Winter in Chicago, Purim Gift

Boy is it cold outside! This has been a particularly cold winter in comparison to previous years. That may be the reason I paired our new Wicked Awesome Wickedly caramelized K-cups with a cute coffee mug.From Florida to the West Coast, I have heard stories of ice cold weather and snow in places, like Las Vegas, that never see it! What a great idea for Purim Mishloach Manot! Send this Purim gift to your family and friends and they will feel warm and comfy! Check it out

Hanukkah Celebrations

With just 2 weeks until Chanukah, I think about how different the holiday feels when it is not celebrated at the same time as Christmas. When Hanukkah and Christmas and Kwanzaa all fall together at the same time, Happy Holidays seems to be the generic greeting to all. We do not want to antagonize or make someone else feel ignored. That’s fine with me. I think recognizing every holiday for its culture is a great thing. It is a lesson in diversity that we should be teaching our children.

However, when the holidays are separated by many days, as it is this year, each holiday stands out on its own merit. When I am shopping for Chanukah gifts or foods, I am more likely to hear Happy Chanukah than Happy Holidays and I love that. I love that Chanukah is getting the recognition it deserves as a purely Jewish holiday. I enjoy answering question about the meaning of Chanukah and I feel that people are not so frenzied about their own holiday shopping that they can recognize the holidays of other groups.

I also must admit to enjoying the purely relaxing feel of the Christmas and New Year holidays where I am done with my own preparations and can relax on those national holiday  vacation days. While everyone else is scurrying around getting their last minute gifts and cooking their turkeys, I am thrilled not to have to be out in the stores trying to find a parking space.

That said, I still have to cook my own Hanukkah meals. Therefore I have included a link to some great Chanukah recipes. try some out!


Thanksgiving and Veterans day

We have alot to be thankful for at this time of year. We are thankful for the men and women who put their lives in danger every day for our safety and the security of our country. Without their bravery, America would not be the great country and beacon to the world that she is.

We are thankful for our wonderful and caring family and friends who we are lucky to have in our lives. Whether sitting and shmoozing around the dinner table or skyping across the miles, our loved ones give meaning to our lives.

My wish is that we carry in our hearts these feelings throughout the year and remember how much we have to be grateful for.


Rosh Hashana 2017

As Rosh Hashana draws near, we all try to get a little closer to G-D. We look for ways to see G-D in our lives. Often, its hard to see. However, this year, I think we can all say that the wonders of Hashem are all around us.

First, and most spectacular, was the total eclipse. While I was not privileged to see the actual eclipse myself, the pictures on the news and in the papers are certainly awe inspiring. From friends and family who were lucky enough to be close by, the stories they tell not just of the majesty of the event, but also of the connections they made with people they met along their travels as they looked for a location to see it up close and personal. Total strangers conversing about life and the miracles of the world, without regard to religion, race, ethnicity or social standing. Everyone friendly and open and showing us the true depth of the American people, despite what chasms are reported in the papers.

We then move from the glory and beautiful eclipse to the horrendous devastation from both Hurricane Harvey and Irma. While we do  not know how bad the effects of Irma will be, the horror and crippling loss from Harvey give us an idea of the destruction that may follow in the wake of Irma. We only pray it will not be as bad as they are reporting.

But here too we see the hand of G-d. People from all over the country and in fact from all over the world are giving of themselves, their time and their money to help total strangers in need. The generosity of money and spirit prove to us all that people are good, no matter what their circumstances. this display of care and compassion for us is what defines us as Americans.

As we look forward to Rosh Hashana we should take these thoughts to heart and hope they make us better people in the end.


Now at…Ahava beauty products

We are very excited to announce that we are now carrying selection Ahava beauty products, imported from Israel!!We are offering Dead Sea Essentials by Ahava, Lavender hand cream, tea tree oil hand cream and Tea tree oil foot cream! These wonderful moisturizers are know for reliving cracked dry skin and hydrating skin for a soft and supple feel. Dermatologist tested and safe for sensitive skin these new lotions are just what you are looking for.Known for its healing properties, the Dead Sea provides minerals such as calcium, magnesium, potassium, boron, that you skin thirsts for.

We also carry other Dead sea collection skin products such as Anti-Wrinkle creams and serums that do wonders for your skin. Log on and check out our new selection. Your skin will thank you.

