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Giving

Families leaving a legacy

For members of the Jewish community who want to create a permanent charitable endowment that will benefit the community long after they’re gone, one of the most notable ways to accomplish this is through the Jewish Community Foundation’s Endowment Book of Life.

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Special Section: Real Estate & Home Guide

Buying or selling a home during the holidays has its advantages

Each year as the holiday season approaches, a significant amount of homeowners decide to postpone placing their homes on the market until after the New Year. Other homeowners, who may already have their house listed on the market, decide to take their homes off the market thinking that prospective buyers do not have an interest in home shopping.

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High Holiday Planner

The High Holiday Planner features articles to help you get ready for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur: A Sephardic seder for Rosh Hashanah; Easiest Rosh Hashanah dinner ever; Celebrity cooks share their Rosh Hashanah recipes; Tiny acts bring great rewards; We need to stop overcooking.

Get Connected

Programs match different ages, stages

Whether you are new to town or entering a new phase in your life, the Valley’s Jewish community offers many ways to get involved.

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Simchas

Jewlyweds: a community for couples

When Marina Awerbuch moved from Toronto to attend graduate school at Arizona State University, she immediately made a connection with Jewish Arizonans on Campus (JAC) and jLive, run by Rabbi Jordan Brumer.

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Summer Cool

VOSJCC opens new pool

With summer on the way, the new lap pool at the Valley of the Sun Jewish Community Center in Scottsdale opened May 16. It is the first element of the JCC’s aquatics center infrastructure to open. 

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Passover

Market holds pet Passover seder

In an effort to raise awareness of its kosher-for-Passover canned pet food, Evanger’s Kosher Pet Foods hosted a pet-friendly and family-friendly seder for pets April 18 at Choice Pet Market’s Scottsdale location on Scottsdale Road and Shea Boulevard.

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Good Health

Our Good Health special section features articles about spiritual coaching, helping families adjust when a child is diagnosed with autism, and how children can cope with ADHD. 

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Jewish News Best of brunch 2016

Inclusion

Jewish Disability Awareness & Inclusion Month

February is Jewish Disability Awareness & Inclusion Month and Jewish News has collected articles about efforts to promote inclusion of the disabled in the worldwide Jewish community.

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Hanukkah Planner

Delicious treats for the Hanukkah dessert table

It is a truth universally acknowledged that we can never get tired of Hanukkah latkes and sufganiyot (the holiday’s deep-fried jelly doughnuts). But there’s no harm in adding some culinary variety to this year’s Festival of Lights. Pastry chef Paula Shoyer offers a doughnut recipe with a twist as well as two alternative recipes that are great for Hanukkah and will satisfy any sweet tooth.

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Thanksgiving Planner

Sides add interest to main course

While the turkey is the center of the Thanksgiving feast, there’s a lot to be said for the appeal of the side dishes – warm soups, savory potatoes, hearty vegetable recipes and festive beverages. Here are some new ideas to liven up your holiday table.

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Giving

Program gives Jewish nonprofits training to ‘secure the future’

Few conversations are tougher to have than the one about planning what will happen when you die. So it’s not surprising that it’s been tough for nonprofits to seek commitments for bequests, gifts made from the estate of a person who has died.

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Get Connected

Connect with your community

With 5776 on the horizon, it’s time to reflect on the past year and think ahead to next year. As with any new year, Jewish or secular, looking to the future usually means making resolutions, many of which include how we spend our hours and days. If you’re looking for new ways to invest your time while connecting with your community, Jewish News has rounded up a few organizations you might consider joining or volunteering with to make 5776 more fulfilling.

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High Holidays

How to get back on proper path

We live with a practical tradition. We begin the Jewish New Year with 10 days devoted to introspection. Between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, we are asked to review our past failures and victories, to evaluate our relationships and how we can make things better for ourselves and those we care for. We take stock of our lives and try to put ourselves back on the right path.

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High Holiday Planner 5776

High Holiday Planner

As 5776 approaches, Jewish News has collected articles to help prepare for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur on new High Holiday-themed books for children, easy and elegant menu recipes, Jewish New Year cocktails, a reflection on whether one can atone through social media, as well as a call to be welcoming to singles and the childless.

