Ideas for “Hanachat Tefillin” Ceremony

A reader writes: Hope you're well.  We're making our first bar mitzvah in a few weeks' time, iy"H, and our son will be putting on tefillin for the first time in a couple of weeks.  Just wondering what people do to mark hanachat tefillin, if anything.  Do you have any ideas? In Jewish … [Read more...]

Inspiring Projects for Your Child’s Bar or Bat Mitzvah

The best tip I heard for planning a bar mitzvah or bat mitzvah is to hope to have an average one. Of course, no one wants average or ordinary. But when you start off with the expectation that your bar or bat mitzvah is going to be special, you set yourself (and your child) up for failure. By … [Read more...]

On Bar Mitzvah Planning

People like to kvetch about the extravagance of weddings, bar mitzvahs, and other life-cycle events in the Jewish community. When it becomes real, though, doing your own thing is harder than it looks. We just celebrated our son's bar mitzvah, our third so far, and I have been thinking about why … [Read more...]