Thursday, December 01, 2011

Monthly Commuter Tax advantage goes to cars, not people

Are you aware of this? I was bummed to see my monthly commuter benefits (which help cover my PATH pass and metro card with pre-tax pay) but I was outraged when I saw that parking benefits are *increasing*!!
Wtf?!?! Let's all drive more so we can use more gas!
I'm calling my congressman to voice my disappointment. What else can I do? 

Begin forwarded message:


Sent: Wednesday, November 30, 2011 1:13 AM
To: Mahalel, Laura
Subject: Monthly Commuter Benefits Reminder



This email is being sent to you to confirm your order for the JANUARY 2012 benefit month. If you do not wish to make any changes to your order, you do not need to take any action.

Important Note: The temporary $230 monthly pre-tax transit limit set by Congress in 2009 will expire at the end of 2011. Beginning with the January 2012 benefit month, the pre-tax transit limit will decrease to $125 a month and any election amount over $125 will be deducted from your pay on an after-tax basis. Beginning with the January 2012 benefit month, the monthly pre-tax limit for parking will increase from $230 to $240.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

No peas for Melech, please

We enjoyed a lovely day at Coney Island yesterday. The kids played joyfully on the beach like little cave children, nearly naked in the unusually warm November sun.
The NY aquarium was thrilling for young and old. Also cooler, cleaner, and less smelly than I remembered it from my own childhood.
At snack time while I inquired about coffee at the "seaside cafe" (they were out of all varieties of coffee but had an endless supply of enormous drink containers topped with Plastic shark heads), Melech grabbed tube of organic baby food with a picture of Peter Rabbit on it. My boy is two now and way beyond baby food but I thought what the heck, it's better than the junk food options, and willingly shelled out $3 for the privilege of watching him suck down a not entirely horrible mixture of peas, apples, and some other fruit or vegetable. Adi even helped squirt the last bit into his mouth.
We carried a sleepy Melech up a million stairs and took the train to Brighton Beach ISO Russian food. Mele-bell was in deep slumber when we began digging into a tasty plate of cabbage dumplings and sipping sweet, yeasty kvas and suddenly heard him coughing in his stroller. Then it began. Or, rather, they began. Waves of pea green puke.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Sunday, August 28, 2011

News from Hurricane Irene

By 7:50 this morning, our kitchen floor was flooded. With drips from CLEAN DISHES I YANKEd fROM THE dishwasher and above all with drops of strawberry milk melech poured all over himself. And the floor. milk we only bought because yesterday we were walking round the block as much as we could, dreading today when we'll likely have to stay in all day. 
(random caps are Melech's artistic contribution to this blog entry).
Seriously, we're fine. It's just been raining since last night. Raining hard, but the wind doesn't even seem especially windy.
It's  now 9:16 and I'm letting the kids watch a 2nd movie (Peter Pan 2). Luckily we have kind neighbors with kids and we have a strategy to preserve our sanity, namely we will take turns watching all the kids. 
So right now boredom and sanity are my biggest concerns.
But I am also worried that lower Manhattan and thus the PATH train that takes me to work in NJ will flood. Because I do want to go to work tomorrow (revisit biggest concerns above). 
If the kids are happy, I am happy. And I may even get to put a dent in countless home improvement and organizing tasks. Hurrah for the hurricane!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Adamah vshamayim Zimriyah 2011

It was a sauna in the Nyack High School gym last night but I couldn't have been happier watching Ahuva avd her fellow campers belt out songs w such RUACH.

Hotter than Sinai

This heat reminds me of Sinai. 'cept there we just lay around half-naked and stoned, playing shesh-besh while the Bedouin waiters brought us cheap yummy food and "ice-cold Coke-a-Coalies!"
Are we humans going the way of the dinosaurs?

Monday, May 16, 2011

Nyc aids walk 2011

Melech and I did the walk togeter in the rain. Ahuva, tired from an alergic reaction to penicillin and the medication to treat it, opted to stay home, saying she needed time with just Aba. He didn't seem to mind. Both were releived when i loaded a very kvetchy Mellie into the ergo carrier and stepped outside.
110th st. Was already blocked off but the walkers had not yet arrived.