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Simchas

Food trucks are hot party trend

Food trucks, a staple of the culinary scene in cities like Los Angeles and New York, are gaining popularity in the Valley. While the mobile eateries can be found around town at office complexes, festivals, farmers’ markets and other locations, many are also hirable for birthdays, bar/bat mitzvahs, weddings and other private events.

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Back to School

Starbucks Club: a habit of giving

Traditionally, Chabad centers on college campuses are funded entirely by donors – alumni, parents and community members.

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Mature Living 2015

Exercise is key to maintaining seniors’ brain and body health

Living an active lifestyle is important at any age, but for seniors it’s critical. Exercise can contribute to better health and well-being, provide an energy boost and help delay the aging process. Regular exercise can also help seniors manage and improve existing conditions, such as diabetes, heart disease and osteoporosis. But before starting any exercise or fitness program, seniors should check with their doctors to make sure they are ready to proceed. Exercise benefits seniors both mentally and physically – not just in the gym, but outside as well.

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Summer Cool 2015

Staycation deals end summer on a high note

Craving a vacation but don’t have the time or money (or both) for a full-fledged getaway? Don’t despair; Arizona’s world-class resorts are just a short drive away, and many are offering summer specials to make a staycation an affordable and attractive prospect.

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Weddings

Creative bachelor parties

The bachelor party probably won’t be the groom-to-be’s last night out with the guys, but it should be one of the most memorable. If you’re inclined to forgo the wilder type of bachelor blowout, here are some ideas for great parties:

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Good Health 2015

Focus on Nutrition

Our latest Good Health special section, sponsored by Cypress HomeCare Solutions, focuses on nutrition.

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Wednesday 02/14/2018
Documents every parent will want their 18-year-old child to sign
Posted: February 14, 2018

As parents know, it’s never too early to start planning for your child’s college education. And the race to research colleges and send in applications hits a fever pitch in your child’s junior year of high school.

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Understanding your middle schooler
Posted: February 14, 2018

They’re called the “tween” years — those tumultuous, treacherous and confusing middle school years when kids dangle precariously between childhood and adolescence.

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A guide to common concerns regarding preschool behavior
Posted: February 14, 2018

Preschoolers often exhibit behaviors that parents may worry are odd, unusual or symptomatic of a disability. Most are nothing to worry about, but there are some you should keep your eyes on, just in case.

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Trampolines to travel: Valley JCCs offer a wealth of camp options for school breaks and the summer
Posted: February 14, 2018

Jewish summer camps offer an immersive experience that boosts participants’ level of engagement with the Jewish community for years to come, as was shown by a 2011 study by the Foundation for Jewish Camps. For parents seeking to cement their children’s connection to Judaism while staying closer to home, the East Valley JCC (EVJCC) and the Valley of the Sun JCC (The J) both offer a wide variety of options.

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Wednesday 02/07/2018
Ways to make your desert yard more sustainable
Posted: February 07, 2018

When designing the perfect Arizona backyard, most people want something that looks great and doesn’t require too much maintenance. But they also want to include plants and hardscaping that will last for a long time and won’t waste water. Those are great goals that make sense for the environment, as well as for making our own lives easier.

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Wednesday 01/31/2018
Stitching a legacy for 43 great-grandchildren
Posted: January 31, 2018

It’s not an unusual sight to see a bubbe sewing, knitting or crocheting a special something for her grandchild. But for Nita Quint, who has 43 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild, sewing personalized fabrics for them is an extraordinary feat of patience.

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Interfaith marriage poses challenge to Jewish seniors
Posted: January 31, 2018

One of the most significant trends within the American Jewish community over the past few decades has been the rise of intermarriage.

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When immigrating to Israel is a senior moment
Posted: January 31, 2018

For some retirees, this can be the time for them to fulfill a lifelong dream to live in the Jewish state. Empty nesters are now the second-largest group immigrating to Israel today.

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Wellness: Men's Health

Hall not shy on prostate cancer

If you want a frank depiction of what it’s like to receive a prostate cancer diagnosis, read Derrick Hall’s story at pro-state.org. The Arizona Diamondbacks president, diagnosed with prostate cancer at age 42 in September 2011, depicts his dazed post-diagnosis state, including his inability to dial his wife’s number to let her know the news. 

