Friday, September 26, 2008

The Feast of Trumpets

Ahh, the Feast of Trumpets, also known as Yom Teruah, also known as Rosh HaShanah, also known as the Jewish New Year, also known as the Day of the Blowing of the Shofar, also known as the Birthday of the World, also known as the first of the "High Holy Days"...well, I think you get the point. A day known by any other name will still be as sweet!

Yes, this Biblical holiday is known by many names. From that perspective, one might draw the conclusion that this is a holiday that the Bible has a lot to speak. Actually, that is not the case. Yom Teruah, as it is called in Leviticus 23 (God's calendar), is spoken of only briefly throughout the entire Bible.

Here's what we do know about this holy day from Leviticus 23:

- It is to be celebrated on the 1st day of the 7th month (Tishri 1).

- It is to be a "day of complete rest."

- You are to have a "holy convocation."

- You are to sound the shofar, a ram's horn.

- You are to present an offering made by fire.

Sounds like a party, right? No work? Blowing horns? I'm there!

Here's how we celebrate Yom Teruah, 21st century style:

- Taking off a day or two from our occupations. Yes, people that follow the Biblical holidays do end up using quite a bit of PTO on these holidays.

- Going to synagogue or meeting with fellow believers (our version of a "holy convocation"). This is the time when people that you never see at synagogue decide to show up and have their annual rendezvous with God. Which is better than never, in my opinion. When God makes a few dates with you, at least keep one or two.

- Praying special prayers and singing special songs. The prayers and songs of this day focus on God as King, beautified by rich melodies.

- Having a big meal. This, of course, is the Biblical way to celebrate anything. Ok, maybe not Biblical. But the People of the Book sure do enjoy a good feast! Hey, they aren't called the Feasts of the LORD for nothing! We eat things like roast chicken or turkey, kugel, that stuff I'll never like called gefilte fish, tzimmes (think honey glazed carrots with prunes and other yummy stuff), honey cake and of course APPLES AND HONEY. I cannot overemphasize how important apples and honey are to the modern Rosh HaShanah festivities. You see, the theme of the day is "Have a SWEET New Year."

L'Shana Tovah! For a good new year!
For more on Rosh HaShanah, go here.

*Congratulations to our winners for the Rosh HaShanah giveaway:
1st prize = babybeth07
2nd prize = wendymom
Thanks for participating ladies!

Publix Rosh HaShanah Deals!

Have a frugal Biblical holiday...with a little help from our friends at Publix! Here are the deals you can get this week that relate to traditional Rosh HaShanah foods:

Streit's Matzo Ball Soup Mix - BOGO (2 for $2.59)

Empire Kosher Turkey - $1.89/lb.

Manichewitz Noodles - 2 for $3.00 Perfect for noodle kugel!

Manichewitz Wine - 2 for $7.00

Publix Baby Cut and Peeled Carrots - BOGO (1, 2 or 3 lb. bags) Perfect for tzimmes!

Royal Gala Apples - $1.29/lb. Gotta have apples and honey!

Round Challah Bread - $2.49

Chinet Classic White Plates - BOGO (2 for $6.39) My Publix also has 75 cent off blinkies for the Chinet...use 2 coupons and get 2 for $4.89!

For more Rosh HaShanah recipes, see

For more great Frugal Friday ideas, see Biblical Womanhood Blog.

*For a New Year, how about a "new do"? Leave a comment on this post by 8 pm EST on Sunday, September 28th, for a chance to win a $10 coupon for any salon service at Regis Hair Salon. I'll do a random drawing that evening and post the winner on Monday morning. You must live in the continental US to win.

Picture courtesy of

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Fall Feast Time!

Well, I finally think Blogger is going to let me publish a post, and just in time for the fall feasts too!

As the fall feasts are less than a week away, there's no time like the present on starting with an introduction. For those of you that were reading during the spring feasts, you've got a head start so feel free to skip the next paragraph.

