TBA`s new gate by designer David Avidor page 11 Congregants

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TBA`s new gate by designer David Avidor page 11 Congregants
Volume 34, Number 4
the
December 2014
Volume 31, Number 7
Kislev/Tevet 5775
March 2012
T E M P L E
B E T H
A B R A H A M
Adar / Nisan 5772
TBA’s new gate by designer David Avidor ... page 11
iR
Congregants’ six word Chanukah memoirs ... page 7
Pu
M
DIRECTORY
Services Schedule
Services
GENERAL INFORMATION:
All phone numbers use (510) prefix unless otherwise noted.
LocationTime
Monday & Thursday
Morning Minyan
Chapel
8:00 a.m.
Friday Evening (Kabbalat Shabbat) Chapel
6:15 p.m.
Shabbat Morning
Sanctuary 9:30 a.m.
Exception: we will begin 9:00 a.m. the Thursdays of
Sukkot, and Shemini Atzeret.
Candle Lighting (Friday)
December 5
December 12
December 19
December 26
4:49 p.m.
4:50 p.m.
4:52 p.m.
4:56 p.m.
December 6
December 13
December 20
December 26
Vayishlach
Vayeshev
Miketz
Vayigash
Torah Portions (Saturday)
Mailing Address
336 Euclid Ave. Oakland, CA 94610
Hours
M-Th: 9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m., Fr: 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.
Office Phone
832-0936
Office Fax
832-4930
E-Mail
[email protected]
Gan Avraham
763-7528
Bet Sefer
663-1683
STAFF
Rabbi (x 213)
Cantor
Gabbi
Executive Director (x 214)
Office Coordinator (x 210)
Bet Sefer Director
Gan Avraham Director
Bookkeeper (x 215)
Custodian (x 211)
Kindergym/Toddler Program
Volunteers (x 229)
Mark Bloom
Richard Kaplan, [email protected]
Marshall Langfeld
Rayna Arnold
Virginia Tiger
Susan Simon 663-1683
Barbara Kanter 763-7528
Kevin Blattel
Joe Lewis
Dawn Margolin 547-7726
Herman & Agnes Pencovic
OFFICERS OF THE BOARD
TEMPLE BETH ABRAHAM
is proud to support the Conservative
Movement by affiliating with The United
Synagogue of Conservative Judaism.
Advertising Policy: Anyone may sponsor an issue of The
Omer and receive a dedication for their business or loved
one. Contact us for details. We do not accept outside or
paid advertising.
The Omer is published on paper that is 30% post-consumer
fibers.
The Omer (USPS 020299) is published monthly except
July and August by Congregation Beth Abraham, 336
Euclid Avenue, Oakland, CA 94610.
Periodicals Postage Paid at Oakland, CA.
POSTMASTER: Send address changes to The Omer, c/o
Temple Beth Abraham, 336 Euclid Avenue, Oakland, CA
94610-3232.
© 2014. Temple Beth Abraham.
The Omer is published by Temple Beth Abraham, a nonprofit, located at 336 Euclid Avenue, Oakland, CA 94610;
telephone (510) 832-0936. It is published monthly except
for the months of July and August for a total of ten issues
per annum. It is sent as a requester publication and there
is no paid distribution.
To view The Omer in color,
visit www.tbaoakland.org.
i
President
Vice President
Vice President
Vice President
Vice President
Secretary
Treasurer
Mark Fickes 652-8545
Eric Friedman 984-2575
Alice Hale 336-3044
Flo Raskin 653-7947
Laura Wildmann 601-9571
JB Leibovitch 653-7133
Susan Shub 852-2500
COMMITTEES & ORGANIZATIONS:
If you would like to contact the committee chairs, please contact the
synagogue office for phone numbers and e-mail addresses.
Adult Education
Chesed
Development
Dues Evaluation
Endowment Fund
Finance
Gan Avraham Parents
Gan Avraham School Committee
House
Israel Affairs
Membership
Men’s Club
Omer
Personnel
Public Relations
Ritual
Schools
Social Action
Torah Fund
Women of TBA
Youth
Aaron Paul
Warren Gould
Leon Bloomfield & Flo Raskin
Susan Shub
Herman Pencovic
Susan Shub
Toni Mason
Gary Bernstein
Stephen Shub
JB Leibovitch
Ulli Rotzscher
Jeff Ilfeld
Rachel Dornhelm
Laura Wildmann
Lisa Fernandez
Eric Friedman
Alice Hale
Marc Bruner
Anne Levine
Molli Rothman & Jessica Sterling
Phil Hankin
WHAT’S HAPPENING
You’re Invited to the Men’s Club-Sponsored
2nd Annual TBA Master Chef Latke Edition!
Hanukkah Party for the Entire TBA Community
in Honor of longtime Past President Leonard Fixler (of blessed memory)
Sunday, December 14 • 3:00 - 6:00 p.m.
Temple Beth Abraham Social Hall
Fun for the whole family. Latke cook-off, sufganiyot, bingo, dreidel games,
face-painting, music, live entertainment, child care and more!
Erev Xmas Movie and Sing-a-long featuring “FROZEN”
Co-sponsored by the Men’s Club and Women of TBA
December 24, Temple Beth Abraham Social Hall. Dinner included. FREE.
Questions and RSVP to Rob and Esther at [email protected]
THE TEEN SCENE
The Friendship Circle
Friendship Circle programs present families of individuals with special needs and teen volunteers the
opportunity to form real friendships
within a non-judgmental and supportive community.
Teen Scene:
Teen Scene is a semi-monthly, one and a half hour
program on Sunday evenings for teens with special
needs to join with loving teen volunteers for a fun,
educational group experience.
The program begins with a light dinner and is followed
by an hour of activities and Jewish discussion. Teens
enjoy various activities, which include dancing, basketball, yoga, drum circle and more.
Kindergym Sunday Play Days with Dawn
Dec 7 — Details on page 16
PJ Library Events for Families
(Children ages 2-7)
Come enjoy these wonderful free family events!
December 7, 3-4:30 p.m. Puppeteer Diana Schmiana
All events will be held at the
Contra Costa Jewish Day School
955 Risa Road, Lafayette
For more information, including Teen Scene dates,
please contact Devorah Romano, [email protected]
SAVE THE DATES in 2015:
January 17: WTBA Shabbat
March 14: Men’s Club Shabbat
May 1-3, 2015: TBA Camp Retreat
See additional WTBA sponsored Adult
Education activities on page 8.
CORRECTION:
In the last month’s Omer we referenced Outi Gould’s
talit website. The corrent URL is customtallit.com,
NOT .org. We apologize for any inconvenience.
1
COMMUNITY PROGRAM
2
JEWISH SPORTS HALL OF FAME NEWS
Rabbi Bloom Honored With “Golden
Bagel” by Jewish Sports Hall of Fame
by Lisa Fernandez
Rabbi Mark Bloom will go down in history as an honored
member of the Jewish Sports Hall of Fame of Northern
California for all the work he has done coaching Sunday
soccer, allowing youth to kick and run on the weekend just not during Shabbat.
On November 30, Bloom – who weaves a Giants reference into almost every Torah drash he can muster – was
honored with a coveted “Golden Bagel Award” from the
nonprofit sports organization, which bestows such honors
to those who “have made a significant contribution to our
community.”
Since his boys, Jonah and Micah, were old enough to
dribble a soccer ball and swing a bat, Bloom has been
coaching them and other Bay Area Jewish boys – and
girls – soccer and baseball on Sunday. That’s so they
can learn the value of sports, and not miss out on games,
which are typically held on Saturday.
“There aren’t a lot of people who want Sunday only for
their kids who know much about soccer or baseball,”
Bloom said. “The few who do need to step up, even
though it’s a time commitment, so I did.”
Plus, since Bloom is delivering sermons on Shabbat, he
gets Monday off, which is when he holds practices. He
can still tick off off the team names he’s coached over
the last decade: the Lightning Fast Jets, Cougars, Bench
Warmers, Purple Hawks, Brazil, Mini Giants, Blazing
Saddles, the Bees, Pirates, Padres, Crawfords, Marlins,
Giants, Sea Dogs, Sounds and the Rockhounds. He has
also coached a girls team – the Marta Mias.
Bloom is now coaching Jonah and several TBA friends on
the “Las Pulgas,” the fleas, in Spanish, inspired by Lionel
Messi, “the best player in the world,” Bloom said. This
year, he also became “match secretary” to his role.
Even though all the coaching adds to Bloom’s already
packed life, he loves it. “I get to spend extra time with my
kids,” he added, “which is great.”
There are 14 Jewish Halls of Fame in the United States,
and the San Jose-based chapter is the first in Northern
California. President Jack Anderson said the goal of the
organization is to show that the “People of the Book” also
excel at sports. The group also provides scholarships for
Jewish athletes.
Rabbi Bloom coaches the Las Pulgas team on Nov. 9, 2014 and celebrates after their opponents
forfeited the game. “Eizeh Goal!,” the rabbi wrote on his Facebook page.
3
FROM THE RABBI
TBA Chanukah Memories: The Social Hall Play
by Rabbi Bloom
One of my favorite parts of Chanukah every year is the Bet Sefer celebration in the Social Hall.
It is a fairly typical Chanukah celebration. There are latkes made by an army of volunteers with
apple sauce, sour cream and gelt. There is music. There is a dreidel spinoff.
But my favorite part is the Chanukah play. The plays have evolved over the years. These days,
we are mostly reading a prepared script that Susan Simon found about how each candle stands
for a different facet of Chanukah with one candle consistently interrupting wanting to talk about
presents.
In previous years, parents sometimes wrote the plays. I remember the Schacker family writing
one involving my San Francisco Giants fandom, and who could forget Ronn Berrol playing the
part of the Dreidel and Phil Hankin playing the part of the giant latke?
December 2004
So while Chanukah is primarily a home celebration (hence the many rules about lighting the
Chanukiah in the home), the Bet Sefer Chanukah celebration has become nostalgic for me in its
own way. I look forward to this year’s rendition.
L’shalom,
Rabbi Mark Bloom
Courtyard Project Moves Forward
by Leon Bloomfield
As you have all noticed by now, the demolition of the dilapidated house and garage at 333 MacArthur is complete.
We have a nice clean lot now with a big yellow excavator (that’s apparently what they call that machine) in its place!
In the coming months, you will witness even more of a transformation as we begin to install new retaining walls,
ramps and stairways and initiate work on the actual courtyard itself. There has admittedly been a slight break in the
activity level on the site since the High Holydays as we needed to work out some lingering issues with the City of
Oakland but we expect all of that is happily behind us now.
In addition, our silent campaign continues. To date, we
have raised approximately
$1.9 million in donations and
pledges which will go a long
way to making all of this a
reality. However, we still need
an additional $1+ million from
the congregation at large. The
Committee expects to begin
contacting all the families in
our community over the next
several months to let you know
the latest on the Project and to
discuss how you can participate. Together we can make
this happen!
In the meantime, watch for
updates in the Omer or talk to
anyone on the Next Big Thing
Committee.
4
PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE
A Little on the History of Chanukah
by Mark Fickes
While celebrating Chanukah is an annual favorite in my home, it occurred to me this year that
I actually did not know much about the history of the holiday and so I decided to do a little
research into its origins. Here is what I found.
Most of us also know the story of the Maccabees, a small band of Jewish heroes who liberated the us from the Syrian Greeks who occupied it. The Syrian Greeks sought to impose
their culture, which many Jews found attractive. By 167 B.C.E, Antiochus intensified his
campaign by defiling the Temple in Jerusalem and banning Jewish practice. The Maccabees-led by the five sons of the priest Mattathias, especially Judah--waged a three-year campaign
that resulted in the cleaning and rededication of the Temple.
Under Syrian Greek rule, the Jews were not unable to celebrate Sukkot at its proper time
in the Fall. So, the Maccabees decided that Sukkot should be celebrated once they rededicated the Temple, which they did on the 25th of the month of Kislev in the year 164 B.C.E.
