27 October 2009

SBB Branches Out Into Guest Bloggery

There have been some recent changes in my life that I do not want to write about here.

I do, however, want to point out that I have branched out into the blogging world by writing a guestpost for Jewschool. Read about my take on the Brandeis study about Taglit-Birthright Israel!

Maybe when I go to Germany and Israel in November, I can blog more for Jewschool...

29 July 2009

Polka Dotted Polish Pictures

So, camp is over, and I tried to upload these weeks ago. Now that time has passed and polish chips, I had to take this polish off. My cousin Gloria (Hi, Gloria!) has requested that I post something to the blob, so...here's a cute, short story that makes me happy.

As a waterskiing instructor, I worked on Tzevet Mayim / Water Staff, with a large team of lifeguards. One of them, L, used to be my camper. Now she's a lifeguard, and is actually off to college tomorrow (good luck)! She also has a true southern accent, something I've loved since she was my (somewhat sassy) camper.

On a day when I didn't have much to do in the afternoon, I stopped by the pool and she asked to paint my toenails and fingernails. Since I am a sucker for accents and pedicures, when I left the pool, my fingers were neon pink, and my toes were neon pink with blue polka dots. I loved this, and it was a vast improvement over the highlighter yellow polish my 13-year-old campers had bestowed upon me about 2 weeks earlier.

The toes lasted for weeks, and I was sad to take it off just days ago. But L's promise to paint my nails for my upcoming wedding (I'll let you know when I actually set a date) remains in my head, twangy and adorable.

Behold! Toes and Chacos! A happy camp combination!

I love this dotted masterpiece!
Extreme closeup of the lovely paint job!
You can tell I actually cleaned my Chacos the day before. The straps are SO clean and almost Banana Boat-free! Almost...

22 June 2009

On the Concept of the Ski Burqa

So, I've been floating around an idea.

Wait. Back up.

First, I decided to go to camp for a month to do waterskiing. So I'm at the same camp I was at last summer, and the summer I met Rafi, but not the camp I was at in the midwest in 2007.

Now, waterskiing is a good job for me because I like leading the hashkamah minyan - we meet at 6:45 for tefillot before we eat breakfast and go to the lake. It's also a good job because I like having one real co-counselor and only 6 kids. We all get to know each other really well, and it's special. They become, have become, OUR babies. Additionally, I like waterskiing because I'm good at teaching it, I love driving a bus to the lake, I love driving the boat, and it's the same lake I've been skiing on since 1991 (no, really).

But waterskiing is a terrible job for me because I am fishbelly white (something I unsuccessfully translated to beten-dag lavan in Hebrew today), I have had precancerous moles removed, and I do not tan, do not wish to tan, would prefer to spend summer under a large umbrella at all times. If it weren't for camp, in fact, I would spend my summers inside, sitting hunched in front of an AC unit, lamenting the summer heat the way most people experience Seasonal Affective Disorder in the winter. (What can I say, I was accidentially a Floridian for all of those years.)

So...I've been floating around an idea. Long sleeve shirts and pants can only go so far over bathing suits, which are required for responsible boat-driving lifeguards of the waterskiing-instructing persuasion. At some point, they get soggy, they flap in the wind, they get snagged on a strap here or a rope there.


Now, before you get all up in arms, let me remind you that I'm pretty liberal. In dress, in speech, in religious belief, and in politics. My dad calls me an empty-headed liberal on a regular basis, and I've gone so far as to be completely left-handed in everything that I do. I even slalom ski with my left foot in the front boot of the ski!

Actually, modesty in swimwear was all over the web today, with a blog post on MyJewishLearning.com, giving this take on other options. MJL linked to this article about modest swimwear. Neither article has any mention of sun protection, which is more my concern, although when I found out some of our ski videos might be on the web, my first thought (out loud, of course) was "My thighs are going to be on the internet?" Maybe I should just get some modest swim wear...?

I am slowly baking myself to (in my mind) death. Doomsday music rings in my ears when I check my shoulders after a day on the water. I am - GASP - tan. And I am not happy. And my nose! My poor nose! It looks like I painted a white line through my eyebrows that ends abruptly with a splash of tanned residue ruining my snowy nose! Let it be said in this forum that I reapply SPF 50 at LEAST once an hour - and I start with a foundation of SPF 85 on my face!

SOOOOO, hows about we get me a ski burqa? The way I see it, it has nothing to do with religious belief - except for maybe the Jewish concept of pikuach nefesh - saving a life. In fact, it can be stylish - made out of the same material from which you make rash guards, those long-sleeved surfer shirts. Quick to dry and a full-on cover, I can't see the down side.

