition of miracles.

For a slideshow of photos and some more details of Lev Leytzan's Ambassador Program, see http://www.examiner.com/jewish-bridal-in-new-york/anticipating-chanukah-and-smiles



Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Sunday, November 14, 2010

We have a winner!

Evenlyn Behar of Chicago won a copy of the Kosher by Design Teens and 20-somethings cookbook reviewed in http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2010/10/review-of-cookbook-you-could-win.html  The post also includes a discount code for ordering the cookbook online.


Congratulations to Evelyn! And thank  you to all who participated and offered feedback on Kallah Magazine.  




Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Divrei Chaim: Ya'akov Avinu -- tehillim zugger?

Divrei Chaim: Ya'akov Avinu -- tehillim zugger?: "The Midrash tells us that before Ya’akov came to Lavan’s home he was learning yoman va’layla, he was completely immersed in Torah and did no..."

Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Review of Jamie Geller's Quick & Kosher: Meals in Minutes

I can see why Jamie Geller is popular with audiences.  She intersperses her recipes with tidbits of advice and personal experience relayed as if she is talking to friends.  In her new cookbook, Quick & Kosher, she includes a useful guide to the various types of oils used in cooking, as well as some stories related to setting up a kitchen as a “comfort zone.” In a section entitled “Your Tool Box,” she presents her 11 favorite kitchen tools that she would not want to do without even on a desert island (equipped with electricity).  Which kitchen tools one would include on that list really depends on her/his own preference and cooking style (See http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2010/11/perspectives-on-kitchen-equipment.html)  My kitchen functions without many of them.  However, I like to bake, so I would be sure to include a stand mixer on my must-have list.    

In what appears to be unedited transcripts of interviews, Jamie Geller presents the people behind the products and stores she endorses throughout the book.   In that fashion, readers hear from the manufacturer who puts out 3 labels of kosher cheese she recommends in the recipes, the president and CEO of Manischewitz (she uses the chicken and vegetable broth from this manufacturer in numerous recipes), the chairman of Kosher.com --in the bricks and mortar world, known as Gourmet Glatt --  (she is the marketing Chief Marketing Officer there), and the Director of Wine Education at royal Wine (a wine selection appears next to each meal – even for the pancakes!). 

The idea behind Quick and Kosher is to offer readers a selection of meals based on the time they have or wish to put into preparing them.  They range from 20 to 60 minutes.  Then, there is a section of holiday meals that are not classified by time in the same way, though each recipe includes the prep and cook time required for it, a breakdown that is absent from the meals in minutes section.  While this set up was intended to make it easier for the reader to find recipes to fit her/his needs, I found it didn’t work well for me. 
My preference is for the standard organization of cookbooks:  section for appetizers, fish, dairy, meat, poultry, side dishes, vegetables, cakes, and other desserts.  Another helpful label of kosher cookbooks that is absent in this one is a clear identification on top of whether the recipes are meat, milk, or parve.  Yes, it can be derived from the ingredients, but usually when planning a meal, we want to plan on which kind it will be, and for those who haven’t grown up in a kosher kitchen, it would even more important to have recipes clearly labeled according to this type of classification.

As I don’t like being boxed into preset meals, I prefer a book that allows me to look over several chicken recipes, one after the other, to decide which one I would like to make.  When I wanted to find a chicken recipe to try out, I flipped through the 20 minute section, jumping over dairy, pasta, and fish dishes, or chicken cutlets.  I also glanced over the holiday recipes section.  Finally, I found a recipe for chicken eighths in the 60 minutes section that I decided to try.  The extra time was required because the chicken called for over 40 minutes in the oven. I found I had to double the cooking time to get it to the level of doneness that my family prefers.

I only prepared the chicken itself -- not its accompanying vegetable side dish.  It was not something my family would care for and is also insufficient for a meal.  Unless you are following an Atkins style meal plan, generally, your dinner would consist of a protein, starch, and vegetable – not just a piece of chicken and vegetables.  That’s the thing about the quick meals here; they typically consist of just 2 dishes, and so often cut out at least one aspect of what is usually included in a balanced and satisfying meal.  Many of the meals requiring the shortest time are, essentially, sandwiches served with a vegetable  dish, and many depend on buying prepared or convenience foods. 

Look, it’s fine to offer sandwiches for a meal once in a while when you don’t have time to do more or don’t feel up to cooking.  But I don’t really consider those options to be recipes.  Likewise, I avoid cake recipes that call for cake mixes.  In this book, there are very few desserts, are most prepared by combining pre-cut up fruit, or prepared cake with prepared toppings or assembling shells with prepared pudding. I do buy prepared puddings, but only in the form of individual portions for my children to pack along for snack.  However, when it comes to cooking, I prefer to make things from scratch.  It’s not just a matter of pride in achievement but of better control over exactly what goes into the food and better economy. Prepared and convenience foods often contain preservatives, colors, and other additives you are better off without, not to mention the fact that they raise the cost of your grocery purchase tremendously.   