Because Sukkot lasts seven days, this became the timeframe adopted for Hanukkah.
250 years later, Jewish historian Flavius Josephus wrote about Chanukah’s origins. He
referred to the holiday as the Festival of Lights in order to link the Jews’ liberation with the
image of light. About another 100 year later, at the time that the Mishnah, the holiday took
on the name of Chanukah or “Dedication.” Later, it is in the Gemara that we get some more
detail about the history of the holiday and the stories associated with it. In Tractate Shabbat,
we are given about three lines on the events of Chanukah but there are several pages on when,
where and how the Hanukkah lights should be lit.
The Talmud, which was completed about 600 years after the events of the Maccabees, sets
out the “current” version of the story about the miraculous jar of oil that burned for eight
days. The Talmud relates the story in the context of a discussion about the fact that fasting
and grieving are not allowed on Chanukah. In order to understand why the observance of
Chanukah is so important, the Rabbis recount the story of the miraculous jar of oil.
Chanukah gained new meaning with the rise of Zionism. When the early pioneers in Israel
found themselves fighting to defend against attacks, they began to connect with the ancient
Jewish fighters who stood their ground in the same place. The holiday took on even greater
meaning in the years leading up to the founding of the modern state of Israel. At that time,
Jews were living and experiencing the issues raised by Hanukkah: oppression, identity, religious freedom, and the need to fight for national independence. Hanukkah has developed into
a holiday rich with historical significance, physical and supernatural miracle narratives, and a
dialogue with Jewish history.
Chag Sameach! May you all find time for a miracle this year.
Please Join Us for Morning Minyan
on Mondays and Thursdays
Join the regulars at our Minyan service, each Monday
and Thursday usually starting at 8:00 a.m. The service
lasts about an hour, and is really a great way to start the
day. As an added bonus, breakfast is served immediately
afterwards. To use the old expression – try it, you’ll like
it. If not as a regular, just stop in once or twice and see
what it’s all about.
5
COMMUNITY
Come Volunteer With TBA at City Team
by Amy Kittiver
On Oct. 26, approximately 12 peopled from TBA heeded
the call to take the next volunteering step: Ingredients
were purchased and donated and a full healthy meal
was prepared for the residents and diners at City Team
in Oakland. Participants included: Amy Kittiver, Lilli
Kay, Tony Kay, Ulli Rotzcher, Treya Weintraub, Debra
Weinstein, Talia Weinstein, Mya Marcus, Sarah Marcus
and friend, Barbara Oseroff, Allan Gordon, Shira
Sanghvi, and Caren Shapiro, with additional support from
Bryna Ross.
Dinner included chicken and rice, roasted vegetables,
faro, salad and topped off with Barbara’s chocolate chip
bars and ice cream. The event was challenging, rewarding
and fun!
If you are interested in getting involved, please contact Caren Shapiro at [email protected] We help
prepare and serve meals on the fourth Sunday of every
month. We are planning on donating and preparing
another full meal in the near future. Our dream goal is to
be able to have enough donations and volunteers to be
able to take do entire meals like we did on Oct. 26 every
month.
THE OMER
We cheerfully accept member submissions. Deadline for articles and letters is the seventh of the month preceding publication.
Editor in Chief Rachel Dornhelm
Managing Editor Lisa Fernandez
Layout & Design Jessica Sterling
Calendars Jon Golding
B’nai Mitzvah Editor Susan Simon
Cover David Avidor
Help From People like you!
6
Jessica Dell’Era, Nadine Joseph, Richard Kauffman, Jan Silverman,
Debbie Spangler
June Brott, Jessica Dell’Era, Charles Feltman, Jeanne Korn, Anne Levine,
Proofreaders
Stephen Shub, Susan Simon, Debbie Spangler
Copy Editors
Distribution Hennie Hecht, Herman and Agnes Pencovic
Mailing Address 336 Euclid Ave. Oakland, CA 94610
E-Mail [email protected]
SIX WORD MEMOIRS
Six Word Memoirs:
Chanukah Lights
Chanukah, we go to bed late. Jonah
Rosenberg, 5
We’d like to put together a book
of six word memoirs from our
larger community on topical Jewish
themes. We’ll print them, one month
at a time, in the Omer until we have
enough to compile a book.
Chanukah lights, can’t wait till
tonight. Jessica Sterling, 50
Please send us your six word memoirs to [email protected] with
the word “six word memoir” in the
subject line. Please include your
name and your age, because part of
the beauty of the book will be seeing
how we feel about Judaism at different ages.
Melted wax on our heirloom table.
Jessica Teisch
Hannukah funner with kids than
Yom Kippur. Jo Ilfeld
Candles, Latkes, Applesauce, We
Will Survive. Rabbi Art Gould
Friends surround, lights around,
happy faces. Maureen Krantz
Beeswax candles, veggie latkes,
California Chanukkah! Debbie
Weinstein, 48
Bench licht, get gelt, ess latkes.
Sandy Margolin, 60
Family gathering, gift giving, big
hugs. Elinor DeKoven, 79
Not new socks again. Thanks Mom.
Elan Masliyah, 43
I love lighting my people menorah.
Jonah Rosenberg, 5
Family together, Dad’s Great Latkes,
Borscht. Herb & Harriet Bloom
Don’t cook latkes here – too smelly!
Shira Levine
Menorah in window. No rocks
please. Eppi Margolin, 21
Oil, potatoes, onions, matzo meal,
eggs! Ann Rapson, 59
Mi Yimaleil now Arranged
Barbershop Harmony. Charles
Feltman, 72
Glowing candles, tasty Latkes,
happy family! Audrey Kauffman,
adult
Last year, Thanksgivukkah was too
hectic. Julie Berman, 35
Amazing dancing lights, Delicious
latkes, Menorah. Cassius Perelman,
age 8
It’s fun; I really like it! Vivienne
Perelman, age 5
Friends were jealous of eight
presents. Karen Bloom, 44
School vacation – maybe. Check
calendar again. Marcia Benjamin
Latkes: finding stray grease in
February. Marcia Benjamin
I eat cookies decorated with
menorahs. Eva Rosenberg, 3 ½
Annual math problem: how many
candles? Marcia Benjamin
Blue lights outside, one of us?
Marcia Benjamin
Hannukah first night, new ice
skates! Becca Posamentier, was 12
when I got those skates, now 37
Bubbie stuck in kitchen, missing
fun. Karen Bloom, 44
Dreidel spins. Gimmel wins the
game. Amalia Campbell, 7
Rejoice, candles warm darkness,
miracles reoccur. Ann G. Rapson, 59
2,4,6,8 Chanukah Candles.
Aurora Campbell, 7
Homemade latkes for
Thanksgivukkah. Dad happy!
Elizabeth Simms
Shalem Aleichem stories, grandma’s
Hanukkah gelt. Svetlana Partsuf, 43
Shining lights, happy faces, spinning
dreidel. Alicia von Kugelgen
Seven little gifts. One big one.
Lisa Fernandez, 45
Family, friends, candles, songs,
laughter, fun. Stacy Margolin
Know all the words to Maoz tzur?
Karen Bloom, 44
I sing songs; I read stories.
Eva Rosenberg, 3 ½
Play Dreidel with pennies, m&ms,
cheerios. Karen Bloom, 44
Chanukkah songs, smiling children,
new bicycle. Treya Weintraub
I like eating chocolate Chanukah
gelt. Jonah Rosenberg, 5
A lot of latkes grease everywhere.
Michael Rosenberg
In coming issues!! Submit to
[email protected]
The Six-Word Memoirs on Jewish
Life is a partnership between Reboot
(www.rebooters.net) and Larry
Smith. In November 2006, writer
and editor Larry Smith issued a
challenge to fans of his online publication, SMITH Magazine. Inspired
by Ernest Hemingway’s legendary
shortest of short stories (“For sale:
Baby shoes, never worn”), Smith
asked readers to describe their
lives in six words. Since then, the
Six-Word Memoir® made its debut
in 2006, nearly one million short
life stories have been shared on
the storytelling community SMITH
Magazine website.
Menorah, gelt, latkes, family – best
holiday! Helen von Kugelgen, 11
7
WOMEN OF TBA, OUR SISTERHOOD
Chanukah Miracles and Bunco at WTBA
by Molli Rothman
Chanukah is approaching and I can’t help but contemplate the miracles and activity that surround this holiday.
Women of TBA (WTBA) holds monthly Girls Night Out (GNO) get-togethers. They are held on the first Thursday
of almost every month and are just fun gatherings, a chance for women to hang out, make friends or catch up
with old ones. Often there is an activity involved. Recently we tasted six Israeli wines with chocolate pairings and
shared some hot conversations! We have had cooking and art activities, as well as discussions and educational sessions. I have attended many GNO events and have greatly enjoyed meeting new people and getting to know others
better. Jessica Sterling, my co-president of WTBA, and I strongly encourage all women of TBA to join us for a
GNO or for any of the other numerous events and activities that are sponsored and run by WTBA.
At our next GNO we will be playing Bunco. Bunco is a fun and hilarious dice game played in rounds. The winner
of each round gets to wear the special hat, and prizes are awarded for different achievements. It is easy to learn
how to play. This is always a well attended GNO and much hilarity ensues. This event is on Thursday, December
4, from 7:30-9:00 p.m. in the Baum Center. The WTBA Board members work hard to plan and execute each
WTBA-sponsored event. Our goal is to create a welcoming and supportive community. Please join us!
Join us for WTBA’s
Girls Night Out
BUNCO!
Thursday, December 4
7:30 - 9:00 p.m.
Baum Youth Center, 341 MacArthur
Girls Night Out is a casual, monthly event to
gather TBA women together for relaxed and
unstructured social time. Drop in on the first
Thursday of each month to chat, laugh, debate,
have a glass of wine and some light goodies, and
get to know each other better. No need to bring
a thing! Meet old friends, and make new friends.
There’s a different mix, vibe, and conversation
every month. Come check it out!
Questions: [email protected] or
[email protected]
8
Sponsered by WTBA & Ruach Hadassah
Next Meeting: Monday, January 26
On behalf of The Women of TBA (WTBA) and
Oakland Ruach Hadassah, we would like to invite
all East Bay Women to join our Rosh Chodesh
group. The group meets monthly on the Monday
close to Rosh Chodesh, from 9:30-11:30 a.m. at
rotating members’ homes. The meetings are facilitated by members of the group.
Our new text is The Harlot by the Side of
the Road, by Jonathan Kirsch. We will
discuss chapters 2 and 3. The meeting will
open with a short discussion about the significance of the new month.
Questions? Contact Amy Tessler at [email protected]
comcast.net or (510) 482-1218 to obtain the reading materials and get on the distribution list for the
upcoming meeting locations.
MEN’S CLUB
The Annual Chanukah Party – a Men’s
Club Tradition
by Jon Shuster
The year was 2004. David Lenik and I had taken over the
leadership reins of the Men’s Club and were approaching the first Hanukkah without Leonard Fixler as Men’s
Club President in over a decade. Then, the main event of
the Men’s Club at the time was the annual Men’s Club
Hanukkah Party. It was always a big affair: food prepared by the marvelous wives of the Men’s Club board,
prizes raffled off and money to be raised for the synagogue. And now it was our turn to carry on the tradition.
We were going to do it differently. To Leonard’s bewilderment, we planned to prepare dinner ourselves (no
wives!). We hired a Klezmer band (no Mischa, the accordion player). We solicited a wide range of raffle prizes ,
including sports tickets and a challah-per-week for a year
from Semifreddi’s. And begged and pleaded for people to
come.
What do I remember? Going from less than 40 RSVP’s a
week to over 120, including a flood of requests well after
the “deadline”. Working like crazy to set up the social
hall and watching in admiration as David and an array of
volunteers prepared the food. Watching Alan Silver whip
off his jacket and don a serving apron because we were
short servers.