I read today in the NYT that Sarkozy today said he wants to rid France of burqas. Maybe if they have a few over there made from the spandex-lycra blend of my favorite one-piece, they could mail them to me at camp?

02 June 2009

Not the Answer...

Warning: This post goes from fun to serious without much transition. Don't say I didn't warn you.

On Sunday, I went on a walk through the park with my former roommate B. We wandered toward the Israel Parade as I yammered on about the need for Israel education taught with a critical eye. On our way through the park we wandered into Japan Field Day, which meant we got some free tea:

Mmmmm, Jasmine. (Photo credit B)

When we got to 5th Avenue, we settled into a spot with my friend Mel, where we could watch the parade and not be too crowded. And there was quite the crowd of a wide variety of Jews, all celebrating Tel Aviv's 100th anniversary, and I LOVE Tel Aviv. It was peaceful and fun, happy and cheery. Then I got to hang out with my OLDER roommates, and life was good. I was all love, hearts and stars for Israel.

I was dancing to Yeshiva U's blasting music (Yehey, a camp favorite), and enjoying the Israel that I learned about growing up - Israel of dancing and snacks, of fun and chocolate.

The lovely happiness of Rikudei-Am / Israeli Dancing (Photo thanks to B)

[Insert transition here]

Somewhere else, at some point in the parade, "Am Yisrael Chai" blasted as onlookers sang their own interpretation, in Hebrew, "The nation of Israel lives" alternating with the phrase "All Arabs must die." Read the take on this episode from one Rabbi for Human Rights here. (H/T Jewschool)

I have said before that the answer to the conflict in Israel is not to kill all of the Arabs. That idea makes me uncomfortable, and I can't imagine how killing so many people. I was disheartened by the onlooker who said that the chant about killing Arabs is a chant from Zionism. I don't know the answer to this problem, but I hope that someone soon figures it out and that people won't die in the process. This is where the critical eye becomes important. How can we make this better? Who's going to tease out the solution?

In other news, an abortion doctor was killed in the states a few days ago, when he was ushering in his church in Kansas. If you want commentary on the murder, you can find it all over the web. I happened to like this post in Jezebel about how Tiller was a good doctor and person. Late-term abortions are contraversial. So are early-term abortions. But reproductive choice is a right in the states, and there are difficult decisions that people had to make (see the Jezebel post in particular for heart-wrenching examples) that sometimes end in abortion. Wanting to stop abortion is one thing, murder as a means to an end are another, and it's NOT ok.

Nobody wants a life to have to end. But certainly killing a doctor who does abortions is not the answer. And killing a group of people just for being Arab? Well, that's not the right answer to war, conflict, terror or tension. But debating about these conflicts will help smarter people than I to come up with answers.

To quote my fabulous Bubbie: May we live see peace in our day. Amen, Bubbie.

14 May 2009

Going to Beautiful Lengths!

First: In 2005, I donated my hair through Locks of Love. I gave 12 inches, and I said I would NEVER donate my hair again.
That's a foot of perfectly crazylong hair!
The results, in 2005.

Second: Let's get back to Israel a little bit.

Last year, I lived in Israel. And one of my issues was my Hebrew illiteracy. One of the many resulting fall-outs from my faltering speech was that I couldn't get a haircut. OK, I could have, but I didn't know how to say, "please don't give me a mullet" in Hebrew. (I hope that images page defines the word in a way that wiki never could...) Israelis sometimes have some weird opinions in hairstyle, and while I do know some beautiful Israelis, I wasn't going to go to some random hair stylist / sapar, who was going to make me look all "Disco, Disco" (obligatory Zohan reference), leaving me looking unlike myself.

So I decided to grow my hair over the year, and when April rolled around, I knew enough Hebrew to say "just a trim," and by then my hair was getting pretty long. I decided to keep growing it, instead of cutting it all off. I decided to go back on my word...
That's great lengths, right there! Thanks, JN for taking these pics an hour before my haircut!
Much less gross than when I donated it last time. This was silky smooth donation hair.

We wrote these end-of-year cards in one of my classes in September, and on the back, I'd written "nice haircut" because I thought by the end of the school year, I would have donated my hair. I was wrong.

