The Ultimate Chanukah Gift

Better than an iPod or a Play Station or a sweater.

Comments (9)

(9) Anonymous, December 11, 2007 10:43 AM

Time to parents

In today's day in age, when our parents are living longer B"H we cannot forget about them as well. The gift of time is a great message, but let's not limit it to our kids. I know my parents love it when I call or stop by and visit. Our parents have done so much for us. The least we can do is spend some time with them. Because, when they're no longer with us, we will regret that we didn't.

(8) Gene, December 5, 2007 12:09 PM


The gifts I remember most now as an adult of the times when I was a kid are the gifts that I hated the most as a kid like socks, underwear, shirts,and the gifts I remember now the most and cherish is the going fishing with my Dad, watching football games together,the socks, underwear, and shirts, stuff I realize now I really needed. I don't really remember the toys I got as a kid I loved back then.
Crazy huhh!!

(7) Anonymous, December 5, 2007 9:34 AM

grab the moment

The video on time, really touched me deeply.
i spent many years very depressed and in an abusive marriage. and the saddest thing is that my two daughters suffered a great deal without my even realizing it while it was happening. Only one good thing came out of all this. I was able to be with my girls when they were little and have a treasure chest of wonderful memories of their childhood. i made the decision to stay home with them and not let someone else take care of them when they were infants. we never lacked for anything material tho we were not rich. the kids grew up always eating homemade food and having a mother at home and that has been the best i could have ever offered them. another thing is that i was able to have time always to teach the TORAH. Now we look back and remember all the BIBLE STORIES we read when they were little. and as far as the abusive husband goes, i never left him, i stuck it out and i'm glad for it. i trusted HASHEM WOULD MAKE A MIRACLE, and sure enough, he's a different man from the one he used to be when we were younger. He's now becoming observant of dietary laws and also will observe shabbath as far as never turning the tv or radio on and so forth. I thank HASHEM
for putting in my heart to take the TIME.

(6) Anonymous, December 5, 2007 7:49 AM

Importance of time with children

As a school social worker, I find that many children's behavior problems would go away if parents would pay them some attention and give them private TIME. During this time, the parents would listen and not criticize or lecture. The funny thing, when I tell parents that there is nothing seriously wrong with their child and they just need some attention, the parents find it very difficult to do-not due to lack of time but because their parent never did it with them! They look at me with an expression of disappointment ("You mean that there is no magic pill I can give this kid to make him behave?") and astonishment ("I have to actually pay some attention to him?"). I think that if a parent really has a hard time with this, it's time for them to get some help to see why they have difficulty in bonding with their child and chances are, their other relationships are distant as well.

(5) Yoni, December 4, 2007 1:29 PM

Presnts... but also time!!!

Ever since I was a little kid, my siblings and I, as well as millions of other Jewish kids, would receive gifts on Chanukah. This was and still is a very exciting and beautiful time for us.
A week or so ago, I was flipping through a popular Jewish newspaper and came across a letter written by a certain community rabbi, to the editor. The newspaper advertised that they were lowering the cost of their subscription as sort of a Chanukah gift to us. Just as someone wrote in a previous comment, this person was disturbed at this. He says giving and receiving gifts on Chanukah is a secular adapted custom. He demanded that they reword "Chanukah gift" in a different way.
So I asked a Rabbi, who happens to be the head of a Bes din in Brooklyn, if indeed this is a secular custom and should be avoided. The Rabbi explained as follows. The minhag was and still is to give gelt and zedaka. Nowadays, he says, it has become a custom to give Chanukah gifts as well. According to this Rabbi, just because this wasn't necessarily the custom 300 years ago it doesn't mean that it isn't a Jewish custom now. There are plenty of customs we have that aren't documented in Torah literature, but rather the Rabbis of the generation decide whether it should be followed or not. Of course, there will be some who oppose it. But that doesn't make the people who are accustomed to it wrong for there are Rabbis who encourage and find nothing wrong with it. But again, that reason in itself doesn't make it a secular custom.
And out of curiosity, who's to say *we* were the ones who derived this custom from the secular world?
But I have to say Rabbi Salomon, I'm completely with you on this one. As cheesy as it may sound giving time is the greatest gift of all. It's much easier to buy your kid a gift then to spend time with them. Most kids would rather a play station, but that play station will last a few years. Childhood memories last a lifetime or as the mastercard commercial would say: PRICELESS. Eventually, they will grow up to see that.

(4) AM Schrage, December 4, 2007 11:57 AM

Time For All

As frequent Christian visitor to this site, I think Rabbi Salomon has totally described what is missing most in all the winter holidays. It's not the time we spend together over a break in the school semesters or some holiday time off from work or hobbies, or a boxed gift.
What is of greater value than all that can be bought or sold, is our time that we share with our loved ones and which we only have today. That is the gift.

Isn't it said, yeterday is history, tomorrow a mystery, today is the gift.

May these gifts be a blessing upon all nations and written in our hearts for the children Israel.

(3) Anonymous, December 4, 2007 3:52 AM

less is more

A few years ago a friend in Switzerland decided to downsize his working life by going from 100% to 80% in his working week. He didn't suffer materially to any great extent, though there were adjustments that had to be made, but his family life improved markedly. Do you know of friends who have done the same? Does it always work? Have we made career, money into an Idol? Whoever said on his death-bed 'I wish I had spent more time at the office?'

(2) BS, December 4, 2007 2:30 AM

Chanukah presents?????

Gift giving is always nice, but there is no minhag (custom) to do so on Chanukah, it is a Purim custom. "Dmei Chanukah" or "Chanukah gelt" comes from the custom to give money to the poor and to needy Torah scholars, as Chanukah is a time to renew our commitment to Torah which the Greeks tried to eradicate. I find it so disturbing that the holiday wich symbolizes standing up for authentic Torah observance has become Hellenized and adulterated. The non Jews give gifts on xmas. Well, if the Goyim are giving presents, why should Jewish kids feel left out of the fun, lets make Chanukah presents! Chanukah decorations, Chanukah parties, Chanukah much Torah learning is going on during Chanukah? How much have we worked on strengthening our Jewish identity as the Torah defines it? The very holiday commemorating our battle with assimilation has become assimilated! There are paople who will put up a Chanukah bush. Hashem Yeracheim, may we merit recapturing the true meaning of Chanukah

(1) Rosen, December 2, 2007 6:15 AM

time can be timeless & priceless

Quality time may be more rare nowadays since we have so much technology around us. Seems like most of those who give us time to express ourselves would be that in therapy, because even family sometimes won't always take the time to hear what you want to say that is pertinent on your mind.

As for technology, much of the time I spend with my grandfather involves maintenance of his computer. The elderly often don't understand the latest technology they obtain, and they need assistance from their younger counter-parts. The elderly typically considers computer technology as "too complicated", which is understandable.

All in all, it's best to spend quality time with those who are friends and family, either in a home or dining out.


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