Best of all, I remember Leonard walking in and saying,
when I asked him what he thought, “it’s beautiful. You
boys have done a wonderful job.” We had done our best to
carry on his and the previous board’s tradition and as I look
back, it was one of my most memorable Chanukah’s ever.
The Men’s Club would evolve, expanding to offer
an array of programs that did not include the annual
Hanukkah party. We never forgot, however, the contributions of Leonard Fixler, Syd Schaffer (of blessed
memory), and other previous board members. In building
a Men’s Club dedicated to “enriching
the quality of Jewish
life at TBA”, we
stand on their shoulders and continue in
their spirit of contribution and service.
Come join us!
We have a host of exciting events coming up, including
for the first time in many years, a Men’s Club-hosted
Hanukkah Party. Don’t miss it. For more information,
contact Jeff Ilfeld at [email protected]
Jews in Bad Shoes bowling 7:30 p.m. Thursday
December 4, Alameda’s Southshore Lanes. Knock down
a few pins and share pizza and refreshments with old
and new friends. To get in on the bowling fun, RSVP to
Howard Zangwill at [email protected]
Young Parent Chavurah 1 p.m. Sunday December 7,
location TBD, sponsored by the Men’s Club with snacks
and beverages. Hey parents and toddlers: Like eating
other people’s cookies? Enjoy watching professional
sports? Join the Young Parent Chavurah for a cookie
swap and enjoy your treats during the 49ers – Raiders
game. Contact Jessica Klein at [email protected] or
Lauren Smith at [email protected]
Kol TBA Hanukkah party Get a jump on celebrating Hanukkah with an early TBA community Hanukkah
party. Latkes, fun, and further details to follow.
Jewish Heritage Night at the Warriors 7:30 p.m.
Monday December 22 vs. the Sacramento Kings.
Celebrate a night of Chanukah and winter break from
school with the gift of basketball. $32 per ticket includes
commemorative scarf. Questions and RSVP to Jereme
Albin at [email protected]
Erev X-mas Movie Sing-a-long and Dinner, co-sponsored with the Women of TBA, December 24, time
TBD. Come join us while we sing our way through the
movie Frozen while enjoying a delicious no-cost meal.
No talent required! Questions and RSVP to Rob and
Esther Debare at [email protected]
Men’s Club family game night Sundown Saturday,
January 17. Welcoming individuals and families of all
ages, we’ve revived a classic Men’s Club event for this
winter. Come ready to play and bring your favorite game
to start after we celebrate Havdala together.
Member’s Only Super Bowl Party: Sunday,
February 1, time TBD in the Baum Building, it memberappreciation day! Our members and their immediate
families are invited to a front row seat at this year’s Super
Bowl. This is a no-cost event; just show up, enjoy the
game, the commercials, the camaraderie, and the plentiful
food & drinks. Come watch the most viewed television
event of the year with friends, family and the Men’s Club.
Men’s Club Shabbat: Saturday March 14
9
RITUAL
Let’s Talk a Little About Death
by Susan Simon
Every once in a while, someone who isn’t Jewish but
knows a bit about Jewish customs expresses surprise to
me that so many Jews don’t know much about the customs about death and dying in our tradition. So I thought
I’d mention a few common ones, just in case there are
some gaps in your knowledge. Hopefully you already
know all of this stuff and can feel really knowledgeable.
But if not, you’ll soon be able to hold your own in any
cocktail party where the subject comes up.
Yahrzeit Candles – you know what these are, right?
Those squat little white candles that you can buy at
Afikoman or your local grocery store that come in little
glasses that you feel guilty about recycling afterwards
because there just HAS to be something you can do with
them but don’t need more clutter. Do you know when to
light them? When you get the little reminder from TBA
that you have a yahrzeit (anniversary of the death of a
close loved one) coming up, it tells you the date to light
the candle. You should light it before sundown and let it
burn until it goes out on its own. The glass won’t break
(OK, it isn’t supposed to break, and I’ve never had one
break, but I bet someone has!) I usually leave mine sitting on my stove which feels pretty safe to me. I have
also been known to put it in my sink before bedtime if
I’m feeling paranoid.
But actually there are more times per year than just on
the yahrzeit that you are supposed to light the candles.
We also light them for the three pilgrimage holidays.
So stock up and light them before sundown on Sh’mini
Atzeret, eighth day Pesach, and second day Shavuot. Oh,
and also, don’t forget before coming to shul on Kol Nidre.
How many should you light for these holiday candles?
That’s up to you. I have so many family members to
remember that it gets to be a little pricey. So I buy one
for each really close member and then one extra for
everyone else that I am missing.
The word yahrzeit actually is Yiddish meaning “time of
the year.” In Ladino, the commemoration is known as
nahala.
What’s the bracha for lighting a Yahrzeit Candle? There
is none, and I have to admit, I always feel a little empty
doing it without a bracha – like there is a missing ritual.
So I usually send my love to each person and say aloud
that I miss them, my own little ritual. Some people recite
psalms – and I think a favorite poem might be nice.
10
The burning light
represents the
human soul, taken
from Proverbs
(chapter 20, verse
27) that says
“The soul of man
is the candle of
God.”
What are all of
those abbreviations? – you’ve
been to the cemetery and see
Hebrew letters on
the stones with
little quotation
marks on them,
such as Z”L, ZT”l, and A”H and probably wondered what
they mean. Here is a little list to help you out:
Z”L – abbreviation for zikhrono livrakha which means of
blessed memory or may his/her memory be for a blessing.
This is used for someone who isn’t a rabbi.
A”H – abbreviation for alav ha-shalom which means may
peace be upon him/her – again, used for a non-rabbi.
ZT”L – abbreviation for zekher tzadik livrakha which
means may the memory of this righteous be for a blessing, used for a rabbi or other righteous person.
ZK”L – abbreviation for zekher kadosh livrakha which
means may the memory of the saintly be for a blessing,
used for a saintly person or someone who was martyred.
ZY”A – abbreviation for z’khuto yagen aleinu which
means may his merit protect us – saved for rabbis of great
piety.
There are more, but those are the most common ones.
You will also see on grave markers an abbreviation of the
Hebrew letters pey and nun which stands for po nikbar
or po nitman which means “here lies.” And at the end of
the marker you might find the letters tav, nun, tzadee, bet,
hay which is an abbreviation of a verse from the Tanakh,
first book of Samuel, 25:29, “May his soul be bound up
in the bond of eternal life. “
You are now all must more expert in some of the Jewish
customs of graves and yahrzeit candles. Next month on
to something a bit more upbeat!
CAMPUS UPDATES
Interview with David Avidor - Designer
Behind the Gate
by Roberta Masliyah
Finally, we have a new gate on our campus. But it’s
not just a gate, it is a thoughtful and beautiful piece of
art located as you enter the chapel and the Gan from the
parking lot. The artist, is TBA member, David Avidor.
I met with the talented 42-year-old Israeli (husband of
Tosha Schore and father of three) recently and asked him
a few of questions about his creative process.
RM: What is your design background?
DA: I studied graphic design at California College of the
Arts in Oakland and in San Francisco and graduated in
2004. Since then, I had been working as a toy designer
for 11 years, until recently when I got laid off when the
company downsized.
RM: How did Rabbi Bloom think of you for this
project?
DA: He knows I am graphic designer and I also take a
lot of photos, and in the Sadud he composed, some of my
pictures are in there too, so I think maybe he was feeling
that.
RM: What inspired you to design this beautiful gate?
DA: I was thinking about the name of the synagogue that
is Temple Beth Abraham, Abraham the father of Judaism.
I wanted it to be symbolic of learning, the wheat and the
open book. Also, I wanted to incorporate a symbol of
the Bay Area, which is the Bay Bridge, which are hidden inside the palms on both sides of the gate. The gate,
roughly resembles a tent shape with the strings. It was
important to me that when you come into the synagogue,
that you see in Hebrew (located on top) “You will be
blessed when you come” (as you leave is reads, “You will
be blessed as you leave”). So, who is blessing the people
who come? It is really, you! You are part of the community; you see yourself in the reflection of the letters.
You as a member of the community, you’re supposed to
be welcoming as Abraham was in his tent, to people who
come to visit our synagogue. A big part of the consideration to make it fit into our synagogue, I admire the art
that we have on the windows and I wanted to somehow
tie it to that, so it would loosely, visually be connected to
the art on the windows. Like the same shape and fluidity,
while working with metal.
RM: What are the materials used to create the gate?
DA: Both the brown colored part and the mirror are
steel. The brown steel was cut by an amazing process of
super small, super hard beating of a water jet to cut out
the shape, similar to laser. The mirror, is polished steel
and is solid sheet sandwiched in between two layers of
brown design.
RM: What about the other design elements, like the
Star of David with the mirror behind it?
DA: The Star of David in the middle of the gate, is in
the middle of an open book,
which also symbolizes wheat,
the bread, the challah. I put the
Star of David in the middle, to
remind us, there is no bread without learning, no learning without bread. There’s a proverb in
Hebrew about that. Personally, it
was challenging to make the Star
of David in the center and that it
wouldn’t disappear and that the
negative space was filled with a
mirror.
RM: Well I think is was brilliant. Especially for our little
ones who attend the Gan, they
can see their reflection in Star
of David.
DA: (Laughs) The height of their
face?
RM: (Laughs) Yeah!
continued on page 27
11
CHANUKKAH LIGHTS
Talia (13) and Avi (9) Paulson on the 8th night of Chanukah, 2013
Each year we have a tradition of taking a photo of the kids on the
8th night of Hanukkah at our house with all of the menorahs lit. Many
of the menorahs were gifts from Israel from our relatives, and some
are handmade by Talia and Avi. Sometimes we have friends over or
we go to friends’ houses for the 8th night, but we never miss taking
the yearly photo. (From Debra Weinstein)
Chanukah 2012 with David & Hannah
Reback and Danny & Josh DeBare.
12
Chanukah 2013: Two Gan children celebrate
Chanukah at their grandmother’s home in Danville,
California last year.
CHANUKKAH LIGHTS
Chanukkah fun, 2004.
Jessica Teisch (about age 4, right) and her twin sister Rachel
and their father, Joel, celebrating Chanukah in San Mateo,
California around 1977
Chanukah With the Heegers
by Alice Hale
The Heeger cousins gather every year to
light the menorah -- and even when one
of them isn’t there physically, he is there
virtually! But shhh! don’t tell anyone -neither of these photos were actually taken
on Chanukah!
Every year, we spend Thanksgiving with
my husband Rick’s family. Most of the
time, that means his sister and his brother
and their children coming up to the Bay
Area to spend the long weekend (occasionally, we go down to Southern California).
And because that is generally the only
time during the holiday season
when all (or at least most) of us
are together, Saturday night is
our family Chanukah celebration.
Imagine our delight last year
when it was actually Chanukah
during Thanksgiving weekend!
It is very gratifying to know that
the cousins, though all are grown
and away from home now, love
to still come back together for
that holiday weekend every year.
13
COOKING CORNER
B’Tayavon: Latkes 101
by Faith Kramer
I first wrote about latkes for the Omer in 1997 and to be
honest not much has changed in traditional latke recipes
since then. Thankfully, you don’t see recipes for cabbage
latkes any more, but there are still those out there who are
determinedly trying to make latkes healthier, trendier or
just different, attempts that are sternly repulsed by potato
pancake purists.
It was like a visit with old friends to reread my article
from 17 years ago and read the latke making advice from
several members, some of blessed memory. In that article
I had interviewed Temple Beth Abraham’s then latke
mavens and recorded their tips and tricks.
Jeanette Jager was the spiritual mother of all latke-makers
at TBA. Until her passing, she had headed up the TBA’s
Men’s Club’s massive potato pancake effort. She and her
volunteers fried up as much as 50 pounds of the shredded
spuds a year for the club’s Chanukah latke dinner.
“I don’t have a recipe, I just put in what I have a feeling
for,” she said in 1997. That includes “a little bit of flour”
to keep the potato mixture together and a “if it needs it, a
bit of matzo meal” which stiffens the batter.