Thursday, March 31, 2011


Tour is TODAY!

This friday: PS 165 March 31st School Tour

It's cool too go to your neighborhood school!

PS 165 School Tour
234 W 109th Street (between Amsterdam and Broadway)
March 31, 2011 from 9:15 AM to 10:15 AM

PS 165 is hosting school tour for parents of PK through 5th grade.
Parents will meet at 9:15 AM in the waiting area outside the Parent
Coordinator office on the 1st floor.

Children are welcome.

Parents are encouraged to RSVP by calling Mr. Duran at (212) 678-2873
Ext. 1142.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Just say no to the mishugas: go to your local public school

A letter to the fellow parents at our daughter's pre-school about our choice.
>> I realize that most of you are considering other options. But if you want to
>> skip the pressures of applying, waiting, and stressing about  kindergarten, not
>> to mention the high price of tuition, be aware that you have a choice.
>> We have decided to "Just say 'no'" to the craziness that applying to
>> Kindergarten in NYC can represent for families. We are sending Ahuva to our
>> zoned public school which happens to be PS 165. She will attend the dual
>> language (Spanish) K class. The advantages for us are clear:
>> -No travel. The school is one block from our home. We look forward to having
>> classmates who live close by.
>> -Spanish. Learning another language is more than most kids  elementary school.
>> Additionally, the dual-language programs supposedly have a    curriculum that match
>> the G&T programs, except that you gain another language.
>> -Cost. None. We can spend the extra money on ballet or karate or on  donations to
>> help improve the school's library. Or we can just feel a bit less    strapped for a
>> change.
>> -Community. I attended the first "meet and greet", I and was  impressed by the
>> small core of parents I met who care deeply about their school and  who are open
>> and welcoming to anyone who wants to get involved.
>> -Great teachers. We met the dual language teachers for K and 1st    grade who were
>> both wonderful.
>> -A very decent public school. A tour of the school was eye-opening.    There were
>> no ipads, but the children were happy and engaged in their lessons.  The younger
>> grades were safely separated from the older grades. The classrooms    were in good
>> shape. There was a positive feeling in the air.
>> The disadvantages?
>> -Low test scores. To be fair, the school has those test scores in    part because
>> it does take whoever comes. However, there is a new principal at  the  school who
>> is bright, articulate, energetic, and seems to have what it takes to make a
>> difference at the school.
>> -Diversity. Right now, it's not very diverse. I expect that will    change. We will
>> add to the diversity. If you join us, so will you.
>> -Bad reputation. This seems to be an outdated hold over from the    1980s when the
>> neighborhood was quite different than it is today.
>> I encourage you to join me at the next meet & greet and to sign up    for a tour.
>> And tell your friends!>>

Snowy jersey city in march



Jc today.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Night monkey, day monkey

You'd think that after sleeping fewer than 3 hrs on tues, melech, like me, would want to sleep well wed night. Wrong! His vengful wrath knows no rest. We walked. Screamed. Chatted on skype with saba and savta at 1:30 am. Savta sang lullibies which soothed me & made M. Laugh. Aba and i took turns waking and snoozing. It is a blur. M. was impossible.

A bright spot thou: impromptu nocturnal FB chat with a friend in Australia cheers me up.

Irony: m. Fell asleep in strollie to school b4 leaving home, that little monkey!

Extra love

A perfect coffee heart procured with an emergency fiver i had hidden in my purse.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Weanin' Ain't Ez

When it was time to wean Bigsis, i turned to la Leche League's website for advice. Under weaning it said "Thinking about weaning? Have you consiered the benefits of nursing? Unless your child is in college, there's no reason to stop."
I am well aware of the benefits of nursing. I love nursing. In fact, I happily would nurse BabyBoy until college. But the time had come.
A closer read on the LLL site suggests that if you really must stop you could do so gradually by adopting a "don't offer, don't refuse" policy. Meaning don't present your breast but if he tears at your shirt, signs "milk", you can give it up

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Looking for bright spots

Tues. First day back after a long weekend proved bad day to wear shoes instead of boots as freezing rain fell all day. But coming out of the train the sight of ice-covered branches was beautiful.