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Wednesday 01/31/2018
Holocaust survivor still runs family business
Posted: January 31, 2018

At the age of 90, Suzy Ressler still comes into work every day.She owns Mrs. Ressler’s Food Products, which she founded in 1954 with her husband, Emerich, soon after they arrived to the United States. They started with only one employee by selling chopped liver and, in the decades since, expanded to selling more than 50 kinds of meat and employing more than 100 workers.

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Johns Hopkins dementia study aims to improve quality of life
Posted: January 31, 2018

Today, more than 5 million people are living with Alzheimer’s and related dementias in the United States, according to the Alzheimer’s Association. About 80 percent live at home and are cared for by about 15 million unpaid, informal caregivers — often spouses or adult children. And while impacts on patients include medical and psychological problems, reduced quality of life and high costs for care, impacts on caregivers can be severe.

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Granddaughter opens assisted living facility to get it right for Nana
Posted: January 31, 2018

Jesse and Shira Charyn decided to open their own assisted living home, Shalom Home, after watching Shira’s grandmother, Clara Esther Shinder, move from one facility to the next, never receiving the care or attention she needed.

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Heart health and gender bias
Posted: January 31, 2018

If my 20-year-old self could see me now — living in the Valley of the Sun, where it is bathing suit season 10 months of the year, and surrounded by women ... Wait, let me explain.

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Wednesday 01/17/2018
Embrace your niche: the rise of specialty camps
Posted: January 17, 2018

Going to camp is an integral part of the summer for many kids. Not just many, millions. More than 7 million, in fact, and growing, according to the American Camp Association.

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Preschools need ‘radical hospitality’ to thrive
Posted: January 17, 2018

Big changes are afoot for Jewish preschools, and your synagogue may need to adapt in order to thrive.

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Wednesday 01/10/2018
Exciting home decorating trends for the new year
Posted: January 10, 2018

Interior design trends for 2018 are all over the map. It’s no surprise when you look around the world at what is going on politically, economically and socially. Design is always a reflection of people’s attitudes, and today it has become a global experience.

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Wednesday 01/03/2018
Longtime songwriting couple still at it, stay topical with Al Franken song
Posted: January 03, 2018

Henry and Bobbie Shaffner consider themselves big fans of resigning Minnesota Sen. Al Franken — and excitedly attended one of his book signings last year — but they aren’t above needling him a bit for his alleged sexual transgressions.

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Call your mother: exploring changing communications
Posted: January 03, 2018

During the holiday season, and often on Sundays, it has been a tradition for adult children to pick up the phone and call their parents, especially their mothers.

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Survivor's story told in haunting narrative
Posted: January 03, 2018

Suzanne “Suzy” Choder truly met her mother for the first time when she was 3.

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Wednesday 12/20/2017
Let’s sleep on it
Posted: December 20, 2017

My Aunt Viv, of blessed memory, had a unique way passing on the news from Baltimore. She would give a quick rundown of the facts and then, at first unexpectedly, proclaim, “There, I have now given you dinner conversation. Goodbye.”

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88-year-old backpacker travels to Southeast Asia
Posted: December 20, 2017

Robert Mellin is a man with a thousand stories.

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Break free from the blues this holiday season
Posted: December 20, 2017

Festive parties, family gatherings, gift shopping and time-honored recipes are what most people associate with the holiday season. However, for some, the winter is far from being the most wonderful time of the year. Coined the “holiday blues,” this condition should not be taken lightly.

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Ins and outs of aging in place
Posted: December 20, 2017

Aging isn’t what it used to be. And innovations in senior living and care are coming in time for the elder boom.

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Medicare takes aim at medical identity theft
Posted: December 20, 2017

Criminals are increasingly targeting people age 65 or older for personal identity theft. In 2014 alone, there were 2.6 million such incidents among seniors, according to the Department of Justice.

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Interfaith group receives grant for grandparents program
Posted: December 20, 2017

Across the country, 2.7 million grandparents are raising grandchildren, according to the U.S. census, and about one-fifth of those have incomes that fall below the poverty line.