She also added eggs, onions, salt and a little pepper. You
also have to use enough oil, she advised. “This is not like
making an omelet, you can’t just coat the pan,” you have
to have enough to really get the pancakes sizzling and
browned.
The late Pola Silver’s family liked her potato pancakes
with applesauce as well as with sour cream, but she liked
to eat them plain. “Back home in Russia we didn’t have
that much sour cream and applesauce,” she said in her
1997 interview.
Silver added a bit of garlic to her potato pancakes and
shredded her potatoes in the food processor and then
pulsed them a bit to even out the texture. She also added
onions, eggs, salt, pepper and flour.
She made so many latkes every year that she needed to
make them ahead.
“I don’t leave them to the last minute. I make them and
freeze them on cookie sheets one layer at a time. When
they are frozen I put them in ziplock bags,” she said. She
reheated her latkes for 10-15 minutes in 250 degree oven.
Paula Hamilton, a cookbook author, and husband Edward,
a retired chef and culinary educator, are the founders of
TBA’s popular Gourmet Gala events.
In that original latke story, Paula Hamilton shared how she
and her husband shredded the potatoes, grated the onion
and added a bit of sour cream to the batter to prevent it
from turning brown, a common goal of most latke makers.
14
They sometimes added sweet potatoes to the batter.
Sweet potato only latkes have been rising in acceptance
since I wrote the original article, even among latke traditionalists, as are more heavily seasoned latkes (in 1997
even adding black pepper or garlic was heresy to some).
Latkes have always been a more Ashkenazi treat and I
also see more Jews embracing Sephardic and Mizrahi fritters and fried pastries. The Israeli custom of sufganiyot
(jelly doughnuts) has also become very popular in the
area, thanks in part to their availability from Oakland’s
Grand Kosher Bakery, owned by TBA members Bob and
Lori Jaffe.
Another custom I learned about since I wrote the original
latke story is that for some it is traditional to sprinkle
sugar on top of their potato pancakes. I haven’t done the
research to see where the custom comes from and how far
ranging it is, but it makes for an easy and intriguing topping option.
Accompanying this story are several latke recipes.
One traditional, one “shortcut,” one vegan and one
Southwestern sweet potato. I hope there’s one for you in
the batch. If you have a latke or other Chanukah recipe
or tradition to share, please be sure to let me know at
[email protected] and I’ll be sure to include it in a
future roundup.
BROWN PAPER BAG LATKES
Serves 4-6
My latkes are a bit of the heretic. My
family likes the taste and texture of
potato peels, so my spuds are unpeeled.
I alternate shredding onion and potatoes
in batches in the food processor to help
prevent the dreaded browning. (Although
the darkened raw potatoes seem to make
little difference in the final taste.) I
use matzo cake meal to bind my batter. The
latkes are fried in plenty of oil until
the lacy edges are crisp and brown. And
I follow my mother-in-law’s advice and
always drain the freshly fried pancakes on
brown paper bags instead of on the more
usual paper towels (but the towels will
work if you find yourself without enough
paper bags.) It is inspired by a recipe
from the Jewish Holiday Cookbook by Gloria
Kaufer Greene.
2 ½ pounds of baking potatoes,
1 large or 2 small onions,
2-3 cloves of garlic, minced, optional
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper, or more to taste
About ¼ cup matzo cake meal (or 2 to 3
tbsp flour)
Vegetable oil
COOKING CORNER
Peel the potatoes if you prefer. Shred or
grate the potatoes with the onions. Larger
shreds produce lacier latkes with rougher
edges. Fine shreds or grated potatoes produce more “pancake”-like latkes. Squeeze
out and discard excess moisture from the
mixture. Mix in garlic, eggs, seasoning
and matzo meal or flour. Let sit for five
minutes so mixture can absorb the meal or
flour. Add more if it still seems wet.
In a very large skillet (the heavier the
better) over medium-high heat, heat oil
that is about ¼-inch deep until it is very
hot. (I drop a bit of batter in to see
if it sizzles with bubbles all around.)
Shape by hand into patties (or press
the batter into a large serving spoon),
squeezing out any excess liquid, then adding to the hot oil. Do not over crowd
the pancakes in the pan. Fry them until
browned on both sides and crisp on the
edges. Drain on brown paper bags. (I cut
the bags apart and drain on the unprinted inside.) Repeat until all latkes are
fried.
VEGAN LATKES
Serves 4-6
I know I said I’m not into making latkes
“healthier,” but I developed this recipe
for folks who can’t or won’t eat eggs but
still want a traditional potato pancake. I
use pre-ground flax seeds. The flax seeds
not only “glue” the potato shreds together, they also cause the latkes to stick
to paper towels or brown paper bags (the
usual medium for draining them). Use the
parchment paper instead to avoid or lessen
the problem or pat the latkes with a paper
towel and set them directly on the serving
platter.
4 Tbs. ground flax
3/4 cup of water
3 lbs. of russet, Idaho or other baking
potato, peeling optional
1 large onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
Canola or other frying oil
Mix the ground flax seeds with the water.
Stir or whisk until combined. Let sit for
10 minutes, stirring occasionally until
thick and gelatinous.
Shred potatoes alternating with onion.
(Larger shreds produce lacier latkes with
rougher edges. Fine shreds or grated potatoes produce more “pancake”-like latkes.)
Squeeze dry and discard liquid. Stir in
garlic, salt, pepper and flax seed mixture. Mix well. Let sit for a few minutes
so mixture can bind.
In a very large skillet (the heavier
the better) over medium-high heat, heat
oil that is about 1/4-inch deep until
it is very hot. (I drop a bit of batter in to see if it sizzles with bubbles
all around.) Take a handful of the batter (about 1/4 to 1/3 cup depending on how
large you want the pancakes) and press the
batter between two hands to make a patty,
squeezing again to remove any moisture.
Place carefully in the hot oil, pressing
down with a spatula on the latke occasionally to flatten it somewhat. Do not
over crowd the pancakes in the pan. Fry
them until browned on both sides and crisp
on the edges, adding more oil as needed.
Drain on parchment paper. Repeat until all
latkes are fried. Keep cooked latkes warm
in a low (250 degree) oven if desired.
SHORTCUT LATKES
Serves 2-3
Refrigerated, shredded potatoes are usually available in supermarkets near the
eggs. Use them right out of your fridge
for best results. (The colder the mixture,
the less likely the pancake will fall
apart in the fry pan.) For a milder latke,
use the lesser amount of onion and leave
out the garlic. If you can only find the
frozen pre-shredded, thaw in the refrigerator and drain well before using.
1-20 oz. package of refrigerated preshredded potatoes (may be labeled
“hash browns”)
2 eggs
1/8 tsp. ground black pepper
½ tsp. salt
1/3 to ½ cup of finely chopped onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1 Tbs. matzo cake meal or flour
Canola or corn oil
continued on page 18
15
GAN AVRAHAM
KINDERGYM
Eating Latkes, Playing Dreidels at the Gan
by Barbara Kanter
Chanukah is a fun time both at school and at home for children and their families. At the Gan, children light candles,
chant blessings, sing songs, listen to the story of the Macabees, play dreidel, create art and make and eat latkes. We are
very busy as usual.
At home you may want to consider creating your own family traditions. Remember it is the miracle of the oil and the
re-dedication of the Temple that we are celebrating rather than the emphasis on gifts. Enjoy and appreciate the glow
of the Chanukah candles as they burn for at least thirty minutes. Some ideas for home activities include inviting family and friends to your home to celebrate, cooking latkes and sufganiyot, playing dreidle, giving tzedakah, singing songs
and reading or telling the story of Chanukah. Ask your children for their ideas. Probably the best gift you can give your
children is the gift of time. Spend Chanukah evenings with your children (perhaps even without including modern technology).
Gan Avraham will be on winter break December 22-January 2. We return on Monday, January 5, 2015. Soon after on
Wednesday evening January 21, we have our Information Evening for prospective families. If you are interested (or
know a family) in enrollment for the 2015-16 school year, please contact Barbara at 510-763-7528 or [email protected] to request an enrollment application. Congregation members receive priority enrollment status. Children must
be two years old before September 2015 to enroll in Kitah Alef.
KINDERGYM SUNDAY PLAY DAYS
with Dawn for Under 3s
Temple Beth Abraham Social Hall
Dec 7, 10:30 am-12 pm, $12 per family
Information Evening
Please Join Us
Wednesday, January 21, 2015, 7:30 pm
In Room 10 (Kitah Gimmel)
Meet the Director
Learn about our Program
Ask Questions
Schedule your Visit
If you are unable to attend the Information
Evening, please call 510-763-7528
after January 21 to schedule a visit
Gan Avraham Preschool
At Temple Beth Abraham
336 Euclid Ave., Oakland
Please RSVP
[email protected] or 510-763-7528
16
Join our community of diverse families for our 32nd year
for climbing, sliding, ball pit, fire engines, water play, playdough, rocking horses, parachute, songs, bubbles, and all
of you will make new friends! Priced per family; siblings
under 3 welcome! Share this info with your entire parenting community. Contact Dawn with any questions at
(510) 547-7726 Kindergym with Dawn for ALL families
YOUNG PARENT CHAVURAH
Calling all parents of babies and toddlers! Want to connect with other parents of young children at TBA for
some low key schmoozing, fun baby-friendly activities,
and Shabbat luncheons? Then join our Chavurah for
some casual fun!
December 7 - Cookies and Football
Hey parents, babies and toddlers: Like eating other
people’s cookies? Enjoy watching professional sports?
We thought so! Join the Young Parent Chavurah for a
cookie swap on Sunday, December 7 at 1 p.m. in the
Baum Youth Center and enjoy your treats during the
49ers vs. Raiders game. Bring your “A” Game cookies,
brownies, or bars and the recipe (or box) to share. We’ll
nosh on the goodies while cheering on the game and
you can go home with new dessert ideas just in time for
Chanukah. Special thanks to the TBA Men’s Club for
sponsoring this event! To join us, please reach out to
Jessica Klein at [email protected] or Lauren Smith at
[email protected]
BET SEFER
Ethics and Stuff Like That
by Susan Simon
Several years ago at Bet Sefer we had a situation where
there were some social dynamics in a class that weren’t
ideal. Some students weren’t being so friendly to some
others. One parent in the class was particularly upset since
her child was on the receiving end of the caustic words and
actions. This was a bit before the word “bully” was used
on a daily basis – before our collective consciousness was
changed and our antennae were on full alert. In a meeting
to discuss this, she said to me “aren’t you teaching Jewish
ethics so that these things don’t happen?”
Her hurt for her child and anger came through loud and
clear. She was sending her child to a Jewish institution
where she believed that because of the ethical nature of
the curriculum, this kind of thing wouldn’t happen. I
have stewed over this comment for years.
As a student myself and as a young parent, I believed that
if you taught a subject, the content would be “learned.” I
never stopped to question what was meant by the word
“learn.” Of course I was confronted with many examples
of how ineffective this learning can be. Take spelling
tests, for example. How many of us learned to correctly
spell the words on our lists each week so that we could
do well on the test, only to promptly forget the correct
spelling when not being tested? Most of us probably
remember the “facts” about Columbus “discovering”
American, the year it occurred and the names of his ships.
But I would guess that most of the other details are lost in
the dark recesses of our brains.
Let’s make it more relevant to religious school. Many of
you know that Isaac had two sons, Jacob and Esau. And
you probably remember that Rebecca helped fool Isaac
into thinking he was Esau, the elder son, who was entitled
to his father’s blessing (inheritance). But after this farce,
Jacob runs away to escape his brother’s wrath. Do you
remember the name of the place that he ran to? Do you
remember what kind of stew Jacob used to coerce Esau
into giving him his birthright? Do you remember any lessons that you learned as a child from this story? Perhaps
you do, or perhaps the details of this story have flown the
coup of your brain.
