It's getting done - the cleaning, the dusting, the organizing, the whatever. Of course, one doesn't have to empty out every drawer and clean every closet, just the ones in food-related areas but it's hard to avoid that desire to just clean the whole house top to bottom.
We've been working in sections and bits and pieces. Natan came home a couple of nights last week to pitch in and Gabe's been making his way through various kitchen cabinets in between football and whatever. The menu is set, the tasks given out. Seder 09 is on it's way.
It's our first year for hosting since we've moved which is fun to consider. I for one, feel ready to return to a job that Ira and I did happily (most of the time) for most of our years in Bklyn. Once my parents made Aliyah in 1992, we were in Bklyn. One or 2 years in Merrick at Ira's brother but they mostly came to us along with Joanne's parents, usually on 1st night, and when Ralph and Lisa were in town we Seder'ed with them many times and also with Ron and Marion and Miriam Wasserman, Iris and Steve, etc, etc, etc. Sorry for the trip down memories of Seder's past.
I should add here that the reason we're extra relaxed this year is due to the debut of the new Ira. Some of you may remember the Old, New Ira - way back with George W Bush's first term. I think there was something said about the Kinder, Gentler America (I don't remember, it's soooo long ago and I like to forget that period of American History). Ira decided that he'd be the Kinder, Gentler Ira. No more sarcastic retorts, no more nasty NY humor - Ira went all nice on all of us. This lasted for a time and then was replaced by the regular Ira we all know and love.
Now we have the Zen Ira. Zen Ira goes to the shuk and is unperturbed by marauding shoppers. Zen Ira gets ready for Pesach in a laid back mode - hey, it'll all get done. Zen Ira is off playing baseball and singing in Oklahoma! rehearsals Erev hag. What me worry?
I'll keep you posted. Later note: A few days later and Zen Ira is rubbing off positively on everyone, including myself. Best moment was calling Ira yesterday from camp (we were closing up, organizing and putting things away and I was running very late and Akiva was unattended by his babysitter who had canceled and Ira was working) and instead of kvetching that he needed me at home (which he had every right to do), he Ohmmed....on the phone. Hilarious. I think this is all the Eastern influence of our favorite books of the moment - John Burdett's tales of the adventures of a Buddhist detective in Krung Thep, or for you Farang, Bangkok. He assures me he's not about to take up Yoga and wishes that people would stop recommending it (a flash of the Ira we know and love) but that so far this is working for him. He did have a weak moment today, Erev Hag, when the phone was ringing fast and furious between Jess, myself, Daniel, Natan and Ira - he snapped a bit at Daniel but it was brief.
Shopping in the shuk is mostly done. Bought some fun things this time - freshly ground rice flour (first you check the rice and then they grind it for you), also, freshly ground almond flour. A lovely assortment of coconut based and chocolate dipped macaroons. Spices of all sorts. Nuts and dried fruits. It's just so easy in this country at Pesach time, especially if you eat kitniyot/legumes, which we do, even Zen Ira has come over to the Dark Side.
And we have our new Guide to the Perplexed, www.kashrut.org, the work of Rabbi Abadi formerly of Lakewood, NJ, which seems like enough of a 'hechsher' for us. Take a look at his extremely and seemingly lenient take on much of the cleaning and craziness of Pesach. Hey, we can all learn new tricks and still have ourselves plenty of work to do - but maybe, just maybe be a bit less tired.
A Happy and Kosher Pesach to all.
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