God's Biblical Calendar

Did you know that God has a calendar, and it's not the one that has January through December on it? God's calendar is (of course) in His Word; specifically, Leviticus 23. As you read this chapter, you will find that there are four feasts in the spring (Passover, Unleavened Bread and First Fruits and Pentecost - Pesach, Matzah, HaBikkurim and Shavu'ot) and three in the fall (Trumpets, Day of Atonement and Tabernacles - Yom Teruah or Rosh HaShanah, Yom Kippur and Sukkot). Additionally, Leviticus 23 discusses one more special day, but this one comes every week. Shabbat, or the Sabbath, is a day of rest that God's people are to observe every seventh day.

God's Calendar = Messianic Prophetic Timeline

The Messiah Yeshua is the living Torah. That means that everything (EVERYTHING) that He said and did was in accordance and in fulfillment of the Torah, including the feasts of the LORD. With the spring feasts it is very evident how Yeshua fulfilled them. He died on Passover and arose on Yom HaBikkurim, the Feast of Firstfruits. Fifty days later on Shavuot, the Feast of Weeks (also called Pentecost), the Ruach Kodesh (Holy Spirit) came down and filled the believers. For more on the spring feasts, see here and here.

As for the fall feasts, we know that Messiah Yeshua will be fulfilling them as well. Rosh HaShanah (known Biblically as Yom Teruah, the Day of Trumpets) will be the day that the great shofar is sounded, and Yeshua will be revealed. On Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, will be a day of judgment. Finally, on Sukkot (a seven day festival), God Himself will dwell with His people. We do not know the day (which year) or the hour (what time on that day), but we do know if Yeshua fulfilled all of the spring feasts on the exact day, then it's pretty clear that if He is who He said He was, then all the fall feasts will be fulfilled as well.

A Quick Note on the Meaning of Fulfillment

When I say that Yeshua "fulfilled" the feasts, please do not read "ended" or "stopped." Just like on my wedding day, my husband "fulfilled" his role as my husband but did not stop being my husband after that day. I am using the word "fulfill" as in "to make complete" or "to bring to fullness", as I believe it was used in Matthew 5.

Fall Feast Schedule for 2008

Days that are a Biblical "day of rest."

Rosh HaShanah - Begins at sundown on Monday, September 29.
Yom Kippur - Begins at sundown on Wednesday, October 8.
First Day of Sukkot - Begins at sundown on Monday, October 13.
Last Day of Sukkot - Begins at sundown on Monday, October 20.

More To Come...
Check back in the next few days for specific posts on how we celebrate each holiday. I'd LOVE to hear how you celebrate the feasts, or if you are new, if you have any questions. Maybe you'd like to share your favorite holiday recipe or another idea?

Picture available at

I'm trying to do a new post, but the "New Post" screen is really messed up! Is anyone else having this problem? Does anyone know how to fix this? Thanks!

Monday, September 22, 2008

My Favorite Publix Deal of the Week

Since I am in a season of life right now that does not give me as much time as I'd like to devote to posting ALL of the Publix weekly deals, I decided to post my favorite deal once a week. That way, I'll be able to tell you the absolute best deal, in my opinion, as well as remind you to go to Fiddledeedee for the WHOLE scoop!
As you probably guessed from the picture, my favorite Publix deal is on the Pompeian Olive Oil. It is Buy One, Get One (BOGO) and there are $1 printable coupons on the website. I was able to print at least 2 coupons (haven't tried for more yet), so:
Buy 2 Pompeian Extra Virgin Olive Oil 32 oz. ($11.99 each)
Use 2 $1 off coupons here
Get 2 for $9.99!
Remember, Publix sales run Thursday to Wednesday (in Florida) and Wednesday to Tuesday in other states, I believe.
Thanks to Sarah at Fiddledee for alerting me to the coupons!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Wellness360 Can Really Pay Off!

I have been waiting a long time to tell you about wellness360 because I wanted to try it out myself first, and make sure that it is legitimate. How does it work?

First: Sign up.

Originally, I had signed up to get that old $5/$15 CVS coupon that everyone was raving about months ago. I started receiving emails that claimed that I could make money just by clicking around the site, and using the tools there.

Second: Start using the site.

They actually have some pretty useful components on the site, including health articles, exercise videos, and my personal favorite - a food/calorie journal. Your points do seem to add up slowly, but little by little, you start earning more.