We are always reinforcing ethical behavior in our classrooms – if teaching the Jacob and Esau story, of course
a large focus is on the morality of the actions that were
chosen. But there seems to be a large gap for children
between the moral of a story and their own behavior.
And the gap doesn’t just apply to children.
Let’s take the issue of lashon ha-rah, or evil speech.
Everyone knows that this is bad – it’s one of those values
that we talk about all the time. We know that we aren’t
supposed to engage in gossip. And that to qualify as
“gossip,” the information being shared doesn’t even have
to be negative. Our sages tell us that sharing information
continued on page 18
Shopping at Grocery Outlet with Mila-a-Thon Funds
by Susan Simon
Each year our students in 4th, 5th and 6th grades have Hebrew vocabulary words that they are expected to learn and
practice over the summer. Each fall they take a test to see how well they have learned the words. We ask them to
raise money for each word that they get correct on the test, similar to a walkathon where the students raise money for
each kilometer that they walk. Our program is called a Mila-a-thon - the word, Mila in Hebrew means “word.”
Each class goes shopping
at Grocery Outlet here in
Oakland and spends the
money that they raise to purchase food for the Alameda
County Food Bank. It’s a
wonderful program because
instead of just hearing about
how important it is to perform
mitzvot, the students get to
actually do the work. Plus,
they have a good time shopping together and are quite
proud at the end. Here are
a couple of photos from last
year’s shopping trip.
17
COOKING CORNER
Cooking Corner, continued from page 15
Beat the eggs in a large bowl with the
pepper and salt. Add potatoes, onions and
garlic. Mix well. Add cake meal or flour.
Mix well. Heat ¼” oil in a large fry pan
over medium high heat. Form patties about
3” in diameter and ¼ to ½” thick. When a
bit of batter put into the pan sizzles,
slide 3-4 patties into hot oil, being
careful not to crowd pan. Press down on
pancakes with spatula occasionally as they
cook. Fry for 2-3 minutes on each side
until brown and crispy. Remove to papertowel covered plate. Add more oil if necessary and allow to come back to “sizzle”
before frying next batch. Repeat as needed. Keep warm in a low (200 degree) oven
if desired. Serve with applesauce and/or
sour cream or plain yogurt.
SOUTHWEST SWEET POTATO PANCAKES
Serves 4
I find mashed sweet potatoes are easier to
work with than raw shreds. Vary the recipe by leaving out the cheese, chilies and
cumin and adding about a third cup drained
raisins soaked in orange juice or triple
sec and 1-2 tsp. of pumpkin pie spice.
2 Tbs. oil plus additional as needed
1 cup chopped onions
2 cups coarsely mashed, cooked sweet
potato
4 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
3 beaten eggs
1-4 oz. can diced roasted, green chilies, drained
1/4 tsp. salt or to taste
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
About 2 Tbs. flour or matzo cake meal,
if needed
Heat 2 Tbs. oil in large skillet over
medium high heat. Sauté onion until golden. Mix onions with oil into sweet potato.
Stir in cheese, eggs, chilies, salt, pepper and cumin. Mix well. If mixture is
too loose or you prefer a stiffer pancake,
stir in flour as needed.
Reheat skillet over medium high heat, adding oil as needed. Fill a 1/4 cup measuring cup with batter. Plop mixture into
pan, pressing with spatula to flatten into
a pancake that is about 1/2” high. Repeat,
being careful not to crowd pan and working
in batches if necessary. Cook a few minutes on each side until browned. Drain on
paper towels.
In addition to writing for the Omer, Faith Kramer is a
cooking columnist for the j. weekly. She blogs her food at
www.clickblogappetit.com. Send questions, suggestions
or comments to [email protected]
18
BET SEFER
Bet Sefer, continued from page 17
about others, whether good or bad, is wrong, qualifies
as evil speech. Now let’s be honest – when was the last
time that you had a conversation with a friend or family that didn’t involve some form of gossip? We discuss
other people with our close friends because sharing information bridges the gaps between us, makes us feel close,
and sometimes, makes us feel important that we knew
something “first.” We all know that Judaism teaches that
this is bad, but we do it anyway.
We are adults – we have learned ethics and morality for
decades. How many of us follow the rules all of the time?
How many of us lose our temper and say and perhaps do
things that are cruel? How many of us don’t report all of
our income on our tax returns? How many of us park in a
place that is supposed to be reserved for another?
I’m guilty of all kinds of breaches and I bet many of you
are, too. So why do we expect that our children will
always act in ethical and moral ways just because they are
being taught these lessons in religious school? The fact is
that we can read stories that have ethical behavior in them,
we can have discussions in class about these actions, we
can talk about how they apply to our lives, and yet somehow, in the heat of the moment, it becomes much more
complicated. Simply knowing and understanding rules
doesn’t compel a child (or adult) to follow them.
And so I continue to ponder about this parent’s complaint
to me. I get it – in a place where children are learning
and reinforcing ethical behavior, how can mean-spirited
behavior take place? But hearing, discussing, debating
ethical behavior doesn’t necessarily result in 100% kindness, understanding and compassion. It has taken me this
long to figure that out.
On the flip side, I have seen multiple examples of children going out of their way to be especially kind to
children who have different abilities than they do. In
t’fillah classes I have seen children wait patiently while a
child struggles with decoding the Hebrew or learning the
prayers. I don’t see teasing, I don’t hear mean comments.
It is as though many children understand that differences
have to be taken into consideration.
Does that all come from our schools? Heavens, no! It
mostly comes from the wise teachings and modeling by
parents who value their child’s ethical learning, who take
the time to read them stories where people act in kind
ways, and who act kindly to and in front of their children. The parents are the real heroes for every child who
grows up to be a mensch. But if we can help a little bit,
so much the better. Yasher Koach parents, grandparents,
aunts, uncles, cousins and family friends. You’re doing a
pretty stellar job!
BET SEFER
LA’ATID
The Best Trip to LA: From the
Holocaust Museum to Splash Mountain
By Milah Gammon
I really enjoyed going to LA with my 7th grade Hebrew class. The three main things we did were going to The Museum
of Tolerance, Disneyland and a Jewish drug rehabilitation center. As some of my teachers said when I told them I was
going to be gone from class, “Wow…what an interesting variety.” They sure were right!
Every single part of our trip was meaningful and had some significance, from eating kosher hamburgers at Nagila to
doing speedy evening prayers on the trams at Disneyland. At the Museum of Tolerance we all were very engaged. I
learned so many things about the Holocaust and issues in the world today. Did you know that anti-Semitism started long
before World War II? Well, I didn’t and it was enlightening to learn a lot more about these subjects.
Besides the places we went, it was also great to just be with our friends and bond as a whole Hebrew school class.
Next La’atid Event: Chanukkah Party, December 14, Baum Center
If you are a 4th-7th grade parent this year, your child is automatically a member of La’atid
“To the Future”. We have monthly events which tend to be both social and socially conscious.
To RSVP or questions, contact your trusty advisors, Dina & Phil Hankin at [email protected]
Please Join Us for TBA’s Youth Services
Shabbat Mishpacha
for preschool-aged children
and their families.
Kitah Gimmel classroom.
December 6, 10:15 a.m.
T’fillat Y’ladim
for children in Kindergarten,
1st & 2nd grade & their families.
In the Chapel.
December 6, 10:15 a.m.
Junior Congregation
for children in 3rd - 6th grade.
In the Chapel.
December 20, 10:15 a.m.
19
JEWISH DAY SCHOOLS
Tehiyah Day School Celebrates Hanukkah
With Lights That Shine Around the World
by Sheila O’Daniel
In the days and weeks leading up to Chanukah, Tehiyah
Day School comes alive with the sights, sounds, åand
sweet smells of the holiday. Student of all ages in every
grade experience a sense of wonder as the seasons
change, the sun sets earlier, and we begin exploring the
traditions of Hanukkah.
Diversity is one of the cornerstones of Tehiyah, where
students and teachers hail from around the world.
Although different paths may have brought us all together, it is the strength of our community that unites us with
the same purpose. During this time of year, we deepen
the importance of the diversity on our own campus as we
discover Jewish traditions that span the globe. Touching
each subject we teach, the values and customs that come
to light during Chanukah are woven into every classroom
throughout our school.
This year, art students in the Tehiyah Day School Middle
School are designing and building their own Chanukiahs
inspired by North African Jewish artistic traditions. Art
teacher, Janet Lipkin, guides students through a cultural
history of Jews from Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia as
she shows them examples of artifacts in museum exhibits. With a wealth of knowledge and the guidance of
their art teacher, students imagine and create their own
Chanukiahs inspired by what they have seen and discovered. The process is magical as we watch students
connect what they know to what they make with pride,
authorship, and love for the traditions that they celebrate
together.
As winter descends and chilly nights await, our students
continue to add their own light to the world. While we are
full of joy and gratitude to have our students at Tehiyah
Day School, we know that the foundation of knowledge,
respect for diversity, and the lasting strength of their community is a light that will continue to shine, wherever in
the world they may go.
Oakland Hebrew Day School and the Art
Student
by Philippa Lichterman
At Oakland Hebrew Day School (OHDS), the student
is at the heart of the Art curriculum. From Kindergarten
to 8th Grade, students learn to not only appreciate and
explore different kinds of art, but in essence they learn
more about themselves through the process of creating
artwork. In Kindergarten, the goal is to build students’
confidence in navigating their way safely and effectively in the art room, so that they can really immerse
themselves in different art materials. By Middle School,
students are able to choose (from a guided list of assignments) which artists they would like to study, which
materials they would like to explore, and how they want
to go about creating their artwork.
Laurie Bellet has taught the art program at OHDS for 10
years. “For me, art is about process”, says Laurie, “The
artist should be captivated in an adventure of exploration,
experimentation, discovery and accomplishment. Students
need to nurture the creative spirit within themselves and
within one another”. According to Laurie, studying art
through the artists themselves helps the students to “see
into their lives and their struggles and think about our
own.”
Laurie is always finding new and creative ways for students to engage with art. This week in the OHDS hall-
20
JEWISH DAY SCHOOLS
ways, you will see the work of 8th Grade students as they
explored the “terragraph” method (using sand from the
deserts of Israel as a means of creating textured images
on paper) or the American Flag depicted by 3rd grade
students in different ways, depending on what the national anthem meant to them.
By the end of the school year, the students are ready to
share their learning and insights at the annual Art Show.
Along with different pieces of art that each student
chooses to display are the students’ artist statements. As
Laurie states: “It’s important that each student has artwork displayed that is meaningful to them, that they feel
most proud of. This is their journey. Their artist statements really provide insight into their soul.”
Laurie has developed a nationally-recognized Jewish
Artist curriculum and received a unique grant from the
Covenant Foundation to implement this curriculum.
Laurie’s thoughtful insights about art have been published
in a number of journals and newspapers including School
Arts magazine and Torah Aura productions.
If you have a preschool-aged child aged 4-5 years old, we
invite you to enjoy a special event:
Art Workshop with Hamora Laurie
Tuesday, December 16, 3:00 - 4:00pm, Art Room, OHDS
Rabbi Dan Kohn, CCJDS Rabbi in Residence believes,
“Contra Costa Jewish Day School students in are following the example of the ancient Maccabees. The
Maccabees championed the value and importance of
Judaism in a sea of Hellenized, Greek culture which surrounded them. Similarly, CCJDS students learn about
the details of Jewish life and learning to serve as leaders
of Jewish life and of Jewish particularism in a sea of the
universal American culture in which we all live.”
Come see CCJDS shine both in and out of the classroom.
We are located in Lafayette, just 18 minutes from TBA.
We offer transportation from Oakland and Berkeley.
Visit www.ccjds.org or call Amy Wittenberg, Admissions
Director at 925.284.8288, email: [email protected]
Please join us: (RSVP appreciated)
K-8th grade Open House on Sunday Dec 7, 4:30-6:00 pm
– come at 3:00 and enjoy a PJ Library event, an amazing
Chanukah puppet show by one and only Diana Shmiana!
