Off the Beaten Path

Off the Beaten Path

My work for In the Gardens reaches out to many communities – schools, townships, businesses, nonprofits, and also to congregations, straddling needs in both the secular and spiritual community. As such, I was invited to join Kenissa, an organization that celebrates and creates connections for Jewish innovators. This past March I participated in its Communities of Meaning Network 2018 National Consultation Cohort. The Kenissa Network...

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Mindfulness in the Garden

Mindfulness in the Garden

This weekend I had the opportunity to lead a session at the 2018 Good Food EXPO, a conference for all things garden, farming and fresh food related. It was my fourth year at the conference. The first year I attended, I met a young man – a high school student – named Lucas Zeidner. We were in a breakout session together. It turned out that while he was looking for an internship, I was looking for an intern. A partnership was made, which not only...

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Bringing Forth Kindness: Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Bringing Forth Kindness: Martin Luther King Jr. Day

I returned from a 10-day seminar in the wee hours of Monday morning. When I woke later that morning to Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, I saw volunteer opportunities listed on my phone – how to put King’s vision to work and make this world a place of greater love and kindness. Then on Tuesday morning, I was inspired to listen to Stevie Wonder. His early music was presented in the seminar I’d attended, and I wanted to start my day to his beat....

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Light in the Dark

Light in the Dark

This time of the year we see lights everywhere we turn. It is ironic – or maybe practical – that during the shortest days of the year, we look to bring in light in every corner we can. We light the lights of Hanukkah. We see lights adorning homes, businesses and trees in celebration of Christmas. We receive the lights of Kwanza. The winter solstice is the start of the solar year, and as such, a celebration of the light of the sun. So perhaps...

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#HoustonStrong

#HoustonStrong

I am honored to have participated in a trip to Houston last week for disaster relief after Hurricane Harvey. It was coordinated by an organization called Nechama, and promoted in Chicago through the Jewish United Fund. When I saw the email invitation, I quickly checked my calendar and said, “Yes!” I submitted an application and was invited to take part. Nineteen people – sixteen volunteers and three JUF staff members – traveled to Texas to see...

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