As nearly all students are away on break, we enjoyed a little getaway of our own this late December 2015 weekend. We went down to Brooklyn to enjoy a Shabbos with Raizy’s parents, the Galperins, and 5/8 of our children. Why 5/8? Three of our girls were away having a great time at the Jewish Girls Winter Retreat, this year in Latham NY.

We drove down on Friday morning and before Shabbos had enough time to visit Mendel’s brother Efraim and Menucha and family for their son Mendel’s 4th birthday. Shabbos began quite early so we were able to eat dinner early, too, and enjoy quality time with the Galperins and an early night sleep. Shabbos morning Moshe and Mendel prayed in the Rebbe’s Room at 770 (see about that visit here) and afterwards attended a local farbrengen at the “across the street” Empire Shteeble synagogue where Raizy’s father prays. Saturday night we walked over to Bubbe Fox’s apartment and enjoyed time with her, as well as a huge tray of delicious chocolates that alumnus Ben Z. very thoughtfully brought for her and she was overjoyed to share with guests. Little empathetic Esther Miriam asked her, “Do you live alone?” To which Bubbe Fox replied, “I enjoy company, people come to visit!”

This weekend was also a little bit of a working visit. On Saturday night we met (at the Chabad on Campus main offices) with one alumni couple in preparation for their marriage, and on Sunday afternoon with another alumni couple, also in preparation for their marriage (this time using the conference room of the Shluchim office, also on Eastern Parkway). Many thanks to both Chabad on Campus and the Shlichum Office and their staffs for graciously providing nice private spaces on short notice. And it was a pleasure spending quality time with these very fine couples!

Another real nice perk to this getaway weekend Brooklyn visit was that we got to see Raizy’s brother Shimon and Mushkie and their two adorable sons who drove in from Ohio. They spent Shabbat with family elsewhere, but we enjoyed time with them on Saturday Night and Sunday. Chani got to meet up with some friends, so that was nice, too.

On Sunday we went as a family to the Rebbe’s Ohel (gravesite) as we like to do when we can on our NY visits, and being that we weren’t rushed this time, the kids wrote some very meaningful things, especially Bluma, writing for her 7th birthday (really deep stuff actually).

On Sunday evening Mendel drove back to Albany with 5/8 of the kids, but left Raizy in NYC for her 2-day Chabad on Campus retreat with several of her fellow campus Shluchos. We hope to hold things together till she gets back – and we get back to work, trying to get as much paperwork done in the Shabbos House office, put together the Fall 2015 “What’s Cooking?” update newsletter and prepare for the Spring semester – it’s coming quickly!