K-8th grade School Tour & Lunch on Wednesday, Dec 18
and Jan 15, 11:00 am-12:30 pm
Middle School Open House on Tuesday, January 27,
6:15-8:15 pm
Kindly RSVP to Philippa Lichterman, as spots are limited: [email protected] or (510) 531-8600 ext. 12.
You are also welcome to schedule a personal tour of our
campus.
Chanukah at CCJDS
by Amy Wittenberg
At the Conta Costa Jewish Day School (CCJDS)
Chanukah is celebrated each year by the entire community. Soofganiyot, gelt, dreidel, latkes, songs from Israel
and America about this special season pervade our time
together. However, learning together and taking action
to make our world better has a central place through the
chag’s lessons (holiday) as well.
Eighth graders contrast the Book of Maccabees with the
Gemara passage dealing with Hanukkah. We talk about
the differences between a military victory and a miracle
of oil performed by God and the message that each story
conveys. The military victory of the Maccabees emphasizes the importance of human action vs. the more passive role of humans in the story of the oil. Students also
study the historical context of the Talmud story, how the
rabbis were under the subjugation of Rome, and how
military action against Rome already had brought disaster
upon the community and this is one of the reasons for the
Midrash of the oil.
Jonah Kunis (CCJDS Student/TBA member) celebrating
Chanukah at CCJDS
21
DONATIONS
Charity is equal in importance to all the other commandments combined.
Davis Courtyard Match Fund
Cynthia Berrol
Marc & Eden Bruner
Richard Charlesworth & Amy Moscov,
in honor of Misia Nudler receiving award
Richard Charlesworth & Amy Moscov,
in memory of Henry Ramek
Richard Charlesworth & Amy Moscov,
in memory of Karen Bloom’s father
Richard Charlesworth & Amy Moscov,
in memory of Leonard Fixler
Robert DeBare & Esther Rogers
Barry & Cheri Feiner
Philip & Dina Hankin
Susan Johnson, in memory of
Murray Davis
Gary & Faith Kramer
Marshall & Lynn Langfeld, in memory
of Louis Berg
Howard & Judy Craddick Maccabee
Misia Nudler
Ron & Adele Ostomel, in loving
memory of Pola and Sam Silver
Alan S. & Eve O. Rosenfeld, in honor
of Marshall Langfeld’s Birthday
Sheldon & Barbara Rothblatt
Barry & Hana Rotman
Ellen Davis & Richard Sears
Ethel Shaffer, in memory of
Emma Shaffer
Stephen & Susan Shub
Greg & Jessica Sterling
Vera Zatkin
Jeanette Jeger Kitchen Fund
Norman & Jo Budman, in memory
of Herman Budman
Norman & Jo Budman, in memory of
Rabbi Morris and Mary Schussheim
Helen Fixler, in honor of Misia Nudler’s
birthday
Helen Fixler, in memory of
Harold Nudler
Helen Fixler, wishing Jack Jeger a
speedy recovery
Misia Nudler, condolences to Martin
Kharrazi on loss of his Father Michael
Misia Nudler, congrats to Applebaum’s
for new grandson
Joel Piser & Jing Weng Hsieh, in
memory of Monroe Mendel Piser
General Fund
Carole Skowronski, Happy
Rosh Hashana 5775!!
Richard & Michelle Marrus
Sarah Queller
22
Marcy Belfer, in memory of
Reba Schechtman
Libby Hertz, in memory of Sidney Hertz
Anthony Kay & Amy Kittiver-Kay
Randall & Jan Kessler, in memory of
Isaac Kessler
Eugene & Marjorie Myers, in memory
of Father
Esther Nathanson, in memory of Sam
Sarver
Mark & Rita Roytfeld, in memory of
our parents and relatives
David & Elaine Saffan, in memory of
Paulette and Isaac Sevi
Nissan & Carol Saidian, in memory
of Hezghia Saidian
Bryan Schwartz &
Alicia Cernitz-Schwartz
Madeline Weinstein, in memory
of Emma Rothenberg
Tara Yudenfreund
Kiddush Fund
Mark Kamen
Minyan Fund
Daniel & Anne Bookin, in memory
of Norman Bookin
Camper/Scholarship Fund
Barry & Hana Rotman, in memory of
Ken Rotman
Leon & Jessica Zektser
Rabbi Discretionary Fund
Kelly Rosales, thank you to Rabbi Bloom
Vernon & Knarik Levy
Ronn Berrol & Joan Korin, in memory
of Barbara Korin
Michael & Kathryn Burge, in memory
of Samuel Burge
Jay Fischer, in memory of Susan Fischer
Murray & Janet Gordon, in memory of
Clarence Marcus
Klaus Ullrich Rotzscher & Jessica
Siegel, in memory of Penina Turner
Stuart & Abby Zangwill, Bodhi
Strickman
Stuart & Abby Zangwill, Edgar Shiner’s
Brit Milah
Stuart & Abby Zangwill, Ezra Wolka’s
Brit Milah
Stuart & Abby Zangwill, Gideon
Rosenbach’s Brit Milah
Stuart & Abby Zangwill, in memory of
Errin Berkowitz
Stuart & Abby Zangwill, Isaac Lenhert’s
Brit Milah
Stuart & Abby Zangwill, Isaiah Rothe’s
Brit Milah
Stuart & Abby Zangwill, Jasper Wolt’s
Brit Milah
Stuart & Abby Zangwill, Judah
Leibowitz’s Brit Milah
Stuart & Abby Zangwill, Mayor
Hemberg’s Brit Milah
Stuart & Abby Zangwill, Ryder Crook’s
Brit Milah
Stuart & Abby Zangwill, Zachary
Gorman’s Brit Milah
Cantor Discretionary Fund
Cherryne Kravitz, in memory of
Evelyn and Albert Kravitz
Celia & Morris Davis Hunger Fund
Sandra Sher, in memory of Victor Ries
Endowment Fund
Ilya & Regina Okh, in memory of my
mother Klara Okh
Hertz - Israel Scholarship Fund
Gerald & Ruby Hertz, just feels good
to give
Wasserman Fund
Marc & Janet Wasserman, in memory
of Helen Wasserman
High Holy Day - General Appeal
Rami & Daphne Albert
Michael & Liat Bostick
David Coltoff & Debra Perrin Coltoff
Michael Ehrenberg & Stephen Pollack
Noah & Carrie Garber
Alan Gellman & Arlene Zuckerberg
Jeff Gutkin & Helene Blatter
Fredric & Rose Hoffman
Richard & Audrey Kauffman
Eric Leve
David & Jill Lindenbaum
Jeffrey Lipsett & Lisa Tabak
Mark Liss & Bonnie Burt
Dan & Amy Maidenberg
Elan & Roberta Masliyah
Larry & Deborah Reback
Daryl & Bryna Ross
Sheldon Schreiberg & Sherry Marcus
Bryan Schwartz &
Alicia Cernitz-Schwartz
Will & Rebecca Sparks
Karen Sumner
Samuel J. Tobin & Susan E. Bloch
Joseph Young & Rachel Goldstone
DONATIONS
High Holy Day Appeal Fund
Nick & Lydia Adams
Armand & Carol Attia
Felix Baum
Jennifer Baum
Kenneth & Tamara Benau
Ellen Bercovich
Jason & Nancy Berger
Judy Berkowitz
Steven Berl & Anita Bloch
Cynthia Berrol
Ronn Berrol & Joan Korin
Harvey & Fran Blatter
Norman & Jo Budman
Michael & Kathryn Burge
Andy Campbell & Rachel Dornhelm
Sophie Casson
Marvin Cohen & Suzy Locke
Jack Coulter
Virginia Davis
Jason Edelstein &
Leah Wagner-Edelstein
Robert Edesess & Janet Lai
Eric & Tina Eisenman
Rebecca Farmer
Barry & Cheri Feiner
David & Diane Feldhammer
Helen Fixler
David Freeman
Joel & Jueli Garfinkle
Reuven Glick & Marci Gottlieb
Dean Goldfein & Tamira Elul
Fifi Goodfellow
Neil Goteiner & Nadine Joseph
Warren & Outi Gould
Allan Green
Morey & Eleanor Greenstein
Steven Grossman & Jill Rosenthal
Ward Hagar & Caroline Hastings
Philip & Dina Hankin
Steven & Penny Harris
Gerald & Ruby Hertz
Alison Heyman
Jeff & Johanna Ilfeld
Jonathan & Joy Jacobs
Steven & Joan Jacobs
Daniel Jaffe & Yael Yakar
Donald Jurow
Joseph Karwat & Stacy Month
Susan Kasdan, in memory of
Jessie Kasdan
Leonard Katz
Brent Kauffman
Anthony Kay & Amy Kittiver-Kay
Jesse & Gabriella Kellerman
Seymour Kessler
Martin & Lisa Kharrazi
Daniel & Jessica Klein
Robert Klein & Doreen Alper
Gary & Faith Kramer
Phillip & Andrea LaMar
JB Leibovitch & Judy Chun
Jerrold & Anne Levine
Gabriel & Angela Levy
Philip & Amy Mezey
Larry Miller & Mary Kelly
Peter Miller & Bess Gurman
Shelby & Adrienne Miller
Randy & Lori Morris
Misia Nudler
John Parker & Deborah Santucci
Mikhail & Svetlana Partsuf
Lawrence Polon & Ernestina Carrillo
Betty Ann Polse
Jeffrey & Judith Quittman
Eve Gordon Ramek
John Rego & Deborah Kahane Rego
Penny Righthand
Sheldon & Barbara Rothblatt
Barry & Hana Rotman
Klaus Ullrich Rotzscher &
Jessica Siegel
Kelly Rosales, thanks to TBA
Nissan & Carol Saidian
Colin & Cecile Schlesinger
Daniel B. & Marieka Schotland
Lori-Jill Seltzer
Ethel Shaffer
Jonathan Shuster & Beth Sirull
Alan & Cheryl Silver
Shirley Silver
Melvin & Janice Silverman
Sandra Simon
Gary Smith & Coline David
Stephen Steiner & Sarilee Janger
Greg & Jessica Sterling
Michael Stevens
Gilles Tarquin
Jane Tishkoff
Jerome & Beverly Turchin
Bruce & Alicia von Kugelgen
Morris & Audree Weiss
Ronald & Vicki Weller
Joshua Wittenberg & Jennifer Kopp
Stuart & Abby Zangwill
Steven & Victoria Zatkin
Endowment Fund
Nick & Lydia Adams
Richard & Naomi Applebaum
Armand & Carol Attia
Felix Baum
Jennifer Baum
Ellen Bercovich
Jason & Nancy Berger
Steven Berl & Anita Bloch
Cynthia Berrol
Ronn Berrol & Joan Korin
Harvey & Fran Blatter
Norman & Jo Budman
Michael & Kathryn Burge
Andy Campbell & Rachel Dornhelm
Sophie Casson
Marvin Cohen & Suzy Locke
Jack Coulter
Virginia Davis
Jason Edelstein &
Leah Wagner-Edelstein
Robert Edesess & Janet Lai
Eric & Tina Eisenman
Rebecca Farmer
Barry & Cheri Feiner
David & Diane Feldhammer
Helen Fixler
Joel & Jueli Garfinkle
Reuven Glick & Marci Gottlieb
Dean Goldfein & Tamira Elul
Fifi Goodfellow
Neil Goteiner & Nadine Joseph
Warren & Outi Gould
Allan Green
Morey & Eleanor Greenstein
Steven Grossman & Jill Rosenthal
Ward Hagar & Caroline Hastings
Philip & Dina Hankin
Steven & Penny Harris
Gerald & Ruby Hertz
Alison Heyman, in honor of Mark Fickes
and Rabbi Bloom
Jeff & Johanna Ilfeld
Jonathan & Joy Jacobs
Steven & Joan Jacobs
Daniel Jaffe & Yael Yakar
Donald Jurow
Melvin & Margaret Kaplans
Joseph Karwat & Stacy Month
Susan Kasdan, in memory of Jessie
Kasdan
Leonard Katz
Brent Kauffman
Anthony Kay & Amy Kittiver-Kay
Jesse & Gabriella Kellerman
Daniel & Jessica Klein
Robert Klein & Doreen Alper
Gary & Faith Kramer
Phillip & Andrea LaMar
Jerrold & Anne Levine
Angelina Levy
Gabriel & Angela Levy
Philip & Amy Mezey
Larry Miller & Mary Kelly
Peter Miller & Bess Gurman
Shelby & Adrienne Miller
Joseph & Sheila Millman
Randy & Lori Morris
continued on page 27
23
B’nai Mitzvah
LIFE CYCLES
Eliana Bloomfield, December 13, 2014
My name is Eliana Bloomfield and I am a 7th grader at Piedmont Middle
School. My favorite subjects in school are Shakespeare and ceramics
because they are fun and relaxing. I love playing soccer on my team, the
Flying Tigers, playing piano (I have been playing for five years), cooking,
cuddling with my dog, Belle, and hanging out with my friends and family.
