How this Summer is Different from That Summer

How this Summer is Different from That Summer

Last time I was here at my mother-in-law’s Ontario cottage was two summers ago.

That summer, Blue Lake was a refuge for me and my family. From everything happening in Israel….

From the war with Gaza. From the missiles and sirens and the feeling that the entire world was against us.

From Nachlaot, our old neighborhood, which (oldtime JewishMOMs will remember) we desperately needed to leave.

And from our search for a new home, which had turned out to be a long, drawn-out series of let-downs and disappointments.

But there were also problems at Blue Lake. My newlywed sister-in-law and brother-in-law Catherine and Noah were immersed in a cloud of sadness, still recovering from a devastating miscarriage at 22 weeks. I wished I could hide my own growing belly.

And I cannot help but compare two summers ago with this summer…

Israel, while never completely quiet and peaceful, is relatively calm.

We cannot wait to return next Monday to our beautiful new home in our wonderful new neighborhood, Kiryat Moshe.

And yesterday I met my newest nephew, 4-month-old Anatol (“sunrise” in Greek). At first we thought he looks just like his father, but now we see he is a perfect combination of Noah and Catherine together.

Right after his birth, my brother and sister-in-law decided they would start keeping Shabbat, to raise their son with Jewish traditions.

And their favorite moment of all of Shabbat is when they bless Anatol before the Friday-night meal. Unfamiliar new tears of joy and gratitude replacing the old, familiar old tears of despair and grief.


  1. just beautiful! wishing them only happiness in raising their baby

    with jewish values and simcha. mazel tov!

  2. So nice to look back and appreciate all the good coming your way. Only travel for happy reasons like anniversaries not visits to hospitals! May your entire extended family be well.

    • JewishMom

      yes, I didn’t mention that last year I didn’t come to the cottage since I visited my father in the ICU in Baltimore instead. B”H this year, before I came to blue lake, we celebrated my parents’ 50th anniversary with them, and my father is in good health. so much to be grateful for

      • Mazal Tov! What a wonderful milestone, for the whole family, to see your parents in good health reach their 50th anniversary. Best Wishes!

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