One of my favorite activities this time of year is taking a drive through local neighborhoods and enjoying the decorative lights. So far this year my family has already driven through the Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights display and the Lights of Glenross.
If you’ve never visited the Lights of Glenross, this is truly a grassroots movement in a very special neighborhood just off U.S. Route 23. Over 250 homeowners have decorated their homes with lights, which then “perform” a coordinated show every night of the week to holiday music played on 94.1 FM. Do yourself a favor and plug 1100 Ballater Drive, Delaware, into your GPS for an unforgettable light show through a local neighborhood this week.
Speaking of lights, the Festival of Lights began Thursday evening and continues through Friday evening this week. The Delaware County District Library wishes a very Happy Hanukkah to those who will celebrate throughout the week.
The Ohio Digital Library has highlighted some of their favorite books to celebrate. Log in with your library card on the Libby app or online at www.ohioebooks.com. Cookbooks like Joan Nathan’s “Jewish Holiday Cookbook,” “Kosher Style” by Amy Rosen, and “Jewish Holiday Feasts” by Jeannette Ferrary won’t disappoint. You can’t go wrong when you weave tradition with full bellies. I’d really love for someone to make the Romanian Fried Noodle Pudding recipe from Joan Nathan’s cookbook and tell me all about it.
Emerging readers will appreciate the read-aloud titles available on-demand through the library’s Hoopla app. These titles are eBooks that also have a read-along option that will play and highlight the words as they are read to help with sight word recognition. Search for titles like “Dinosaur on Hanukkah” by Diane Levin Rauchwerger, “Dreidel Day” by Amalia Hoffman, “Light the Menorah!” by Jacqueline Jules, or “The Count’s Hanukkah Countdown” by Tilda Balsley for the Sesame Street lover.
Finally, to enjoy some sounds of the season, search the Delaware County District Library catalog to reserve some music CDs. These CDs will feature a mix of Christmas and Hanukkah, pop and classic, uptempo and subdued: “Barenaked for the Holidays” by the Barenaked Ladies, “Songs of Joy & Peace” by Yo-Yo Ma, “Christmas: A Season of Love” by Idina Menzel, or Glee’s Christmas Album, Volume 3.
Try a book this week that is written by a Jewish author. Audible.com has provided a vast and diverse list of Jewish authors that represent a deep catalog of fiction, nonfiction and poetry in a wide range of genres. Below are a handful of books from their recommended reading list.
• “The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay” by Michael Chabon. In 1939 New York City, Joe Kavalier, a refugee from Hitler’s Prague, joins forces with his Brooklyn-born cousin, Sammy Clay, to create comic-book superheroes inspired by their own fantasies, fears, and dreams.
• “What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank” by Nathan Englander. A collection of short stories includes the title story about two marriages in which the Holocaust is played out as a devastating parlor game, and a dark story of vigilante justice undetaken by a troop of geriatric campers.
• “Everything Is Illuminated” by Jonathan Safran Foer. Follows a young writer as he travels to Eastern Europe on a quest to find Augustine, the woman who saved his grandfather from the Nazis, and discovers an unexpected past that will resonate far into the future.
• “Color Me In” by Natasha Diaz. Fifteen-year-old Nevaeh Levitz is torn between two worlds, passing for white while living in Harlem, being called Jewish while attending her mother’s Baptist church, and experiencing first love while watching her parents’ marriage crumble. A coming-of-age story of friendship, first romance and religious intolerance.
• “Man Walks Into a Room” by Nicole Krauss. Found wandering in the desert outside of Las Vegas, Samson Greene, a thirty-six-year-old Columbia University English professor, is discovered to have a brain tumor, but when surgery removes the tumor, leaving him with no recollection of his life after the age of 12, he finds himself struggling to deal with a life, and a wife, he no longer recognizes.