Sunday, June 04, 2006

Post-Shavuot post # 1: It's a good thing *one* of us is smart

Early Friday evening, I awoke from a Yom Tov (holiday) nap in a panic and ran to the kitchen, afraid that I would barely have time to cook dinner before Shabbat (Sabbath--cooking on a pre-lit flame is permissible on a holiday, but not on the Sabbath). There, I was confronted with a puzzle--on the counter sat two empty boxes of blintzes, and I could have sworn that I hadn't cooked all the blintzes the day before. What on earth was I going to cook for Shabbat? Finally, the coin dropped. I turned around, and, sure enough, there, on the hot-tray, sat the cooked blintzes, along with a pot of vegies. After almost 29 years of marriage, my poor, long-suffering husband, all too well aware of my penchant for resetting the alarm and then forgetting to turn it back on, had been kind enough to let me sleep and make our dinner himself. I think I'll keep him for another few years (oh, say, another 29 :) ).

Since the "weather guessers" were predicting severe thunderstorms, I decided to skip Erev Shavuot (Evening of Jewish Pentecost) services and the Tikkun Lel Shavuot study session voluntarily (as opposed to due to motherhood duties or illness) for the first time in years. (Boy, were they right--the thunder was so loud that it scared the bleep out of me!) In walked the braver hubster at around 11 (the oldsters of our congregation are afraid to stay out any later, so we break up early), and asked me why the candles weren't lit. "Well, you know the rule for Shavuot: Since we're supposed to count seven complete weeks between the second night of Pesach (Passover) and Shavuot, we have to wait until after sundown to bentsch lecht (light candles with a blessing for the Sabbath or Festival), so I figured I'd wait 'til after you got home and . . .

Oops! I forgot it's also Shabbat."

Lighting candles from a pre-lit flame is permissible on a holiday, but not on the Sabbath. Guess who ended up not bentsching lecht this past Friday night?

There are times when I think I have a sieve where a brain should be.

On the plus side, at least this Shavuot, unlike last Shavuot, we didn't french-fry our kitchen.

While we're on the subject of toasted stoves, here's Mark's/PT's post concerning this conflict between halachah (Jewish religious law) and safety.


Blogger Elie said...


Since you enlightened me recently in understanding different kiddush customs, I hope these questions on your story won't seem nosy - just trying to learn!

- Did the story with the missed candle lighting and 11pm return of hubby occur on the first night (Thursday) or 2nd night (Friday) of yom tov? The former is when late-night Shavous learning is held, and the latter is when lighting would have been a problem due to Shabbat. Or does your shul hold late-night learning on both nights? That would be new to my experience.

- A related question: Is the late-night learning in your shul done before dinner? Again, in my experience the usual order is:
1) daven maariv at shul
2) go home for kiddush and the yom tov seudah
3) go back to shul after the meal for late-night learning

Is the order different in your shul?

Tue Jun 06, 12:55:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Elie, that was my error--the hubster walked in closer to 10 that night, because, indeed, we, too, have a Tikkun Leil Shavuot on the first night only. The missed candle-lighting occurred on the 2nd night.

In olden times, both in our former shul and in our current one, blintzes used to be served during the Tikkun, so that people actually had dinner at shul or in the home of the person(s) hosting the Tikkun. Nowadays, our Tikkun ends early enough that we just wait and have dinner at home thereafter.

Having dinner at home after maariv, then returning to shul for the Tikkun makes more sense. This is particularly true when there are kids involved, as it's nice to have a family Yom Tov seudah/holiday meal together before one parent or the other (ok, in Orthodox circles, that's probably the father) disappears for the rest of the night.

Tue Jun 06, 08:10:00 PM 2006  

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