In my small world, we had a very nice Shabbat with three of our children. Amira's small family came, giving me some quality time with my grandson. He's at that amazing age where each time I am with him, he has blossomed more and more and I remain in awe of what my son-in-law and daughter have taught him (and am completely out-classed by what my son-in-law's family regularly teaches and instills in him).
I bought a small toy kitchen and Yosef loved it. It was such a hit. He served us all soup and tea and understood not to put real food on the play dishes. I wish I had been able to make two videos - the first of Aliza putting it together; the second of Yosef playing with it.
Davidi was home, telling us about his new yeshiva. He's excited to be coming close to finishing his driving lessons...all good.
So, in my small world, things were basically good. Some good things, some bad; some happy, some sad. Mostly life as you'd expect it for a mother with five children.
After Shabbat ended, I finally got around to checking the computer. It's a mixture of news, much of it likely not reported outside Israel.
During the recent war, Hamas killed over 120 youths because they violated the curfew. Guess Human Rights Watch missed that bulletin.
Turkey apparently refused the United States access to bases from which to launch rescue missions to save the lives of two American journalists who were beheaded by ISIS. Guess Obama missed that bulletin.
In the last two months, the light rail in Jerusalem has been attacked with stones and firebombs about 80 times.
And Israel's military intelligence is predicting a war soon with Hizbollah in Lebanon and is concerned with the 100,000 rockets they have; 5,000 of which are long range missiles capable of hitting most of Israel.
So, in the big world out there, things are tense, messed up and uncertain. CNN writes about ISIS brutality and why they are so anxious to show the world what how vicious they can be.
I think the greatest gift God gave to the people of Israel, is the ability, the command to shut out the large world and focus on our small world. For the last few months, friends have been posting on Facebook about a challenge. Some do the 5 day challenge, but more are doing the 100 day challenge.
For 100 days, each day, they are writing one thing that makes them happy - a way of showing that even in the bad times, there needs to be a way to focus on the good. For some reason, something inside of me rejects the idea of doing this. It feels a bit artificial to me. I love my friends and their optimism and more, I'm impressed that on some of those days, they could post something happy because in the last 100 days in Israel - three Israeli teens - Gilad, Eyal and Naftali were murdered and buried; we were at war for more than 50 days.
In my personal life, outside blogging and tweeting, I try to be as optimistic as I can; try to find the good and push it to the front of the bad. There were so many miracles that were given to Israel over the last 100 days but each week, the greatest happiness, the greatest peace, and the greatest happy, is Shabbat.
It's been just over a year since my surgery - my shoulder is about 90% better, and as I tell people - I'm not sure if it ever was 100%. It was bothering me today - I clearly strained it - but that's fine because that's what I do often enough.
Without question, I can easily, at any moment in my life, outweigh the sad and bad with the blessed and the amazing. I am so grateful for who I am, where I am, and for all those in my life.
I can't post 100 days of happy because inevitably withing those 100 days there were or would be days of sadness. What I will say, is that for all 100 days, we are blessed. That might be a challenge that I accept...maybe I'll start it myself. Yes, I think I will - 100 days of blessings...
Day 1 - Today, I am blessed with my oldest daughter, Amira. She is beauty defined - inside and out. She is an incredible mother, sister, daughter and wife. She is a friend, an accomplice, a teacher and an adviser. So, today's blessing is my daughter Amira.