Honoring: Mothers and Bubbes


With Mother’s Day just around the corner, we thought we’d give some extra love to our mothers and bubbes–because they deserve the best all year, not just on Mother’s Day.

But in case you get a little too wrapped up in everyday life, take a moment to scroll down and honor all the wonderful Mothers and Bubbes out there–including our own!

Top 5 Yiddish Words
you swore you’d never use…

drek–rubbish, or trash
What did our mothers used to say?
“Another brownie? Stop eating all that drek before dinner!”

schlep–haul or carry, a tedious or difficult journey
What did our mothers used to say?
“I had to schlep to the grocery store, and the pharmacy, and the doctors office. Then I came home, got all of my work done, and made dinner. I will respond to Supermom.”

schmutz–dirt, or similar unpleasant substance
What did our mothers used to say?
“Come here, you’ve got some schmutz on your face. Let me get it.”

kvetch–complaining, or a person who complains a great deal
What did our mothers used to say?
“You had to make dinner for yourself last night? You’re such a kvetch.”

chutzpah–guts, nerve, shameless audacity
What did our mothers used to say?
“He’s got a lot of chutzpah to not have a jacket on in this cold weather.”

Top 5 To-Do’s
for Mother’s Day

Food— It’s always about the food. If you really want to make breakfast special–ditch the eggs for a jelly doughnut! It’s Mother’s Day. Splurge a little. We won’t tell. Or have a family cooking session for dinner. Nothing says family like everyone being in the kitchen at once to make a home-cooked meal together.

Flowers— A staple, of course. But get her something as unique as her! Maybe a nice plant this year? Or a bouquet you make yourself in the flower aisle at your nearest Wegmans: lilies, tulips, daisies, peonies. Orchids are also beautiful year-round.

Family art project— Maybe a project that everyone can help with! Or a craft that the kids do together. Something she can put on her desk at work, or a painted flowerpot for that plant.

Outing— Take a trip to a museum, a park, a show or movie, the Grounds for Sculpture–if it’s not 100 degrees outside, of course.

Manicure/Pedicure— Unless she’s ticklish. Then all bets are off. Maybe just get her some nice nail polish, so she can do it, herself.

Top 5 Jewish Mothers
that made (or are still making) a difference in history

Golda Meir— Israel’s first and only woman elected Prime Minister of Israel in 1969. This mother of two led Israel for five of Israel’s most challenging years. When Meir was elected secretary of Moetzet HaPoalot (Working Women’s Council), which required her to spend two years as an emissary in the United States, her children went with her. A true mother to the Jewish people.

Natalie Portman— Portman, an Israeli-American, has become increasingly vocal about her views on the Israeli government. We have to admire a Jewish mom willing to speak her mind and stand up for what she believes in! In 2006, she commented that she felt more Jewish in Israel and that she would like to raise her children Jewish. Portman has also said that although she “really love[s] the States… my heart’s in Jerusalem. That’s where I feel at home.”

Bella Abzug– In 1970, Abzug’s first campaign slogan was, “This woman’s place is in the House—the House of Representatives.” The first Jewish woman elected to Congress, who had two daughters, was an American lawyer, U.S. Representative, social activist and a leader of the Women’s Movement. Plus, do you remember those hats?

Joan Nathan– Perhaps not as political as some of the other Jewish mom’s we’ve got on this list… But we think there’s nothing more Bubbe-like than knowing how to make a good bowl of matzo ball soup- not to mention brisket, blintzes, and borscht. Nathan has written ten cookbooks, winning numerous awards for them. Six are about Jewish cuisine, and two on Israeli cuisine. Her goal is to preserve Jewish traditions by interviewing cooks and documenting their recipes and stories for posterity.

Aviva Shalit– After her Israeli soldier son, Gilad, was taken captive by Palestinian militants in a cross-border attack near Gaza in 2006, Aviva and Noam Shalit vowed to do everything in their power to bring him home. In late June 2010, they organized a march from Shalit’s hometown, to the Prime Minister’s residence in Jerusalem, and were joined by 10,000 people! Aviva and Noam stated that they would not go home until their son was freed. Even with strong parallels to the experiences of Ron Arad and Nachshon Wachsman – Israeli soldiers who never made it out of Arab captivity – Aviva and Noam never flagged, mounting a relentless campaign for their son’s release. In October 2011, their persistence was rewarded when Gilad was returned home (although at a very heavy cost to Israel). Thank goodness for loving, Jewish moms.



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