Passover Joy Comes in Small Packages

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April 2, 2012

As a few adults rush by him, my 4-year-old twirls around as he plays with a wind-up matzo ball toy. He giggles as he watches the matzo ball hop across the rug.

“It’s like in Big,” the sales clerk at Israel Book Shop says. “He just brings such joy into the store. He should come every day.”

I create an unambitious shopping list for this recent Passover shopping trip to Brookline, which has a few blocks of Jewish delis and stores. Simon has a day off from preschool. The … Continue reading

Spiders, Frogs, Oh, My: Author Sylvia Rouss Tries to Engage, Comfort Children

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April 11, 2011

Children’s books by Sylvia Rouss lately have fascinated my toddler and me. As Passover approaches, we are reading Sammy Spider’s First Passover. And Sammy Spider’s First Haggadah will take center stage at our first night seder. The Littlest Frog, which pokes fun at the Pharaoh as frogs jump on him, has become a new favorite.

So how did Rouss, a Jewish preschool teacher from Los Angeles, get her start as a Jewish children’s author? Why create … Continue reading