Sunday, December 21, 2008

Chanukah! Oh Chanukah!

And so tonight begins the 8 nights of Chanukah!
During this time, we celebrate the story of Judah Maccabee & the fight against tyranny the Jewish people faced thousands of years ago. We light the Chanukah menorah for 8 nights, play dreidel & eat foods fried in oil.
Huh? Fried in oil? Surely that can't be good for you. True. It isn't, but it is a custom that Jewish people the world over follow. Eating latkes (potato pancakes) and sufganiyot (jelly donuts) remind us of the miracle of the oil that lasted for 8 days when there was enough to last for only 1 day. And boy are those latkes & sufganiyot delicious!
For many families, there is a tradition of giving a present to each child on each of the 8 nights that are celebrated. The first year that Erin was home, we did just that. She got 8 presents from her mother & father. And then there were the presents from anyone else who wanted to give her something. Holy cow! She made out like a bandit at 12 months old! And had no clue what was going on. Thankfully, David & I wised up by the time she turned 2 & decided that we were going overboard so we came up with a new tradition. Yes, she does get a present each night. One night is from her grandparents - both sets. She gets gifts from other families on different nights, & David & I fill in the other nights.
This year we had a first. Erin came to me a few weeks ago when we were at Borders. She had found a book that she wanted to buy - for her daddy. And she beamed tonight as she handed him his gift. And he beamed in amazement that she did this all on her own.
Happy Chanukah to everyone!!


fricke92 said...

How fun! I didn't realize the connection with the oil, even though I've heard the story of the oil lasting 8 days. Enjoy the celebration!

Super Mommy said...

Can I celebrate even if I'm not Jewish?? I love fried food!! Joking aside, thanks for sharing the info - I knew a part of the Chanukah tradition - but not all.

Happy Chanukah!

Vivian M said...

Happy Chanukah! Erin is such a sweetheart.
We are looking forward to lighting candles with you on Friday night!

Magi said...

Happy Chanukah!

My parents were a mixed marriage. Catholic mom and Jewish dad. We were raised Catholic. I didn't realize the significance of the chocolate coins that were always in our stocking until I spent some time learning more about Judaism in my 20s. Chanukah gelt became a family tradition that we continue. It's more than pieces of chocolate to me. It's a little nod to my paternal ancestors.

Candy said...

Happy Chanukah! How thoughtful of Erin to buy a book for her daddy. Enjoy the Holiday!

PinkDevora said...

Happy Chanukah! Those doughnuts look absolutely delicious!

Pug Mama said...

hope you have a wonderful Chanukah