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Valley teen takes part in BBYO trip to Spain

Faith Kessler was the only person from Arizona who went on the BBYO Spain Discovery high school youth group trip this summer. Spain Discovery is a two-week cultural travel opportunity for teens to explore Spanish cities and meet the Jewish communities there. Kessler, a senior at Arizona Agribusiness & Equine Center in Phoenix, wrote this travelogue about her Spanish adventure. — Janet Perez

Wednesday 09/12/2018
Simple, elegant break-the-fast meal
Posted: September 12, 2018

Everyone looks forward to breaking the fast, except for maybe the chef, who likely has plenty of other things to do in the days ahead. So with Yom Kippur just a few days away, here in advance are some quick and easy ways to break the fast in style.

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Genetic screenings urged during Tay-Sachs National Awareness Month
Posted: September 12, 2018

Like many Jews, Shari Ungerleider was tested for Tay-Sachs disease while she was pregnant with her first child, Evan. Tragically, the results were misread and Ungerleider was assured she wasn’t a carrier.

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Thursday 08/30/2018
Consider the versatile, nutritious cauliflower
Posted: August 30, 2018

A diet rich in a variety of fruits and vegetables is generally recommended for optimal health, but that can be a challenge in our region during the dead of winter. The good news is that with some effort, we can find locally grown and stored produce at area markets.

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Outdoor adventure is key at Northern Arizona’s only Jewish day camp
Posted: August 30, 2018

Every summer, Bruce and Barbara Goldberg of Phoenix escape the city’s oppressive heat by retreating to their Flagstaff vacation home. They love having their grandchildren visit for the summer, and are thrilled to give them the special treat of attending Northern Arizona’s only Jewish day camp, Camp Canyon, which emphasizes outdoor adventure.

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Wednesday 08/22/2018
Two insider tricks to make dinner better
Posted: August 22, 2018

I recently discovered two fantastic tricks: One involves the grill, the other a pie.

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Wednesday 08/15/2018
Checking your own communication behaviors with your children
Posted: August 15, 2018

When my two brothers and I were in elementary school, our family always ate weekday dinners together. Everyone in the family had a chance to talk about problems, successes and minutia of the day. My parents insisted that if we wanted to be listened to, we had to listen to everyone else, including them. My parents created an environment conducive to sincere communication. They knew that if they wanted their children to listen to them, they needed to listen to us.

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Fall is the time for teens to reconnect
Posted: August 15, 2018

It’s back-to-school time for Valley Jewish students, which means it’s also time to reconnect with various Jewish youth groups around the Valley.

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Should schools start later?
Posted: August 15, 2018

Ask a teenager whether they want to sleep a little bit longer, and they’ll happily turn around without a sound and crawl back into their cave of 500 thread count sheets.

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Wednesday 08/15/2018
A fiesta of Mexican appetizers
Posted: August 15, 2018

Zesty and delicious, Mexican appetizers are so versatile. Sautéed or roasted vegetables, cilantro, scallions, salsa, avocado, corn kernels and refried beans can be easily added or substituted for a recipe’s suggested ingredients. Because Mexican appetizers are often finger foods, they set an informal tone. Perfect for summer fun.

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Wednesday 08/01/2018
Chicken so good, it’s addictive
Posted: August 01, 2018

R emember the “Curb Your Enthusiasm” episode where Larry David is obsessed with chicken from a Palestinian restaurant, but is wracked by guilt for supporting the establishment? “I know, I know, but this chicken, you can’t believe how good it is!”

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Wednesday 07/25/2018
Keep furry friends safe this summer
Posted: July 25, 2018

Summer is a time for both you and your pet to enjoy the sunshine and outdoors, but along with the fun, the season also offers up situations that can endanger your pet. 

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Should you put insulation on the outside of your house?
Posted: July 25, 2018

Most Arizona homeowners know what insulation is and how it helps protect houses from getting too hot in summer or too cold in winter (not something we worry about very much).

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The fresh flavors of Mexico in your kitchen
Posted: July 25, 2018

Since visiting one of my newly discovered favorite restaurants, I have craved Mexican food nonstop.

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Wednesday 07/18/2018
Refreshing no-bake desserts perfect for summer
Posted: July 18, 2018

There is something special about an elaborate dessert. Finishing a meal with a showstopper of a sweet treat makes everyone smile.

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Wednesday 07/11/2018
Peach season blossoms each summer
Posted: July 11, 2018

There is nothing better than biting into a ripe peach, even when the juice rolls down to my chin. With their sweet flavor tinged with a touch of tartness, peaches are my favorite fruit — not just for their taste but for their versatility, too.

