Category Archives: Every Day Blessings


Dear Ones,

Yesterday was an Aunt Chickie day.  Aunt Chickie is my 94 year old Aunt whose words of wisdom often come to me, in her voice, in my mind, when her truism are holding court in my llife.  Yesterday, after a visit to my lymphedema therapist @ St. David’s here in Austin, I was coming through the parking lot and there was a handicapped parking spot right outside the door to my Optical Shop.  Why was that important?  A couple of months ago, on a Friday, the 13th, my glasses slipped out the car door and I didn’t see it.  I drove over them with my Fiat, breaking the frames, but not hurting the lenses.  I have stopped at at least 5 or 6 optical shops to get the frames replaced…no luck.  Since I hadn’t bought the frames at my Optical Shop I never stopped there to see if they had a pair that would fit the lenses.

I pulled into the parking spot, thinking it was pretty useless, and I would just get new frames when I get new lenses in October after a visit to my eye doctor, who incidentally is in the same parking lot at St. David’s.

I was laughing at myself as I walked into the shop.  Both men working there know me.  “What’s so funny, Rabbi?” one of them asked.  “Well, I feel a little foolish, but my glasses slipped under my car without me realizing it and I ran them over and since I didn’t buy the frames here, I haven’t come back to get them fixed.  I’ve been to a few other places here in Austin and they don’t have frames that fit these lenses.  Now I’m thinking, why didn’t I try here before today.  I am here twice a week for my lymphedema therapy.”

The man took my lenses, walked over to the wall of women’s frames, removed one from the wall and popped the lenses in.  THEY FIT.  It was that easy.  He said, “you should have come here first.”  We all laughed.

Meanwhile, the frames cost $150.  That was really more than I wanted to pay.  But in the intervening moments of all this happening, the man said, “you know, Rabbi, you always come in with such great stories and you often leave us laughing so how about a storyteller’s discount.  Let’s say, $100. and be done with it.


Today I had a luncheon date with a friend.  I got to the restaurant at 11:30 even though our date was for noon because I was coming from another appointment.  I was starving, having only eaten a banana and a cup of coffee before leaving the house.  The waitress brought ice tea and a warm loaf of wheat bread and butter.  I had some of both, then I asked her to remove the bread as it was too tempting.  I explained that I was early and I was sure my friend would be there by noon.  So I sat, enjoying my tea and it was noon, it was noon plus 15, it was noon plus 30.  I got worried and called my friend.  “Oh,” she said,”I wasn’t sure if that was yesterday or today.”  It didn’t make any sense to me, and I did remind her that we had written it down in her calendar that she religiously keeps with her in her purse.  Anyway, I told her not to worry and called the waitress over.  Explaining that my elderly friend had forgotten I asked her for a soup and 1/2 sandwich combo.  What she brought me soon after was a soup and salad combo.  I told her that was not what I ordered and she offered to replace it.  I said that it would be okay as it was and enjoyed the soup.  The salad, not so much.

The manager came over after a time.  He said the waitress had told him about her mistake.  He asked if I had found something wrong with the salad.  I explained that I have a swallowing issue and sometimes, like today, eating lettuce is difficult for me.  He immediately said, “no problem, I will have Cook make you a 1/2 sandwich to take home.

A couple of minutes later he reappeared with a hot, half sandwich, hot french fries and a pickle in a take away box.  The waitress had already brought me a fresh ice tea in a  take away cup.  So I left the restaurant with ice tea, always welcomed here in Texas, and enough food for supper.

I could have sworn I heard Aunt Chickie whispering in my ear, “you get what you give, honey!”

With many blessings and very great love for all of us,

Rebba Raine aka Aunt Chickie’s neice.

Too Close to Home

Dear Ones, Already down this past weekend by the news that Rev. Orah Gibbons had passed away, quietly in her sleep, I was even further upset by recent happenings in NJ. A suspected Militant Muslim, from Elizabeth, NJ, has been taken into custody after a shoot out in Linden, NJ…the next town over. What hit… Continue Reading

A Moment in Time

Dear Ones, Last night, at a Landmark Forum Seminar on Integrity, I, along with 150 other of HaShem’s children, witnessing a stunning moment in time.  I want to put it into words, particularly because it relates to how many of us felt after 9/11…for just a moment in time. We were sharing, as a group,… Continue Reading

Mother for Life

Dear Ones: A message on my cell phone.  “R U home?”  I had seen it before.  Out of the blue, without warning, “Mom” is pressed into service again.  What does it matter that the “child” who is texting will be 36 on his next birthday.  When a guy needs his “Mom” she has to be… Continue Reading

I’m Back

Tuesday morning, December 27, 2011…From the Lab: I am back.  Actually I haven’t been gone from here or Hashem’s House, or the Ranch at all, except for a few trips to NYC…once to bury my dear step-father Paul, twice to try and save an institution from itself (which I could not, in the final analysis… Continue Reading

The Rest of Yesterday’s Stories

Yesterday’s Story Dear Ones: I have spent a life-time, ok, 65 years, trying to integrate all my various parts into one complete life…and it hasn’t been easy.  I am a woman, someone’s daughter, granddaugter, sister, aunt and niece.  I am a rabbi, an interfaith minister and a maggidah (spiritual story teller).  I am a teacher… Continue Reading