Friday, February 24, 2012

I Just Have to Share This

I'm flying in again this week 'cause I have to share this article I just read on Ynet. I know you don't get excited when presidents or presidential candidates open a FB page, but hey, our president is 89 years old, still going strong, still cool. Have a read:


Zuckerberg to help Peres launch Facebook page

President joins world of social networking, launches Israeli, international Facebook pages with help of Mark Zuckerberg
Yair Altman
Published: 02.24.12, 09:31 / Israel News

The president of the State of Israel is joining Facebook and is set to receive a near-royal welcome. Shimon Peres is planning on taking advantage of the social network to call on citizens of the world to ask him questions through his official page on the site and even to suggest ideas that could promote peace in the Middle East.

Peres' page in its Israeli version will be launched on Friday and the international version will be launched with more pomp and ceremony at the Facebook headquarters in San Francisco.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Yummy News: Europe Says We're the No. 1 Bread Baker!

Shalom Girls & Boys:

Yummy, yummy, yummy, I have great news for your tummy. Israel took first place in the European 2012 Bread Baking Cup in Rimini, Italy.

I can't believe that we beat the French. They're an unbelievable baking power! And what about Germany?  They're considered tops too, and we beat them. Yup, we won 2 out of 4 categories: Innovative bread with a health focus, and baked dessert.

To be honest, I do believe it. I've got a lot of frequent flyer miles between bakeries, outdoor markets, indoor supermarkets and restaurants around Israel, and I've got to tell you that just the aroma of our freshly baked breads knocks the wings off of me. We Israelis know how to bake and break bread. It's a tradition dating back to Biblical times, but I'm not going to get into that. Instead, I'm going to give you a mini bread tour of Israel. WARNING: YOUR MOUTH WILL WATER!
Presenting Pitot, Lafa, all types of baygelah, and of course, Challah.

This is a just a small taste of all the breads we bake. You have to come over here to really appreciate our bread baking skill. I just discovered that we even have  a special Purim prune and chocolate bread. Try that out for your Mishloach Manot. With an imagination like ours, no wonder we continue to count our blessings of Hamotzi Lehem Min Ha'aretz.

pita bread photo credit
laffa bread photo credit
baygeleh breads photo credit
Challah photo credit

Saturday, February 4, 2012

We're Bringing Back the Shade of the Mighty Biblical Oak Tree

Shalom Girls & Boys:

Come fly with me to the Beit Keshet Forest in the Lower Galilee. Why? Because Israeli conservationists -- that means Israelis who want to restore and preserve our natural resources -- are replanting oak trees like this one.

Isn't it a beauty? It looks so Biblical.

It makes me think of the story of Abraham and the three strangers. The Bible says that he was sitting at his tent door near the mighty trees of Mamre when he saw them. Legend has it that the trees were oak and I believe it since oak trees are mentioned 60 times in the Bible!!!! That must be because they are one of the best sources of shade, which is something we definitely need over here in Israel during our long summer.

Oak trees also yield an oak nut called an acorn. I just found out that acorns are very important for forest ecology because they are a favorite food of wildlife living there. It's kinda like a cycle. You plant a little acorn seed and it grows into a massive oak tree with lots of acorns to eat. That's why Israel's forest friends are planting acorns over five acres of what was once a beautiful oak forest. I say once, because nearly 100 years ago almost all of the oak trees in the Beit Keshet forest were cut down, their wood used for construction, heating and steam engines. Sounds familiar I'm sure, since it's a sad story that's happened to many forests around the world.

Sooo, isn't the replanting of oak trees VERY good news? I'm so happy I'm reporting it to you for Tu B'Shvat. New trees for the New Year of Trees. Yippee!!!!

Chag Smaeach.  Happy Tu B'Shvat.

Psst...Almost forgot. Want another great way to celebrate Tu B'Shvat? Connect stories from the Bible with environmental protection by reading
Tami's new book Green Bible Stories for Children. It's a real eye opener and you'll love the matching activities.

Oak tree photo credit