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latest by jen

Gem in the Galilee

My dad and my husband have this routine: My dad, an archaeology enthusiast, always keeps his eyes peeled for the undiscovered artifact when he visits Israel. My husband always ribs him, “They’ve already found everything there is to find, Paul.” I take my dad’s side on this one and whenever archaeologists make a big…

Their stubborness, their bodies

Yesterday wasn’t the first day I was reminded that we accidentally on purpose train our daughters to give up rights to their bodies. Even though the more mindful of us will have conversations with our young ones about ownership of their “private parts,” about “stranger danger”, about saying “No,” there…

Color of

“War is what happens when language fails.” — Margaret Atwood * * * * * This is the color of my voice these days … Almost Silent. Imagine it there in a box of 64 crayons. In my mind’s eye, Almost Silent is wrapped in Ecru But its waxy innards…

Review: How to Survive a Sharknado

Book Details Title: How to Survive a Sharknado (and Other Unnatural Disasters) Author: Andrew Shaffer (with contributions by Fin Shepard & April Wexler) Publisher: Three Rivers Press, July 2014 Review In 1999, when Chronicle Books published the first in what would eventually be the popular Worst-Case Scenario book series, I was…

Sexy Quiet

What if I made the choice and the choice was Quiet? It’s true sometimes Noise tricks me into believing he is life. What with all the heart racing and the jumping out of bed. Gentle she, Quiet, though sometimes tiresome allows me the freedom to kiss my children goodbye and think…

What the world needs now

I spent the morning with my father-in-law in a cafe in Kfar Tavor. He was generous enough to be an interview subject for me in regards to a creative writing project I’m preparing for a class called “Art, Atrocity, and Truth.” My father-in-law is a child of the Holocaust. He is, in…

Putting out fires at almost 40

Honesty bursts forth from me in fits, in starts. This is 40. This may not be 40 for you. I realize, for you, this may be 43. Or 38. or 67. I don’t know if it’s temporal, situational, or hormonal, this shift. It certainly resembles the week leading up to…

If it was a place

If it was a place — cognitive dissonance, it would be here, Israel. Where in one swift shift I move from embarrassment (I forgot about swimming lessons) to fear of war. Shame I forgot about it; murder and them (those who can’t forget except in dreams which aren’t real) and yelled at my…

How to be a happy fool

The Buddha never said this, but it’s the noise of parenthood that propels me to appreciate the quiet. This is probably the greatest lesson I’ve learned so far in the 11 and a half years I’ve been mothering.  This is also why I wouldn’t use time travel to go back…

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