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Cyclist, 67, rides across country to raise funds for childhood cancer
Posted: December 20, 2017

When Glenn Hirsch was a teenager, he dreamed about someday riding his bike across the United States. When he turned 50, he figured he’d better get started.

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Wednesday 12/13/2017
Chanukah Events
Posted: December 13, 2017

Dec. 3-12

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Make holiday entertaining a breeze with these tips
Posted: December 13, 2017

Chanukah is here and there are plenty of ways to throw a festive holiday party without breaking the bank or setting your kitchen ablaze.

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Annual Chabad motorcade brings Festival of Lights to Phoenix streets
Posted: December 13, 2017

Every year in cities across the U.S., Chabad holds Chanukah parades featuring vehicles decorated with various kinds of menorahs.

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Wednesday 12/06/2017
Buying or selling a home during the holidays has its advantages
Posted: December 06, 2017

Each year as the holiday season approaches, a significant amount of homeowners decide to postpone placing their homes on the market until after the New Year. Other homeowners, who may already have their house listed on the market, decide to take their homes off the market thinking that prospective buyers do not have an interest in home shopping.

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Down-and-dirty on keeping a clean home this winter
Posted: December 06, 2017

While it may very well be the most wonderful time of the year, winter is often also the dirtiest.

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Books are the gifts that keep on giving
Posted: December 06, 2017

Chanukah and children’s books go together like latkes and applesauce.

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Toast Chanukah with these festive, flavorful wines
Posted: December 06, 2017

Whether having friends and family around for cocktails and candles or for a full-on celebratory Chanukah dinner party, adult beverage offerings are a must.

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Chanukah Event Calendar
Posted: December 06, 2017

Dec 3-12

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Eight ways to repurpose and DIY Chanukah traditions
Posted: December 06, 2017

It's that special time of year again — Christmas! — er, Chanukah.

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Wednesday 11/29/2017
Sweet Potato and Zucchini Latkes
Posted: November 29, 2017

Enjoy this twist on a traditional Chanukah dish.

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Top 10 financial scams targeting seniors
Posted: November 29, 2017

Top 10 financial scams targeting seniors

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Beware of scams during moments of transition
Posted: November 29, 2017

When people, seniors especially, are going through a transition in their lives such as the death of a spouse or a move, they are likely to become more vulnerable to scams.

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Exercise keeps brain and body sharp
Posted: November 29, 2017

Do you ever do the ostrich when you are presented with new information? Do you figuratively bury your head in the sand to avoid reading the article that challenges you to save for retirement or to exercise your way to better health?

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Annual holiday event raises funds for interfaith group Duet
Posted: November 29, 2017

Duet: Partners In Health & Aging continues an almost 30-year-old tradition of raising funds for the interfaith organization during the holidays.

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Things to do
Posted: November 29, 2017

Sunday, Dec. 3

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Wednesday 11/22/2017
Bar and bat mitzvah food pulls into the station
Posted: November 22, 2017

If you’ve noticed fewer and fewer buffets at bar and bat mitzvah parties, there’s a reason. The trend today is for more individualized and streamlined meals.

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How not to be Jacob the Bar Mitzvah Boy (or Bat Mitzvah Girl)
Posted: November 22, 2017

You probably don’t need to have seen Vanessa Bayer’s portrayal of “Jacob the Bar Mitzvah Boy” on “Saturday Night Live” to get the joke.

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6 budget-saving party tips
Posted: November 22, 2017

Celebrating a child’s bar or bat mitzvah is an important and meaningful milestone — and an expensive one. It’s akin to a wedding, with all the range and variety that implies. From a small and simple $7,000 celebration to a tens of thousands of dollars-level spectacle, this is no minor affair.

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The Valley’s first mobile kosher pizza oven is ready to party
Posted: November 22, 2017

The Valley’s first mobile kosher pizza oven is open for business and, quite literally, ready to roll.

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8 ways to celebrate Chanukah’s 8 nights in the Holy Land
Posted: November 22, 2017

Is it possible to stay entertained for “eight crazy nights”? For the wintertime extravaganza of Chanukah, Israel offers a wide selection of cultural, culinary and religious activities to pack any tourist or resident’s schedule.