Third: Invite others to join.

This is the highest point-earning activity. Within 3 months of using the site and inviting my friends to join, I had earned over $30...not bad for clicking around a site for about 5 minutes here and there.

Finally: GET PAID CUZ!!!

A few weeks ago, I had received an email saying that wellness360 needed my SSN to send my check due to tax regulations. I didn't do it. I'm really into this whole privacy thing and not having my identity stolen, so I was a little disappointed. However, tonight when my husband was cleaning up our office he found a check from wellness360 (it actually comes from Aperture Health) for $36.07 made out to me! So I guess they didn't need my SSN after all!

All in all, I think this is a great idea. They have advertisers (of course) on the site, and they share that revenue with the users. I am wondering if anyone out there has had any experiences with wellness360 that they would like to share? I can see how if I spent a few minutes a day doing this it could be very rewarding!

ALSO, if you decide to sign up because you read this on Tavita's Purse, I would REALLY appreciate if you input my enrollment code (ahm803124) when you sign up! : ) Thanks!

For more Frugal Friday ideas, head over to BiblicalWomanhood.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

CVS Deals 9/14 - 9/20 2008 - Free Aleve and Excedrin!

I know I haven't been doing a lot of CVS blogging lately, but since this is a pretty good week, in my opinion, for beginners I'll post a few deals. I hope I can turn a few more people on to this wonderful system!

Deal Idea:
Buy 1 Aleve D Cold and Sinus or Sinus Headache at $3.99
Buy 1 Excedrin Express Gels at $3.99
Buy 1 Purex Laundry Detergent (50 oz.) at $2.99

$2/$10 (if you have)
$1 off Aleve
$1 off Excedrin Express Gels CRT (if it prints for you; mine printed yesterday at the card scanner)
50 cents off Purex from 8/10 SmartSource insert

Spend: $6.47 OOP (or use ECB's to pay!)
Make: $8.98 ECB's!


For more deal ideas, see MoneySavingMom and The Centsible Sawyer! I love these gals!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Putting Your Spouse First

"If you treat your husband like a king, he will treat you like a queen." This wise advice from the Talmud is not something we have an easy time putting into practice. We're afraid we'll get stepped on, become doormats, we're concerned our needs won't be met, we don't want to feel like shmattes, we don't want it to be about him. ~ Emuna Braverman

Read the rest of the post here at

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Parasha Ponderings: When You Go Out

This week's parasha is Ki Tetze or "When You Go Out" for us English-speakers, and can be found in Deuteronomy 21:10 - 25:19. At first glance, it seems like a bunch of random rules all thrown in one chapter and stirred a bit for good measure. I seriously had to read the portion 3 times before I felt confident even to even write about it. Why all the "random" laws? If God is so powerful, couldn't He be a bit more organized???

Here's the thing - God's idea of organized is much, much different than our idea of organized and this portion is yet another to prove this theory. For example, the first section talks about what to do if you go out to war and see a pretty lady from the other side that you want to marry. This follows into a section about what to do if you have two wives, one loved and the other unloved. Hmmm...and then of course, the very next section talks about what to do if you have a very rebellious son...which a few verses later digresses into what to do if you are walking along and happen upon a nest with a mother bird and some chicks. See what I mean?

I was listening to the radio as I was getting ready for work this morning, and one of the morning show hosts was telling a story about how one day he prayed for a car. "And make it a convertible while You're at it," he added, rather sarcastically. Well, about two hours later, someone had given him a car. Yep, it's a convertible. He went on to say that while he's very thankful for the car and still amazed that this happened, the only explanation is that for some reason God decided to give him a car that day. A convertible.

People could say that was random, or that it was just "coincidence." Well, I happen to not believe that anything is coincidence, but I also do not believe that there is a "magic formula" when it comes to prayer. God is just not like that. Yes, there are prayers in the Bible that are all fine and great to pray, and I do so myself quite often. However, we have to get passed this idea that this infinite, all-powerful, King over kings over kings confines Himself to this teeny, tiny little box that we so often deduce Him down to. He just doesn't fit.

