Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Crafting Jewish Style wishes you a Happy and Sweet New Year!

I like setting the holiday table early. This way every time I pass the dining room I feel that I am more prepared than I really am. For Rosh Hashanah I usually fill vessels with apples, pomegranates and other fruit for an easy and autumnal themed centerpiece. I fill out the arrangement with hydrangeas from the garden and/or  mums or some other Fall flowers from Shoprite.

For the place settings I've purchased mini pomegranates and placed a die cut circle with a Shanah       Tova sticker on it on top of the pomegranate. I find that pomegranates make great decorations and we love eating them both for their symbolism and because they taste great! I can't wait to try them     in Maya's recipe.                                                                                                                                        

That's it for my quick, easy and elegant holiday tablescaping ideas.

 It's hard to believe that another year has once again flown by. Its a time of reflection as well as a time of hope and prayers. In the midst of all the cooking, baking and mundane preparations (Does everyone have ironed shirts for shul? Did I cook enough food?...) I send up small requests (OK, big ones too) that this year should truly be a good and peaceful one for everyone.
I wish you all a year of happiness, peace, good health, prosperity and may all your prayers be answered for the good!

Sunday, September 25, 2011


Hello everyone.  It is Cassie.  For Rosh HaShanah this year I decided to make a little box to place Tzedakah during Rosh HaShanah.  I used Crafting Jewish Style's fun line of Rosh HaShana papers and I am really please with how it turned out.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Sketch time

It is time for another sketch here at Crafting Jewish Style. Once again we have a beautiful sketch created for us by Anam Stubbington. I love Anam's sketches, they already look like a piece of art so you can never go wrong with them. This sketch features one big photo and 5 smaller ones.

Lisa closely followed the sketch and made a Passover layout with one big picture of the seder guests and smaller pictures of the faces and little details that make the seder special. 

Louise used the sketch to document her recent family trip to Jerusalem. I love that she used the "Next Year In Jerusalem" saying and covered the "Next" with "this".
Shir used only one big photo on her layout. The title says "The 5th Modein Walk".
I omitted the big photo and used only 5 small square photos to document the details of our last Rosh HaShanah celebration. This layout will live in the album next to my Rosh HaShanah layout from the last year, so I skipped the journaling.

Four layouts based on the same sketch, four very different ways of sketch interpretation. Would you like to join us? Let see what is your take on the sketch.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Ruby grapefruit and pomegranate salad for Rosh HaShanah

One of our favorite Rosh HaShanah foods is pomegranate. I personally think it is one of the most beautiful fruits and my girls love eating the red, juicy seeds straight out of the bowl. We always have pomegranate seeds at our Rosh HaShanah table and try to add them to a dish or two.

In the Bible, the Land of Israel is praised for its pomegranates. It is also said that this fruit contains 613 seeds just as there are 613 mitzvot. Another reason given for eating pomegranate on Rosh HaShanah is that we wish that our good deeds in the ensuing year will be as plentiful as the seeds of the pomegranate.

The following recipe features pomegranate seeds and ruby grapefruit. It can be a good addition to any holiday table. The recipe is taken from Haim Cohen & Eli Landau's Cook Book.

Ruby grapefruit and pomegranate salad
1lb fresh green leaves (lettuce, arugula, ...)
Seeds from 1 pomegranate
1 ruby grapefruit, peeled (including the inside membranes) and chopped coarsely
1 bunch of radishes chopped coarsely
1 Tbsp capers
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
olive oil

Combine all salad ingredients in a bowl. Season with olive oil and salt. Enjoy!

What are your favorite Rosh HaShanah recipes?

Thursday, September 15, 2011

New Year Project

When I came to live in Holland (16 years ago!!!) I saw something I've never seen before and loved it. It was a birthday calendar, a calendar with no specific year where you can write birthdays and days to remember. The Dutch custom is to hang it in the toilet where you visit daily and has nothing better to do ;)
As we celebrate our birthdays on its jewish date, I always wanted to make myself such a jewish birthday calendar.
In a Hectic lifestyle as mine and a big mishpoche (=family), such a calendar is a must!

I used a mixture of papers and stickers. 100% CJS products.
I love the result and hope not to forget anyone's birthday from now on...
Nili :)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Thoughts about Sept. 11 from the Crafting Jewish Style design team

It's hard to believe that ten years have already passed since 9/11. It's an event that everyone will remember precisely where and when they were when the towers were hit. This is my story.
What strikes me the most about that day is its initial ordinariness. It began as just a regular day. A beautiful day, the sun shone so strongly that morning and the air had a bit of crispness to it. As usual, I was in a rush to get out to work that morning. It was my son's first day of preschool and I wanted to take him there instead of having his babysitter walk him. Before we left, I took some pictures of him and my daughter, both of them eager and smiling in anticipation of the fun to be had in school. (I have never scrapped those pictures, every time I see them I choke up.)
 I dropped them off  and rushed to work.  There was traffic on the parkway.I turned on the news to hear the traffic report, anxious not to be late.. As I was listening to the traffic report the reporter relayed the sighting of what looked to be a small aircraft flying straight into one of the towers.
I sat in my car, listening in horror, as the chopper pilot flew in for a closer look. It was definitely a plane that hit the tower.
I made it to work. I stopped into the office to relay the news to the principal. His immediate response was -terrorists. I disagreed, said it must have been an unfortunate aviation accident, and went in to teach my class. Minutes later the principal knocked on the door to let me know that the second tower was hit. This was no accident.
The rest of the day was awash in horrors as we one tragic event after another occurred. frantic phone calls were made as we tried to connect with everyone who worked or lived in the area.

I think back now to the initial minutes and hours after the attack, when we hoped all those people would be saved and then when we saw that they wouldn't.  I remember the grief on strangers' faces as I walked down the street and posters of the missing. I recall when we found out all the people we personally knew or knew of, as well as the thousands of strangers who died on that day. It was, and still is, too much to bear. Processing the enormity of that day was impossible. All I wanted to do is hug my family close and turn away from all the devastation. Yet we couldn't. And still cannot ten years later.
It's been ten years but I cannot forget the Rosh Hashanah that followed a week later.
We prayed with intensity for all those who were lost, their families and for ourselves-trying to make sense of the incomprehensible.
Nor can I forget Sukkot, that joyous holiday marred by the stench of the still smoldering buildings. The ground outside littered with the  detritus of the fallen towers a boro away.
Most of all I remember the little things-talking to the garbage collector in front of my house hours after the attack, my children building block towers and toppling them down, reading the NY Times "Portraits of Grief" daily, the American flags that seemed to have sprouted from every car, home and building. and of course driving over the bridge and not seeing the towers-I still miss seeing them.

Feel free to leave your comments and thoughts.
We will not forget all those who were lost. Yehi Zichronom Baruch.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

More Rosh HaShana Cards

Here are a couple of beautiful cards from Shir Benovich using the Rosh HaShana kit. These cards are an easy way to add a personal touch to your Rosh HaShana greeting.

I love the beautiful bow she tied on this second card.

The High Holidays are less than a month away. Now is a great time to get started on your cards. I hope these beautiful cards inspire you to create.