Passover Begins

Passover began last night at sundown.  My grandmother, Mama, has forever hosted the Passover dinner to kick off the holiday.  She prepares everything from scratch, sets a beautiful table, and cooks an elaborate and delicious meal.  Last night was no different, though my grandfather, Papa, admitted to helping her make the gefilte fish for the first time in 60 years. 🙂  Our party included about 25 people, 7 of which are great-grandchildren to my grandparents.  (We were missing 3 of the great-grandchildren.)

What is Passover?  Passover is an “eight-day festival that commemorates the emancipation of the Israelites from slavery in ancient Egypt.” (souce)  There are many traditions that go along with Passover, along with conducting a seder on the first (and sometimes second) nights, and avoiding leavened grain – Chametz – for the duration of Passover.  We do this to remember the unleavened bread the Israelites ate when they left Egypt in a hurry.  No grain, eh?

What can Jews eat during Passover?  Cara wrote a lovely post explaining what we can and cannot eat during the holiday and I highly encourage you to check it out.  (Click here to read.)  She has also created numerous Passover-friendly recipes!

Most importantly, Passover (and Easter and any other holiday) is about spending time with family, friends, and loved ones.  We are blessed to be a part of such a close family who actually enjoys hanging out together.  And my sister and I still like to participate in our own photoshoots when we get together.

Yes, the second one was actually a, “Look at the camera and pretend to laugh!” shot.  Nerds.  This was my new dress I bought in Arizona.  I love the yellow and Stephanie was apparently feeling the yellow, as well.  While we matched our outfits for years and years growing up, these outfits were not, indeed, planned. 🙂

This morning I woke up bright and early (of course), so I decided to hit up some bikram yoga.  I have been wanting to take a bikram class, but it is such a time commitment that it usually doesn’t work out during the week.  It felt good to take the time to stretch, breathe, and focus on myself for the 90 minute class.  I definitely struggled during the last part, but I made it through and was a sweaty mess by the end.

Before

After

Yikes! Red, drenched mess is right!  It felt good and was a nice change of pace from the workouts I have been doing.  The rest of the day will be spent hydrating, hanging out, and preparing a side dish for our Passover dinner on Jonny’s side this evening.

Happy Passover!