I was going to get my hair cut with my friend EG, but the place where I did my LOL cut in 2005 wasn't into taking people like me anymore. EG got in and went on Lag BaOmer, my original plan, as it is a traditional time in the Jewish year to get a haircut - part way between Passover and Shavuot. Since there is a tradition to get haircuts on any day after Lag BaOmer, I decided that I would go for a complimentary cut at Mark Garrison Salon. They do half-price Pantene Beautiful Lengths donations on a few days a week (including Tuesdays), but FREE on Wednesdays, so I went for the unemployed grad student option...

Hiroshi separated my hair into 8-inch sections, and since I was without my wingman Meredith, nobody took pictures of this part, and you'll just have to take my word for it. I looked like an octopus.

A measure here, and a snip there, a measure there, and a snip here, and I looked like a big sectioned crazy person. Brie from Roslyn washed my choppy remnants, and then Hiroshi went to work.

I have been denuded.

My hair is in an envelope, going off to make wigs for women who have lost their hair due to illness.

And I look FABULOUS!

I am pretty happy with the cut, and I'm sooo stoked my hair looks good with the little clip again!
Yeah. I really like my haircut!
Right after the cut, featuring my two lovely rings - old and new!

No More Thesisizing!

We're missing one blogger in this lovely picture, but here are the lovely ladies of Davidson, who turned in their thesis on this day. I should've posted this sooner:

We're graduating in a week from today.
Mazals to MB, MCY, SBB, EG, YA and RS (not pictured)!

Also, thanks to the (then) Boyfriend and the lovely friends from SkiTeam for celebrating at our post-thesisizing party. I didn't take a pic with JHD and Arthur and their token J-friend, but they definitely came the farthest out of their way to play at the party!

Then-boyfriend! GREAT picture!
Instructor, Bellayre connection, SBB and honorary ski-team member Rafi!


Just in case you don't know this:

After a lovely dinner at the place we went to on our first date, where Rafi said lovely things, and I was happy, and he was happy, and then everyone was happy, and now:

Rafi and I are getting MARRIED!


A lovely photo of us together!
The night-of picture!

Stay tuned for info about B/L 2010 - The Greatest Merger of Our Time!

03 April 2009

Thesis Wordles

I mentioned Wordle to my old roommate Rachel (remember her?), because we have both turned in our theses, placing them in the proverbial shoebox. Wordle makes "beautiful word clouds" out of a text that you can copy and paste into a text box.
I copied and pasted my thesis, in all of its 132 pages of glory, into the box. This included the many, many Roman numerals from the curricular piece, about 90 pages, which show up in all three of the Wordles. Check out the results!
Can you guess what my thesis was about, based on my Wordles?
Looking at the Wordles, I'm pretty amazed at how secular it seems. Good thing Shemittah (The good comments helped me learn some Hebrew I hadn't learned yet...) made it into the Wordle, since I spent all year learning about it! That's the thing about Wordles. You can't always tell what's on the inside just by looking at a "beautiful word cloud."

Thank you thank you to Wordle.net!

02 April 2009

What Not To Wear

So, a month or so back, I was the victim of an attack on my wardrobe. One of my friends, whose friendship status is tenuous with me at best, decided that I should be on TLC's What Not To Wear, a delightful reality show that I DVR. I like it because they take people who have mullets and acid-wash jeans and dress them up in pretty clothes, usually purchased in NYC, the center of my universe. It also reminds me of Pimp My Ride, which is totally about tikkun olam, I don't care what anybody says. But I digress.

This friend meant it to be a nice surprise. She got it wrong. See below:

Dear friends of fashion trauma SBB: So since I am jobless at the moment, and obviously bored, I have decided that it is time that we take matters into our own hands and nominate our dear friend Sara Beth for TLC's What Not to Wear!!! I know you may think this is a little far off, but come on; have you seen her wardrobe lately??? (and if you haven't it hasn't changed much since about 1996)!!!

I will let the punctuation go, and just focus on the fact that in 1996 I wore colored and patterned socks with white sneakers and shorts. I was also an awkward skinny minny. Unfair.
Elementary school, but you get the point. Embarrassing now, hilarious then.

Jobless or not, don't be casting aspersions on me. I am not always the most fashion-forward, but I often get compliments on my wardrobe, particularly from my colleagues at "my very best friend the Storah," and since they're the coolest people I know, everyone else can go take a hike.

Totally doesn't count when you're dressed for a day on the lake. But I do love me a good bucket hat...