Economy is not something that seems to be considered in this cookbook.  But economic times being what they are, thrift is something to take into consideration when planning one’s menu.  Ignoring it can translate into food budget that expands beyond your means. While precut fruit does save you time, it cost about 300% more than buying whole melons and cutting them up yourself.  Prepared chicken also will cost you more than raw.  And opening up a bottle of wine for every meal you serve, according to the suggestion of this book, will add about $10-$40 to the cost of the meal.  I looked up the price of the wine match for chicken marsala with garlic mashed potatoes.  Barkan Cabernet Sauvignon Altitude Series 624 is carried by my local kosher wine store, which has the site OnlyKosherWine.com,  for $39.99 a bottle.  At a site out of state, called KosherWine.com, it is priced at $32.99 a bottle.  At least the wine selected to accompany the blueberry and lemon pancakes is more reasonably priced.  Jeunesse Cabernet Sauvignon is $9.99 at one site and $9.79 at the other.  But really, who serves wine with pancakes?  Even in her introduction the author herself suggests, “Serve is just like they do at restaurants with coffee, tea, and orange juice or milk.”  Note that wine is not among those beverages. 

In any case, based on my own experience and the informal poll I took among friends, in real life people do not serve wine with every meal.  Many only open a bottle for Kiddush, and even for that, some use grape juice.  While it is an appealing fantasy to have the types of dinners at which the perfect wine accompaniment is served, those are not the types of dinners thrown together in minutes.  Another consideration is that you may not like the wine’s taste, even if it is considered the right choice.  Instead I would advise those new to wine to sample some and find which ones they like.  If they find they don’t like the taste of dry or heavy reds, they can ignore the expert advice and drink the white wines they do like – even if beef is on the menu.  In the end, that really what preparing meals is all about – preparing food that you and your family will enjoy eating.
Quick &Kosher has a sticker price of $34.99.  You can buy it at judaica stores, on Amazone, or at http://www.kosher.com/KosherGifts/KosherCookbooks/QuickKosherMealsinMinutesByJamieGeller.html which is offering signed copies for a discounted price of $26.99



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Off tomorrow? - New York Jewish Bridal | Examiner.com

Off tomorrow? - New York Jewish Bridal | Examiner.com

Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Not quite the text I had in mind

I believe in learning from texts, seeing texts inside, and close reading for understanding the nuances of meaning.  That is why people should actually read the chumash  and navi rather than just listening to lectures about them, inspiring as the lectures may be.  But there are texts that we study and texts that I wouldn't consider as the subjects of a classroom discussion.

Yesterday my daughter asked how the extra lo ta'ases derabanan can be added when the Torah prohibits additions, as well as subtractions.  This was a discussion the teacher brought up to offer the answer that the siyagim are there to protect us.  To illustrate the point, she distributed a photocopy of a piece by Sara Yocheved Rigler that appeared in Binah Magazine. In a nutshell, the author relates her amazement at the closed roads, fences, hotline, and guard all put in to protect a Monk seal that had just had a pup.  Then she comes to the realization that the extra fences put in by the rabbis functions in the same manner -- as protection.  She says that sometimes we find these things tiresome, but we have to realize they are there for a purpose.  She offers examples of derabanans like waiting 6 hours between eating meat and milk.  She also mentions how inconvenient the prohibition of yichud can be when the plumber only comes around at 6 PM when your husband is out of town.  OK, anyone else catch that?  The prohibition of yichud for a married woman is actually deoraytha.  It is only for single women that it is derabanan.  In any case, there are ways to make a repairman visit not yichud, especially if one has children in the house.

Bottom line:  I'd rather the teacher focuses on the texts of the Tanach, its meforshim, or even seforim on Torah sheba'al peh that address these issues of halacha directly with truly grounded sources rather than through a personal experience that may be seen as a subjective form of revelation.  My comfort in this is that our daughter, of her own accord, said she didn't like the story.  And she hadn't even grasped the error about yichud in it!  If the kids want to read Binah on their own, that's fine -- and I admit it would be a better choice than many other magazines out there -- but it is not Torah miSinai and should not take time away from studying what is.  Would this ever go over in a boy's yeshiva?  I know my son would be livid if the rebbe would take away time from Gemara to discuss a magazine article.  He's upset enough as it is that there is a beur tefilla class in high school.