My Torah portion is called Vayeshev. Triennials one and three of Vayeshev
are about Joseph, but triennial two (the part that I got) is about Judah and his
daughter- in-law, Tamar. This story is especially interesting because Judah
and Tamar end up having a baby. As you might imagine, one could interpret
this in many different ways. I hope to see you on December 13th so I can
share my interpretation with you.
Marshall Wildmann,
December 20, 2014
My name is Marshall Wildmann and
I am a 7th grader at Willard Middle
School in Berkeley. My favorite subject in school is history. I especially like
to read about World War II. I like to play many sports. My favorite sports
are baseball and skiing. I also like to play tennis, soccer and frisbee. I am a
Giants fan. I go to camp Ramah Outdoor Adventure in Colorado where we
get to go backpacking.
My Torah portion is Miketz and it is in the book of Genesis. Miketz is about
Joseph as the Vizier of Egypt during the famine and how he lies to his brothers when they come to Egypt to get food. In my drash I will speak about
how Joseph lied and when it is OK to lie.
Juliet Hagar, December 27, 2014
My name is Juliet Hagar. I go to Claremont middle school and I am in 7th
grade. My favorite subjects in school are math and computer animation.
When I am not in school, I participate in activities such as soccer, cross
country, horseback riding and girl scouts. Although, I am mostly focused on
soccer.
Friends are a big part of my life. They keep me positive and make every
day amazing. I’ve met some of my good friends during my many years at
Bet Sefer. I enjoy seeing and learning with them each week. I couldn’t live
without my friends!
My Torah portion is Vayigash and comes from the book of Genesis. My
portion is about how Jacob finds out that his son Joseph is alive and he
wants to see him before he dies. G-d tells Jacob that he will take him to and
from Egypt and Joseph shall be there at Jacob’s death bed.
I hope to see you there to enjoy this day with me and my family and, of
course, my friends!
Welcome New Member
24
Judy Glick
LIFE CYCLES
DECEMBER BIRTHDAYS
1
Jereme Albin
Bruce Goldberg
Sara Korn
Julie Rubenstein
Ariele Scharff
Vera Zatkin
11
Rachel Harris
Sy David Schwartz
12
2
Aaron Eliahu
Aron Gellman
Derek Krantz
Richard Stone
3
Avshalom Berrol
Marissa Glick
Tony Rose
Gabriel Levy
Renee Marx
Leah Turchin
Ilah Ross
Daniel B. Schotland
13
14
Michael Rosenberg
Aaron Skiles
Hannah Tobin-Bloch
Hannah Benau
Lila Coltoff
Carrie Garber
Steven Kay
Sheldon Rothblatt
5
15
4
Miriam Green
Gabriel Halperin
Judy Glick
6
Caroline Hastings
Eliana Bloomfield
Zack Davis
Geoff Robb
Esther Rogers
7
Ari Berl
8
Robert Edesess
Russell Eisenman
Sarah Goldman
Juliet Hagar
Mrs. Linda Knauer
9
Gaia Bostick
Johanna Ilfeld
Brian Kaplan
Katya Marinoff
10
David Avidor
Ariel Spritzer-Satomi
16
17
Ila Albin
Max Baum
Michael Marx
Joel Mendelson
18
Mia Harvitt
Rowan Mason
Amy Mezey
Colin Schlesinger
Rachel Zatkin
20
Shosh Blachman
Stephen Shub
21
Alan O’Neill
Tate Lev Schwartz
Josephine Trilling
22
Rachel Barach
Aaron Bukofzer
Amalia Dornhelm Campbell
Aurora Dornhelm Campbell
Carla Itzkowich
Carol Saidian
23
Nathaniel Ilfeld
Emily Sarit Pascal
Ari Varga
24
Maureen Krantz
Josh Weiss
25
Holly Forster
Rachel Liron
Jesse Shalev
27
Corey Davis
Ben Stiegler
Susan Weiner
28
Faith Kramer
Lynn Langfeld
Sheila Millman
29
Gene Brott
Marlene Dines
Peri Zangwill
30
Lara Gilman
Paul Leibovitch
Rachel Nosowsky
John Parker
Caren Shapiro
Dana Sherne
Audrey Isabel Trilling
31
Jennifer Beck
Zoe Harvitt
Elliot Lenik
Sam Weiner
Is your birthday information wrong or missing from this list? Please contact the TBA office to make corrections.
25
LIFE CYCLES
DECEMBER YAHRZEITS
May God comfort you among all the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem
Esther Nankin
Richard Gutmann
Leslie Kessler
KISLEV 9-13
Ganesane Rosenberg
Leon Klein
Morris Leavitt
December 1-5
Ben
Silver
Phillip
Mendelsohn
Mark S. Bloom
Irma Eis
Wayne Stanfield
Arthur Nightingale
Bessie Kvint
Jeanette Jeger
Max
Davis
Goldie
Turetz
David Mehr
Sarah Lichtenstein
Richard M. Goldstone
Fred Brinner
Ethel Mehr
Eve Rothman
Molva Goodman
Nathan Dickson
Fannie Shapiro
Stanley Rudee
Mary
Hale
Rebecca
Epstein
William Heeger
Anne H. Tanner
Max Kaufman
Michael Fynland
Israel Rogers
Jacob Karwat
Mervin
Tessler
Rabbi
Joel
Goor
Frieda Zilverberg
Edward Bercovich
Nina Balint
Booker Holton Sr.
Abraham Bercovich
Herbert Goodman
Edith Budman
Sophie Kranz
Mendel H. Friedman
Leon Kraft
Max
Charlup
Samuel
Morow
Blanche Jacobs
Rebecca Millman
Jennie Gevertz
Louis Robinson
Jacob Kerbel
Esther Naggar
Adolph A. Kay
Goldberg Roselyn
Benjamin Millman
Sarah Leah Schneider
Erna
Bender
Esther
Asher
Sam Silver
Aaron Gissen
Al Mendelsohn
Herbert Allen Goodfellow TEVET 5-9
Alexander Kleinlerer
Sylvia
Reback
Richard Levine
Alice Mendel
December 27-31
Helen Ida Tessler
Betty Gordon Grinberg
Joseph Rosenfeld
Jacob Frydman
Thelma Diane Tobin
Kalman Klein
Joseph Samson
Sadelle Kilmen
Pierson Jacobs
Rita Melamerson
Joseph Schein
William Malakoff
Toni W. Berke
Israel Stamer
Jacob Wachsman
Alice Rosenstein
Louis Berman
Eva Weissman
KISLEV 28-TEVET 4
Lynn Dries-Daffner
Marlene Berger Caspar
Stella Brott
December 20-26
Helene Holeman
Ida Hyman
Sandy Rosenfeld Emert
Samuel Gevertz
Yetta Lazerwitz-Miller
Anna Shalinsky
Sam Katzburg
Rabbi Phillip Langh
David Rosenstein
Shlomit Green
Ann Pitkin
Michael J. O’Rourke
Goldie Steinberg
Benjamin Holeman
Sandra Rosenfeld-Emert
Sidney Winchell
Michael Wallerstein
Samuel Rubin
Laura Rosenthal
Joseph Dorfman
Doris Held
Arthur Wald
Erwin Wallen
Isadore Goldman
Minette Mogill
Eric Zielenziger
KISLEV 21-27
Jack Gray
Norman Stone
KISLEV 14-20
December 6-12
David Aarons
Harry Barnett
Irwin Bryan
Rita Heeger
Nancy Konigsberg
December 13-19
Victorine Misan
Miriam Nudler
Sam Feltman
Masao Kishi
Mordecai Parker
Stanley Schechtman
Paul Trof
David Freedman
Morris Gelfand
Jacob Kronrod
Raymond Naggar
Harold Reid
Samuel Bernstein
Recent Deaths in Our Community
N Martin Kharrazi, Father of Martin Kharrazi
Paul Rothman, Husband of Galen
Max Turchen, Father of Freya Turchen
Edith Bloch, Mother of Anita Bloch (Steven Berl)
26
Sheldon Bereskin
Max Lutz
Rabbi Hayim Goren
Perelmuter
Sarah Libby Reich
Joseph Bloch, Father of Susan Bloch (Sam Tobin)
Peter Lipman, Father of Janna Lipman Weiss (Josh
Weiss)
LIFE CYCLES
Donations, continued from page 23
Misia Nudler
Barbara Oseroff
John Parker & Deborah Santucci
Mikhail & Svetlana Partsuf
Lawrence Polon & Ernestina Carrillo
Betty Ann Polse
Jeffrey & Judith Quittman
Eve Gordon Ramek
John Rego& Deborah Kahane Rego
Penny Righthand
Sheldon & Barbara Rothblatt
Barry & Hana Rotman
Klaus Ullrich Rotzscher &
Jessica Siegel
Nissan & Carol Saidian
Colin & Cecile Schlesinger
Daniel B. & Marieka Schotland
Lori-Jill Seltzer
Ethel Shaffer
Jonathan Shuster & Beth Sirull
Alan & Cheryl Silver
Melvin & Janice Silverman
Sandra Simon
Gary Smith & Coline David
Stephen Steiner & Sarilee Janger
Greg & Jessica Sterling
Michael Stevens
Gilles Tarquin
Jane Tishkoff
Micah & Ortal Trilling
Jerome & Beverly Turchin
Bruce & Alicia von Kugelgen
Morris & Audree Weiss
Ronald & Vicki Weller
Joshua Wittenberg & Jennifer Kopp
Stuart & Abby Zangwill
Steven & Victoria Zatkin
Endowment Appeal Fund
Rami & Daphne Albert
Michael & Liat Bostick
David Coltoff & Debra Perrin Coltoff
Avidor interview, continued from page 11
Matthew Disco & Sandra Rappaport
Michael Ehrenberg & Stephen Pollack
Alan Gellman & Arlene Zuckerberg
Jeff Gutkin & Helene Blatter
Fredric & Rose Hoffman
Richard & Audrey Kauffman
Eric Leve
David & Jill Lindenbaum
Jeffrey Lipsett & Lisa Tabak
Mark Liss & Bonnie Burt
Dan & Amy Maidenberg
Larry & Deborah Reback
Daryl & Bryna Ross
Sheldon Schreiberg & Sherry Marcus
Bryan Schwartz &
Alicia Cernitz-Schwartz
Will & Rebecca Sparks
Karen Sumner
Samuel J. Tobin & Susan E. Bloch
Joseph Young & Rachel Goldstone
RM: Could you explain the circle?
DA: I usually get an idea that sparks the imagination and
then draw a few sketches out. Then I showed it to the
Rabbi and then we went back and forth, and then we settled on Abraham’s Tent and from there I started sketching
some more, until it felt right.
