24 February 2006

Gotta start cleaning NOW

...cause my Mom is coming for Pesach*! Yay! How exciting that my Mom wants to spend Pesach with us!


Holy crap. My extremely secular "why do you go through all that trouble for just a few days?" "why can't I watch tv on Saturday - I'm not religious?" "What do you mean, 3 straight days of holiday restrictions?" Mom is coming for Pesach.

Oy vey.

Anybody have any experience with secular relatives visiting for holidays? I've already told her that I won't be offended if one full-on seder is too much for her and she wants to stay home 2nd night (she sounded very relieved at that!). And that if she doesn't want to come to shul with us, that's okay, too. And if she wants to run next door to the neighbour's to watch tv or check her email, I'll pretend not to notice. Any other suggestions/hints/advice? I'd like this to be fun for both of us, and the last time I had a secular relative visit for Pesach, well, let's just say a good time was not had by all. I'd like my Mom to see what I love so much about Pesach (and Orthodox Judaism), and even if she doesn't go home wanting to be more frum, I'd at least like her to go home with a happy memory.

*Update: Obviously, I'm so verklempt about my mother visiting, that I overlooked my non-Jewish readers. Pesach is the Hebrew word for the Jewish holiday of Passover. Thanks to Jenny for pointing out my goof. My apologies!


At 24/2/06 5:26 p.m., Blogger Just another Jenny said...

now I am off to go do a google on "Pesach". I have never heard of that, although I am not sure I am pronouncing it right so maybe I have.
I don't have any advice other than to say that I am secular and I love a chance to discover other religous events. I hope you have a great time with your mom. It sounds like you are really considering her feelings so I am sure it will go well.

At 24/2/06 7:55 p.m., Anonymous thalia said...

I think the beauty of observance is in the peace, in the distance from the world, the chance for reflection. That's something that your mum can enjoy even if she would not usually spend the time. Can you persuade her of that? Talk to her about how much you enjoy it?

At 25/2/06 9:29 p.m., Anonymous wessel said...

Um, tell her where the bakeries are in town? Just kidding!

Well, I would recommend telling her to eat something filling BEFORE the seder, and then move the seder along at a fast and steady clip. I think that most people just do not have the stamina for a traditional seder. It's a struggle for me each year, and were are pretty darned Orthodox.

At 27/2/06 7:02 p.m., Anonymous LC said...

And make sure that *you* eat something before the seder - I know being hungry (OK, starving) because I was too busy with last minute preparations to eat all day makes me a bear, nevermind 2 cups of wine on an empty stomach (the other 2 come after the eating part, for anyone wondering about the count :) )

But it sounds like you've covered most of it. Maybe try to be a bit creative with foods? There are lots of veges that aren't the potato (thank goodness for low carb; it won't seem so strange to her).

My only other thought is to be really explicit about any restrictions before the holiday starts so she doesn't freak out when you say "oh, you can't do that". (Although I invariably only remember to mention whatever 'that' is after the fact . . .)

Good luck!

At 27/2/06 11:39 p.m., Blogger projgen said...

Jenny, ugh, my bad! I usually try really hard to explain stuff - I guess it's a good indication of how freaked I am! ;)

thalia, thanks for that suggestion; I'll try to make a point of talking up that aspect of the holiday.

wessel: *snort* Maybe mom & I can go on a donut binge beforehand ;)

lc: thank you; I do usually forget to feed myself and I don't even make the seder! We always go to someone else's for first night, so while I don't have to worry about cooking, I also don't really have control over how fast the evening goes. Usually, our various friends have great, creative ideas to make the seder enjoyable and fun for everyone! Hope Mom thinks so, too!!


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