Anti-Missionary

 Counter-Missionary

 Torah Study

SHABBAT

I remember learning that until Wednesday we live off the light of the past Shabbos and from Wednesday on we prepare for the next. So that is what I try for. Remember, you don't have to do it all. Family can help. Preparing to bring in Shabbos is a Mitzvah everyone should be part of. Even the youngest children can help and it is a great way for them to learn the importance of this Mitzvah and take joy in helping to bring it in.

I try to do my shopping on Wednesday. This also gives me Thursday as a back up so I don't have to stress out if something interferes. As a matter of fact, that tends to be my rule for all preparations. l try to plan an a bit early so I can take my time and don't go into Shabbos all frazzled and stressed. I also do basic cleaning of things that will last a few days or deeper cleaning that needs to be done. I can always run a quick touch up as it gets closer .

On Thursday I finish what I didn't do on Wednesday, as well as straighten up. I mostly focus on the rooms that will be used over Shabbos. I save the rest for when I have time. I'll vacuum and double check that I have what I need for cooking. This is also close enough to get the bathrooms, especially if I am having company. Again, major goal is to not stress. I used to think everything had to be perfect, especially if company was coming. I have learned that the important thing is enjoying my family and company and that won't happen if I am worn out. It's harder to daven when worn out from all the prep. I also get my clothes ready here so I don't have to worry about repairs when I can't make them or last minute laundry.

That leaves Friday - this can change as the times change but again, major goal is stress free. When Shabbos starts later I make sure to sit down and have a light lunch, both for a few minutes to relax and also so I don't get grouchy from eating dinner so late and having an empty stomach. First thing I do is start my challa - I have a bread machine so I can make it fresh every week. There is something very special about the smell baking bread has to my family. It helps get every body in the mood. I will finish the cleaning Friday morning - except the kitchen. After lunch I start anything that needs a long time to cook and get candles ready and the table set. Then I do the rest of the cooking, so all I need to do is warm up the food right before candles. This allows me time to clean the kitchen and run the dishwasher. I like to start Shabbos with it empty so I can put the dinner dishes in it after we eat. I find it works best for us to store them there until after Shabbos when I can clean them. We have a tiny kitchen so dirty dishes everywhere causes issues and ups the chances of accidentally getting dairy and meat mixed up the next day when people grab snacks.

About an hour before candles, I do a walk through to make sure nothing was forgotten and get dressed. Now I can sit down and relax - more so after the clocks change for daylight savings. In the winter, not so much but usually I will have time for a few deep breaths. Now for candles and Shabbos

Rabbetzin Dawyn Snyder