Friday, September 26, 2008

Blogging over the years and remembrance of things in the not-so-distant past...

my blog kinda sucks.  i was just reading through some posts.  funny stuff.  kind of haha funny, kind of just plain old stupid funny.  since my memory is shit (no, i did not do drugs in college!), it is kind of nice to have a little record of what i was doing a couple of years ago, where i lived when i started this blog, how i spent my time, what my mood was like.  berlin. babies. breastfeeding. boobs. strollers.  diapers.  my dear girlfriends. baking.  germans.  it kinda looks like i did lots of cooking, and really got into it. i think i had a frickin' cooking blog. 

boy oh boy, things have changed....

well, sort of.  i still cook, but largely as a function of what i like to call, "the coop" in which Mama Jens lives in.

and speaking of things changing,  old friends (hi liz!) who used to remark that even my dirty dishes looked clean, would be pleased (or disappointed?!!) to learn that i have let the slack out a little.  instead of cleaning my dishes before i wash them, now i just don't fucking clean them.  no, no... i do.  but they do sometimes hang out in the sink for awhile collecting fruit flies and other things.  

mid-life crisis plus having to work your dang brains out to earn a living here equals forgetting to do things like eat, much less clean.  screw cleaning.  who needs it anyways?

but back to the coop bit...

when the school year ended last year and summer started, and we were like "holy shit, you mean we have to take care of these kids all day?!" we did something very brilliant.  we got a nanny.  

perks for nanny:  free room and board.   a weekly stipend.  no bills.  getting to sleep-in late on most days because one child doesn't need to be picked up from school until 11.  delicious hot meals every evening from mama jens (i'll get back to that cooking bit in a minute).  hi-def tv. presents and incentives because mama jens is so happy that you are here that she can't contain her excitement.  two friendly little girls to talk your ear off all day. new york city at your doorstep.

perks for us:  live-in childcare while we work during the day, not costing too much more than a room.  one on one entertainment for the insatiable little ladies.  once a week or so getting to go out and rock the house all night and not have to pay 8 million dollars for a babysitter.  all of your husbands' friends and everyone you work with and basically any random person you ever talk to asking if the nanny is hot, which provides us with hours and hours of conversational entertainment that we would never have had otherwise, friendly energy (she is from the south), and very good vibes.

so cooking.... i feel like i live in a coop.  and you know what i fucking love about it?  it brings out the hippy in me.  we have three adults.  two kids.  we all take turns with morning duty (getting the kids up and ready and to school), night babysitting duty (all three of us really like to go out and party all night like rock stars), and even cleaning up around the house and cooking.  it sounds like heaven, because it kinda is.

our nanny rocks.  she is awesome.  she likes us.  we like her.  she is amazing with the kids.  she is very low maintenance.  she is cool.  she understands how crazy we are and laughs with us. she drinks beer and watches project runway with me.

okay, i know you are all wondering if she is hot.  hehehe...

so back to the cooking.  mama jens is still doing all the shopping.  i whiz through a store with lightening speed and come out with the exact amount of food for a week's worth of meals, lunches, and breakfasts without forgetting anything!  its amazing!  and by the end of the week, holy empty fridge.  so i don't really know what i want to say about cooking.  oh, yes, we do it every night, but its after work and before bed and i'm not writing recipes or reinventing the wheel.  its basic, practical, meat and three vegetables, wham, bam, eat! feeding the coop.

so what am i trying to say?  i am at work and all these people keep interrupting me.  geesh!  

so yes, blog entries of then vs. now...those dreamy times spent at home, in stay-at-home motherhood and high unemployment bliss in berlin with all my friends and kids' friends on afternoons after kita....cozy in the kitchen built by our friend or at a playground or cafe, coffee with steamed milk, fresh baked something, a plate of nice cheese, rosy-cheeked sweet toddlers running around in seems faraway from the 9th floor of this building overlooking the hudson river, a photoshoot for a magazine happening in the next room, my kids at school, the nanny chillin' at home, the empty fridge on a friday, the traffic, all the windows with all the lights, no breastfeeding.  no boobs either.  how life has changed...

its amazing how we choose our paths.   some decisions are obviously more formative/transformative than others.  but i think about it all the time.  how little decisions affect the course of things, how much is conscientious and considered, how much is emotionally driven, how much is chance or even unnoticed....  

happy friday.