So, after an already crazy morning and afternoon, I was walking on 5th Avenue before meeting my friend in Union Square for dinner. I wandered into an Ann Taylor at 40-somethingth and 5th. I took off my hat (it was raining), shook out my hair and began sifting through racks of suits and pretty dresses. I heard a voice...the voice of my DVR! Stacy London from What Not To Wear was in the store! She looks toward the front door, and me, and says, "Oh, is it raining?" I said, "Yes."

She did not cringe at my outfit. She looked divine, of course.

I ran downstairs to look at the sale rack, and began furiously texting my posse, to let them know I had seen Stacy and she didn't mind my outfit. I heard another voice. Clinton Kelly!

I wandered some more, and I was too excited to do anything else but walk back upstairs and maybe gawk at Clinton. He was wearing this really great magenta argyle sweater over pink stripes. He's so fashionable, but I could never dress my brothers or boyfriend up like him. I mean, Rafi in magneta wouldn't work.

Cameras were everywhere, and they were clearly wrapping up filming at Ann Taylor, at least for the time being. I paused at the top of the stairs, saw Clinton chatting with a cute little woman who is probably going to be on WNTW in the next few months and I realized, I could go on being a New Yorker and ignore the famous, or I could do this:

SBB: Hi, I'm so sorry to interrupt [Lie], but could I ask you a question?
Clinton: No problem. Hi.
SBB: You're Clinton from What Not To Wear, right?
Clinton: Yes.
SBB: OK, so I'm a big fan of the show. I love it, I DVR it. But I have a question. I got into a big fight with a friend over whether or not I belonged on What Not To Wear. I wanted to ask you what you thought of my outfit today, particularly because I am wearing my most contraversial [ok, I said ugly] article of clothing today.

Flowered Docs, b. 1996, d. NEVER!

[Clinton and companion look at my feet.]

Clinton: Yeah, those are awful.
SBB: But it's rainy and I'm wearing them as rainboots.
Clinton: OK, fine, but you should hem your pants. [Pants, btw, were a present from "friend" who nominated me, although I will admit it's my own laziness that prevents the hemming.]
SBB: That's fair, but what about my coat? [$50 at Old Navy] The rest of my outfit? [Gap, Banana, JCrew]
Clinton: It's cute. I would hem the pants, and you should worry about what you look like when the coat comes off, but...
SBB: Not bad?
Clinton: Pretty cute. Hem your pants.
SBB: Thank you!

I sashayed out of Ann Taylor, happy as I could be. I then ran into my lovely friend E, who took two pictures of my WNTW-approved outfit, and shoes. Thanks, E!
They're just not that into my shoes, but it's ok, because I'm CUTE! Clinton said so!

23 March 2009

My Thesis Is Ready For the Shoe!

My thesis is in the shoe! Read on to learn the lessons of the shoebox...

In the mid-1990s, I was a student at Ramblewood Middle School (wow, that is one annoying website...) in Coral Springs, FL, as my older brothers were before me, and my younger followed before they rezoned him. I had a terrific experience at Ramblewood.

One of my favorite teachers was my science teacher, Mr. A. He was actually the first person to show me an internet search, on something called Gopher. He was the teacher who gave me Diet Cokes whenever he made a joke at my expense. Not a day went by without me getting a DC, and I loved his jokes. Also, this explains my love of DC a little. He called me [color] shirt, based on whatever I was wearing. When we studied genetics, and it was revealed that I had no earlobes, he had everyone in the class point and laugh. I never felt so noticed, happily, as I did in Mr. A.'s class.

Mr. A. also taught us how to balance chemical equations, and this is the single-most lasting lesson I learned at RMS, except for maybe my passionate commitment to English grammar. When we learned how to balance equations, Mr. A. taught us to check and double-check, and then write a special symbol over the bi-directional arrows that connect the first side of the equation to the second.

Mr. A. explained that during the Gulf War, his classes were filling shoeboxes to send to soldiers, with supplies and candy and notes, and his classes added something extra - sheets with balanced equations. Once they were sure the equations were balanced, they would draw a circled "SB" for shoebox, indicating satisfactory completion, and put the sheets in the boxes for the soldiers. I liked the "SB" because it was also my initials.

By the time I was in the class, we weren't sending boxes to soldiers in Iraq and Kuwait, but we were still confirming the completion of our equation balancing by writing "SB" and calling them "ready for the shoe."

This phrase stuck with me, and since then, I have said often that something is "ready for the shoe" at the end of a project or assignment, to resounding blank stares.

