The Jerusalem Business Networking Forum….I Wish I Lived There…

What? I mean that I feel at my best when I am connecting people and sussing out their dreams. I love to meet the shy geeky brainiac who is just going to set the world on fire and then getting him to meet the money people. I love having my “green” friend meet other people involved in new technologies. I love getting all of the alternative therapies and modalities people off to the side and really talking about what they do. I love asking people what they need.

If this were a job I would do it everyday. I love doing the “meet and greet” and finding out what types of businesses people are in and what is their passion. The matchmaker in me wants to help them find a resource they didn’t know about. I love finding the synergy between strangers.

Tonight I met up with a familiar face who is connected with people I have admired and known for many years in completely different contexts.  He offered me an opportunity.  As you know I have been casting about for my next move. This project is something I can believe in!  I’ll let you know when the details are firmed up…but I should have known that Hashem knows where my parnassah comes from. The next time I stress out, you have my permission to call me and tell me to chill. Better yet- come on over to my “Little Chabad House on the Wadi” and I’ll make you the drink.

I love being a doula- there is a lot of downtime. I have managed to make it meaningful and have learned a tremendous amount. I am in the hunt for a job to complement the life I have created up until now. My doula business is important to me and it takes a while to grow a reputation and a clientele.  I have decided to look for something worthwhile to do until then. Until I unearth the treasure trove of pregnant women needing comfort.

Today I applied for jobs- sent out resumes something I have not had to do for over 25 years.  All of my jobs have come from personal referrals. I don’t know what made me think that I needed to do this. I know I have to do my hishtadlut/make my effort. I understand that all of my sustenance comes from Hashem/G-d.  He has fed me for a number of years, given me shelter and knows where my parnassah/income is coming from….even when I don’t.

So if you know anyone who can use a committed, out-going and enthusiastic person in their business call me….

Jenny Sassoon to My Rescue

B”H

I am in that strange place in my Aliyah process. I was getting a little nervous about what comes next. I needed some help to sort things out. I have done the initial Ulpan and I can function in society on a rudimentary level. I am hoping for more formal education in the spring so I can advance in my Hebrew literacy. I am currently a very happy seminary girl, at least 3 days a week.

I have started to think about getting a job- just something to help pay the bills.  What kind of a job?  I have always been successful with the ones that you actually have to do something. I need to be active and engaged.In Israel that probably needs more Hebrew than I feel confident with. Please correct me if I am wrong. Really, please….

I have been thinking about working from home, but I really love being with people. I would sell a product if I was really passionate about it. My doula work is soul satisfying but it is a lot of waiting- so I do have time to do other things. My kallah class training won’t be until Fall and I am working on my Childbirth Education certification. All good in the pipeline, but not going to be rolling in the shekels.

Today I had  a meeting with Jenny Sassoon. She offered her time through a program Shelly Brinn offered at the Iriya (City Hall) in Maaleh Adumim aimed at soon to be employed new Olim. Jenny is a trained social worker and a certified Coach. Last Rosh Hodesh Jenny did a short workshop on self-esteem. I was so impressed with her group work skills and her sensitivity; I knew I had to jump at the chance to pick her brain about my existential crisis issues. There I said it” I have issues”….

Jenny walked me through her “inside/outside” approach to getting a handle on the issues many women face when starting a business or a new career. We talked about getting paid for what you used to give away- making the leap to being a professional.  She told me that all of the thank you notes and recommendations I have carefully collected shouldn’t affect how I feel about myself. I have to take pride in what I do and offer it in the marketplace with no caveats. Funny, Chassiduit teaches that also. Hmmm…

She told me how to hold my body to feel more confident. She gave me daily homework in front of the mirror aimed at strengthening and owning my qualities that make me who I am. She told me to be proud and upright about who I am. It was on the surface a business problem I handed her- and she handed me back soul work.

I think I like Jenny’s approach to business and life- know who you are. She says the answers are in me!  If is one thing that I have learned from Chassiduit studies this year is that she is right – we know what we have to do to be aligned with our values.  I got a little scared and shaky about what is coming next. I really needed Jenny to walk me through the fear and lack of self-confidence. I have a lot of emmunah about parnassah, but every so often it slips. Jenny was there to catch me.