mama jens

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

My Bloody Valentine vs Ears

i am enjoying the quiet coming through my window this morning along with a little light fall wind, and trying to work through a speedy ear recovery from the aural abuse i took last night at the my bloody valentine show at roseland ballroom. having never been to one of their concerts, and apparently being an unsuspecting and naive, though solid fan, i wasn't prepared for it. well, i had earplugs, so in that way i was prepared, but i wasn't mentally prepared.

we stood through two relatively uninteresting opening bands, though j. mascis did make a stage appearance toward the end of the set of the second opener, and man that guy has some nice hair. we kept thinking, wow, we are in nyc, my bloody valentine could get anyone to open their set, we were hoping for our other favorites i think.

anyways, mbv delivered right away with loveless hits. beautiful, ecstatic, nostalgic, all the things one could ever want from a mbv show. by the third song, i felt ear damage. i looked around at the people around me and saw that they were all wearing earplugs already. mbv on earplugs felt like a really woozy, tranquilizer experience. maybe fun 10 years ago, but just annoying now. so the earplugs went in and out, based on what i wanted to hear vs how much ear damage i wanted to inflict. the strobe lights had my head down and eyes covered most of the time. unfortunate, because kevin shields was a nice thing to look at, as was belinda butcher.

a guy behind us had a seizure of some sort and had to be taken out, stiff as a board and eyes big and glassy.

the assault continued beautifully, and peaked with the 20+ minute head and heart crushing feedback fest that felt something like death by sound. knowing that they were going to do that at the end of the set, i wanted to get out of there about 2 minutes in. i sort of ran around the venue - to the bar, to the basement, around the sides, hoping to make it get quieter. no such luck. i finally left the building when i felt my chest and my heart seemed to be undulating weirdly under my ribcage.

holy jesus.

it took me a good hour to calm down. subway ride. a walk from the d train. in bed at 1 am my ears were pulsating. i was thinking about how crazy it is that you can hurt people with sound. sure its a well-known torture tactic, but i wasn't prepared for it indie rock style. i felt like i had been abused. an expensive, kind of beautiful abuse.

tonight is the low show at union hall's new venue on 3rd ave. i'll be screaming for more noise.

enjoy the beautiful, fall day.

-mama jens

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Its been a long time...

holy shit.  its been almost a year since i have posted.  my two devoted readers are probably long gone.  and anyways, who can follow all the title anyways.  what does all that mean? maybe i'll simplify at some point.  in the meantime, the fact that i haven't posted seems to parallel the first year in the delightful big apple.  

sometime around the one year anniversary of living here, i started to feel something like being human again.  it was like, we moved to new york, we got excited and blown away by the prospects, then a wave came and has kept us under for months.  drowning seems to be a decent analogy, so i'll stick with that.  

but remind me to get back to the being human again part...

one of the words that i learned living in berlin, a concept that never occurred to me until i gave birth there two times and dealt with midwives and birth houses and pelvic floors was "constitution."  i think when i first heard the term, i thought something like bowel movement.  i think the fifty times i heard the term after that, i was still stuck on you eat well, you have a good constitution.  who knew?  americans don't understand constitution.  but germans do.  

anyways, fast forward to a couple of years later, you find yourself going nuts in a crazy fucking city, and the term resurfaces again.  this time, it takes on a different meaning, or the real meaning.  hmmm, the overall strength of the body?

okay, i'm not a big lady, but i'm a strong lady.  sometime last month, i started questioning if i had it in me to live here, physically.

stress.  its loud,  its expensive,  its hard to find work,  going anywhere requires some hearty, uplifting subway travel, people coming going upstream downstream on sidewalks with (get this!) overwhelmingly, tall fucking buildings, pollution, an energy to shatter the most calmed soul, millions of entertainment options, countless old friends that have congregated, visitors up the wahzoo, brilliant people, beautiful people,  excitement, alcohol, and did i mention that its expensive?

in the back of our believing minds has been a feeling of sticking it out a year.  in the back of our lease, it says that if you don't stick it out a year, you fucking owe. 

so here we are.  my late-night encounter with questioning the strength of my own constitution (a couple of weeks ago) has remarkably, peacefully, luckily challenged me to stick it out longer. lucky only because i know i don't have the constitution to move somewhere else right now.

