10th April 2009
One of my favorite holidays has arrived. We are now eating matza at every meal. Matza: a thin square of flour and water baked before it can rise, traditionally eaten by Jews during the spring holiday of Passover (referred to as Pesach in Hebrew). Many think of matza as inedible.
We, on the other hand have a few favorite casserole type dishes like Matza Pizza and Baked Matza Fruit Tzimmes (compote) necessary for proper, er, bowel function after eating so much…matza! This picture is the Seder plate that is a component of the religious service conducted at home before eating the holiday meal on the first two nights of Passover. Each food item on the plate has a significance to the historical basis of the holiday.

I’ve been playing on the computer/Internet this morning, though I’m sure there’s more pressing matters to attend to, so let’s say I’ve been taking a necessary break from responsibility.

I came across an interesting new book called, Put your Dream to the Test. To read about it, and the author, here’s the site: http://www.thomasnelson.com/dreamtest/ The quote I absolutely loved from the chapter I read online is this: “Everyone has the potential to live way beyond average. As Robert Kriegel and Louis Patler write in If it Ain’t Broke…Break It! ‘We don’t have a clue as to what people’s limits are. All the tests, stopwatches, and finish lines in the world can’t measure human potential. When someone is pursuing their dream, they’ll go far beyond what seems to be their limitations. The potential that exists within us is limitless and largely untapped…when you think of limits, you create them.’ ”

From there, through some twists and turns on the subject of creativity I arrived at the next bit. The article is called
“Stuck With an Old Sewage Plant? Remake the Neighborhood, BY Cliff Kuang (Apr 9, 2009) published on http://www.fastcompany.com. Please go there and see this incredible reincarnation. Also click the link to Arons and Gelauff Architects’ dormitory-climbing wall which is really neat too. It’s on the http://www.dwell.com website. And what a creative answer to the question, how to deal with the post-teenage abundance of energy that could lead to sex, drugs, crime and who-knows-what?
unicycle-woman With my own children–which means five teenagers over the years, I came to realize that challenging them in healthy ways was good and maybe even necessary. Who can eat the hottest pepper or ride the scariest roller coaster? A teen is trying to sort through who they are and will be, what they’ll value and do with their lives. Not least of all, is setting themselves up as independent of their parents, and often in their own minds, as better than them too.

This past week I got into trouble while teaching art in the public school’s after-school program. I told a big boy he was not to use the word “hate” when speaking to the little girl next to him, or anyone else, while I was teaching. A little later I told him he would not accuse the little girl or anyone else in class of “telling lies.” Finally I said there would be no more chances, just a move to the table by the door, and no more art for him. He responded well to my authority. The teacher of the after-school group did not. Oops, obviously I stepped on toes.

See here’s the issue, she was trained, and I am, after all, just mashed potatoes! I so dislike territorial politics. What’s important? Dealing with the child. This boy’s aggressive language told me 1) that people, probably family member talk to him like this, and 2) the class teacher did not recognize his speech as abusive to the other children. How many of us grew up hearing someone else was better than us, or we were a pain, or we should disappear and stop bothering our parents? Quite often I felt this way and I’m sure others did too.

I’ll end on an upbeat note, circling back to John Maxwell’s book about dreams. There’s a neat contest of sorts. You can find out more at the website: http://www.scribd.com/dream
Someone who enters will win because their business dream is chosen, and they’ll receive $10K for start-up. Wow. A dream come true, for sure.