If you need Jenny’s help she is available on Facebook and she can Skype if you live far from Jerusalem. Just don’t go it alone- it takes a guide and a coach to kick your compass into gear. Look for her at http://www.BuildBetterRelationships.com and tell her I sent you.

This recipe is a favorite at our little Chabad House on the Wadi!

My Plant-Based Family

Mac & Cheese

I’ve been wanting to make a gluten-free, dairy-free Mac & Cheese that is actually healthy. Now that I have I’m already thinking of other ideas to spice it up. I plan to serve this at my next Healthy Craving group. If you aren’t concerned with gluten you can use regular whole wheat pasta.

Mac & Cheese (Gluten-free and Vegan)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups gluten-free noodles (uncooked)
  • 2 cups raw cauliflower (diced into small pieces)
  • 1 recipe Faux Cheese Sauce
  • Cooked potatoes, peeled (I used two small red potatoes peeled) plus water

Do

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°
  2. Cook noodles according to package directions. Cauliflower can be steamed separately or cooked with the noodles.
  3. Prepare Faux Cheese Sauce
  4. Mash potatoes, adding water until a smooth texture is reached.
  5. Pour noodles and cauliflower into an 8×8 casserole dish.
  6. Add potatoes to the prepared cheese sauce and whisk well.
  7. Pour cheese sauce into noodles and gently stir until noodles are well…

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I keep finding new dreams…..

B”H

There was a time that I thought I had no more dreams left. Hashem has blessed me beyond what I deserve. It has all ” just fallen into place” – I got remarried to the love of my life, I found a job that I loved and had more children come into my life.

Then, I made Aliyah,  landed in Maaleh Adumim,  found a chevrah that I love. The most amazing part is I have been so blessed to be a part of more than a few labor and deliveries in Jerusalem which touch me in the deepest part of my soul. I told everyone who would listen before I made Aliyah that my goal in life was “to deliver Jewish babies in Israel”.

I am at an age when more people are starting to think about retirement and counting the days until they can stop their jobs. I am on the opposite end of the spectrum. I feel like I am just getting started. I feel so energized and ready to take on the world. The Lubavitcher Rebbe had a philosophy precluding “retirement” and demanding always more from himself and others. It is only fitting that I am planning on not ever retiring- it isn’t even a concept!

In the past year, I have attended Seminary at Malchus, an English language program for women with a desire to learn Chassiduit, Tehillim, Tefillah and Sichot of the Lubavitcher Rebbe. I go at least 3 days a week into Geula, in Jerusalem, and I am always a bit sad when I finish my week of learning. My mashpia/mentor tells me that I should be teaching and so my dream is to provide “Mommie and Me Torah Tots”. It is a dream.

I volunteered to join the Mishmar Ezrachi /Citizen’s Patrol for Maaleh Adumim.  I can’t talk about it but, it is awesome! I have always respected the Police. My father z’tl used to raise German Shephards for the Massachusetts State Police and took me along many times for the canine training. I joined to help my community and to gain some skills and language .  I dream of being able to work with the domestic violence team. As a Rebbitzen I was exposed to it far too often. I want to help if I can. It is my dream.

I went to a discussion on Mikveh and a big light went on over my head. As I listened to the women talk about feeling more positive towards Mikveh when they had a good kallah teacher I knew I had to reclaim this piece of my old life. I remember my days as a Rabbanit teaching new brides and sitting down with perfect strangers and talking about the most intimate subjects. I thought- if not me – then who? If not now- then when? This week coincidentally  I contacted  Rebbitzen Tehillah Abramov and  several other organizations looking for a Kalleh teacher training class….there are no coincidences….

I have been slowly working my way through my Childbirth Education syllabus and this seems like the most logical connection. So you see, Hashem once again revealed to me what direction I should be moving in. I have exciting dreams and vital goals to look forward to accomplishing. So far all of my dreams have come to fruition- maybe not the way I thought they should have, but always how it was meant to be.  I accept that.

So those are my dreams- what are yours?