after a trip to maine (you gotta get out of here once in awhile) this summer, i have a sense of i know i can handle this if i put my mind to it.  those days (long ago posts) of being baffled by the amount of people running in prospect park and the beyond packed classes of type-A yogis trying to find a place for their mats are making sense in a new way.  i once heard that new yorkers are among the healthiest americans, but i tell you something:  its not all the walking, its not that they are more enlightened or that they don't want to eat fast food, its that if they are gonna live here, they have to learn to sink or swim.  you can come here healthy and sink quickly (drown under the wave), you can come here healthy and get lucky enough to catch a nice wave to ride (surfing), or you can come here healthy, start sinking, and figure out that you will simply drown if you don't do something different (take surfing lessons).  if you come here unhealthy, you're fucked.
as it turns out, i feel more in the category three of this storm.  i'm signing up.  what's outrageous is that i haven't really had a flight response, no matter how weak my lovely non-bowel movement meaning constitution has become.  sure, i ache sometimes for the lovely chapel hill house, but still, somehow, i still want to be here. 

call me crazy.

maybe the second year is different.  right here at the beginning of september, i'm banking on that.  with all the moves in my life (this is the 15th), i have never had a problem adjusting. maybe new york is just different, i keep telling myself.  its bigger, so it takes longer.  

not only are there the basic living stresses of being here.  the surface ones.  the ones that actually don't matter all too much, but there are the psychological/quasi-spiritual stresses.  
though i'm happy to report that i still have this weird ironic satisfied feeling after hauling my laundry to the laundry mat when i pay INSANE rent, there are other things that have lost their punk rock charm (i know, i know...nothing punk rock about paying INSANE rent...).  ease in the daily living things that one has to deal with is something that exists elsewhere.  i can embrace that.  everything is a little bit more challenging. options are plenty, maps must be navigated, blocks must be walked, people must be dealt with constantly, and well, when you are tired and don't think you can walk another step, you can't flag down a taxi to save your life. extremes downs are met with extreme highs, when you find yourself face to face with julia roberts because your old friend from high school is a reporter for a major u.s. publication, assuming being face to face with julia roberts constitutes (ahem) an extreme high.

julia roberts is absolutely star striking.  taller than average, sun-glassed, a jaw-line and a smile that makes you question biology and symmetry in general.  a fear, a wealth, an ease from living, fame beyond comprehension.  some kids, some acting skills, a constitution... 

and then there is the issue of meaning.  far more abstract and complicated than fresh laundry and  stunning julia roberts.  we all confront those issues in life no matter where we are or who we are, but if you ever find yourself wanting to jack up your mid-life crisis a little, move to nyc and let your head spin.  good stuff.

okay.  i don't know if any of that made any sense.  just talking for now.  goodnight to all the internet and non-internet souls out there.

mama jens

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The People Next to Me and Anton Corbijn's Control

One of the most beautiful things about living in a place like NYC is people watching. To top it all off, I recently got my first, very own iPod shuffle (right here at the ripe age of 32), which makes the people-watching that much more dramatic and cinematic.

Last night, I went to see Anton Corbijn's Control, a biopic about the late Ian Curtis and Joy Division.

But first, let me tell you about the subway ride there:

Sitting next to me was a young couple speaking in sign language. They were in their own world completely, laughing (silently, it all seemed), and totally unaware of all the wandering, curious, fascinated eyes and slight smiles stealing glimpses of their silent love affair. At some point, they stopped signing and started examining each others' hands - something lovers do, but these were hands they obviously already knew, hands that spoke to them, that held the key to everything between them in a way far more fundamental than in the beauty of their lines and muscles. They then started playing with each others' hands. First, slow, soft movements, then jokes -playful twists and turns of the wrists. He was speaking, she was squeezing to make him be quiet. Their fingers wrestled and tugged in this alien, communicative, sensual experience that they were both clearly completely lost in. Every single person on the bench opposite them was enraptured. An old, hippie couple - clothed in grey hair and glasses - riveted, eyes pointed over the newspapers that opened against their chests. A man with a bible - letting his eyes pass equally back and forth between the bible and the couple without noticeable preference for one or the other (he could have been a minister marrying them in this silent, emotional film). Another woman, piles of bags beside her, hid nothing in her expression as she watched the two - without reserve, unembarrassed to stare, and staring hard, like the intensity of a keen television watcher. And then me, beside them, watching them as intensely as all the others, but through the reflection on the window opposite. I had the special vantage point of seeing the watchers and the watched at the same time, and then the melodic filter of the music playing through my headphones to keep me at a safe, disconnected, anonymous distance. I stole occassional glances to my right to see them in color. In the window reflection, everything lacks bright tones.