Today, I will turn in my thesis on Israel Education. It is 132 pages. Each curricular unit ended up being 30ish pages, and the rest of the paper is my literature review. After 2 years, 2 thesis advisors, 2 grad programs (Davidson and visiting at Hebrew U), 2 camps (plus FJC and the Berk), 2 flash drives, an ocean and a lot of complaining, I'm turning in my thesis. Now pdf'ed, I can say:

My Thesis Is Ready For the Shoe!

15 March 2009

Of Blessed Memory...

William Davidson, the naming donor of my fabulous school, the William Davidson Graduate School at JTS, has passed away at 86 years of age.

I never met the man I dubbed Uncle Bill (a nickname that is now a common saying among all Davidson students), but I heard he was a kind, giving man. He also has been rumored to be seen in tracksuits, which is so cool, and makes sense, because he owned more than one basketball team. According to wikipedia, he was the stepfather of the actress who played Ava on Grey's Anatomy.

He was a big Jewish philanthropist, donating to places I love, such as Hadassah Ein Karem, JTS, and The Kotel. I pointed out to my friend / Jerusalem roommate Allison that Uncle Bill accomplished so much, because he bought the Kotel! OK, he helped fund the excavation of the Southern Wall, but still. What part of the kotel was named after YOU?

I am lucky to be graduating from Davidson this May as one of the many beneficiaries of his HUGE donation to my school. I sent him thank you letters, but I never got to shake his hand. Uncle Bill, you will be missed.

My Davidson Class - at the end of our three-week Visions and Voices of Israel trip - poses at the "Endowed by Uncle Bill" sign outside of Uncle Bill's Kotel.

At Uncle Bill's kotel, where men, women and children can all gather around the Torah in a pluralistic service.
Good times. (January 2007)

07 March 2009

Snapshots (snowstorm and thesis)

My camera isn't really working. It's sort of working, but much like my Nth-stage Dell, I am going to have to get me some new electronics over the course of the next few months. Will I get a Mac? What kind of camera do I want? Who knows?

What I do know is this: Last week there was a snowstorm. I had an HOUR LONG meeting about my thesis with my thesis wonderwoman on the phone, and then I went to play in the snow. Both of these things - the snowstorm (not surprising) and my meeting with thesis wonderwoman (surprising, as I was expecting her to tell me to start over and be ashamed of my writing, and she was like, "Rock on, SBB") - were terrific.

My camera worked for about 2 minutes before it turned itself off. I didn't take pictures of me in my thesis phone meeting, but before the camera died, I got these snow pictures:

A million little kids sledding just across the street from my apartment in Riverside Park.
I rather like Riverside Park. Now that my tush is better, I will rollerblade in Riverside Park.

Sara Beth B, snow angel.
Melanie joins me on my Riverside Snow Frolic.

11 February 2009

Im Yirtzeh HaShem By YOU!

My Bro and Bro-Bro (Rebecca's nickname) are engaged!

If they had gotten engaged in Israel, or at my school, people would say stuff like (Note: Hebrew translations are liberal, at best.):
1. Im Yirtzeh HaShem by you (Maybe God will want you to get married soon, too)
2. B'sha'ah tovah (All in good time, let's make sure the evil eye doesn't think we're too excited)
3. Od yishama b'areh Yehudah... (JTS fight song, let's rejoice in the cities of Judah, because another Jewish boy and another Jewish girl somehow managed to decide to get married)
4. MaZal tov! (Wheeeeeeeeee! - #4 also applies in the real world, where real is outside of JTS-land.)

Outside of JTS and Israel, there are these questions:
5. When are YOU getting married? (Response: Not today, as I am tired.)
6. When is the wedding? (Response: Sometime in the next 7 years, since they've been dating for that long.)
7. Were you surprised? (Response: As previously stated, they have been dating for 7 years, so you can IMAGINE my surprise.)
8. Will you be a bridesmaid? (Response: Not if it involves dresses that are brown.)

31 January 2009

Pro-Israel and Even a Little Reality

Thursday was a good day. I had some great conversations and did some good work.

Like a mullet, I was business on top, party on the bottom. See, I was wearing my business suit. With fishnet-ish tights... And flowered doc martens for most of the day. I wore the suit for the AIPAC benefit, and the Docs because it was too cold to wear rain boots and I knew it would be icy getting to work in NJ. It was good that I wore the docs because the sheirut* driver...

Sheirut? Yes, and here's why:
  1. It's a small, white van.
  2. Nobody speaks English.
  3. They drive like crazy people.
...ignored my request for a stop, and after arguing with him, he dropped me off somewhere else. Somewhere else that was not a 5-minute walk to my office, with the ice-encrusted grassy knoll that had previously muddied up my pants and busted my fragile, still-healing tush. Somewhere else that involved me ice skating to work. And jumping across a creek. And walking across train tracks that may or may not be used anymore. And ice skating in my boots.