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Computer generated shadchan

The computer generated voices don't say shidduch and other Jewish terms quite right and the outfits are not quite representational, but you may still get a kick out of it.


See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1sZu1u3BMI
Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Yaakov and Esav" setting expectations

Another component of the child's development that many point to as key is resilience -- the power to bounce back after a set back, not to give up in the face of adversity. When Esav sells the bechora for the soup, he declares, "Here I am going to die, so why do I need the bechora?"  That is the opposite of resilience.


Divrei Chaim: setting expectations: "There is one thought on this past week’s parsha from Rav Hirsch that I think everybody, even those of us who don’t know anything else Rav Hi..."

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Monday, November 08, 2010

Where can you go for free this Sunday or next?

Try this place on Long Island http://www.examiner.com/jewish-bridal-in-new-york/happy-trails-on-long-island-no-charge-review
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Divrei Chaim: when to say no

Divrei Chaim: when to say no: "Daughter #2 asked me what I thought was a very good question this Shabbos. When Eisav came in from the field starving from hunger, why did ..."

Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Saving money on food even if you're kosher

 See  http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/ways-save-money-food.html I admit that I don't have enough of a green thumb to grow my own food, but the other suggestions are feasible for anyone.  Adapt to kosher by substituting a kosher brand of sauce for the pizza and eliminating the pork suggested for the vegetarian dishes.  You can keep them dishes completely vegetarian or add some kosher meat or poultry.  Or make them dairy with some cheese.  
I would add on planning seasonally -- in other words, plan to use fresh strawberries in June, apples in October, and oranges in winter, etc. That way you get the best value for produce.  Another thing to avoid is making recipes with expensive ingredients.  Really, you can get just as delicious results without exotic, specialty items purchased just for a particular recipe.

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Easy and delicious oatmeal chocolate chip bars - New York Jewish Bridal | Examiner.com

Easy and delicious oatmeal chocolate chip bars - New York Jewish Bridal | Examiner.com

Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

You could still enter to win the latest from Kosher by Design

See my review, link for a form to enter to win, and links to three other reviews (one of which contains a full recipe from the book) at http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2010/10/review-of-cookbook-you-could-win.html

Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Love and judgment (part 1 of 2) - New York Jewish Bridal | Examiner.com

Love and judgment (part 1 of 2) - New York Jewish Bridal | Examiner.com

Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner

Perspectives on Kitchen Equipment.

I received a new cookbook to review that I started looking over.  The author includes the 11 items she considers essential specialty items. While she urges all readers to obtain all of them, I manage fine with just one.  I'll share her list with my comments here:
Food processor - that's the one I agree on.
Grill pans - I don't own these and can't think that they would justify the space they take up for the couple of times I may ever in my life make use of them.  However, I do have a George Foreman indoor grill that I use for burgers, hot dogs, and grilled vegetables.
Mandoline - I don't own one.  If it can't be sliced in the food processor, a knife will do.
Microplane - any grating I do is usually done in the food processor.  For very small things like lemon zest, I use a knife.
Ovenproof skillet -- the idea behind this is that you can transfer what you've carmelized in it directly into the oven.  I think many skillets would be ovenproof, and if your isn't, you can simply transfer it into a pan that is.
PepperMate -that a brand name peppermill -- another thing I live without
Potato Masher -- I don't use it. It is possible to mash with a fork or even to use the whisk on a Kitchen Aid*
Reamer or Juicer -- I may have one among my Pesach stuff, but I don't use it.  I just squeeze lemons by hand when I do opt for fresh.  More likely, I would use bottled lemon juice.  And forget about squeezing enough oranges for fresh oj.
Salad spinner -- don't own and can't see taking up space with it.
Scissors - while I can see how poultry shears could come in handy, I've made do without them
Tongs -- I actually have both the BBQ kind and a decorative kind.  I find myself using neither.

Surprisingly, she does not include an immersion blender, though I don't think her recipes do call for it.

*What she is missing that I would include is a Kitchen-Aid or other heavy duty mixer.  If one doesn't have the space or the funds, then at least a good hand-held mixer.  I bake a lot, but the cookbook features very little cake.
I also think it is more useful for the beginner cook to get a list of the real essentials, like measuring cups, pots,  pans, strainers, and little things like corkscrews, can openers, pot holders, trivets, etc.  Then there could be the nice to have lists that really reflect individual tastes and inclinations.

What would you list of recommended  kitchen equipment include?




Visit my site www.kallahmagazine.com -- not just for kallahs. You can also see posts at http://www.examiner.com/x-18522-NY-Jewish-Bridal-Examiner