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And Yadda Yadda Yadda … I Made Aliyah

A boy with his homemade sun scope, after observing the Transit of Venus in 2012
A boy with his homemade sun scope, after observing the Transit of Venus in 2012

Taking a picture in my mind

Back when this little guy was a tad bit younger than he is today, he used to “take pictures with his mind.” He’d put his pointer fingers up to his temples, lean down towards the object he wanted to focus on (typically a kitten or a flower), and snap his eyes shut for a moment. […]

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Believing in your inner rock star

Tonight my son was the student of a lesson I’ve been actively trying to learn all week all my life. How to keep thinking you’re a rock star when the world hands you proof otherwise. The setting? My son’s soccer ceremony. The kick in the gut?  Instead of being awarded the “best player” trophy at his soccer […]

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A woman on the brink of death

(This was originally posted on the Times of Israel on 1.2.13) Sometimes I imagine I am a woman on her death bed. How else to explain the sense of wonder I have the minute I pull out of my driveway each morning to head to work? Before I even leave the boundaries of my small […]

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Israel, 2012
Israel, 2012

Dear 38-year-old me

Dear Jen: It’s a trend in the last decade or so for writers or celebrities to pen letters to their younger, seemingly more innocent and vulnerable selves. While sometimes introspective and poignant, this practice is a waste of time. Letters lead only to wistful and wishful thinking. Energy is better spent focusing on inventing a […]

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Religous puzzle

Is it possible to move to the Jewish State and feel less Jewish? Yes. Yes, it is. Even when you’re acting a lot more Jewish than you did when you lived in the Non-Jewish Jewish state. (Not, no the Vatican. New Jersey.) Even though I moved to Israel and live in a community that is […]

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The magical power of you (yes, you)

Twice a month, on average, I travel to Tel Aviv for work. And twice a month, on average, after I park my car on Menachem Begin street in Ramat Gan I walk over to Cafe Cafe to order an espresso k’tzar to go. Today, I walked into Cafe Cafe and before I could order, the […]

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jen heaven-seekers-470x264

Wonder might be what saves us

(This was originally posted on The Times of Israel on 12.13.12 … before the hullabaloo over Instagram privacy rules …) In college, one of my best friends was Stephanie. We met sophomore year as we both hesitantly decided to join the eager freshman girls in sorority rush. By the time Rush Week was over, we […]

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Remedy for discontent

 ”’Kathy, I’m lost,’ I said, though I knew she was sleeping, I’m empty and aching and I don’t know why…” Lyrics written before I was born, and yet as I sing them out loud today, I feel their depth and their truth. They penetrate my heart, and silence my mind. But only for a moment. […]

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A monster is hiding in the closet

You know that feeling you get — that rush of breath-stopping adrenaline — when you watch a scary movie and you helplessly watch the main character walk across the screen straight into the death trap of pure evil? And her hand reaches for the door knob…and… BAM! Someone behind you — someone in real life […]

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I’m sensitive to war

In case you haven’t heard, Israel has launched an operation against the terrorists in Gaza who have been firing rockets on Southern Israel. Rockets that keep children from going to school. Rockets that force families to sleep in bomb shelters … if they can sleep at all with the alarms going off all night. Rockets […]

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