I landed, several stops from the theatre, and much too early. I was in the West Village, so I decided to check it out. I thought of Berlinbound, and how he and HH must know those streets so well. I wished I had him as a guide as I walked in circles without a map through the cozy, criss-crossed streets.

I got to the cinema two minutes before the film started and had to take the LAST seat available in the second row next to a 60-something gentleman who was very well-dressed (business man style) and was hushing the chatty people behind us even while just the movie previews were playing. Being so packed into a theatre in seats so small, it is hard not to be aware of the strangers sitting on either side of you in a sort of forced intimacy. You can smell them. You can hear them breathing when the loud surround-sound pauses. This man was breathing so quickly, that I was worried he was going to die on me. The movie began, and throughout the film, he was reacting quickly in these funny laughs that made me think again and again that he was actually one of the people depicted in the film, or else used to have some close relationship to Joy Division. I even caught him feigning chords with his left hand during the performance scenes. Anyways, I thought about striking up a conversation with him afterwards to get the real scoop on Joy Division, but instead, just watched him swagger in this akward, jerky, mechanical way (much like Ian Curtis on stage) into the night, his suit pants actually hemmed about a half a foot higher than normal.

So I get back onto the subway, super late. I sit down, and again, there is a couple next to me using sign language. This time, they were older, more settled and mature. They weren't sitting together, but directly across from one another. They, like the couple earlier, communicated in a world that didn't seem to associate with the rest of the people around them, in that there were no voices to engage.

This is not to include all of the other people I "interacted" with over the course of the evening....people I asked directions from, people I made eye contact with, the waitress with the English accent and big glasses in the West Village. The personalities that come through in these small moments are so full, so expressive, so unguarded in a quick moving city way where people seem to be surrounded by walls, but when interacted with, are very quick to let them all down as though they are starving for human contact.

As for the film, it was beautiful. Well, to be honest, it was one of the most depressing films I have ever seen....but I appreciated the long, quiet spaces which say more than words...something one doesn't see in films or real life much anymore.

Good night and good lovin',
Love Mama Jens

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Supermarkets, Fillo Dough, Laundry, and School Updates

A couple of discoveries this week....

Fairway. Ever since we moved here, it has been like a buzzword...and finally, this past weekend, I went to check it out. Its a supermarket in Red Hook - about two miles away. It is right on the water and there are cool things to look at there like the Statue of Liberty. It is a supermarket which blends everything - your normal-chock-full-of-preservatives and packaged food items, which, let's face it, you gotta have sometimes, plus all the trusted organic labels that they have at the lovely, very inexpensive, fascist coop plus a huge fresh fish and seafood selection plus all the deli items and cheese you could ever lay at a German breakfast table PLUS all the gourmet and imported food items that we oh-so-savvy world travelers must re-experience from time to time. As if that is not enough, they have fresh produce for days and a perfectly French selection of fresh (hot) bakery and bread items, and even a goddamn cafe. And the prices, still much cheaper than Whole Foods and even competitive with the coop (but not the cheeses). So I went nuts and spent a million dollars there and loaded everything up in my car and drove back home feeling like a responsible and satisfied mother hen who is doing more than providing only one or two edible items in the refrigerator each day.

You see, I still haven't gotten the German-shopping-everyday thing out of my system, so the fridge always looks kind of paltry....but that's just how we do. You know, buy the stuff and eat it, and so there isn't much else there. So, when I really go crazy and stock up, it feels pretty awesome.

And it came just in time for the cooler weather, which I AM SO HAPPY ABOUT. First, a couple of days ago, it rained. This was awesome, because then our car got washed. And then the wind and cooler temperatures finally showed their reluctant faces, and this made Mama Jens Very Happy. So now things like leafs swirling around in little whirlwinds are happening on the sidewalks, and Mama Jens is starting to bake, which is always a sign of fall.

Fall and Spring are basically perfect in my book. These are the months where I don't bitch so much about the weather.

So speaking of what's been cooking, I have discovered the joys and beauty of fillo dough. I am excited as hell about this discovery....the family, on the other hand at this point, is probably like, "Are you gonna wrap every single one of our meals in this shit?!" Fillo dough, as it is spelled on the package, but is probably more properly spelled "Phylo" (but I am too lazy to google it right now) is pretty frickin' awesome stuff. I am sure the rest of the world is very familiar with it, but Mama Jens just discovered it, so let me just bask in my Fillo glory for a minute.

