Sunday, October 30, 2011

Israel: Natural Beauty of Nature

While bussing through Israel, you pass a lot of coastline and deserts. When Israel first became a state, you would not have passed many trees at all, but today, you'll see plenty of banana trees (those are the ones with blue plastic bags hanging off of them), as well as tufts of budding forests. None of the trees in Israel are natural to the land; efforts such as the JNF (check it out here) have raised money since the state was born, to plant trees in Isreal.

The Mediterranean coast is beautiful as well as the banks of the Jordan River. Closer to the Lebanese border, you can see beautiful grottos and views from Rosh HaNikrah, We took a speed boat and got as close to the Israel-Lebanese border that we safely could. The water was so clear and the views were gorgeous. The speedboat ride was a lot of fun; I made the decision of going with the kids and my aunt, P; this mixture always results in hilariousness. After the speedboat ride, we sat on the rocks, absorbing the scenery while the rest of our group took their ride.

Together, we took the cable cars to the grottos at Rosh HaNikra. These beautiful cave formations have been carved out for years by the water. The beauty is such a contrast to the bitter feelings and moments that come to mind when most people think of the Israeli-Lebanese border.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

22. I believe in giving a smile, at the least, to everyone I see

It's just simple politeness...No one has to say good morning or start up a conversation with everyone, but smiling at people who may be strangers for a second may make their day...It's hard to make a monotonous day at work or school seem enjoyable, especially if you feel invisible. How many people have you passed in hallways or been on an elevator with others who you either pretend don't exist, ignore, or don't say anything to? Even if you don't know them, giving them a simple smile makes you seem approachable and might brighten their day. I don't think a simple smile is putting out too much effort. Who knows, it may be the start of something really good, and really, do you want to look like the bitch or asshole who walks around looking like she or he is too good to talk to or acknowledge anyone they don't know? I personally do not.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

20. In every tv show, there's a hott skinny girl and a hilarious fat girl-the "average curvy girl" between is either a bitch, a nerd, or a slut

Seriously thank G-d for Kat Dennings, or else this would be COMPLETELY look at it, every single tv show..hott, skinny, pretty girl..check, maybe even a gorgeous and skinny group of friends...then there's a hilarious and pretty heavy girl...but whenever there's someone average, she is made super unattractive in some way-looks, personality, any combination...I'm a pretty average sized girl, maybe a little above, and this makes me really sad...which is why I am soo loving Kat Dennings (watch 2 Broke Girls if you're not already; she's also in Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist and The Housebunny)...She's so pretty, she has a great sense of humor, and she's not stick thin...It's just nice to finally see someone who I can relate, whose around my age, being successful, being the leading lady. She's not caught up in everything and she's a real person...Not that Hollywood should dictate how we feel about ourselves, but it really does; when we see people "like us" whether in looks, sense of humor, etc, it makes us more secure...Hollywood does dictate how society sees people, so yay for the quirky, sometimes awkward seemingly average but not girl!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

19. Please don't tell me to "watch my quantities" on what I eat...I am sick of people telling me that I'm getting fat...I AM AWARE

So I was home last weekend for a family event...and it's Sunday, we had just had brunch, my grandparents are getting ready to leave; I'm leaving for Dallas in a few hours, and my grandfather comes up to me and says "I know I'm close enough to you to say this-you really need need to watch your quantities of what you're eating" So I just smile and nod like yeah Papa, I know, I'm working on it..and pretend like I'm brushing it off, but really, those words and words of the like are burned into my mind for ever....In middle school, a boy in my Hebrew class called me fat and that was the first tim it really hit camp, a boy who I liked called me pleasantly plump...clearly it wasn't that pleasant because he didn't like me back...I've always been the chubby girl, the heavier friend...whatever, it sucks, but to have your family like constantly nit pick at EVERY little thing wrong with you...please stop! Don't get me wrong, I LOVE my family, but this just did not help.

I know that I need to take better care of myself, but here is where I am right now: I've been living in Dallas for a little over a year and I have FINALLY found a group of friends to go out with; work is picking up, friends are fun, and life is just picking obviously that means more going out, more drinking, less sleep, and a little more stress (as work still must get done...we're professionals here!)...So yes, I look fat...I am a little chubby, i ALWAYS am...I work out intensely at least 2 times a week (I know it's not enough), and I do really try to eat healthily and not drink TOO much, but sorry, I'm 23 years old...this is what I instead of pointing out that I'm gaining weight or I look fat, tell me that I look happy, I seem happier and you're glad that things are coming together...that's how I'm trying to feel, but pointing out that I'm getting fat or how I'm still single doesn't help my outlook on life.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Music Monday

Check out Matthew Mayfield's upcoming tour dates here

At Spin! Get a free download from G Side here, and their October Mix here,

Check out Courrier's upcoming tour dates here

On Noisetrade, download free music from Steven Kellogg and the Sixers,

Download Joe Jonas's new single featuring Lil Wayne, Just In Love, here

Check out Andrew Belle's upcoming tour dates here

Download Hot Chelle Rae's new single, I Like it Like That on iTunes

Grab a free download of Suite 709s EP, Keys here

Grab a free download of Joe Pug's Live sessions on the Hear Ya Blog and check out his upcoming tour dates here

Check out Jack and White's music video for Double Trouble here

On Daytrotter, check out new sessions from The Bo-Keys, DM Stith, Wooden Wand, The Holidays, Mason Jennings, Santah, Alexi Murdoch, and Mat Kearney.

