Rucheli's Writings

Readings, Ramblings, and Religious Rantings

Good morning, Brooklyn! September 1, 2010

Filed under: My Blog — rucheli @ 9:47 am
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Just a quick update before I head out for day 2 in New York City 🙂

Yesterday was an incredibly long day. Not sleeping at all on Monday night didn’t help, I’m sure. I had to be at the airport at 4:30am Tuesday for my 6am flight… or so I thought. Of course I got there and my flight was delayed 3.5 hours, so Dad and I just hung out for a little while and then through security and off I went.

I got into New York around noon. Of course by the time I got my luggage and took a taxi into Crown Heights (Brooklyn) it was 1:30 or so. I found my way to RL’s house, but she wasn’t there so her sister CB let me in. After getting settled in, I went to go see Estee for the first time since she got married… she’s so happy 🙂 I hung out at her work (Bais Chana) for a while before stopping by Empire Kosher for some sushi that I’ve been craving for several months. Then some shopping on Kingston Ave., a mint chocolate milkshake to hold me over until dinner (yummm) and some relaxing in the least-relaxing city in the world 😉 Dinner was with the Dubovs, and the conversation and good company lasted until about midnight before I found my way home and PASSED OUT.

It was a great first day away from home, and being in Crown Heights is always a vacation for my soul… Everything is so much easier here. All the restaurants are kosher, there’s a shul on every corner, the stores only sell clothes that are tznius (modest), and every person you meet on the street is Jewish… and observant also. You know everyone with no more than 2 degrees of separation, and whether you know them or not, 99% of them are willing to be your friend if you need a helping hand. I don’t know if I could live here forever, but I’d definitely like to give a year or two a shot! Maybe once I find a husband to live here with 😉

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Soul Accounting August 11, 2010

Filed under: My Blog — rucheli @ 11:27 pm
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The Profit and Loss Statement for Your SoulI just read an extremely interesting article on Chabad.org about Cheshbon HaNefesh, or the “account of the soul”. I’m a numbers and math kind of person, and obviously anything that ties my faith and beliefs back into the math and science I was raised on makes me extremely happy… two worlds collide and I find myself in a “comfort zone” on multiple levels. So this article basically turns the concept of Cheshbon HaNefesh into a logical step-by-step balance-sheet-ish analysis. For my Industrial Engineering friends out there… think “Cost Engineering” at it’s most spiritually moving level. Now anyone who knows me or knows anything about my work style knows that I am absolutely obsessed with Excel and making things easier by use of templates, programming, databases, etc. So in typical “me” fashion, feel free to download the following “Soul Accounting P&L” template. Template is © Cathleen (Rucheli) Manville 2010 (5770)… Enjoy!

Click here to download the Soul Accounting Profit & Loss Statement!

The entire 5-step process was introduced by Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneerson, the sixth Lubavitcher Rebbe. Chabad has always been great at breaking extremely spiritual and mystical concepts into easily applicable ideas, and this is no exception!! If you want to read the full article on Chabad.org you can find it here, but below is a basic summary:

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Inside Camp Gan Israel: South Orlando’s Largest Jewish Summer Camp February 24, 2010

Filed under: Featured,Headline,The Orlando Judaism Examiner — rucheli @ 1:18 pm
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CGI2Every summer, Jewish kids of all ages fly halfway across the country to go to the “best camp ever.” Little do these kids know that the place they’re looking for is right in their own backyard.

Opening this summer for the eighth year in a row, Camp Gan Israel (CGI) – Orlando is a child’s dream. As the largest Jewish camp in the area, they have the staff and the resources needed to fill this summer with memories that kids will cherish forever. Some kids are looking for more traditional camp activities like boating, archery, fishing, trips and nature walks. Other kids may be looking for a more “extreme” experience with things like wakeboarding, ropes courses, and surfing. Since there is something for everyone at CGI, kids have the chance to make the most of each day by picking the activities that they’re most interested in. Long summer days are filled with sports like…

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"Got Shabbat?" – Chabad brings light to Lake Mary

