How an Anxious Jewish Mother Became a Free-Range Parent
BY CARLA NAUMBURG for Kveller
I am not built to be a free-range mother. I am anxious and over-protective by nature, and my years of experience as a social worker have only increased my awareness of everything that could happen to my daughters, from sexual abuse to traumatic brain injuries. If I had my way, my girls wouldn’t leave the house without a GPS tracking device, a helmet, a cellphone, and a Taser Jr.
And so I was as surprised as anyone when I realized I had started free-range parenting my daughters, ages 7 and 8.5. The girls will spend weekend afternoons running to the neighbors’ house, and then sometimes the other neighbors’ house, and eventually either my husband or I end up texting the other parents on the block in order to figure out where they are.
8 Times Natalie Portman Gave the Best Advice
BY JOANNA C. VALENTE for Kveller
June 9 was Natalie Portman‘s 36th birthday. The mom of two (her kids have the best Hebrew names: Aleph and Amalia) is also one of the biggest stars today, not to mention one of the most talented. Regardless of whether you are a huge fan or not, you have to admit, she’s got range; her films range from “V for Vendetta” to “Black Swan” to “Jackie” to “No Strings Attached.” And let us not forget one of her most shining moments: that profane SNL rap.
Here are some of my favorite Portman quotes in which she reveals her sassy side, how she parents, and what she stands for.
How Israel Beat Peanut Allergies
Dr. Eliana Aaron for The Forward
Allergy advocacy used to be easy. Given the potentially tragic consequences of anaphylactic shock, everyone assumed a simple formula: the more precautions the better. In wealthy countries like the United States, ever greater accommodations were made to ensure that allergy sufferers were separated from the foods that could do them harm. Nut-free schools went from unheard of to ubiquitous in just a few decades. It seemed that the only limits on the allergy-containment agenda were money and willpower.
Over the past decade, however, this crystal clear picture became distinctly blurry. The first blows to the confidence of allergy advocates came from studies that suggested that allergy-free zones were ineffective in keeping people safe. Instead, we learned, they were often counter-productive because allergy sufferers developed a false sense of security, while compliance with increasingly draconian restrictions was impossible to enforce. Warning signs were starting to flash up, counseling moderation in the fight against allergies. However, they were nothing compared to the bombshell revelation waiting in the Jewish state.
This Non-Verbal Jewish Teen Wrote a Breathtaking Letter Explaining Autism
BY JOANNA C. VALENTE for Kveller
Gordy Baylinson is a 16-year-old who has never spoken. His parents, Evan and Dara Baylinson, didn’t realize their son could understand anything they had said previously–but recently, they were proven wrong. Gordy understood everything.
This month, Gordy wrote a letter–his first letter–to a police officer about the treatment of people with autism. He was diagnosed as on the autism spectrum when he was 17 months old, but it wasn’t until February of last year that his parents found out, while he doesn’t speak, Gordy has strong opinions of his own, which he can eloquently communicate through writing:
“My brain, which is much like yours, knows what it wants and how to make that clear. My body, which is much like a drunken, almost six-foot toddler, resists.
This letter is not a cry for pity, pity is not what I’m looking for. I love myself just the way I am, drunken toddler body and all. This letter is, however, a cry for attention, recognition and acceptance.”
I Learned All I Need to Know from Playing Cards with My Grandma
BY CARLA NAUMBURG for Kveller
Some of my favorite life memories are with my Grandma Dede, who passed away just over a month ago. I particularly remember playing cards with her, including many games of Russian Bank.
For those of you who didn’t have the pleasure of playing Russian Bank with Delia, here’s how it goes: it’s a two person solitaire-style card game, played with two decks. The goal is to get rid of all of your cards before your opponent does, and you do this by building up the center game board, solitaire style—and by dumping your cards on your opponent’s pile whenever you can. As the playing board gets built up, each move can require multiple steps, and if you see your opponent missing steps or breaking the rules of play, you can call “stop!” and take over their turn.
Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur
High Holidays - 2017/5578
High Holidays 2017/5778 Services Schedule -Rosh Hashanah September 21-22, Yom Kippur September 29-30 - Click here for the 2017 services schedule.
Sign Up to Attend High Holidays Services - Please let us know which services you'll be attending in order to help us assign honors by completing our High Holiday Services Attendance Form
Reserve Your Tickets and Seats - Can pay by cash or credit card - Click here for the ticket and seating reservation form.
Special Programming for Children and Teens:
Children Can Participate in Our Beautiful Neilah Service - Join us on September 30 at 7:00 p.m. sharp in the Chapel. - Click here for the registration form due by September 25, 2017.
High Holiday Children's Services - Great for families who love holiday songs and storytelling! Join us for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur at 2:30 p.m. - Click here for the schedule.
High Holiday Childcare for Children up to 5 Years - Free for Temple Members, $25/day for Non-members, Return form to the office no later than September 1, 2017 - Click here for the form.
High Holiday Experience For Children in TK, Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Grades - A creative service with hands-on fun! Begins at 9:00 a.m. - Click here for the flyer.
Junior Congregation For Children in 5th, 6th, and 7th Grades - Join in leading a meaningful service in the Winer Chapel. For Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, meet in Wolfson at 10:45 a.m. - Click here for the flyer.
This Yom Kippur Sicha is LAVA!! Don’t get burned by the choices you made in the past! Join us on September 30th, from 12pm-1pm for a fun and interactive program about how to be our better selves this year. For 8-12th graders only. Click here for the flyer.
