The seasonal transition happens so quickly that you don’t even make it to Halloween anymore before the Christmas music, decorations and advertisements start bombarding you everywhere you turn. As a parent trying hard to make Jewish traditions, values and customs a part of everyday life, it can be extra challenging and sometimes disheartening when shopping this time of year. Do you remember when Adam Sandler’s Chanukah song debuted? There was a sense of “hey we finally have something for us on the radio.”

These days you smile when you see a mainstream store that has one shelf of items for a Jewish holiday, and have to tell all your friends about it, so they can get to be a part of the phenomenon as well.   We started a listing of places where you can find some nice Chanukah items, which appeal to your young ones, or may even appeal to you if you love the holiday season and want to get into the spirit.

Christmas Tree Shops, TJMaxx, Target, Kohl’s, and Crate and Barrel all have a little section with low budget menorahs, linen, candles, plastic tableware, crystal/glass dreidels, serving dishes that are decorated for Chanukah. Pottery Barn, One Step Ahead (catalog) and The Nod (catalog) have puzzles, hanging days of the festival of lights, and pretend wooden sets for playing Chanukah. Barnes and Noble as well as Borders have a nice selection of Chanukah books. We have seen the items on the shelves this past week, our advice is to get them while you can… they do not seem to refill the stock of this one-shelf department in most stores.

Also, after visiting several synagogues in the area, we discovered they have lovely gift shops with menorahs, dreidels, and unusual and unique collections of art at a higher price point. Some of the Jewish book stores have a greater selection of all the above mentioned items; however you need to be willing to travel out of the South Shore, or to order items online.

Also, if you have been looking for a photo studio in the South Shore that can provide you with a nice selection of Chanukah holiday photo cards, The Picture People in the Silver City Galleria in Taunton has a giant dreidel and a nice selection of Chanukah photo cards. They print all photos and cards onsite, and you can walk away with them after your appointment. Companies such as Vistaprint, Tinyprints, Shutterfly and Snapfish also allow you to upload your favorite photos for making some special cards that will be cherished by everyone who gets them. Either way you can’t go wrong in documenting your children’s Chanukah year after year.

For those families living in the South Shore, we wanted to let you know of some great programming for Chanukah for the entire family. We have a great variety of programming throughout the calendar year, as well as centering around all the holidays. This group is for the whole family.  So whether you’re Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, married to a non-Jewish guy, or married to a Jewish guy and not Jewish yourself, this group is for you! Consider this a mommy and me group with a subtle Jewish twist.

We welcome anyone who has at least one child under the age of 6! We’re here to create a fun and supportive environment to those looking to meet other families with young children. We Look forward to meeting you!  Please check out our new website and calendar of events, we have a very exciting Fall and Winter planned, and are always looking to add some new and exciting events! Feel free to pass this email along to your friends who may be interested in joining us!

Click on the link or copy and paste into your browser and click the green JOIN US box to join our Meetup. Answer the question sand load a picture of your family. We will accept your request to join the group, and you will get a welcome email. Once you have access to our site, you can start attending events and RSVP to our calendar events. We look forward to meeting you and your family!