The Sweetness of Passover: A Celebration Worth the Work

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The Sweetness of Passover: A Celebration Worth the Work

There's something I don't always admit: Passover wears me out. Between the cleaning, the cooking, and the seemingly endless list of tasks, it's a whirlwind! But here's the thing: despite the exhaustion, Passover brings a joy that makes it all worth it.

Passover commemorates the Jewish people's escape from slavery in Egypt over 3,000 years ago. Fleeing in haste, they couldn't let their bread rise, so they ate matzah, a flatbread. To remember this exodus, Jews around the world celebrate Passover for eight days, eating matzah and reflecting on that time of hardship.

Out of all Jewish holidays, Passover is a big deal. It's like a boom time for kosher grocery stores! People who might not keep kosher all year round stock up on special foods for Passover meals.

A central part of Passover is the Seder, a ritual meal held on the first two nights. It's a family affair, filled with storytelling, songs, and symbolic foods. There are four cups of wine, three matzahs, and a special 15-step order to the meal, complete with bitter herbs (maror) and a chance for kids to ask questions through the Ma Nishtana. It's a long night, but it's a beautiful tradition.

The weeks leading up to Passover are crazy busy. I make shopping lists, plan menus, figure out who's coming for dinner, clean the house – it's a full-time job! With all this work, it's easy to dread the holiday a little.

But then, when the table is set and the delicious food is ready, a switch flips. I'm filled with joy to celebrate this important moment in Jewish history – the birth of our nation, really. A few years ago, I even took a DNA test and discovered that my family is 99.9% Ashkenazi Jewish! We've been part of this tradition for a long, long time. And the best part? My children will carry it on.

So, yes, Passover prep is exhausting. But when we gather as a family, sharing traditions and remembering our history, the feeling of connection and the joy of the holiday wash away the stress. It's a powerful reminder that we are here, we are strong, and our story continues.

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