"Don't tell God how big your storm is; tell your storm how big your God is."

I believe in God.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Semi-Devastation and my Brilliant Fix-It Idea

--Just enough time to blog before I leave for a job interview (watch for a post later today or tomorrow about that), so I will tell this story.

--First, the semi-devastation: I was at the laundromat yesterday, doing my weekly load that does not go through the dryer.  In that load, I always have my tallitot k'tanot.  They are supposed to go in some sort of bag so the strings don't tangle.  I use a pillowcase and tie a big knot at the top; normally this works fine.  Even if it opens up a bit, the garments usually stay inside.  Well, yesterday, my pillowcase opened up, and all the tallitot k'tanot came out.  When the washing machine finished, I was faced with one big tangle of string.  While I was standing at the counter in the laundromat, carefully and patiently untangling, a string broke off in my hand.  It wasn't just any string, either; that's a relatively cheap and easy fix.  No--you guessed it--this was a special blue string.  When I got back, I looked for where the string had broken off.  I was prepared for the worst, because I was holding an eighteen inch or so piece of string in my hand, which meant there couldn't be much left on the tallit katan.  And I was right: not even all the wound-around part of that string is still there, let alone any hang-down.  It's obvious that this set, whose kashrut was really always in doubt because the blue was not from the right source, is now definitely pasul, not kosher, not wearable.

--Now, here's my brilliant fix-it idea: a new tallit katan, the cheapest I could find, would cost about 14 dollars plus shipping.  That's not horrible, but my family doesn't have a lot of money right now, so any money I can save them is a good thing.  I do need to somehow get another wearable tallit katan, because right now I have exactly seven including two ladies' sets, and I like to save the ladies' sets for dressy occasions and Rosh Hodesh only.  But I had this wonderful idea: what if I untie and remove the current strings, and just replace them with all white? New, real blue strings cost upwards of 50 dollars, and now that we've seen that these strings can break in the wash, I wouldn't want the expensive kind in case this happens again.  But I can get a good set of 16 (four for each corner) wool (required material, unless you know what material the garment is, in which case you can use that too) plain white strings for four dollars plus shipping...under ten dollars total.  While I absolutely do not trust myself with the special blue strings, I know how to tie the plain white, I've done it four times in my life (tallit katan in high school, tallit gadol in high school, corner repair for a tallit katan whose string I accidentally snipped to thumb length while working on a sewing project, Hannukah gift tallit katan last winter), and I am absolutely prepared to do it again.

--And...please meet "TARA."  She's from my "Jacob's" country (I have a soft spot for these kids, both for the obvious reason and because they age out two years younger than kids elsewhere), and she is aging out in SEPTEMBER.  "Tara" has Down syndrome.  I am doing something I have never done before.  "Tara" has two pictures posted.  I can't decide which one is better, so I am posting them both.  Here they are:

Tara (1)Tara (2)

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I am a bipolar, Jewish young adult (had my Hebrew birthday, the one I count, and turned 23 this past January) who also suffers from Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy. I love life and I live for my best friends: they are my purpose and my reason for trying so hard. I remain passionately devoted to those I love; I will not let my disorders make me totally self-centered. I like to read, write, and sew. My Rabbinical school plans did not work out, and I am now hoping to go into the field of Early Childhood Education. Please note: I am currently maintaining only Carried in His Hands. Enjoy!