Lilian’s Erev Shabbat

“Mommy, can I blow?”, Sarah asks, looking at me as sweetly as she can. Nain, kippa on his head, is already sitting next to Nathan, Nienke and Noah, who have all been helping me preparing everything we need for making Shabbat. Sarah blows…wide at first. Nathan and Nain can’t help laughing: it is such a sweet sight. Then she takes a big breath of air into her chubby little cheeks and tries again: “Pffft!” and she’s done it! The match is out just a moment before the little flame would have reached my forefinger. Sarah looks proud and I say: ”Well done!” Now we can start. I say the b’racha for the candles and we sing ‘Lecha Dodi’ and ‘Shalom Aleichem’. The children try to behave themselves. Sometimes they succeed, although sometimes one of them bursts out into a laughter or they are all tired. But every week we do this full of joy because Shabbat is on its way!Yochanan, my husband, chants ‘Eshet Chayil’ and Nain tries to sing along. The words are still very difficult to him and his little face is looking very intent. The blessing for the children comes next. The children all come and stand close to daddy and we bless the children from great to small. Nathan has already grown so tall that Yochanan can’t help smiling with the thought that in a while his son will be taller than himself. The children sit down again and Yochanan takes the cup of wine in his hand. When the b’racha is said and sung the cup is passed round. Everybody takes a sip, except for Sarah, who still doesn’t like the wine. So at the end she puts in her little finger and puts it into her mouth, making a funny face. Then the whole family rises and washes their hands. Every child knows the b’racha by heart and one would wish to remember the sound of their clear little voices forever: ”Baruch atah Adonai Elohenu melech ha’olam…asher kideshanu …(and then they need a moment to think) bemitsvotav…and often they make a slip that makes the big ones smile.All children try to be quiet now until the blessing of the bread will be said, which is indeed very difficult to them (but sometimes they succeed!). And when all b’rachot have been said and all the rituals for the making of Shabbat have been done we sing ‘Shabbat Shalom’ at the top of our voices. If we get the chance we sing a few more songs with the piano. The children are making a circle and dance in the middle of the room. The week has passed. It is now time to rest. We are looking forward to tomorrow when we will have a fellowship meeting in the synagogue!
For the young ones Yochanan and I have written a song that can be sung on Shabbat:
(The music can be asked for by e-mail)
“Shabbat shalom, shabbat shalom.
Come and dance, come and dance with me.
Lift your hands to praise the Lord,
Let your feet step on His way.
And give your little hand to me,
Then we dance for Adonai.
Shabbat shalom, shabbat shalom.
Come and dance, come and dance with me.
Give your little hand to dance for Adonai!”Yochanan and Lilian compose songs. You can request for the above song on music via our e-mail address.