Shabbat Shalom, Arayot Parents!!
We are glad that we got to see so many of you at Hebrew College for Ketzev on Thursday, and even more of you were able to join us via Facebook Live! The kids worked so hard on their performance, and we are so SO so proud of them. They also performed the Ketzev ceremony three times in one day! First, they performed at the Chelsea Jewish Nursing Home and schmoozed with the residents for a little while before the performance. They truly made an impact and the nursing home residents absolutely LOVED them. Next, we went to Camp Grossman, a Jewish day camp in Westwood, MA, and performed for their campers. Afterwards, we went to LAUNCH, a trampoline park in Norwood, MA. We had so much fun jumping around and playing dodgeball on the trampoline. Finally, we made our way to Newton, where we ate dinner and performed for our final time. We were so excited to have had such a successful day and to get to cap our Ketzev experience by performing for our families.
On Friday, we had a normal morning of chug, kitah and swim. In the afternoon, we got to watch the camp play, which was an adapted version of Moana. It was great! We then got ready for Shabbat: we danced before Shabbat, sang during Kabbalat Shabbat (Friday night services) and ate great food. On Saturday morning, we had a lot of free time to read, play basketball, and hang out with friends. We had more yummy food on Saturday night and brought in the new week during Havdallah. Then, both the boys and the girls got to perform their Ketzev dances for the whole camp! Everyone loved it and was so impressed.
Sunday was Yom Yisrael (Israel Day). The mishlachat (counselors from Israel) plan a whole fun and special day to celebrate Israeli culture, food, and pride. In the morning we had free swim, kitah, bishul (cooking), and omanut (art). Afterwards, the kids got to go to a pop-up shuk (market), which is meant to simulate the real markets in Israel. The kids are given fake shekelim (Israeli money) and get to go through the market and buy vegetables, fruit, juice, candy, cotton candy, sunflower seeds, and more. In the afternoon, we had fun peulot (activites) about our opinions on Israel politics and Israeli leaders. At night, we had a camp-wide Tekes (ceremony) to commemorate the different ways Israel affects our Yavneh community. Each ayda (age group) had a performance and two volunteers from each ayda lit torches, just like the Israeli Independence Day Tekes. To close the night, we danced to Israeli music.
Today is Monday and we are having a normal day. This afternoon, the kids will get to play spikeball, frisbee, basketball and (if they want to) will get to learn how to make string bracelets–a lot of boys have been asking to learn! We also have Zimriyah practice because Zimriyah is Thursday night! We are so SO excited to perform and to win! The kids already know all of their songs and the hand motions–we are very ahead. They keep asking for MORE practice which is CRAZY, but we love it. We are so excited to show them their shirts and the banner we have been working on, and to get to show all of camp our hard work. And seriously, we have a very real chance of winning–you should all watch us on the livestream on Thursday night at 6:15pm!
After Zimriyah, we will be very close to the end of first month. We know that most of our campers will not be staying beyond Sunday (which we are very sad about). Ethan, Amanda and all of the counselors had such an amazing month with these kids. We are SO lucky to have had the opportunity to be with them this month and hope that they all come back next year. Seriously, we are all so grateful, and you all have amazing children. We hope they had as great a time as we did with them. This ayda is truly special.
B’ahava (with love),
Amanda and Ethan