The Fourth Night

Because we had all our children under the same roof at the same time, we did manage to get a night of candle lighting in.

And after six years, Child A and I can almost sing the songs as the candles are lit.

+5 Theology Studies points for the first person who can tell me what is wrong with this picture.

+5 Silly Points for every entertaining answer after that.


  1. Ok here is the thing…I want to know more. Can you tell more about Hanukkah? I really really love reading about other people’s religious traditions! I have no sillies here. sorry.

    1. Hmm…let’s see what I can do being of the non-Jewish persuasion…

      Hanukkah celebrates the miracle of a temple lamp burning for eight days when it only had enough oil to burn for a day. (The temple had just been reclaimed by the Israelites, and it was a sin for the lamp to extinguish.)

      In truth, according to my Jewish husband and every other Jewish person I’ve known – it’s a minor holiday. But, with the celebration of Christmas being such a big deal in Western countries, it’s sort of been elevated in stature.

      But in our house, it simply honors a tradition that Himself grew up with, and taught his children. So, when the kids are all here (and we remember) we light the candles and sing the songs.

      Another three or four years and I will have those songs DOWN, baby!

      1. At the risk of sounding cynical, *Christmas* isn’t the Biggest Deal Christian Feast either – Easter, Good Friday, and arguably Pentecost are bigger deals. (I’m sure my attitude is slanted, since the earlier I encounter Christmas crap in stores and hear Christmas music the more stubborn I get about not wanting to do ANYTHING Christmas until the actual 12 days of Christmas which do not occur in Advent. Y’know, Orthodox churches still keep Advent as a fast season a la Lent… ;)

    1. The shamash broke. It’s little stubby bottom got stuck and we couldn’t get it back in the right holder after lighting the rest of the candles.

      And any chance one of the dogs made off with the menorah?

      That’s really not so good.

  2. Since the shamash thing is already taken care of…

    You have forgotten the quintessential ‘foil underneath the menorah’ it is used to prevent waxy drippings on your table, and it looks oh so snazzy!

    1. See how clever I am??

      I put HUGE amount of cluelessness into trying to make sure that in my multi-faith agnostic household everyone gets equal airtime.

      Tonight, Zen Candles!

    1. You are so right.

      +5 Silly points for you.

      Then again, my kids are in their teens and NOW if they do something like singe their own eyelashes off, we laugh at them.

  3. Where’s Adam Sandler? I thought he had to oversee each menorah lighting with a ritual singing of the season’s Hanukkah song. Is that a rumor? Damn. I was thinking of converting just for that. Well that, and the latkes.

    1. Despite singing those songs at least ONCE every year, Adam Sandler has not deigned to grace us with his presence.

      Which is contract violation as far as I’m concerned.

      And we actually didn’t do latkes this year.

      Mostly cause our kids lives are so damned complicated now that we’re never sure when they’re going to be eating with us.

    1. Truly, it is a tradition that makes Himself happy, so we do it.

      Himself and the kids happily and joyously celebrate Christmas because my family does. So we happily sing the songs and light the candles, because it’s a special tradition to him. Even though none of these things in our household actually correlate to any religion.

  4. i didn’t look at the answers as i scrolled, but the only things i could think of would be the color or order of the candles and how they are lit.

    1. The shamash (the middle candle) is actually supposed to be IN the middle.

      But it broke off when we were lighting the other candles and we couldn’t get it back in.

      I wanted to take the pretty picture, and later Himself mentioned that it was a little unorthodox, the way we’d done it.

      Still made for a pretty picture though.

  5. Not a clue, Lori, not a clue.

    How about the candle that farts, stands alone?

    Shortest candle is the loser.

    Or alternately, a distance image of a friendly cluster of campfires, with the evil forest stalker’s campfire one mile back.

    No, I’m not drinking.

  6. The kids at our school learn many different holiday songs in kindergarten and sing them this time of year….so now that I see your picture, I’m singing “Candles, candles burning bright. On the first Hanukkah night….”

  7. I think you’re also supposed to light the menorah from left to right. Although it’s possible I just made that up. Me and my imagination are here to help with any other theological questions you may have.

  8. I know, I’m randomly commenting on blog posts that are months old, but I’m hooked on your blog and I always have something to say. ;) My husband and I aren’t different religions, because he never really went to church growing up and I grew up in church, however he IS Canadian, and they have a bunch of holidays that we don’t celebrate here. And while the rest of us in this house are from the US, we’re American Citizens and of course we honor all the American holidays but, like you and your family, because it’s a special thing that he likes to do, and it honors him, we celebrate Canadian Thanksgiving, we celebrate Canada Day, and Fat Tuesday is a pretty big deal in his family, so we do “Pancake Day” since that’s what they always did. It incorporates a bit of the magic of his childhood into our childrens’ childhoods, and broadens their view beyond just what they see repeated around them on every plastic lunchbox. That there are different countries, different cultures, different religions, etc that do things differently than we do. As a result my kids are much more open minded than I was as a kid, and they LOVE learning about other people and the way they live. They’ve all journeyed to different churches and different religions, from Pentecostal, Baptist (which is what I was raised), Church of Christ, Church of God, Methodist, Mennonite, Catholic and Mormon. They’re all really curious about experiencing the Jewish faith, seeing what it’s like, what it’s all about and learning about it, but there isn’t anywhere around here where we could do that. Downside to living in rural NE Oklahoma. heh

    I think you’re doing a wonderful thing with your kids in showing them how it goes, showing them it’s important to your husband and you support him and you want to include him in this holiday, and you want him to include all of you in his rituals as well. This is a great lesson for them to learn to help them with their partner and kids down the line by being openminded and not having to walk a rigid like and never take a step into something not exactly one thing or another.

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