Monday, December 02, 2013

On The First Nights Of Chanukah

On the first night of Chanukah we ate fried rice, fried in oil of course, lit the first candle on the menorah with the shamash and the kids each opened one small present. Rachel got bunny slippers and Sam got three chapter books.





These are our Mensches on the Mantle with our menorah on the first night. A separate post about our Mensches is coming later this week.
On the second night of Chanukah we participated in the LOGOS labyrinth at our church. Our church does a mid-week program called LOGOS and on the last night of the Fall term, there is a labyrinth set up in the sanctuary which each child gets to walk through. It takes about an hour for all the kids to go through and the rest of us sit in the darkness and wait. At the end, the labyrinth is lit by all the candles which the kids have carried to the middle, where two of our pastors lights them.
I was amazed that Rachel and Sam sat quietly, waiting their turns, and seemed to grasp the solemnity of the occasion. After the labyrinth was finished and the lights were turned on, Sam and Rachel continued to walk it, and a couple of kids pretended to be the pastors sitting in the middle. It was quite neat to see them role-playing this unique experience. We then came home and lit the Chanukah candles before bed.

13 comments:

  1. How neat- love your Chanukah traditions! And the bunny slippers!!

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  2. Enjoying reading about this as I have absolutely no background in this and I'm enjoying learning it!!

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    1. It's been an education for me too as Dave and I started dating and got married :)

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  3. I just love the way you beautifully blend the Chanukah and Christmas traditions. That labyrinth ceremony looks so beautifully, and I know it was really a sight to see the kids with their candles. Kids have a special way of just knowing when something is truly special, don't they? I also love Rachel's bunny slippers...that girl and I could be besties for sure with our love of bunnies! :-)

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  4. I love Rachel's bunny slippers. How cute! The church service looks amazing! I love your church and I've never been. =) You are doing a great job of teaching your children both holidays.

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  5. I'm loving following your Chanukah traditions! What a great experience for your kids!

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    1. Thanks! It's both fun, and a little crazy, to have two holidays to celebrate this time of year :)

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  6. I'm curious about the north Waterloo Mennonite church & the labyrinth.. I've experience in both and neither are Jewish related in my world! I attended Mennonite high school in niagara on the lake (loved it) and at work a labyrinth was cut into our grass for a couple yrs to release stress for us and calm Alzheimer's residents. It was a flop.. I find your posts on faith interesting. I'm a new-ish reader (from Stratford..just up the road from you) have you done a post on your faith? You practice Christianity and Judaism?

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    1. Hi -- Welcome aboard! I am a Christian Mennonite who is married to a Jew. We are raising our kids in both faiths and therefore celebrate all the holidays! We attend the synagogue on Saturdays and church on Sundays.

      At this point neither my husband or I is considering converting to the other person's faith, but as we've both learned in life, "Never say never!" That is not to say we are open to converting but I never thought I would get married and become a mom at age 36 and I never thought I would marry someone who wasn't a Christian and those things have all happened :)

      My husband and I did a lot of reading on inter-faith marriages before we got engaged and decided that raising our children in both faiths was the right decision for us. So that is why you will read about church, synagogue, Chanukah and Christmas on my blog.

      We also decided that the way to raise our children inter-faith was for both of to participate as much as possible in the other person's faith, without compromising our own faith. Hopefully this way it won't become a tug of war about "Mommy's faith" and "Daddy's faith" because I participate in the synagogue as much as possible and my husband participates in church as much as possible.

      It's a complicated life we've set up for ourselves :)

      Natasha

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    2. Have you shared more about your Mennonite background elsewhere on the blog? I don't know as much about the Mennonites, but as a former (semi-Southern) Baptist journeying towards Quakerism, I find this fascinating!

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  7. Thank you for the HUGE reply! That is an amazing undertaking & one built on love. Very interesting! And very much reflective I believe of Gods all encompassing love for us, in many different out workings of faith. Your children are blessed!

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    1. You're welcome. We tried to be very intentional about our decision and about how we are raising our kids. It's good because it causes us each to be intentional about our faith, which I appreciate.

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  8. Beautiful--thank you for sharing!

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