Here is an excerpt from our JGU Tribute Class Dedicated to the loving memory of “Bubby” Muriel Axelrod o”bm!
YIZKOR – We remember Marnina Leah Bat Aharon.
“How does a Jewish woman cook? She cooks with a handful of this and a handful of that, but she has been blessed with the right-sized hands.”
Bubby Axelrod who used her entire being, her hands and heart to bring joy to her family and community with her gift of cooking. She used food to share her soul and bring heaven down to earth.
Bubby Axelrod baked her delicious Challah for every Shabbat and Holidays. The Challah Baking process is also a rich spiritual process and we dedicate this “Challah” Tribute to Bubby Axelrod who never missed a week without her home baked Challah.
LET’S BAKE CHALLAH WITH BUBBY:
Let’s mix the following ingredients together:
Water & Sugar
The water and sugar, represent kindness and sweetness, we remember Bubby Axelrod who showed us that the most essential ingredient is LOVE and sweetness. She showered her family with kindness, unconditional love without passing judgements.
We add the ingredients to the yeast which is alive and symbolizes LIFE. It allows the dough to rise and grow in size, and reminds us of the way Bubby Axelrod helped people rise in their confidence with her listening ear and by helping her family grow with her motherly advice and positivity.
The water must be warm for the yeast to bubble and rise. Bubby Axelrod’s joyful and bubbly personality added so much warmth to her environment. She was so funny and if she had been born in another time, she might have been a comedic actress!
We add the eggs, which bonds the dough, and we remember Bubby’s ability to BOND with others in love and joy. She bonded with her daughter in laws over recipes and tips, and other women even in the market place.
We add oil, used to anoint kings, and reflect on the way Bubby anointed us with her praise and compliments. Like oil, which stands apart, she was able to appreciate the unique gifts that made each person special. Her intentions were so pure, like the purest of oils. She didn’t expect anything in return. She was 100% PURE, genuine and real!
We pour in the flour, which represents the physical BODY and we learn from Bubby Axelrod how to fulfill the mitzvah of lovingly preparing food to keep the body and soul healthy.
As we add the salt, to keep the yeast contained so that it doesn’t go out of control, we think of Bubby, who was always in control of planning her cooking schedule. This discipline stayed with her throughout her life and she never missed a Shabbat or Holiday without Challah.
Mixing the ingredients is not sufficient, it is time to take on a new challenge and knead the dough with our HANDS. We may feel fatigued, but if we roll up our sleeves, keep at it and knead well, we will get a soft dough that is shaped into delicious challahs.
Bubby Axelrod taught us to keep going and never give up despite the challenges in life.
Once the dough is ready, we let it rise and remember that growth takes time and patience.
Bubby Axelrod, a stay at home mom, would tell Susan, “When the children are young, you don’t have to go to Synagogue, You are a Mother First.”
Just like Chana who brought her son to the Temple when he got older, she brought her three sons to the Synagogue when they were ready. She had a strong desire to pass on Judaism to the next generation. Today, all of her three sons are leaders and cantors.