Thursday, December 10, 2020

Three Joys

I had such fun sharing three happy-making things last week that I thought I'd do it again for Three on Thursday (hosted by Carole) this week!

Happy Thing 1: Finished Socks

I've been complaining for a while about how long my father's gift socks have been taking to knit. I know it hasn't been that long in the grand scheme of things and in comparison to slower knitters, but I am usually really fast with stockinette socks. Thankfully the planets aligned yesterday and I was able to devote most of the day to working on them -- and last night I finished them! I gave them a quick soak and laid them on a towel on top of the radiator to dry (one of many reasons I like having radiant heat in our house), so by this morning they were ready to go!

I've got just one more pair of socks to go, but I'm going to be knitting those on larger needles and hoping that results in a faster project!

Happy Thing 2: A Surprise Treat in the Mail

I am not and have never been a morning person, so I'm generally a little grumpy when I first wake up, even with the extra half hour of sleep I've been getting since my commute to work changed to walking up a flight of stairs. This morning I got a nice surprise to start my day that instantly improved my mood: an email that someone had sent us something from Zingerman's! If you've never heard of the magical deli, well, just click over and look through their menu. I've never had anything there/from there that wasn't delicious, and I can't wait to see what's in store for us! I have no idea who has sent this gift or what it is, but we'll find out when it arrives tomorrow, and I have no doubt that it'll be delicious!

Happy Thing 3: Chanukah* Starts Tonight

Chanukah is technically a minor Jewish holiday, but it's been blown up to be the equivalent of Christmas over the years (in the United States, anyway). Traditionally it's not about the presents, and children would receive gifts of gelt, or money, rather than gifts. But now it's about the gifts, and we've got a bunch of things for Rainbow (that I really need to wrap today, oy vey!). I had a brief moment of panic this morning when I didn't know if we had any candles in the house -- because I know we didn't buy any this year, and last year we were in Florida for all of the holiday -- but I did a quick dig and breathed a sigh of relief:

Menorah/chanukiah from Nambé

I don't know that we have enough to get us through the entire holiday, but it's enough for at least a few nights, and we can get more this weekend at the supermarket. The fortunate thing is that we only need two candles to start, so I'm sure we could have scrounged up a couple of random candles if we'd needed to.

*And now for a little Jewish education session! One of you asked me a few weeks ago what the correct spelling of the holiday is. The answer is that there isn't one, at least in English. The word in Hebrew looks like this (with transliteration -- if you go to this site, you can hear it pronounced):

It's a three-syllable word, and because the Hebrew letters don't have a direct equivalent in English (there are multiple Hebrew letters that make the same sound, for instance, and some like the middle letter here that in this case only make the sound of the vowel -- the dot in the middle next to it), any English spelling is just an approximation of the sounds. I usually write it as Chanukah because it seems closest to how it's actually pronounced, but there are so many variations -- and really it doesn't matter. So spell it any way you like and don't stress! And if you want to observe the holiday in some way, it's traditional to eat foods fried in oil (to represent the oil that should have lasted for one day but lasted eight instead), like potato latkes and doughnuts. Yum!


  1. Knitting all day yesterday made a big difference! Large male socks in black are definitely a labor of love and I'm glad you finished them. Enjoy your treat from Zingerman's and your Chanukah candles, and thank you for the Jewish education session. I appreciate it and am glad to celebrate with doughnuts!

  2. Thank you for the lesson, Sarah! I always enjoy reading about your celebrations & traditions...and not JUST the food, but definitely the food :) Happy Chanukah to you & yours! The socks turned out beautifully. I love the deep blue. (And so glad you hear some time opened up for you! Especially this week!)

    1. My brother is fond of saying that about 90% of Jewish holidays can be summed up as, "They tried to kill us, we survived; let's eat!" So yes, a lot of the time it's about the food!

  3. Last year one of the rabbis I follow on Twitter reported that an admin for an unnamed Jewish organization transliterated Hanukkah eight different ways on the programming calendar—a different spelling for each night! XD

  4. Your brother's saying cracks me up! Let's eat!! What a treat to get a surprise from a (great) deli. Yum. Congratulations on finishing your Dad's socks - I know that must feel great! Happy Chanukah (glad you found some candles).

  5. Thank you for the Jewish Education Session! There's so much to learn in this world :) I grew up in a tiny town in Southeast Texas and met my first Jewish person in college. Of course, I opened my big mouth and told her that I had never met a Jewish person before... She was taken aback and said, "I don't think I'm the right person for this responsibility." So - yes! I have a lot to learn! :)

    These are three wonderful things! Congrats on finishing those socks and getting them blocked. And I hope you'll let us know more about your treat in the mail.

    Have a great weekend and a very Happy Chanukah, Sarah! Let's eat!

  6. What a beautiful menorah, Sarah! I'm so glad you had enough candles to get your celebration started. As for Zingerman's . . . every time I'm in Ann Arbor (not once this year, though . . . ), I love to stop at the deli for lunch - and some take-out treats for home. Everything is so good -- and especially right there AT Zingerman's. Enjoy your treats! (My mouth is watering already. . . )

  7. Hooray for finished socks - for male feet. That is a feat. Happy Chanukah. I am glad you found a few candles.

  8. The socks look so wonderful (and you were super fast, I think, but I know, some things are slow to your own standards and it's always a bit of a race against yourself).
    What did you get from the Deli? Did you order anything yet??