DA: During Yom Kippur, they say to have an easy fast
and if you have an easy fast, you were closer to perfection during the year. So, we should always strive for
perfection. I find the circle to be the perfect geometric
shape, to help us think about who we are, what we want
to be when we walk in and when we leave.
RM: With the expansion of the campus, do you have
anymore plans to design more gates?
DA: I hope so! I hope to help design the new gate
between the Gan and the courtyard. And I’m also open to
anyone who may want me to design something for them.
(Laughs).
RM: Your whole design process was so thoughtful,
now the whole entrance is secure. We have some very
tall members, did you take any of that into consideration?
RM: (laughs) Are you open to design gates for homes
too?!
DA: Just like the writing above the gate works for us,
the Star of David works symbolically for them at the bottom of the gate.
DA: (laughs). Yes! We had to work with the city
requirements for wheelchair accessibility and the minimum and maximum requirement for height. I think it
worked well. (Laughs) Now everyone can walk into the
campus without bending down.
RM: How long did it take you to design the gate?
DA: On and off about two months to design the pattern.
The fabrication was longer because there was a lot of
back and forth between the fabricator and me, and understanding exactly how we were going construct it. Also,
Rayna (Arnold, TBA Director) did a great job working
with the fabricator regarding the pricing.
RM: Was it a creative process that came easily for
you?
DA: (laughs) Yes, gates for homes, fences or anything
that needs an artistic touch. I like projects like this. I feel
part of the community and if you have the skills, why
not? It’s nice to think about a facility like this that’s over
a hundred years old, you need to fit in what has a connection to the past and be a vision for the future.
RM: How do you feel about your finished work, your
baby?
DA: (laughs) I love it! I think it came out very well.
Now it will be a bit harder for people to go over it, or for
the neighbors to climb over onto the roof.
RM: Well I think you did an outstanding job. Thank
you!
DA: Thank you.
27
28
7
14
22
Kislev
28
21
8
15
22
29
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
7
Tevet
'''''''
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
7:15p Jewish Heritage Night with the
Warriors vs Sacramento Kings
Rosh Chodesh Chanukah
30
Kislev
9:30a Rosh Chodesh-Tevet
(Contact Amy Tessler for location)
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
23
Kislev
7p TBA Book Club Meeting-Tender at the Bone by Ruth Reichl
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
16
Kislev
1
9
2
16
23
8
Tevet
30
No Bet Sefer
''''''''
'' 6:43p
No Bet Sefer
Rosh Chodesh
Last night of Chanukah
1
Tevet
'
4p-6p Bet Sefer
Chanukah Begins (1st night)
24
Kislev
4p-6p Bet Sefer
7:30p Board Meeting
7p Yitzhak Rabin-his Life and
Legacy. A walk thru presentation
(Social Hall)
17
Kislev
4p-6p Bet Sefer
10
Kislev
3
10
''
17
24
31
No Kindergym this week
Office Closes at 1p
9a Weekly Text Study
(Woodminster Cafe)
7p BBYO-AZA and BBG
9
Tevet
No Kindergym this week
Office Closes at 1p
9a Weekly Text Study (Woodminster)
7p BBYO-AZA and BBG
Men’s Club and WTBA
Christmas Eve Movie
2
Tevet
9a Weekly Text Study
(Woodminster Cafe)
10-11a & 11:15a-12p Kindergym
7p BBYO-AZA and BBG
25
Kislev
9a Weekly Text Study
(Woodminster Cafe)
10-11a & 11:15a-12p Kindergym
7p BBYO-AZA and BBG
7:30 Gan School Committee meeting
18
Kislev
9a Weekly Text Study
(Woodminster Cafe)
10-11a & 11:15a-12p Kindergym
7p BBYO-AZA and BBG
11
Kislev
4
11
18
25
No Bet Sefer
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
Office & Gan Closed/
No Kindergym this week
3
Tevet
'''
4p-6p Bet Sefer
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
10-11a & 11:15a-12p Kindergym
26
Kislev
4p-6p Bet Sefer
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
10-11a & 11:15a-12p Kindergym
19
Kislev
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
with Marshall Wildmann
10-11a & 11:15a-12p Kindergym
4p-6p Bet Sefer
7:30p Jews with Bad Shoes Bowling
7:30p Girls Night Out-Bunco!
12
Kislev
5
12
19
26
6:15p-7:15p Kabbalat Shabbat
No Kindergym this week
4
Tevet
''''
'' 4:56p
9:30-10:30a & 10:45-11:45a
Kindergym
6:15p-7:15p Kabbalat Shabbat
27 '' 4:52p
Kislev
6:15p-7:15p Kabbalat Shabbat
with GleeBA!
9:30-10:30a & 10:45-11:45a
Kindergym
20 '' 4:50p
Kislev
9:30-10:30a & 10:45-11:45a
Kindergym
5:45p Bet Sefer Kitah Alef
Share A Shabbat
6:15p-7:15p Kabbalat Shabbat
13 '' 4:49p
Kislev
Always check the Congregational E-mail or the Weekly Shabbat Bulletin for more up-to-date information. Please note any corrections care of Rayna Arnold at the TBA office.
6
Miketz
20
27
9:30a-12p Shabbat Services
Bat Mitzvah of Juliet Hagar
1-2:30p Mah Jongg
for Experienced players
5:39p Havdalah (42 min)
'''''
Vayigash
5
Tevet
5:35p Havdalah (42 min)
9:30a-12p Shabbat Services
Bar Mitzvah of Marshall Wildmann
10:15 Junior Congregation
28
Kislev
5:32p Havdalah (42 min)
1-2:30p Mah Jongg for Beginners
9:30a-12p Shabbat Service
Bat Mitzvah of Eliana Bloomfield
13
9:30a-12p Shabbat Services
10:15a Shabbat Mishpacha
10:15a T’fillat Y’ladim
6p BBYO-Limo and Latkes
5:31p Havdalah (42 min)
Vayeshev
21
Kislev
14 Vayishlach
Kislev
December 2014
Calendars in The Omer are produced 30-60 days in advance using the best data available from the TBA Administration Staff. This calendar is also available at our website www.tbaoakland.org
5-7p CityTeam—
Volunteer to Feed the Hungry
6
Tevet
''''''
6p Teen Scene
29
'' 6:57p
Kislev
10a Adult Education
with Nitzhia Shaked
La’atid Chanukah Party
3-6pm Men’s Club Hanukah Party
in memory of Leonard Fixler
(Social Hall)
10a Adult Education w/Nitzhia Shaked
10:30a Sunday Kindergym
1p New Parents Group Watching
Football-sponsored by the
Men’s Club—49’er vs Raiders
6-7:30p Teen Scene
15
Kislev
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
9
Kislev
Kislev / Tevet 5775
29
11
20
Tevet
18
25
19
26
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
6
Sh’vat
9-10a Minyan (Chapel)
Office closed
Martin Luther King Jr. Day
28
Tevet
5
12
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
21
Tevet
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
14
Tevet
20
27
4p-6p Bet Sefer
7:30p Board Meeting
7
'' 6:43p
Sh’vat
6
13
4p-6p Bet Sefer
29
Tevet
4p-6p Bet Sefer
22
Tevet
4p-6p Bet Sefer
15
Tevet
7
14
21
28
Office Closes at 1p
9a Weekly Text Study
(Woodminster Cafe)
10-11a & 11:15a-12p Kindergym
7p BBYO-AZA and BBG
8
Sh’vat
9a Weekly Text Study (Woodminster)
7p BBYO-AZA and BBG
rosh ChoDesh
1
Sh’vat
9a Weekly Text Study
(Woodminster Cafe)
10-11a & 11:15a-12p Kindergym
7p BBYO-AZA and BBG
7:30 Gan School Committee meeting
23
Tevet
9a Weekly Text Study
(Woodminster Cafe)
10-11a & 11:15a-12p Kindergym
7p BBYO-AZA and BBG
16
Tevet
1
8
15
22
29
4p-6p Bet Sefer
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
10-11a & 11:15a-12p Kindergym
9
Sh’vat
4p-6p Bet Sefer
No Kindergym this week
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
2
Sh’vat
4p-6p Bet Sefer
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
10-11a & 11:15a-12p Kindergym
24
Tevet
4p-6p Bet Sefer
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
10-11a & 11:15a-12p Kindergym
17
Tevet
8a-9a Minyan (Chapel)
Office Closed/No Kindergym
No Bet Sefer
asara B’tevet / neW years Day
10
Tevet
2
9
16
23
30
6:15p-7:15p Kabbalat Shabbat
9:30-10:30a & 10:45-11:45a
Kindergym
10 '' 5:30p
Sh’vat
6:15p-7:15p Kabbalat Shabbat
No Kindergym this week
3
'' 5:23p
Sh’vat
6:15p-7:15p Kabbalat Shabbat
9:30-10:30a & 10:45-11:45a
Kindergym
25 '' 5:15p
Tevet
6:15p-7:15p Kabbalat Shabbat
UNPLUGGED
9:30-10:30a & 10:45-11:45a
Kindergym
18 '' 5:08p
Tevet
6:15p-7:15p Kabbalat Shabbat
Office Open
No Kindergym
11 '' 5:02p
Tevet
Always check the Congregational E-mail or the Weekly Shabbat Bulletin for more up-to-date information. Please note any corrections care of Rayna Arnold at the TBA office.
Vayechi
3
Shemot
10
Vaera
17
Bo
24
31
6:14p Havdalah (42 min)
9:30a-12p Shabbat Services
Bat Mitzvah of Josephine Trilling
Beshalach
11
Sh’vat
6:30p TBA GALA Gourmet
6:06p Havdalah (42 min)
9:30a-12p Shabbat Services
4
Sh’vat
9:30a-12p Shabbat Services
10:15 Junior Congregation
5:58p Havdallah and Games
with the Men’s Club
5:58p Havdalah (42 min)
WtBa shaBBat
26
Tevet
9:30a-12p Shabbat Service
Bat Mitzvah of Eliana Bloomfield
10:15a Shabbat Mishpacha
10:15a T’fillat Y’ladim
1-2:30p Mah Jongg for Beginners
5:51p Havdalah (42 min)
19
Tevet
5:45p Havdalah (42 min)
9:30a-12p Shabbat Services
Bar Mitzvah of Abraham Barnes
12
Tevet
January 2015
Calendars in The Omer are produced 30-60 days in advance using the best data available from the TBA Administration Staff. This calendar is also available at our website www.tbaoakland.org
6p Teen Scene (Baum YC)
5-7p CityTeam—
Volunteer to Feed the Hungry
5
Sh’vat
10:30a Sunday Kindergym
27
'' 6:57p
Tevet
La’atid event - Ice skating - off site
10:30a Sunday Kindergym
11:30a-1p Gan Open House
6p Teen Scene (Baum YC)
4
13
Tevet
Tevet / Sh’vat 5775
Temple Beth Abraham
327 MacArthur Boulevard
Oakland, CA 94610
PERIODICALS
POSTAGE
PAID
Oakland, CA
Permit No. 020299
SAVE THE DATE: Saturday evening January 24, 2015
for the annual and exceptional
Temple Beth Abraham Gala
Enjoy a divine sit-down dinner and music that will pull you to the dance floor.
Look for your invitation shortly.
For additional information contact Doree Jurow Klein or Deborah Reback
WHAT’S INSIDE
TBA Directory...................... i
What’s Happening.............. 1
Community Program............ 2
Jewish Sports Hall of Fame.. 3
From the Rabbi................... 4
The Next Big Thing.............. 4
President’s Message............ 5
Community......................... 6
Six Word Memoirs.............. 7
Women of TBA................... 8
Men’s Club......................... 9
Ritual............................... 10
Campus Updates.............. 11
Chanukkah Lights.............. 12
Cooking Corner................ 14
Gan Avraham News......... 16
Bet Sefer News................. 17
La’atid............................. 19
Jewish Day Schools........... 20
Donations......................... 22
Life Cycles........................ 24
Calendar.................... ......28

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