Koala’s big boy party time!

On the last day of the year, here we are this morning, celebrating…

  • Koala’s first full night with no motzetz! We had a minute or two of pitiful withdrawal face, and another 3 seconds of desperate thumb-sucking, but then he turned over and went to sleep. For the night!
  • Toilet training has hit a new level (as in, we’re actually doing it). Koala’s been interested for a long time, since before he was two, and then he got more serious about it in the summer, but we waited until after the baby, the trip, and gan starting. So… here we are. With poo in the toilet yesterday.
  • New project: overcoming Koala’s creeped-outness regarding stuffed animals. He’s taken more notice of things that scare him lately; toys, pictures, shadows. I loved stuffed animals as a kid, and think it would be a disservice not to share the love on…

So, Koala’s special yomhuledet-animals party was this morning, complete with Kinder egg surprise. And a drink for all the new friends.  

Birthdays.

New parenting milestone: the kindergarten birthday party.

I’m not a big birthday person. When I was a kid I was, as much as any other kid. Who doesn’t want presents? But at some point it switched off. I don’t like the attention for something I didn’t do. It feels a little forced and awkward.

I also don’t believe in making an enormous deal out of the occasion while the kids are so young and are capable of enjoying the simplicity of a leaf, stick, paper bag. I’m not into flashiness. I believe in good old fashion fun (my mom held out pretty long before we had any video games in our house).

And then there’s all the party planning, preparation, socializing… I could be good at it, but it’s just a lot of energy I don’t have right now. Or maybe my own mom was so good at it, I just give up.

Plus… the idea of throwing a birthday party in Hebrew pretty much makes me crap myself. If there’s one thing that freaks me more than getting up and public speaking in Hebrew, it’s doing it in front of a room filled with little kids. Whose Hebrew is better than mine.

So when I found out the gan will do the birthday party for you – in fact, prefer you aren’t even there – well, hey, go for it! Yesterday Koala had his first gan birthday, and from the dozens of photos the ganenet took, seems he had a great time.

I know it’ll change; maybe even next year he’ll ask for his own party at home like the other kids. I’ll let future Koala’s mom deal with that.

Tel Aviv might be hi-tech, but Jerusalem is Online.

Last night I spent a lovely evening at a hi-tech geek party, otherwise known as MashBash. I love it when my hi-tech self and my Israel self combine into one crazy combustication of awesomeness.

There are so many reasons I love these gatherings:

  • They are parties with a premise, so the drinking is casual, the conversation is lively and everyone is just about on the same level of awesomegeek; there’s pretty much one wavelength.
  • It’s a chance to network for business but also to meet Israelis and other immigrants.
  • And usually, the drinks are free.

Of course, the center of hi-tech in Israel – or at least, hi-tech parties – is Tel Aviv. Jerusalem does have a fair effort (like my company, among others) and it’s blogosphere can stand on its own. Bloggers usually meet at each other at parties or events and it’s always fun to see the face behind the URL.

So last night I met the owner of Jerusalem Online, which is

“the first video news update from Israel in English sent directly to your e-mail on a daily basis. This short, to-the-point, balanced update is brought to you by Israel’s leading television news source, Channel 2 News.”

It’s a great way for Jerusalem bloggers to keep Israeli news on their sites and a convenient tool for people outside of Israel to get direct news in English. You can get the video code by pressing “Get this” under the video and embed straight into your blog.

Like so many others, I’ve fallen deeply in love with the Israeli hi-tech scene, whether Jerusalem or Tel Aviv style. Next time I’m at one of these events, I’ll raise a glass (of free alcohol) to hi-tech, to the Israeli brain and to the wealth of the new-age Middle Eastern oil machine.

Polite/funny/logical Israeli building notice?!

I got this forwarded to me the other day and I felt it was important to share this ‘holiday season’ of giving.

fun building notice

In case you don’t read Hebrew, here’s the gist:

On Saturday night I’m having a small party on the roof.

It might be a bit noisy (until the acceptable hour) so right before the accusatory finger gets pointed my way and the cops are dialed, please stop and consider how many times I have helped you change a light bulb, hang your plasma TV, brought down closets and had an extra cup of sugar to lend…

I think that for most people that complain about loud music, the problem is really that the music doesn’t go with your personal taste. So I’m opening it up for you to list the songs/singers/bands that you like and I will make sure to play them.

Not bad, eh? Might want to try that next time you have a party.