Fillo dough is super papery thin dough. It comes wrapped carefully - lots and lots of sheets of it. You have to let it thaw overnight in the fridge and then when you unwrap it, put a wet cloth or paper towel over it because it dries out very quickly. Then you make what you want, wrap it all up and bake it. The coolest part is that it retains its papery shape and so it has the creases and crevices of crumpled paper, and it is very flaky French pastry style.

So far, I have filled it with spinach and feta, quiche style but with far fewer eggs and also with apples that are tossed like you would if you were making apple pie, with cinnamon, sugar, nutmeg and flour. Both turned out really nicely - delicious and also very pretty.

If you want recipes, just post a comment and I will share them with you.

And now time for the laundry update. I am still doing it weekly at the laundromat. Instead of breaking down and buying a machine, I have only come up with more reasons to keep doing it the hard way. One, a washer and dryer unit would take up a whole closet in our flat, which is Very Valuable Space. And two, I just realized tonight, is that it is a perfect time to call friends and family faraway. Load the washer. Call someone. Before you know it, the clothes are done. Load them into the dryer. Call someone else. Perfect. This is a good example of using your time wisely, my friends. Three, lately, there is an older woman from the West Indies who is watching over the place. I have enjoyed how she very unlovingly barks at everyone that comes in and innocently takes on the basically already unpleasant task of doing their weekly laundry. For whatever reason, she has taken a liking to me, and so I tipped her last week. And let me tell you, folks, tipping goes a long way in this country. So this week, she told me which were the best dryers, and this saved me HALF of my usual drying time. Plus, in between her freak outs on random people, I got to hear her life story. She has lived in this neighborhood for 43 years, and so scoffs (uncontrollably) at all the people who write her off as an "immigrant who can't speak the language" as she put it. At the end of her life story, she said, "This country is a loser!" And well, I gave her another tip, not necessarily for that, but because she didn't make my life double hell while I was out doing something I didn't want to do in the first place.

So laundry and food are all cool. Let's talk about schools.

So far, the preschool in Foxy Brown's neighborhood is turning out to be quite the gem. The teacher is awesome and our younger bundle of joy is excited about going there, which is all we really need for confirmation that it is a great place.

As for PS 321, well, it is everything you've read about and well, worth the insane INSANE INSANE rents. So, every month, as I write my rent check, instead of puking, I just remember that curriculum conference a couple of weeks back when the incredible teachers told us about what the children are learning this year and how, basically, they are teaching children to THINK. It is not about reading and writing and math, it is about thinking about those processes and problem solving and learning to love the process, and therefore loving to learn and learning more. It is also a place where they give the discipline guides in the form of "community codes." If you break one of them, you are responsible for solving the problem you created. Seems simple enough, but for a public school, I find it kind of revolutionary.

Good night and big kisses,
Love, Mama Jens

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

This is How We Roll vs. Park Slope Yoga

These are my new wheels. Thank the Good Lord Jesus for my new wheels. They only cost $14 at Key Foods and not only are they insanely practical, they make me feel like I have truly assimilated into the Park Slope lifestyle (I am sure they are all over New York City, but I can't honestly say I have seen them navigating the streets of SoHo). Not only that, they have spared my upper back many a neck massage and my stretched out post-baby stomach muscles many a hernia. And I know that these are the kind of wheels that would normally fall under the Non-Hip-Accessory category, but since my cart is black, the dang thing even matches all of my Jewish Mama outfits. Fuck yeah!

I don't actually know the name of my new accessory, but I have heard it referred to as a "Granny Cart," which I personally find a little offensive, but I am willing to deal with that, because:

A. The thing handles curbs and broken sidewalks as though they were smooth as ice.
B. The handle is well designed, with this slidey sort of grippey plastic-y material that makes turning a dream.
C. Never before have I felt so light and carefree when hauling 4 loads of laundry or 10 bags of squashed groceries.

If you don't have one and you live in the city, you should go get one right away. If you live in Berlin and have noticed that they don't exist there, you should contact an American company that produces them and see if you can start exporting the lovely things and make a shitload of unexpected cash (I would have loved to have one of these things in Berlin). If you just enjoy the pain of all that muscle damage from hauling your shit all over the place, then I have something else for you....