Tashlich Walk with USY - USY Tashlich Walk at Temple Etz Chaim. Meet us on September 21st in the Religious School rotunda at 11:30 a.m. sharp. Click here for the flyer.
Caring Connections and More
I Care, We Care, TEC Cares!
For more information and to be a part of Caring Connections visit our page.
Volunteer opportunity: The ALS Association is looking for volunteers to visit home-bound people with ALS once a week. Teens would be welcome. Please contact with Barbara Porush: 818-429-5686; b[email protected]
Bereavement Support Group Open to the Community: Our Bereavement group will meet every 2nd and 4th Wednesday of the month.
Al-Anon meets every Wednesday at TEC, 7:00-8:15PM.
Be Involved - Click here for a calendar of upcoming events.
Refuah Shelamah Requests - Can't make it to shul for a friend or loved one in need of a prayer for healing? Send in any name you would like read at services (Shabbat, minyan or other) and a dedicated Temple congregant will stand and read the name. Just email your request to refuah.[email protected] with the details of the individual in need of healing. It is that easy and simple! Because No one should be without a voice.
Community Outreach/Caring Connection presents New support group forming at TEC: Caregiver Support Group - May 15th,11:00am ALL TOPICS ENCOURAGED (dementia, behaviors, finances, Alzheimer, aging, etc.) Hear, share,learn, discuss, resolve issues in caring for loved ones. Click here for the flyer - Open to the community.
Religious School - Programs available for Transitional Kindergarten through 12th Grade. For more information, contact the Religious School office at (805) 494-8174 or [email protected].
Temple Etz Chaim’s Thursday Night Bingo - Doors Open 4:00 PM Games Start 6:15 PM. All Games, Including Early Birds, Pay $250.
Shabbat Under the Stars - June 9th to August 18th, 7 p.m. ~ Warren Lawn - TEC's favorite summer tradition is back. Don't miss this beautiful, outdoor service. Click here for the flyer.
Tailgate Shabbat for Religious School Families - August 18th at 5:30 p.m. on Warren Lawn - Complementary dinner, bring your own blanket, reservations required! - Reserve your spot with this flyer.
Havdallah and Hike With TEC USY! August 26 from 5:30pm-7:30pm *Please bring a parve or dairy meal Wildwood Park in Thousand Oaks 928 W. Avenida de los Arboles Thousand Oaks, Ca 91361 Havdallah services led by Hazzan Pablo and you! Click here for the flyer.
Preschool Summer Camp - Registration is now open for a summer of fun! Click here for the list of activities. 10 week program - June 19th - August 25th. Click here for the calendar and registration package.
USY - Fun, exciting, meaningful, immersive Jewish experiences for teens grades 7-12. Click here for the flyer.
Join TEC USY for Disney Day 2017 ● September 3 at 7:30 am to 12:00 am - Click here for the flyer.
Operation Isaiah Canned Food Drive - Donate cans of food to the hungry! September 18 - September 30, 2017
TEC Book Club - Join us to read and discuss a selection of great books - July-November 2017 upcoming schedule
Be The Change - Tzedakah campaign - Are you ready to be the change? Suggested donation of $5.
Parent and Me Classes - Wednesdays, 9:15 AM -10:30 AM. Storytime, art, music, Jewish traditions, crafts, and so much more.
Temple Etz Chaim Video
A window into Temple Etz Chaim's daily life
Women of TEC Judaica Shop
Visit the Women of TEC Judaica Shop at Temple Etz Chaim! We carry a wide selection of Judaica gifts for every occasion. Visit the Women of TEC Judaica Shop web page for hours and featured items!
Camp Conejo Creek
Spend your summer at Camp Conejo Creek! Join us here at TEC June 19th - August 11th
Camp Conejo Creek will provide your children with a fun and engaging summer Jewish day camp experience. Activities include mixed media arts, theater performance, cooking, sports and recreation, science and magic, along with local field trips and theme days – your camper decides on the programming they want to do for the summer! We incorporate Jewish values into our programming and celebrate Shabbat every Friday as a camp. Come for the week or stay for the summer. Camp Conejo Creek is open to everyone! 1-week sessions with the choice of 2, 3 or 5 days a week. Early and late care available.
Click here for Camp Conejo Creek Information and Forms:
Infant Care Now Registering!
Infant Care Now Registering!
Now Offering Full-time Infant Care from 3 months on.
Small caretaker - child ratio.
Full Time Monday to Friday 7:30am - 6:00pm.
Space fills up fast, plan ahead and reserve your spot! To schedule a tour please contact the pre-school office at (805) 497-6852 or email us at [email protected].
Support Temple Etz Chaim everytime you shop
Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases when you shop at AmazonSmile - smile.amazon.com.
Agoura Hills Hand Car Wash "Wash Bucks" Program
Find out here how you can help support TEC every time you wash your car or shop at Agoura Hills Hand Car Wash.
Earn Funds for TEC
When you search and shop with GoodSearch, you help Temple Etz Chaim earn money. How? Good Search is a search engine which donates 50-percent of its renveue to the charities and schools designated by its users.
TEC Trip to Spain
Rabbi Richard Spiegel of Temple Etz Chaim took a group of Temple members to Spain for a Jewish heritage tour of Spain. The group traveled to Madrid, Barcelona, Cordoba, Granada, Sevilla, Girona, and Toledo to see remnants of a once vibrant Jewish community that existed in Spain during the middle ages.