Since it was 4th of July weekend we expected many of our friends to be out of New York City at the beach or on vacation. Our average Shabbat dinner packs in around 25 people in our small studio. Fortunately, we still had 13 friends over to our studio who enjoyed the home cooked meal that Jodi and I prepared. Shabbat is a time to reflect on the past week and enjoy our rest. We had a traditional Israeli Shabbat meal with appetizers like hummous, olives, pita, barekas, and pickles, and numerous courses, as well as some wine.
The holiday weekend gave us a chance to speak about the dual blessing of being an American-Jew. On this weekend where we celebrate our American freedom from Great Britain, we realized that America has also afforded Jews the chance to celebrate their religion without government intervention. Many of us descend from Holocaust survivors and inevitably victims of the Nazi regime. We have read and listened to countless stories of what the Holocaust was like and now in America, just 65 years later, Jews once again have a safe place to honor our heritage and religion. We were all thankful for this.