So Chanukah is a happy holiday - all about faith, courage, perseverance, and dedication. And light!
And, of course, no Jewish holiday is complete without special foods. For Chanukah, it's anything fried in oil - latkes for some; doughnuts for others. (Check out Axel's blog from December 2007 to see him help his mom make latkes.)
Our Mom is getting ready to light the first candle as soon as Dogdad comes home. But in the meantime, she wanted to show you the different menorahs she's come by over the years
This one has the most memories. It's the most traditional, made of brass and a tin-like metal, with the lions of Judah and the ten commandments. It belonged to Mom's grandparents, who came from Russia. When she sees it, she remembers happy times - the lights ablaze, reflecting the joy in her grandparents' faces as the whole family said the blessings and shared laughter and songs.The next two are more modern versions, the first made from aluminum; the second from hammered pewter and a bit more stylized. We'll be traveling with the second one so we can light the candles while we're away next week.This one is very special because our sister gave it to Mom - it plays a Chanukah song when you wind it up. The base is wood and the branches are metal.And finally, this more elaborate menorah was a gift from Dogdad's brother and his wife to Mom last year. It's porcelain and engraved with the word shalom - peace.
To get the true picture, you have to see these on the eighth night of Chanukah, when all the candles are lit. As the lights flicker, it's easy to imagine all the menorahs lit around the globe for so many hundreds of years. And it's impossible not to rememember the times spent with those who are no longer here but whose faces still dance in the lights.