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Wednesday 11/15/2017
The ‘Jewish Jordan’ Israel summer camp playbook
Posted: November 15, 2017

For years, Jewish basketball aficionados have adored Tamir Goodman. The same can now be said for Jewish summer campers.

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Israel program for teachers addresses ‘remoteness’ in diaspora Jewish education
Posted: November 15, 2017

For Shani Tauber, it all came together when her group left the house of Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook, the religious Zionism pioneer known as “Rav Kook.”

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Camp Newman community finds temporary home after fire
Posted: November 15, 2017

Although the wildfires in Northern California left most of URJ Camp Newman’s buildings in smoldering ruins, the speed with which past and current camp employees and campers, including many in the Valley, rallied to its aid has buoyed those grappling with the devastation.

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Wednesday 11/08/2017
Thanksgiving meets Chanukah — and they find they have a lot in common
Posted: November 08, 2017

There’s got to be some connection between Thanksgiving and Chanukah. Why? Because the Baal Shem Tov taught us that everything a person sees or hears is meant to be a lesson in life. Thanksgiving is the American holiday right before Chanukah. In fact, in 2013, American Thanksgiving fell on the first day of Chanukah. Tell me there isn’t meaning there.

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How to increase home equity and get more bang for your buck
Posted: November 08, 2017

Looking to sell your house this fall? It’s time to talk home equity. You’ve probably heard the phrase a hundred times, but it’s often unclear what it really means — or what you need to do to change it.

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A cool head, professional support essential when buying real estate
Posted: November 08, 2017

Whether you buy or build, moving into the home of your dreams is an exciting prospect. But buyer beware; the process can turn into a nightmare quickly without preparation.

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Turkey leftover treats: Ground turkey beats beef
Posted: November 08, 2017

‘Let’s give ground turkey a try,” I said to my husband. “It’s better for us than beef.”

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Jewish identity, Thanksgiving and Jewish unity
Posted: November 08, 2017

Secular discussion of the material world has many different spins that parallel the battle for the birthright between Jacob and Esau. Our forefather Jacob models for humankind the discipline of seeking beneath the surface. Esau, on the other hand, demonstrates the desire to focus on the surface itself.

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A Thanksgiving movie marathon with Jewish flavor
Posted: November 08, 2017

Why just watch the Macy’s parade when you can celebrate the holiday with flicks like “Fiddler on the Roof” and “The Ten Commandments?”

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Wednesday 11/01/2017
Why you should get Mom a furry companion
Posted: November 01, 2017

Is there anything better than a cat choosing to sit on your lap or seeing your dog’s face light up when you come home?

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Staying in your own home as you age
Posted: November 01, 2017

In less than 20 years, the U.S. population of those 65 and over is expected to double. A recent Harvard study claims that almost a third of American households will soon be headed by someone age 65 or older.

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Medicare open enrollment season is here
Posted: November 01, 2017

If you are a Medicare enrollee, you should know that open enrollment takes place from Oct. 15 through Dec. 7. Any changes you make to your coverage will take effect on Jan. 1, 2018. Since your health care priorities are likely to change over time, you might find it beneficial to review and make alterations to how you structure your Medicare solution. Reviewing your Medicare selections may help you either cut costs or improve coverage. For example, you may be able to:

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Consider the source when searching for health information on the internet
Posted: November 01, 2017

TBT (Turn Back Time) to Thursday-night television in the late 1980s. A time before on-demand, Netflix, Hulu and binge watching were part of the vernacular. When it was time for “LA Law,” your heart skipped a beat. If you missed the episode, you missed it. I guess you could catch the reruns during the summer. I am really not sure. I almost never missed.

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A Closer Look: Special Needs

CJSN emphasizes inclusion

The Council for Jews With Special Needs (CJSN) offers many resources and programs for Valley Jews with disabilities and their families to help them fulfill spiritual, cultural and religious needs in a variety of settings. 

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Simchas

Preparing for special days

If the words “kosher catering” conjure up visions of bland and unhealthy food, and memories of bar and bat mitzvahs past still haunt you, remember that planning your upcoming simcha doesn’t have to be a monotonous process full of seen-it-befores or tried-that-onces. With the help of creative kosher catering professionals – or by simply looking within yourself – your special day can be one of a kind. 

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