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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review March 21, 2005 / 10 Adar II, 5765

On American busyness and what really matters

By Tom Purcell


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | An article in the Christian Science Monitor is onto something. We're too dang busy and we ought to do something about it.

Families are so overcome by activities both for kids and parents these days, they hardly get to sit down and enjoy each other's presence. Kids have meetings and schedules that would put an average CEO to shame. Most parents spend their free time shuttling their kids from one event to another.

That's if parents have any free time. I know firsthand that there is little separation between work and home anymore. Pagers, cell phones and other gadgets have allowed folks to keep on working into the evening and right through "vacations."

And I'm as guilty as anyone. Sunday should be a time for church and family. It should be a time to read, relax and reflect. But I have often blown off these important activities to instead get ahead on my workload and billings.

But I was lucky to come back to senses recently.

After working exhaustive hours since October, I had finally taken two weeks off. I've been self-employed since 1993, you see, and vacationing is not what a self-employed person does enough of. The first week went fairly well, and I used the time to relax and catch up on some personal writing projects.

But the second week, my Uncle Jimmy died unexpectedly. Fortunately, I was free of work and had the time to assist and attend the funeral home to talk to my uncle's friends, co-workers and other family members.

Last week, I was supposed to dive back into a busy workload, but I didn't want to do it. I didn't want to fall back into the trap of working long, hard hours that filled my bank account but that robbed me of time, energy and perspective.

But then fate intervened. On Monday my father had had a medical procedure and had to return to a different hospital — one in a bad section of the inner city — the following day. Though the Big Guy's health is good as ever, a temporary medical device restricted his movement and he was unable to drive. I decided to drive him and my mother down, and though they resisted at first — they are stubborn this way — they finally allowed me to help out.

And so I picked them up early Tuesday morning. It was sunny with a hint that Spring was soon to be in the air. I drove slowly, reviewing the directions, and as we drove we talked. My father is the king of the deadpan one liner and pretty soon we were laughing — we ended up talking and laughing the entire way.

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I expected we'd spend much of the morning waiting around, but my father was admitted right away, the device was removed and he came out feeling and looking like a million bucks, as strong and healthy as ever.

And so we headed on home, the sun more vibrant now, and we drove through an old steel town looking at the old mills and the boarded-up shops. We talked about how, just a little while ago, that town was booming — the shops, pubs and stores were jammed full as steel employees worked round the clock. Now they place is empty and dead.

We got home and had some breakfast and talked and laughed some more. My parents were apologetic for having me take time out of my busy day to help them get where they needed to go, but they had nothing to apologize for. It was a blast, one of the best Tuesday mornings I've had in years. It was also an honor.

As I drove home just before noon that day, I felt a peacefulness and happiness I'd not felt in a while. I realized how blessed I am that my parents are so healthy and that I got to spend such a delightful Tuesday morning with them.

And that, for one day at least, I conquered busyness before it conquered me.

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© 2005, Tom Purcell