So, back to the "random rules" of Ki Tetze. I actually don't think they are random at all. Do I have an explanation for why they are where they are? Not at all! I actually don't have a clue...but that's the beauty of God. When you read these teachings, they actually make a lot of sense and I think we would do well to observe them today. (Read my last post here). Especially the part about paying a hired worker before sunset! I would LOVE to get paid everyday!

The last part of the portion seems really out of place, especially the first two times I read the portion this week. However, this evening as I was reading it, it all made sense. Deuteronomy 25:17 -19 says,

Remember what the Amalekites did to you along the way when you came out of Egypt. When you were weary and worn out, they met you on your journey and cut off all who were lagging behind; they had no fear of God. When the LORD your God gives you rest from all the enemies around you in the land he is giving you to possess as an inheritance, you shall blot out the memory of Amalek from under heaven. Do not forget!

Today, the seventh anniversary of 9/11, we remember what was done, in hatred and evil, to our country. The motto of the day is, "Never forget!" How fitting that we read this portion this week as we remember that infamous day when modern-day Amalekites allowed evil to prevail and killed many precious lives. May those who perished be remembered for good, and may we all be reminded that life is short and we must use the time that we have to do good and live for what is ETERNAL.

Shabbat Shalom!

Picture courtesy of, who is having a $4.98 poster sale!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

In Review: The Year of Living Biblically by A.J. Jacobs

What happens when an agnostic writer for Esquire magazine decides to live the Bible, every single verse, LITERALLY for one year? A lot of funny stuff...mixed in with some very serious lessons learned.
I picked this book up recently at the library, and thought it looked interesting. Wow, once I started it, I was not able to put it down! Whenever I was reading it, I would literally be laughing out loud, which my husband thought quite humorous in and of itself.
Not only is A. J. Jacobs a very witty writer, but of course, the subject material was highly interesting as well. However, after reading this book, I think that Jacobs could be writing about the life of rocks and it would still be a best-seller on the NY Times list. This chronicle of Jacobs' journey into the world of Biblical laws, both well-known ("Thou shall not murder.") and a little less known ("Don't take a mother bird with the chicks.") is both entertaining and informative. His experiences include spending time with the Hasidics in Crown Heights, hanging out with a Jehovah's Witness and even a service at a snake-handling church!
Actually, I have to say one thing that truly surprised me. This book went beyond informative for me. It actually delved deep into the devotional realm, which was highly unexpected coming from an agnostic source. However, I found myself being challenged to see some of the more obscure Biblical commandments in a new light. I discovered that as much as I like to say that I take the Bible literally...sometimes my life does not portray that.
As you can probably tell, I highly recommend this book. To anyone. Anywhere. I never buy books, but this is one that I'd love to have on my shelf (hint, hint). Check it out!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

I'm Still Here!

I can't believe I haven't written ANYTHING in over a week on Tavita's Purse! I'm sooo slacking, and I apologize big time! If you want to know what I've been up to, here's a short list:

1) Preparing for the fall Holy Days (see Leviticus 23) - Rosh HaShana, Yom Kippur and Sukkot.

2) Preparing for imminent hurricanes that, thank God, never come. We've had the Weather Channel on almost 24/7 at our house, and I have never heard the words "Local on the 8's" so many times in my life!

3) Preparing lessons for my Shabbat School kids...I love them! They are the best. The class is kindergarteners up to fifth grade, so it's been a huge struggle to make lessons that will suit all of them. But I love the kids, so it's all good.

4) Spending quality time with my husband. I love him so much, and I realize that this season we are in right now will not be forever. So I am trying to treasure every moment that we have together right now.

5) Spending more quality time with friends. There's been birthday parties and impromptu get-togethers, and it's been so good. Friends are truly a gift from God!

6) Spending more quality time with God. As we have now entered into the Hebrew month of Elul, this is the time of preparation for some very important times in God's calendar (see number 1 above). I will try to write more about this soon.

Anyway, I know there's a lot of cool stuff going on in bloggy world, and I'm sorry for not being around lately. I hope to see you all back soon....Thanks for your patience!

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