Sukkot – the Jewish camping holiday

By: Hagit Galatzer


Pop-up Sukkah, Photo by Sukkahmart

The High Holidays are upon us, again, and with them the pleasure of explaining our holidays and their interesting traditions to our children. Take Sukkot for example, this is the holiday where we are required to construct a roof-less hut in our back yard, decorate it and dwell in it, or at least eat there for a whole week.

Today you can construct your Sukkah by downloading instructions and ideas from Pinterest, and if you are DIY challenged you can even order a pop-up Sukkah that pops instantly like a quick setup tent. For the roof, you can use leaves, bamboo or any other organic material that it is not water proof read more

חדשות קהילתיות

IACSharonבשעה טובה ומוצלחת נפתח בסיאטל סניף של:

IACIsraeli American Council

שמטרתו גיבוש הקהילה הישראלית המקומית, חיזוק הקשר עם הקהילה היהודית המקומית ותמיכה וגיבוי במדינת ישראל. נפגשתי לקפה עם שרון פרלין, הדירקטורית האזורית של הסניף שאך נכנסה לתפקידה. שרון היא ישראלית-אמריקאית מעצם הגדרתה. היא נולדה וגדלה בפרברי וושינגטון די.סי. להורים ישראלים. בבית דיברו עברית וביקרו בישראל בכל הזדמנות. כסטודנטית למדה שנה באוניברסיטה העברית בירושלים ואף עבדה בהדרכת עובדים בשגרירות האמריקאית בישראל. לאחר קריירה ארוכה בתחום היחסים הבינלאומיים ועריכת דין, שרון חיפשה תפקיד שמשלב בתוכו גם עשייה קהילתית וחיבור ישראלי וכך הגיעה לאיי איי סי. שרון מתגוררת בסיאטל עם בעלה ושלושת ילדיה read more

International night

By: Hagit Galatzer


Two posters for the Education Hill team! Photo by Hagit Galatzer

If you have elementary age kids you are probably familiar with the various theme days and evenings your school hosts on a regular basis. From crazy hat day to PJ night, a western Hoedown and my personal favorite, the International night. This is a celebration of diversity and a homage to the countries and heritage we all came from before we became Americans.

The main element in the display table is the tri-fold poster board. This conveniently folding board should display pictures, trivia details, maps and other tidbits on our homeland, Israel. read more

Iris Brumer – Life coach

By: Hagit Galatzer


Iris Brumer, Life Coach

Iris Brumer, a certified Life Coach, is no stranger to dealing with life’s hardships. A few years ago her husband of 25 years passed away unexpectedly. Through the pain and hardships, she discovered the healing power of the community. The support she got from the Jewish community in Seattle was heartwarming and inspiring. Not only did she get back on her feet but she also found the strength to fulfill an old dream and complete her mission – becoming a Life Coach.

During the coaching session with Iris you will be working on your story. What goes on in your life currently and the events that led to this point. However, instead of focusing on why this is happening to me? The focus is on how to deal with what is happening. How to get out of your story and not re-live it. According to Iris “Things happen in life all the time, often out of our control. We have the control of deciding how to deal with what happens and how to move forward”. read more

Weekend Getaway

By Hagit Galatzer


Other people's vacation Photo by Pixabay

The summer season marks the beginning of vacation season. There is nothing like a short and relaxing hotel getaway in a different city or state for a change of atmosphere.

The first night is dedicated for getting acclimated to the foreign room. Getting used to the new bed and pillow, the AC humming and the hallway noises. It is really annoying when people return to their rooms late at night and disturb everyone. When we arrive late, we practically scream at the kids to be quiet and we make sure to slam the door ever so gently. read more

Living in Seattle


Blue sky! Photo by Hagit Galatzer

When friends and family come to visit from Israel, the undeniable truth comes out, we don’t really live in Seattle… It’s not that we lie, but Redmond and Bellevue are not the most famous cities in the world, not to mention the exotically named Sammamish and Issaquah.

Washington state itself is pretty obscure and is often confused with Washington D.C. Whenever a blizzard hits the east coast, I receive anxious phone calls at 6:00 am, “Are you guys ok? Oh, did we wake you up? Don’t you live near New-York???” read more

Cleaner Day

By: Hagit Galatzer


Israeli Couscous, food you eat before cleaner day

Although Passover is the ultimate spring cleaning opportunity, there is a more obscure cleaning holiday, celebrated by many around the world. In our household this holiday is celebrated a few times a month with ceremonies and praise to the cleaning ladies.

Like any holiday, cleaner day requires much preparation and cooking. My kitchen is usually tidy, how messy can you get making a salad and eggs for dinner? But every now and then my motherly conscious demands homemade meals for the children. My kids take one look in my culinary creations, a sensational symphony of vegetables, and ask for eggs. In any case, it is best to time these creative bursts to the day before the cleaner ladies arrive. read more

Etty Alony – Personal Trainer

By Hagit Galatzer


Photo by Adi Alony

I arrived to Etty’s home studio in Redmond, without really knowing what to expect. Etty welcomed me with a warm smile and a bottle of water and we got right to work. In my mind I’m in pretty good shape, I’ve got a gym membership, which I even use, sometimes. But nothing can test your fitness level like a personal training session…

After the warm-up we started the real workout. Etty demonstrates each and every exercise and then watches me like a hawk when I repeat. It’s a little strange to work out when someone is watching you, on the other hand, you can’t cut any corners. Every exercise is done in the most precise way, both important to the health of your muscles and joints and also to get maximum results. Every set of exercises is repeated a couple of times with colorful aides like rubber bands, fitness balls, and weights. With the music going on in the background, time flies by and in one hour we covered the entire muscle groups including special physical therapy exercises for my left wrist injury. read more

Purim existential thoughts

By: Hagit Galatzer


Curls rock! Photo by Pixabay

Purim is almost here and I still don’t have any idea which costume to wear this year. Unlike most people, I can’t just throw on a colorful curly wig on my head. I did try once, it just didn’t fit. Also, I fail to see the joke…

Purim is probably the most beloved holiday amongst kids in Israel, however, if your kids were born here, it might be a good idea to verify that they actually know what Purim is all about. My junior, for instance, was pretty certain that this is the holiday where you don’t eat and don’t drink all day…When I explained the difference between Purim and Yom HaKipurim (Yom Kipuur), he was relieved that we are talking about the Jewish Halloween, where you get to dress up and eat ear (shaped) cookies. The famous cookies, Hamentashen, or “Haman’s Ears” are fashioned in the form of triangles and filled with sweet poppy seed filling. Haman, is the bad guy of the Purim story, he devised a plan to kill all the Jewish population in ancient Persia and in a miraculous turn of events ended up hung on a tree along with his entire family, while the Jews celebrated their victory. read more

Gani Preschool of the Arts



The sandbox Photo by Nechama Farkash

Today we are meeting Nechama farkash, administrative director, and Dorit Hayardeni, a senior teacher at Gani Preschool of the Arts, a nurturing Jewish preschool in Issaquah. The preschool is located on a 3 acre green area, surrounded by trees and nature trails and conveniently located only minutes away from the I-90 freeway.

Nechama, the director, resides in the adjacent house; she greets me with a steaming hot cup of tea and takes me on a tour. The preschool was established about 5 years ago, filling the need for a Jewish preschool in the area. Since then the preschool grew and developed, moved into a designated building with state-of-the-art equipment, housing 21 children. The children aging 2 – 5 years old, are divided into a few age groups. Group sizes are kept small to allow for personal attention for each and every child.  read more

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