The top 10 tracks for free download on Tweet for a Track are

Check out The Dirty Guvnah's upcoming tour dates here

You can buy Stars Go Dim's new album, Between Here and Now in iTunes

Sunday, October 9, 2011

16. Why go to the gym if you're just going to sit on various machines and text

I seriously do not understand this...I get using the gym to work out with your friends or say hi to people who you know, but if you're just going to text, do you need to take up a machine to do it? Do you even need to be at the gym? I mean yeah it really has nothing to do with me, it's just like...a gym has a purpose...and it's really not easy to get a good work out in if you're constantly breaking to text...It just bugs me...I just don't understand it

Thursday, October 6, 2011

15. I love my bed and can't wait to get into it, even on my best days

So there are 3 kinds of "Oh my goodness, I can't wait to get in my bed" days:

1. Those awful days when nothing goes right and you just want to go home and forget everything
2. Those that just completely drain you for one reason or another
3. A great, fun day when even though you don't want the event to end, your bed just seems so sweet

and bonus points when it's a bit chilly time to just snuggle

I don't think I really came to love my bed though, until I moved out and bought my own mattress, bed frame, etc. Now, every night, I just want to get in my bed; screw eating and everything else, all I want is my bed and my DVR...or Netflix. Unless I have plans :)..and I guess I don't need to get into how difficult it is to get out of bed in the morning...even if I've had enough sleep and am well rested, I just hate getting out of my bed. It's the perfect snuggle cocoon...all mine needs is a few more pillows-besides a good man, that's all I need for the perfect bed.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

14. Trying to explain some aspect of your culture to someone but they just don't get that it's important or sacred

A few days ago, as a Jew, I celebrated the new year, 5772. Our new year celebration is an evening and two days or prayer and thanking G-d that we were blessed with another year. It's very spiritual and brings about a lot of self reflection. It's probably weird reading this fro me as all I seem to do is complain about my Jewish get togethers, my family, and how everything is crazy and how much I hate it. As much as I do all that..and at this time of year, it is pretty much a daily occurrence, my spirituality is very important to me, and it's not something that I take lightly. I know that most of the world is not Jewish, so it's not commonplace to know about Jewish holidays, when they are (heck, we don't even know...gotta love that lunar calendar), how long they last, what we do, etc. What I do know is when every Christian holiday is, a basic idea of how they are observed, and why...Partially from knowledge that is out there, and partially because I ask my friends questions and actually listen to what they tell me. I am truly interested in other faiths, their holidays, and how they observe them. I guess one of the reasons I get stressed during the Jewish holidays is (aside from when I'm with the craziness of my family), is having to explain over and over what I'm doing, why I'm doing it, and try to help non Jews understand that it is important. That these holidays are not just a day where Jews get together and be Jewish, it has a purpose, even if I complain enough about it to trivialize it, it has a huge purpose and a huge significance in my life. So when I have to repeat the same things to the same people every year, it kind of gets me thinking...they don't feel that it's important to remember, and they don't care to learn more. They're both fine, I don't expect everyone to want to delve deeper into religions and cultures that aren't their own, but my thing is: I'm happy to answer questions, explain customs, etc as best as I can if you actually CARE to learn about it. If you're asking just because it's that time of year and you're trying to be a good friend, it's cool, you can forget about it. I'm not going to be offended....Just remember that when you have that random day off in September or October and you ask your Jewish friend to hang out, they probably can't-it's probably a holiday. I don't expect people to memorize when every Jewish holiday is (I can't even remember-google is my best friend), but be sensitive...I wouldn't ask you to go get brunch on December 25...and please don't trivialize the day and act like it doesn't may not mean anything to you, but it does mean something to me...and just because you don't understand it doesn't mean that it doesn't mean anything either

Saturday, October 1, 2011

13. I've been electrocuted twice

True story

The first time was when I was in Israel in 05...We were down in the Negev at a Kibbutz; the showers in our bathrooms were level with the bathroom floor...which was level with the rest of the room...So after the 4 of us took our showers, our whole bathroom and room were pretty much flooded..there was water everywhere...thus began the attack of the Squeege...All we were given to get the water out of our room was squeegies. It took us a while to get it all out of our room...definitely over an hour of pushing and squeeging and toweling. The floor was still damp when we were done, but at least it wasn't sopping wet or slippery. My little Israel cell phone was dying and I needed to charge it. I guess my feet were still a little too wet and I got a nice surprising electric current when I plugged it in to the wall.

The second time was a few nights ago. I was on the patio at a bar with my friends and I kept putting my hand on the fence and noticing that it was humming. The metal on my ring must have come in contact with something on the electrical box that I had my hand on and I got zapped again.

Okay, not the most awesome stories, but they were both pretty funny...Thank goodness no one got seriously hurt, but I really need to be more careful about things like that