After NJ I went to job #2 and did some good work there. I love all of my jobs! Yay!

And then...it was a quick change into plain black shoes (gotta look respectable to network) and a quick walk to the Times Square Marriott for the AIPAC benefit. where I was invited to sit with my good friends at their parents' table. Happily, this was table #208 of 208 tables, so we were right by the door, right by the bathroom, and right by the dessert.

Highlights of the AIPAC dinner:
1. Ran into a very good friend's sister and met her lovely new husband.
2. Got asked if I was an actress. When I said no, the woman said, well, you're very beautiful.
3. Met a congressman. It was awkward, as I had nothing to say to him. My friend likes to start awkward conversations with congresspeople. This is how he met Barack Obama years ago, and started a conversation in Swahili with Obama. True story. I love my friends.
4. Loved the shmorg! Kosher sushi means no fear of death from rogue shellfish attacks!
5. Appreciated Bloomberg's sense of humor.
6. Appreciated that while most of the speeches were pro-Israel-all-the-way there was some talk of working for peace and making difficult decisions. I love Israel, too, AIPAC, and I do think that there are difficult decisions that have to be made for there to be peace and security. Usually AIPAC is a little too right-wing for me, so I was pleased about this.
7. When Bloomberg started talking about visiting Sderot and going into bomb shelters, I wanted to call out and tell him to visit Israel for an extended period of time, and not to just go to Sderot and on solidarity missions, hoping to go to bomb shelters so he can talk about it later at big old benefits.
8. Dessert was excellent. AND, the table came with a three-tier holder of little desserts before dinner even started! Linzer tarts!
9. They did a motzi after an hour and a half of shmorg. How very symbolic.
10. We took the flower centerpieces home.

AIPAC Bridesmaids
Elana, me, Sarit and Bella -- the AIPAC Orchid Brigade! So long, and thanks for all the flowers!

14 January 2009

Country Music Saves the World...

My classmate Yoni and his identical twin brother Pesach are both beacons of peace and love. So when Pesach sent me this youtube video with the title "A Love Song to Islamic Fundamentalists" I clicked immediately.

Pesach is a talent, and the video is cute but serious.

Here's hoping, to quote my 90-year-old Bubbie, "for peace in our time." (My Zayde followed with, "You're insane" or something along those lines, but hey. She's filled with hope.)

Here's his video. Please pass along.

(YouTube Link)

13 January 2009

Photo Essay 2 (FL)

I haven't been able to write recently and people like updates, so...

1. I finished my finals so I could go away for break, got myself a muppet-sweater as a present, and then it snowed!
100% Muppet!There was snow behind me. I was really excited!

2. I went on a cruise.
The fun that only a muster drill can provide. Allow me introduce Team Overeat!Proof of: (1) Cruise. (2) Bahamas.
3. I went to FL for a LONG time.
Lauren and I enjoy some Bayside!
Lauren learns about health-fungus from our old friend Matt!

The illustrious X approves of Rafi!
Always happy to see the old staples.
Missing our third...

4. Had my birthdays, both Hebrew and English.
My birthday was on the 5th night of Chanukah (thanks to Gloria and David for showing me that), but I didn't take a cute chanukiyah picture with Rafi on that night, so you get the idea.
Dad and I celebrate (with the boys, minus biggest bro) with some tempura ice cream.
Aaron and I share the cake for the #1 Gators, and his, and apparently my, 1st birthday.
See? I'm 1! And so are the GATORS!!
Pine Crest / UF friends reunited on my birthday proper!

5. I spent time with family!

Classic picture-face, with a bonus Mark-got-my-glasses look!
Perhaps you've heard of my Zayde? He's the coolest!
Rafi and Bubbie talk theology. Amazing.
My favorite picture from FL.
Aaron, my nephew, in the arms of his Grandma Barb, with Alta-Bubbie and Alta-Zaydie! Woo!
Precious treasures.
This is my delicious nephew and my delightful boyfriend!

6. Elana (from school) got married, and Melanie came to South FL to play!
Mazal tov to the new Mrs!
AEPhi Alway(s), Davidson and UF - worlds colliding in a fun, but smelly, place.

7. The Gators won the National Championship. AGAIN!

Oh, hey. Yeah, I'm still delicious!