Ahava Dead Sea Essentials Tea Tree hand Cream

We have been getting so many calls asking about our kosher shelf stable microwave meals. My Own Meals are available in 10 favors, Chicken and Noodles, Chicken and Black Beans, My Kind of Chicken, Chicken Mediterranean, Beef Stew, Old World Stew, Pasta with Garden Vegetables, Cheese Tortellini, Florentine Lasagna, and Vegetarian Stew. Several of these meals are gluten Free, and several others are Halal.

The meals are flying off the shelves, an indication that it is summer and vacations are in the works. Going out of the country and worried about finding kosher food? My Own Meals solves that problem. Going camping? My Own Meals are easy to pack and easy to heat. I know my son ate the meals often while in college. He liked not having to worry about getting to the caf before it closed or enjoying a late night snack while studying. I like it too; when the temperature is in the 90’s and I don’t feel like cooking, I can pop one in the microwave and let my husband decide what he wants for dinner.

We ship these meals all over the world. Just last week, a customer called and asked us to ship to Norway! they have a very long shelf life so there is no need to worry that they will go bad. Typically the expiration date is 18 months!

They are always in stock so log on and order yours today!

Summertime and the season is grilling

First, I would like to apologize to our loyal fans for neglecting to post for such a long time. Things have been very hectic around here and I have pushed off doing lots of things, especially cleaning the house!

However, its time to get back to work even if its summertime. Tonight we are making a BBQ and offering our super green pickle relish to go with our hot dogs and hamburgers. I love the crunch and flavor and I know our guests are going to rave about the taste. Our sport peppers are also a hit, its one of the things my husband looks forward to. Making a BBQ is, to me, the easiest meal of the year. My husband does the grilling and all I have to do is make the salad. Add some fresh corn and potatoes and you have dinner that everyone is excited about.

Making a BBQ keeps the heat out of the kitchen, another plus when its supposed to be in the 90’s.

                                              Sport Peppers

We have plenty in stock. Order your jars today!


Cubs Win!!!!

I am taking time out from the usual grind in the office to send kudos to the best baseball team, the Chicago Cubs! The World Series was truly a nail biter for all of us lifelong fans! while it was difficult at times to watch, and I felt physically sick at times, the Cubs played like the true professionals they are and made us all proud!

Image result for picture of cubs win

For those of us who have been waiting decades, our patience has been rewarded!

Cubs win the World Series 2016


Is it sacrilegious to say Next Year at the World Series?

Rosh Chodesh Av and the Nine Days

With Rosh Chodesh Av tomorrow its hard to decide what to think about how this day fits in to our idea of Rosh Chodesh and its joyful inspiration. The following article offers some insights to the day. Interesting reading.

Rosh Chodesh Av: What Do We Do?

This year the Nine days may start on Friday but the reality of only eating dairy does not really come into play until Saturday night. For all you meat and potatoes fans, its a welcome relief from all that cheese! I have stocked the fridge with lox and salmon, a refreshing change from mac and cheese and a cool choice during these hot days of August. The seasoned smoked salmon we offer is a delicious choice; so easy to serve with no need to turn on the oven and heat up the house.

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Seasoned Smoked Salmon

If all else fails, bring out the ice cream tub and enjoy the guilt free treat. After all, in just a few days you will fast it all off!



Pesach and Easter – Not together again!

This is Passover and Easter do not fall within days of each other. It is not that unusual, like Chanukah on Thanksgiving, (once in how many centuries?), but it still a bit disconcerting for me.

For years, our family got together for Pesach and looked forward to family time. One of the most enjoyable things we did was to leave the kids with the husbands and go shopping, just the girls and my mother. How we agonized about missing a day when all the stores were closed for Easter!

This year with Easter almost a month earlier than Pesach, it is not an issue. Besides the fact that Sunday is still Yontif, it is also not Easter. I am taking over my mother’s role; taking my daughter and daughter in law shopping on Chol Hamoed. I look forward to bonding with them both at Nordstroms!

The reason that Easter and Passover do not fall within days of each other has to do with the lunar calendar which is short by 11 days to the calendar with are all familiar with. that means that each year the Jewish holidays fall out at slightly different times. In order to make sure that we do not celebrate Succot in the spring and Pesach in the fall, we add a leap year month every 4 years. This year is that fourth year. Thanks goodness for google search; you check out the dates for all the Jewish holidays years in advance.

That being said, there are no differences in the amount of work, cooking, cleaning, shopping, etc! I am sure that you are looking forward to relaxing as soon as the Dedarim are over just as much as I am!

Have a wonderful and peaceful Pesach from all of us at!passover-dessert-planterpassover-bartons-kisses