Park Slope Yoga. This is the new place where I like to hangout when all the kids are at school, when I want to distract myself from getting a real job, and where I find peace and comfort in doing yoga to indie rock music. Go there, enjoy, stretch your brains out.

Good night and good lovin',
Mama Jens

Friday, September 21, 2007

Making Old Friends, Crisis, and Being a Jewish Mama

The adjustment is going slowly but surely...its humid still which doesn't help and to be really honest, disillusionment sets in....

But first, let's discuss the business of making friends. I have the experience over and over of meeting the same kind of person. I move somewhere new, I meet someone right away, and they have so many similarities to the same person I've met right away in other new places I've lived that I am not sure if it is just a matter of certain kinds of people attracting other certain kinds of people, or if I am just totally fucking crazy and I haven't moved at all and have known the same person all my life.

To profile this person, she usually comes in the form of a single mother, young, pretty, and esoteric. She is into things like healing through intuitive powers, yoga, organic food, and basically anything non-traditional western medicine-ish. She is usually bisexual, intense, and is positive and great to talk to.

Anyways, I met her here...and within days of arrival. I always wonder how I end up with these people, given the fact that I am not super esoteric, nor bisexual, nor a single mother, nor convinced by the powers of healing in non-traditional ways. I can, however, understand how the laid back, open types are attracted to the darker, neurotic types and vice-versa.

So anyways, this girl just moved here too. I love her of course, she loves me. Instant friendship. She moved here because her intuition told her that she should move here, of course. I told her that, initally, when I considered the idea of moving here, that my intuition told me that it was a Very Bad Idea. She got chills at the thought that someone would blatantly ignore their intuition like that. But that is what I did, and well, since I am playing the part of the skeptical neurotic, none of that should matter, right?

So that brings us back to the disillusionment.

I spent my entire childhood, then adulthood (=my whole life) moving every couple of years, so place becomes this huge theme. It is easy for me to blame feeling down on place...but it isn't that straightforward, now is it?

So let us turn to other possible causes...

In the last two weeks, I have experienced, for the first time since I decided 7 years ago to begin populating the earth, days with Nothing to do while BOTH children were in school for the good part of the day. I am currently enjoying that distinct feeling of a crisis coming on again...or at least, the pressure to get cracking on some work or a project of some kind or I'll start to lose my flippin' mind. C'mon, Mama Jens, get off your lazy little ass and get to work.

Which is basically what my husband said to me the other day. I had dropped everyone off at school, then I come home and get right back in bed. What? Don't all mothers do that? My husband came in and said something about its time to get a job, to which I replied, "I plan on getting some mother fuckin' sleep first." Thank the Good Lord Jesus for school.

But let's talk about something else, speaking of the good Lord Jesus.

Like, how Mama Jens is seriously blending in with the Hasidic Jewish community these days. Well, there is nothing new about my outfit. I have the Mama Jens uniform, which consists of a long, black, A line skirt I have owned forever, A black shirt (I have about 50 black shirts to choose from), and my black converse sneakers. My hair is kind of straightish and mid-lengthish. As it turns out, here in Brooklyn, I have found my people. Get this: There are blocks and blocks of people dressed the same exact way! The only minor difference is that the ladies aren't wearing converse shoes, but rather some fancy patent leathery sorts of things or else some tennis shoes of the non-hip variety. Oh yeah, and I usually have two or three fewer children in tow.

Well, I thought, when I started getting stopped daily by the Hasidic Jewish men that they think I am one of them. They stop me and say, "Are you Jewish?" to which I always reply, "No," but one of these days I'm gonna say yes, because I really do want to know what my people have to say. After a couple of days of taking great pride in the fact that I am now a real Jewish woman, I realized that they are stopping everyone they see, not just old Jewish Mama Jens.

This past Saturday, we went ventured out to Long Beach for the day. When we got in the car, my husband looks over to me, and says, "Honey, we're going to the beach, not a funeral." I of course had my Mama Jens, Jewish get-up on, black sweater, skirt and all. But get this, when we got to the beach, all the Hasidic families were out walking, and again, I fit in, which is basically all I ever wanted to do in this life for goodness sake.

So, keep an eye out, Mama Jens has some fashion changes in store for this community. In a couple of years, Jewish Mamas everywhere will be sporting converse sneakers with holes in them for better water flow.

Okay, enough for today. Have a good and godly day.