Rabbi Yanky Majesky and his wife Chanshy from the Chabad of North OrlandoIt may have seemed like a normal Friday night in North Orlando, but something special was going on in the Courtyard Marriott of Lake Mary. As Rabbi Yanky Majesky and the men of the growing Chabad of North Orlando congregation joined in the harmonies of L’cha Dodi, his wife Chanshy led the women of the group in lighting candles to welcome Shabbat. The couple, along with their 8 month old baby girl, moved to Lake Mary a few months ago to start a congregation where every single Jew feels welcomed. Talking to the members of Lake Mary’s newest congregation, it’s evident that was exactly the sentiment that surrounded the congregation’s second monthly “Got Shabbat?” service on February 12th.

All throughout the program, Rabbi Majesky made congregation members feel at home no matter their background or upbringing. By including both traditional hymns and more modern melodies, mixed with the occasional insightful explanation of various prayers, the service held by Rabbi and Mrs. Majesky was a breeze for everyone to follow along. “We attend services with Rabbi Majesky because it’s light and enjoyable for our family… not only that, but we feel personally welcomed,” said one member of the Rosen family, regulars at the new congregation. While those in attendance were from a variety of previous affiliations, from Reform to Orthodox and everything in between, everyone agreed that at the Chabad of North Orlando they got the best of both worlds, immersing themselves in a traditional atmosphere while at the same time enjoying a completely non-judgmental and inviting environment.

Steve Cohen, who co-sponsored the event in honor of his parents David and Adele Cohen, couldn’t be happier with …

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“Until When?” – A Poem in Memory of Avrohom Dovid Liberow January 13, 2010

Filed under: My Blog,Poetry — rucheli @ 9:52 am
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The following poem is dedicated to the blessed memory of Avrohom Dovid Liberow, who tragically died one week ago on Wednesday, January 6th, 2010 or the eve of 21 Tevet 5770. Below the poem is the story of my connection to the Liberow family and the details of this tragedy.

“Until When”

I didn’t really know you well,
But then, I didn’t need to.
Knowing your family is enough
To know something about you.
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Bais Chana's Snorkel & Study 2010 January 11, 2010

Filed under: My Blog — rucheli @ 12:11 am
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I just got back to Orlando from a long winter break… in fact that’s the most time I’ve spent in South Florida since I graduated high school in 2005. Crazy! I wasn’t at home for all of it though, I went home for the holidays and then headed down to the Keys :]

Last week was the 2010 Bais Chana Snorkel & Study program. It was an 8-day yeshivacation type thing for college-aged girls from all over the world. From December 31st to January 7th there was about 100 of us in Key Largo at the beautiful Mariner’s Resort and Condominium Community. It was a week filled with learning, laughter, and lounging around… in 3 layers of sweatshirts! Despite the ridiculously unusual Florida weather, it was an event that none of us will ever forget, and I can’t wait to do a write-up on the event later this week! School starts tomorrow and I go back to work on Tuesday, but hopefully the article will be up in the next few days!

Bais Chana Snorkel & Study Group Picture

Keep an eye out for the article, and stay warm everyone!

 

Chanukah at Chabad: An Orlando holiday review December 20, 2009

Cagan's Crossings Menorah

Jeff and Sandra Cagan of Cagan's Crossings with Rabbi Yosef Konikov of the Chabad of South Orlando

Chanukah is the one Jewish holiday that everyone celebrates the same way. For Shabbat, Passover, and even the High Holidays everyone has their own traditions and customs depending on their family background and their level of observance. But Chanukah? Besides the everlasting debate on the English spelling of the holiday’s name, the actual practices are all the same. Dreidels, latkes, and Chanukah gelt (chocolate coins) are standard no matter what Jewish upbringing you’ve had. Every Jew lights one more candle each night on their menorah, every Jew spends time with family, and every Jew looks forward to their eight nights of presents. And no matter what, every Jew is invited to celebrate Chanukah with Chabad.

This year the Chabad of South Orlando celebrated Chanukah with not one, but two public menorah lighting festivals, going above and beyond all expectations! Please visit the Orlando Judaism Examiner column for a review of the Dr. Phillips Menorah Lighting and the Cagan’s Crossing Menorah Lighting.