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Thursday 07/05/2018
Hoisin chicken lettuce wraps
Posted: July 05, 2018

Pulled chicken is one of my go-to dishes for a crowd.

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Wednesday 06/20/2018
Revamping the Reuben
Posted: June 20, 2018

As a fan of sandwiches in general, I never gave much thought to the Reuben — that traditional deli concoction of corned beef, sauerkraut, Russian dressing and Swiss cheese grilled on rye bread.

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A Shabbat dinner to serve all summer
Posted: June 20, 2018

I began with the best of intentions. For years, I made rich meals for Shabbat dinners all year-round, but in the summer, even with air conditioning, I became overheated preparing hearty food, which my family and friends didn’t feel like eating on sweltering days.

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Report: Arizona bucks national autism trend
Posted: June 20, 2018

In late April, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released findings showing a 15 percent increase in autism spectrum disorder over previous estimates. But Arizona bucked this trend by reporting a slight decrease.

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New website centralizes Jewish volunteer opportunities
Posted: June 20, 2018

When the new website Mitzvah Hub, a partnership between Jewish Federation of Greater Phoenix and Jewish Family and Children’s Service, launches this fall, it will become much easier to find volunteer opportunities within the Jewish community.

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Wednesday 06/13/2018
Local woman puts creative energy into citywide fitness initiative
Posted: June 13, 2018

Lauren Saks barely breaks a sweat as she jumps and squats while cheering on a panting crowd via her headset. You’d never know the leader of Fall into Fitness, a free group exercise class offered by the city of Phoenix through its FitPHX initiative, once avoided exercise.

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Dog tales explored in young author’s newest book
Posted: June 13, 2018

Rachel Kaplan dreamed of having a fur baby since she was in preschool at Temple Kol Ami. In her second book, “The Adventures of Smokey,” she recounts the tale of adopting and learning to care for her first dog.

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Wednesday 05/23/2018
New photography exhibit highlights Israel’s diversity
Posted: May 23, 2018

On Monday, the Arizona Jewish Historical Society held the public opening for “Israel at 70: The Diverse Faces of Israel,” a solo exhibit of photography by Joel Zolondek, a Jewish News contributor. Marty Haberer, CEO of Jewish Federation of Greater Phoenix, and Vicki Cabot, a former Jewish News reporter and editor, served as guest speakers.

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Jewish educational administrator vies for GOP nomination as state superintendent
Posted: May 23, 2018

A Valley native and product of the Arizona public school system, Republican Jonathan Gelbart is one of two Jewish candidates vying to become Arizona’s next Superintendent of Public Instruction.

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New home for Yeshiva High School of Arizona nears completion
Posted: May 23, 2018

The roofers’ hammers boomed overhead on a recent Wednesday as Rabbi Gavriel Goetz, head of school for Yeshiva High School of Arizona, explained that the YHSA’s new building and first permanent home should be open sometime this fall.

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Wednesday 05/16/2018
Jewish day school fights food insecurity
Posted: May 16, 2018

The U.S. Department of Agriculture defines food insecurity as “a household-level economic and social condition of limited or uncertain access to adequate food.”

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Valley groups cater to caregivers during Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month
Posted: May 16, 2018

In 2014, the Alzheimer’s Association designated June Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month in order to support those with Alzheimer’s and those caring for them, in addition to promoting early detection. This year, the monthlong observance culminates on the summer solstice, June 21, with The Longest Day, an event offering individuals and groups the opportunity to host private or public events in order to raise money and awareness to support the organization’s continuing service.

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Wednesday 05/09/2018
A trip to the Roman Jewish ghetto
Posted: May 09, 2018

I had the good fortune to spend a week in Italy recently. I also had the good fortune to tour Il Ghetto, as it is still called.

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Valley breast cancer survivor starts support group with Jewish focus
Posted: May 09, 2018

Jessica Knight was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer in September 2013. Married to a marine, Knight and her family moved around every couple of years. At the time of her diagnosis. they were living in Vienna, Virginia, and Knight hadn’t yet connected with a synagogue.

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Wednesday 05/02/2018
Harissa: spice paste extraordinaire
Posted: May 02, 2018

Harissa, the North African spice paste that blends dried chilis, garlic, paprika and some other aromatic spices, is becoming my newest kitchen workhorse.

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Wednesday 04/25/2018
What to expect from an event photographer
Posted: April 25, 2018

A yad skimming over the black letters of the Torah during a bar mitzvah is an image you probably want to always treasure.

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Speeches present learning opportunity for bar and bat mitzvahs
Posted: April 25, 2018

Your palms are sweaty.

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Wednesday 04/18/2018
The code to success: computer science for kids
Posted: April 18, 2018

What does it take to move your child from consumer to producer of technology?

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