By Chanita Teitz

I’m writing today from my flight to Israel, and we will be landing soon. I must say that the flight went pretty fast, partly, I believe, because the entertainment system didn’t work so I couldn’t keep checking the map on my screen to see where we are and how much longer the trip would take. Actually, because there was nothing to watch I wasn’t distracted, so I slept a little. I also read El Al’s in-flight magazine twice and Yediot Acharonot from cover to cover.

We’re descending and I can see land, and soon I’ll be heading to Yerushalayim. It still gives me goose bumps thinking how easy it is for us to travel. Yerushalayim–the word just rolls off my tongue so nonchalantly. The city our grandparents or great-grandparents only dreamed about. Today, this holy city is modern and bustling, sprawling with surrounding suburbs, a beacon in the mountains, drawing us, touching our neshamos.

My Israeli grandchildren will be waiting for me, asking what I brought them and where I’m going to take them. As for me, all I need to do is be with all of them and sit on the mirpeset, the balcony, and gaze at the beautiful sight. I’m home.

Past Events

Atria Kew Gardens goes red for heart health. At Atria Kew Gardens, residents and staff members joined with the American Heart Association in wearing red for National “Wear Red Day” on Friday, February 1.

This February marks the 10th year of the American Heart Association’s “Go Red for Women” movement. Despite a lot of progress, there’s still a long way to go, because heart disease continues to be the number-one killer of women, taking more lives than all kinds of cancer combined.

“All of us in the Atria Kew Gardens community are proud to participate in National Wear Red Day, and to stand with the American Heart Association in the fight against heart disease,” explains Martin Ingber, Atria’s Engage Life Director. “It’s extremely gratifying to see so many of our residents and staff wearing red to embrace this worthwhile cause and help raise awareness about the importance of heart health.”

Atria Kew Gardens is home to an active and diverse group of accomplished individuals, including a number of Holocaust survivors, and features programming that provides residents with an exceptional senior living experience every day.

Atria Kew Gardens is located at 117-01 84th Avenue and is kosher under the Vaad of Queens. For any additional information, please visit or call 718-441-0300.

Bais Yaakov students discover through experiments. Mrs. Moeller’s fifth-grade science class has been exploring a fascinating unit about the human body. While learning about the skeletal system, a discussion developed about the importance of calcium. Students examined their eating habits and what they thought is needed for strong bones and teeth. To emphasize this need, the girls engaged in a hands-on experiment which brought the lesson to life. Each girl examined two chicken bones and considered their characteristics. They discovered they were hard and non-bendable. They then put one of the bones in a container of vinegar and one in a container of water to see what changes would occur in the bones. The containers were placed on the windowsill in the classroom so the girls could observe them easily. Hypotheses varied. After five days passed, the girls reexamined the bones to see how they were affected by each of the liquids. They found that the bone that had been in the water was unchanged, while the bone that had been in vinegar was soft and bendable. They were amazed at the change and the difference between the two. The reason for this, they discovered, was the acid in the vinegar removed the calcium from the bone, which made the bone lose its hardness. Applying the lesson to their lives, they worked together on ways a loss of calcium could impact someone’s life. This experiment helped the girls understand why calcium is so important for us.

Bais Yaakov siddur play. Bais Yaakov of Queens’ first-graders received their first siddurim this week! The girls performed magnificently. With the accompaniment of Mrs. Rena Greenberg, their small voices sang melodic songs with huge messages about the meaning of tefillah. Their pride in what they accomplished was evident in every student’s smile. Rabbi Gewirtz addressed the many parents and grandparents in the audience about the power and beauty of children’s tefillos. He then presented each student with her personalized siddur. Mrs. Somerstein congratulated the students on their spectacular performance and knowledge. She said, “Our first-graders began their lifelong journey of communication with Hashem by receiving their first siddur.” Students and family were treated to a delicious display arranged by Mrs. Vita Abramchik. The giant mazal tov cake, personalized presents, pictures, balloons, and nosh were enjoyed by everyone in the Bais Yaakov family. A video of the event will, iy’H, be distributed to each family to ensure the memory of the day will remain an inspiration to the students for years to come as they continue to daven with such fervor and enthusiasm as they learned in first grade.

Upcoming Events

Nusach Carlebach davening. This Friday evening, Parashas Mishpatim, February 8 (and every Friday evening of Shabbos Mevorchim) there will be a Nusach Carlebach davening at Yeshiva Kesser Torah. Minchah will begin at 5:14 p.m. and will conclude about 6:29 p.m. Men and women are welcome.

Music & Mingle singles event. Words of inspiration: “Unleash Your Potential: Learn how to get the most out of life.” Also featuring music with Yisroel Juskowitz and band. Refreshments will be served. For modern machmir singles ages 25—35. Sunday, February 10 at 7:00 p.m., Congregation Aderet Eliyahu (Rabbi Teitz’s shul) 144-49 72nd Drive, Flushing, NY 11367. $18 at the door. v

Chanita Teitz is a real-estate broker at Astor Brokerage, with offices in Kew Gardens Hills and Fresh Meadows. For all your real-estate needs in Queens, call her at 718-263-4500 or e-mail

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