Challah (NPE/MPE) —Day 18/30

Photo from Unsplash

Several weeks ago I told my husband that I wanted to buy some challah. That’s a bigger deal than it sounds because we have to drive about 40 minutes to get it. But I really wanted it.

It seemed so strange to me. For most of my life I have not allowed myself to eat much bread. I love bread! Sandwiches are probably my favorite thing to eat… And I never eat them, or hardly ever. Because of my disability, it’s really important for me to manage my weight. And I learned early that I gain weight pretty quickly when I eat bread with any consistency. So I don’t.

And I wanted to drive 40 minutes to buy this particular bread.


I’ve known for a while that this place gets their delivery on Wednesdays. So we went on Thursday, sure that we would find it. And we didn’t. There had been a change and this week, they weren’t getting their delivery until Friday.

No challah. And I still wanted it.

So on Thursday I called around and found a couple of other places. We drove the 40 minutes again and bought some. Sadly, it just wasn’t that good. Now my husband really wanted some good challah too.

On Friday the good stuff had finally come in. We drove the 40 minutes for a third time and bought what we had wanted in the beginning.

It was wonderful!

But it still seemed strange to me… Why would I be craving something that I almost never allow myself to eat?

And then I had a phone conversation with my friend Nancy. And I told her about it. Her response was… “That makes perfect sense to me!”

She elaborated quite beautifully. I’m sure that my paraphrasing will be inadequate but she said something like…

Challah isn’t just bread. It’s history and tradition and connection! For centuries, Jewish women, Jewish mothers, have been making challah every week for every Shabbat (Sabbath). Jewish women lead the Shabbat prayers and family spirituality. And this tradition has been going on for thousands of years. Challah is a beautiful, tangible representation of this tradition. You weren’t craving bread. You were craving connection!—Thanks Nancy!💜

And she was exactly right!

My family of origin is gone. All of them have passed. And, since I never knew my biological father, I wasn’t able to form a connection to my Jewish history. I’m now trying to build that for myself little by little. I started in 2019. Then the pandemic pretty much shut that down. At some point, I might get back to those building blocks.

But there was and is something about challah. I felt it the very first time that I went to the local synagogue. After the service, everyone eats a piece of challah. The very first time that I did that, before I understood anything about the history and tradition… I felt a connection. I felt an ancientness and a rootedness that I had never felt before. And to this day, I feel that every time I eat it.

Challah isn’t just bread. It really is about connection to all the strong women for generations upon generations. It’s about tradition and strength and spirituality and connectedness… And so much more.

For me, challah is about grounding, especially when I feel disconnected from my roots…

It feels important to honor that symbolism and that feeling… and now it feels absolutely worth the 40 minute drive!

Wishing you peace and connection to your past and present, to your roots and wings, and to all of your tomorrows! Thanks for reading.

I’m glad you’re here💜

*** Natalie the Explorer hosts the weekend coffee share. And you can find other coffee chats Here

****This post is part of the 2022 Nanopoblano November writing challenge. We commit to writing a blog post every day if it all possible and to supporting each other in our writing endeavors. All of my cheer pepper friends would appreciate your support. You can find all of their blogs HERE:

14 thoughts on “Challah (NPE/MPE) —Day 18/30


    Dinah – Interesting topic today … not at all familiar with Challah, but I have heard of it – mostly from books.  Now that you’ve piqued my curiosity, I plan to check out our local bakeries.  You do keep life interesting!  Thanks for today’s educational blog.  Kay 

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My advice is to get kosher challah so you know it’s real. I’m sure google will help you find some good stuff. Or call a local synagogue and ask them for a recommendation. I hope you feel its ancientness💜💜


    1. Thank you! Because of the availability of DNA testing, there are thousands of us who’ve found out that our biological parents aren’t who we thought they were. It’s life altering! I found out that I’m half Jewish. And it saddens me to know that I missed out on that rich culture for my whole life.
      Like everything….one day at a time 💜💜💜

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Kathleen, see my comment above… Make sure that you get the real thing. You could get a recommendation from your local synagogue. It really is wonderful! But… As I said… Part of the reason that it’s so good is because its roots are so, so deep! I hope you can find it and I hope you enjoy it. Have a wonderful weekend!💜💜

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Dinah,
    I think there are two reasons this bread tastes so good.
    1) It is about your history, legacy and blood line. Your ancestors ate it all the time. My sisters and I laugh as an old family story about how our mom was addicted to a certain local potato salad, so much so that she craved it when she was carrying us so we literally gestated in the stuff. Today that same recipe is still available nearby and it’s very popular & expensive but so worth it. We crave it now ourselves.
    2) It’s bread and really good bread to boot. Our bodies as a species are wired to crave grain products and bread has to be the most common use for wheat. It’s partially why almost all of us love pizza, pasta, pancakes, any kind of cake actually.
    I think you’re love of bread in natural and is shared by most people but in your case, you have to limit how much you can enjoy (as do I sadly) so it tastes extra good when we do get it.
    Blessings & Shalom

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Absolutely right! These things are always multi layered. Very cool, that the potato salad craving spans generations!
      Thanks for visiting my friend. I hope you have a great week ahead.


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