holidays · Jewish · slice of life

Making Traditions… Together? #SOL20

I heard about Days United sometime between our decision to pull Ari out of preschool and Rosh Hashanah. It’s a subscription service that provides holiday and culture boxes to families. I ordered the eight-box holiday set. The kids and I adored the Rosh Hashanah and Sukkot boxes. So, yesterday, when my friend Emily asked me if we had received our Chanukah box yet (She gets them for her daughter too and thought this one was amazing!), I said “not yet.” Both kids were awaiting the box’s arrival eagerly.

This evening, as I was preparing dinner, I noticed a package from Days United. THE BOX! I gathered the kids around and we unpacked it together. We got excited about the activities inside and decided to make the Chanukah menorah before bedtime.

Isabelle showered in record time since she knew we’d be doing a craft project together. I laid out the contents of the Star of David Menorah bag on the kids’ craft table and scanned the QR code for the speedy instructions. While the video was too fast to follow (They always are!), I knew I could look at the book and follow the pictures step-by-step.

But I couldn’t.

The booklet’s photos for the traditional menorah, which the kids wanted to make, were too small for me to see which side of each bolt to use. I called Marc since I needed help. He watched the too-fast video. He flipped through the instruction booklet. He couldn’t figure it out either.

WE HAVE FOUR ADVANCED DEGREES BETWEEN US AND WE COULD NOT FIGURE OUT WHAT TO DO! (Apparently we needed a master’s in engineering, which neither of us have, to complete the traditional menorah.) The kids were grumbling, but I was groaning the loudest. “This is supposed to be fun.” “This is a craft project we’re supposed to do with the kids, not for them.” “The company’s tag line is ‘making traditions together’… this isn’t together if they’re sitting on the floor while we’re sitting at the table trying to figure this out.”

After I scrapped the traditional menorah (since we were working unsuccessfully on it for over 20 minutes), I declared that we should try to follow the picture directions for the Star of David menorah, which contained slightly larger images. After fiddling around with it for about seven minutes, I finally figured it out. Even Marc was impressed since I am not a handy person by nature.

I allowed the kids to screw in the final two candle holders so they could feel like they completed some aspect of the project.
Ari inserted two candles so the kids’ menorah is ready to go for Thursday night.

I’m feeling better after having written this, but quite frankly, I’m hoping the rest of the items in our box are more fun than this was since this was anything but fun.


4 thoughts on “Making Traditions… Together? #SOL20

  1. I’ve noticed with frustrations lately that they just seem more…frustrating. So little joys make the anticipation greater. In the light of a new day, the directions may be clearer or your problem solving stronger. Trying to give myself and others more grace these days. In consolation, that menorah is beautiful. Sometimes it’s good when kids see that things are a struggle for us as well.

    1. The company was wonderful. Someone Zoomed with me and walked me through changing it to the traditional version, which made my kids very happy. 🙂 I so appreciated the grace they extended to me.

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