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I Heart USA
I Heart USA

I visited Sonoma County for the first time this year. Until then, my idea of a California wine was audacious and obtrusive, like that guy or girl (we all know one) who gets to the party and hijacks the conversation. Never before have I been so happy to be wrong.

It was a fast engagement. Then it ended. How do I move on? It was a fast engagement. Then it ended. How do I move on?

One of the lessons I learned from my (similar) breakup is that a big piece of success in any relationship is timing. In addition to having chemistry, and shared life interests and values, both people also have to be “ready” for the kind of long-term challenge marriage ultimately is about.

My European Odyssey My European Odyssey

My knowledge of America comes from experience, but my knowledge of Europe comes from only research and hearsay. As much as I travel the states, my one trip out of North America was to Israel last summer. That, like this trip, was my wife’s idea. We also went to Mexico last year. If a woman’s JDate profile says she loves to travel, she’s not kidding around.

A Better Grilled Chicken
A Better Grilled Chicken

Whole Roasted Chicken goes with everything. It is the Little Black Dress of the food world!  Juicy, moist and with big flavor. It just doesn’t get any better than that. But, roasting a whole chicken in the summer is kind of a letdown for me. The oven heats up the house, the chicken is delicious but lacking in the summer je ne sais quois. The outdoors beckons in the summer. I want to be outside communing with my garden, my view of the sunset and a glass of wine with my grill.

Cantor vs. Rabbi: Who Should Join You Under the Chuppah?
Cantor vs. Rabbi: Who Should Join You Under the Chuppah?

By Jewish law, all that’s required to make a marriage official is a ketubah and a couple of witnesses. A Jewishly knowledgeable person who steers the wedding rituals can “officiate” the chuppah ceremony and oversee the ketubah ceremony. Also according to Jewish law, you need two kosher witnesses, who, depending on your Jewish affiliation, can be either men or women, related or not to the bride and groom, and practice varying degrees of Jewish observance including the laws of kashrut (eating and keeping kosher). If you have a family rabbi, this would be something to clarify before the wedding day to make sure you’re following correct laws and traditions. As long as your ceremony officiate is ordained by your state, he or she can guide the ceremony for it to count Jewishly and civilly. The ceremony, if it is religious-based, simply requires a license that is filed with the secular authorities (your state) and it ends up fulfilling both secular and Jewish law.

Zucchini Blossoms
Zucchini Blossoms

Firm and fresh blossoms that are only slightly open are cooked to be eaten, with pistils removed from female flowers, and stamens removed from male flowers. The stem on the flowers can be retained as a way of giving the cook something to hold onto during cooking, rather than injuring the delicate petals, or they can be removed prior to cooking, or prior to serving. There are a variety of recipes in which the flowers may be deep fried as fritters or tempura (after dipping in a light tempura batter), stuffed, sautéed, baked, or used in soups.

Meeting Someone Online: Luck or Work? Meeting Someone Online: Luck or Work?

Online dating isn’t easy, which many people don’t realize.  They think they can just throw a profile up there and wait.  No way, Jose.  That’s like walking into a bar and just plopping yourself on a stool without even trying to make conversation with anyone.  It’s just not going to work.  I also realized that many people do not want to put in the work, which is what led to starting my own business, A Little Nudge.  I give people a little nudge in their online dating lives because I truly think it’s the way to meet.

When do I tell my date that my ex is in jail? When do I tell my date that my ex is in jail?

If I were you, I would be honest, but very brief in what I said about this guy until I  entered into a relationship with someone. You can say things like: “I was engaged once, but I found out he was a liar and a cheat, and it was a very painful situation for me and my family. So, we never married.” If the person presses for more, simply say: “I’d be happy to tell you more at some point in the future, but honestly, it’s behind me now and I don’t want to dwell in the past.” The important thing is not to sound defensive, or like you are hiding something … but don’t get bogged down in details either.

Hot and Cool Summer Wines Hot and Cool Summer Wines

All of you white wine drinkers are in luck as summer seafood and lighter, salad-based-fare definitely require something delicate and refreshing.  Grill shrimp, squid, and even whole fish (stuffed with herbs and wrapped in tin foil) and serve alongside an Italian Vermentino or Sauvignon Blanc. White Bordeaux blends of Sauvignon and Semillon have a similar citrus-y character that won’t overpower the delicacy of simple grilled seafood or rice salads. For more elaborate dishes involving chicken, cheese, or creamy sauces, up the ante with buttery American Chardonnays and big, bold Sauvignon Blancs from Australian and New Zealand. For locavores on the east Coast, Long Island is the perfect compromise to accompany your Atlantic salmon and (CSA provided) grilled vegetables.

Three’s Company
Three’s Company

We love this beautiful tradition, as a child is still a child, even on his or her wedding day. Together, the parents raised the child to become an adult who is now taking on the mitzvah of marriage. It’s so nice that the groom doesn’t make the walk alone down the aisle; his parents showed him the way to be a man and on his wedding day, they show him the way to meet his bride under the chuppah. Likewise, the relationship between a mother and daughter is so unique and special that it’s only fitting for the mother to join the father as they both link arms with their daughter in her wedding gown.

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