December 5th, 2007


First night of Chanukah

If anyone has the wrong impression, I do love Chanukah. My resentment toward the holiday is purely commercial and I definitely enjoy the Chanukah holiday for what it is. My problem is that it's so over-hyped and people view it was a *major* holiday because it's close to Christmas. For what it is (a great story of Jewish strength against oppression) it's still a wonderful and amazing holiday.

Last night before class I went over to my parents house to light candles/open presents with the family+. Now, tonight, family+ not only included newish family friend David Snyder, but family+ tonight included long time friends the Hilfsteins! Not the parents, who both live in NY, but the children-- Delia, who lives in Tallahassee and has a husband and a 2 year old, and David, who is in the process of moving from NYC to Israel (for eight months, but it looks like its going to be for good). It was really great to see them, especially David, who I hadn't seen in about 2 years, and haven't actually talked to much since he left for college. I got a grudge against him off my chest regarding a comment he made about gay men regarding our old math teacher. He sincerely apologized and I harbor no more grudges.

Here we are:

120407_1826a.jpg, originally uploaded by thisgirliknow4.

We lit candles and opened presents. I got oven mitts and potholders from my parents. They're a pretty brown with a striped design. <3. I also got a Star of David keychain and dreidel from Delia. Deb opened a giftcard I gave her. My dad opened a shirt he bought himself. We gave out gelt.

Delia left to get Taylor home to sleep, and then we played Apples to Apples. In the game, at the end, people look at the cards they have won and it supposedly describes that person. I won the first game but didn't take a picture of my cards which included both voilent and playful. Hey, wanna play with some knives? These were my cards midway through the second game. I was hiding "normal." Notice the awesome Chanukah tablecloth in the background.

120407_2159.jpg, originally uploaded by thisgirliknow4.

It got to be close to midnight, and Delia apparently fell asleep. I hgave David a ride home, and we forgot at the time that he had no key. And then we get there and Delia's not awake, and not answering her phone, or the door. The garage door was slightly open, and he got in through that way:

120507_0010.jpg, originally uploaded by thisgirliknow4.

Fun night. We'll be doing candles at 10 pm tonight after I get out of class. Thursday night is a Chabad thing at the mall that I'm *not* going to, Friday night is the latke bar at the synagogue, and then we've got Chanukah parties Saturday night.


Go to my userinfo page if you need to for this one.

Pick someone on my friends list that you want to know something about, might want to get to know, or are just curious about. Then I will tell you a thing or two about what I know of them.

The two rules:

1. You can't pick yourself.
2. You can't pick someone we are mutual friends with.

(Come back at some point, if you're curious to see if I've written about you or if someone is interested in learning something about you).

For anyone who may happen to be connected...

December 4, 2007

Dear Alumni and Friends of The Magnolia School,

The end of the year is a time for reflection on the past, and for thoughts of the future. So many of my favorite memories are of you and The Magnolia School, the source of long lasting connections between all of us. But The Magnolia School is much more than a memory. Now in its 23rd year, The Magnolia School continues to offer a unique and enriching experience for the children, parents and staff.

As you know, the Magnolia School environment gives children and young people a safe place to learn and grow. They are encouraged to develop academically, socially, and artistically, but without losing their individuality. And while our approach has inspired and influenced other schools in the area, we are unique in carrying out our commitment to our founding principles. What you remember—our multi-age classrooms, low student-teacher ratio, our small size, our integrated and active curriculum, our developmental student evaluations and portfolios—continues today. It is not easy, but we know it works. Our graduates have for years gone on to contribute lovingly and creatively to the life of our community. To continue this approach in the age of the FCAT, we need your help now.

Nearly 80% of the tuition paid by our fifty-six current students goes directly to paying the modest salaries of our wonderful teachers. Your donation would maintain and protect the school itself. With your help, we recently replaced the middle school roof and made other repairs. We have also installed a beautiful new school sign on Tharpe Street. Come on by and take a look! Soon, we will need to replace the aging playground equipment and the school bus.

The winter holiday season is a time to renew connections. We hope your connection with The Magnolia School has enriched your life. In exchange, your tax-deductible financial contribution this month would bring new life to the school for the current generation of students.


Susan Smith
Founder, The Magnolia School

All donations are tax-deductible.