In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

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 Nov. 17, 2010 / 10 Kislev, 5771

A strenuous Thanksgiving to one and all

By Marybeth Hicks

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Every cook recalls her first turkey.

Mine was fresh, not frozen — about 14 pounds with an ample breast and wings with remnants of feathers stuck to the skin.

My memories of that Thanksgiving drift through my mind like slides fading in and out: Football on the driveway; the dog moseying around the kitchen, seeking out the succulent source of the wafting aroma; the table set with rarely-used china and crystal.

It was a perfect holiday — a quintessentially American Thanksgiving — except that unlike on TV commercials, my turkey refused to cook.

After roughly seven hours in the oven, during which time the mashed potatoes turned to warmed-over wallpaper paste, I admitted defeat, hacked the bird into medieval-sized servings, and zapped the whole thing in the microwave.

In the end, though the effort was strenuous and not just a little stressful, I learned a crucial lesson about Thanksgiving: It's the gravy and the company that matter most.

Thanksgiving holds a special place in the hearts of all Americans. When, in 1789, George Washington signed the first "General Thanksgiving" proclamation, he designated the day "to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty G0d."

For the past two years, our nation's scorched economy and long-term joblessness have caused us to reassess what it means to be blessed.

Oddly enough, despite the financial pounding many families have taken and the relentless and uncertain economic news crawling across our television screens each night, I sense that we're more able than ever to give thanks.

That's because nothing realigns America's priorities like hardship.

Rooted in our Judeo-Christian heritage, we American's don't just count our blessings by looking for the proverbial silver lining inside a passing cloud of events. We're just as likely to "give thanks in all circumstances," understanding that G0d can use every situation for our benefit and His glory.

Perhaps this is part of our national ethos that Theodore Roosevelt described in his classic speech, "The Strenuous Life."

"I wish to preach not the doctrine of ignoble ease," Roosevelt said, "but the doctrine of the strenuous life, the life of toil and effort, of labor and strife; to preach that highest form of success which comes, not to the man who desires mere easy peace, but to the man who does not shrink from danger, from hardship, or from bitter toil, and who out of these wins the splendid ultimate triumph."


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Roosevelt's inspiring words are part of a new collection of speeches and documents released this week called "The Essential American: 25 Documents and Speeches Every American Should Own" edited by Jackie Gingrich Cushman (Regnery Publishing. Full disclosure: I'm also a Regnery author).

"I wrote this book because I believe America is exceptional—that's a controversial statement. These great national stories remind us of the foundation of our country and how our national character has been forged," Cushman said.

"The Essential American" will help us reinvigorate that national character. Through documents such as the Declaration of Independence and our Constitution, to important speeches such as Lincoln's first and second Inaugural addresses, McArthur's Sylvanus Thayer Award Acceptance Address ("Duty, Honor, Country"), and Reagan's Brandenburg Gate remarks, Cushman arms us with the basic building blocks of American citizenship and fans the flame of our national spirit.

There is such as thing as an American character. Just as we have forged quintessentially American traditions like Thanksgiving, we can claim for ourselves the essential American qualities that have defined us for generations.

Cushman's collection challenges us to bolster those traits by knowing and appreciating our history. Perhaps the best place to start is with Teddy's vision of Americans:

"In the last analysis a healthy state can exist only when the men and women who make it up lead clean, vigorous, healthy lives; when the children are so trained that they shall endeavor, not to shirk difficulties, but to overcome them; not to seek ease, but to know how to rest triumph from toil and risk… As it is with the individual, so it is with the nation."

Bully! And Happy Thanksgiving!

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JWR contributor Marybeth Hicks, a wife of more than 20 years and mother of four children, lives in the Midwest. She uses her column to share her perspective on issues and experiences that shape families nationwide. To comment, please click here.


© 2009, Marybeth Hicks