Monday, June 25, 2012

A Peek at our Week

Here's a cute chart we made to highlight the fun trips/activities we will do for the upcoming week. The kids actually love it, because not only do they know what is up ahead, but they have something to look forward to every day.

Here's how I made it: just take a cookie sheet, glue on 6 baby wipe lids for the names of each week and decorate how you wish. 

On Sunday we all sit down and discuss the fun stuff we want to do that week (out of the house) and stick them in each box. The cookie sheet is magnetic and we have some ready made cute activity magnets as well as made some of our own. The trips range from our favorite parks, to bike riding, the beach, really nothing too fancy, but its fun to plan and fun to do, even if the trip is 5 minutes away. 

Enjoy and hope you are enjoying your summer!

Do you SEE what I see?

The Power of Using our G-d Given Talents (and Helping Our Children Recognize Theirs.)

There are twelve months in the Jewish calendar.  The talent of SIGHT is the fourth, the month of Tamuz, (June- July.)

Individuals who have this unique talent are visually sensitive.  They pay close attention to detail.   They are masters of seeing the good. They look at the world with an empathetic eye, having a positive outlook and seeing the best in others. Their keen sight and insight allow them to see the depth hidden beneath the surface.  Visual clarity is their gift.

We can be role models to our children by pointing out their good and the good in others.  When  they look at the world with empathic eyes, they deepen their ability to understand what they are seeing.  We need to encourage them to be confident.  We must pay attention to what they are interested in showing us.

Tools for Developing Your Sense of Sight:
1.  Look for the good in people, in situations and in nature.
2.  Don’t focus on the negative.  If you see something as problematic, trust yourself.  Don’t go in that direction.
3.  Let your insights show you a deeper perspective.

The Kabalah of Sight:

The sense of sight of Tamuz is the ability to “see through” physical reality and to recognize its Divine source. This is developed by guarding and focusing our eyesight correctly.

How we view the world affects our choices. The Jews made a serious error based on a negative way of looking at their situation when they were in the desert, after having been taken out of Egypt. This caused the sin of the “golden calf,” (see to learn more),  which had  serious consequences (ie “the breaking of the Tablets”).  As a result, the 17th day of Tamuz became the beginning of “the three weeks,” a period ending on the 9th of Av. We fast and introspect on the first and last days of this period.

These days will become transformed to days of joy and celebration in the near future.

The tribe which corresponds to the month of Tamuz is the tribe of Reuven.  He was the first born of the sons of our forefather, Jacob and his wife, Leah.

Chana Rachel Schusterman is a Jewish spiritual counselor and coach. If you would like to contact her, please email me at

Monday, June 18, 2012

Weekly Schedule

As I have mentioned in many previous posts, I am a very visual person. So when it comes to keeping a schedule, electronic oranizers just don't work for me. I need to actually see my week. All the time. In my kitchen. On the fridge. 

So, I made this weekly schedule that I laminated and stuck on the fridge and every Sunday/Monday I write down any plans for the week.  It really helps me so much. If you think this will be helpful to you, go ahead and Click Here to download it. 


Monday, June 11, 2012

Maintaining Sanity

You know those mornings when you wake up, only to find that you have slept in til 10am with a note on your pillow saying,

Then you make your way to the kitchen, eat your waffles and head to the Spa. You take a swim in the eternity pool, followed by a hot mud bath and massage. 

As you drift off while your sore feet are being rubbed, you feel 4 chubby fingers that smell like peanut butter trying to pry your eyes open only to realize that this was all a dream and while yes, you have a wonderful husband who actually gave all the kids breakfast this morning so you could 'sleep in' (til 7am) you now have to face the day. 

And if there is anything in the world that you don't feel like doing, its just that.

Well, we all have those days. So here are a few things that got me through one such day, that hopefully will come in handy should you ever encounter one too...

Absolutely gotta start it with a nice big cup of Joe. Tastes even better when your hubby makes it and has it waiting for you as you make your way into the kitchen. 
 Then you need to turn on some good Jewish music. Instant mood enhancer.

You should then hum or sing along. This usually happens automatically if the tunes are good. Kids may get a bit confused if you don't usually do this, but they will soon join along.

Now this one may sound a bit out there, but listen to me- it works. 
Through out the day, every time you pass by a mirror, you should smile at yourself. Seriously. Your kids may think mommy's a little strange today, but there is some interesting smile meditation out there that says if you smile at yourself, it will automatically enhance your mood. Go ahead. Try it. :)

Once you've made it half way through the day, and the little ones are napping and the big ones are having their down time, make yourself this incredible smoothie that not only tastes insanely delicious, but gives you a really great energy boost.

Mango Almond Smoothie:
1 ripe mango
2 scoops vanilla ice cream
1 handful raw almonds
1/2 cup almond milk

Blend together and WHAM--- serious, serious yumness...

And what do you know, I actually made it through the day which turned out to be a pretty awesome one.

Enjoy your week~

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Friday, June 8, 2012

A Week of Pirkei Avot Projects

Here's a little Pirkei Avot booklet I put together for the munchkins for next week--- it covers one lesson a day from Chapter 1. 

I hope to cover a few lessons from all 6 Chapters over the summer.

Enjoy and have a great Shabbos!

Friday, June 1, 2012

~~Summer Activities and Books for June~~

Today I sat down with my little tykes and together we went through a bunch of crafts, games and activity books that we have and decided upon of a bunch of our favorite things to do.

Here are the activities we came up with--- you can print it out and use to your preference! You can cut them up and stick them in a jar labeled "Summer Activities" or laminate them and stick them on a personal calendar. Enjoy!

Click Here to download and print!

Here are 2 Scavenger Hunts I made, Click Here to download and print~

And here are some fabulous Jewish Childrens books filled with incredible stories your kids will love!

I'm working on the arts'n crafts for June--- stay tuned and have a fantastic Shabbos!


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