Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Yad Vashem

Yad Vashem translates to "a memorial and a name" 

Holocaust Museum

Not many words can describe it- most of you have probably been to the one in D.C. but it was especially poignant to be in this memorium in the land full of Jews. I have come to love the Jewish people SO much. They are so devout in their religion, they are kind, they are smart, they are amazingly caring and hospitable.  I left wondering why such a thing could ever happen and I came to the conclusion that no one can ever know or ever explain it. I was glad to be able to go, even though I left fully depressed for the day. We couldn't take pictures inside, but I got a few outside.

 The Yad Vashem memorial reliefs

 A big pretty art piece depicting Star of David and a menorah, and the tomb of Theodore Herzl the most influential person on Zionism and the creation of the State of Israel.

Us having a discussion with our Judaism professor, Ophir Yarden. We love Ophir and his kippah-wearing bald head. The memorial to the one and a half million children who died in the Holocaust. Hebrew stone outside of museum (I can read it- letters: yud, daled (Yad) vav, shin, mem (Vashem)) and an art piece memorializing the children who died in the Holocaust- stone columns lined up like in a class picture, all cut off at the top, symbolizing lives cut short. 

I thought it was beautiful seeing a live, beautiful blue bird sitting on the stone letters of a memorial of death. On the right, a room we went into that was completely dark except for one candle. But the room was made of mirrors, so we saw millions of candle flames. They represented the children who died. Their names and ages were being read off by voices. It was quite amazing. 


Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Neot Ketuvim

This was SUCH a fun fieldtrip!!! The weather was PERFECTION. It is a Biblical Gardens park where they have re-created the look of Israel in the time of the Bible. Our tour guide said that it looked so green, covered in lush and flowers, in contrast to the appearance of the land we saw as we looked out past the boundaries of the park (dry and brush weeds). He said it was because of all of the years of war and contention that wreaked havoc on the land. We got there and learned about plants. Usually a boring topic, but it was super interesting knowing how it applied to the Bible.

Above: Red lilies. ~It has been said that these were the lilies that Christ spoke of in Matthew when he said
"And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faithTherefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or wherewithal shall we be clothed? For your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these ethings shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take athought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the dayis the evil thereof."
Almond blossoms: I cracked open that sucker and ate it. It tasted SO BAD. I thought I was going to die of raw almond poisoning. They're definitely not as good as they appear. 

Above: Random pretty yellow flowers.
Purple flowers: I forgot what they are called. But it's said that King Solomon designed his crown after these flowers because they were his favorite. Random cool fact.
The Jujube Tree. It is the tree that has branches with jujube beans  and a lot of thorns. These are the branches with which they made Christ's crown of thorns. I tried to get some close ups of the actual thorns. 
Then we ground up Hyssop. It’s an herb (frequent in the Bible- look it up.) that people use for food and teas, but Biblically it is very prominent. It is the weed that they used to put vinegar on and make Christ drink when He was on the cross. It’s also a cleansing herb and it’s what David cleansed himself with after his sins of adultery and murder. It’s also the plant that they used dried to be a brush to put the sacrificial lamb’s blood on the posts and lintels of the homes of the Israelites in anticipation for the Passover. Hyssop represents humility and is a very special plant.

Trav and I basically turned that hyssop in to powder.

Then we went sheep herding. Yeah sheep herding. As in, I have officially herded sheep. In a sheep field. In Israel. Ok enough. It was fun- Patrick our tour guide gave us tasks- sometimes we just had to get them in the circle of rocks, sometimes we had to get them around the circle without going into the circle, sometimes we had to get them around the pole and do a figure 8. Skills.


Cutie pie Seth (Bro Harper's son) in front of the field in which we herded. And a goat. 

Then we made our own pita in the forest! I felt like I was back in America camping, because the trees were to thick and tall and I was breathing in way too much smoke! We started a fire right up, made dough (flour, oil, and salt) and packed the pitas onto a big iron half sphere thing on top of the fire. It was so fun ~and delicious~.  We also got wheat and roasted one bowl with salt and one with honey. *sweet and salty*



Sorry to fulfill all stereotypes, but.....girls like to cook and boys like fire. There you go.

This is my best friend, Courtney. He is a cowboy and CONSTANTLY has a toothpick or something in his mouth. He picked a big tall talk of weed and I couldn't resist but capturing it. So Courtney.

Oh how I love Israel!


Sunday, February 19, 2012

Valentine's Day!

Happy Belated Valentine's Day!
We had wonderful celebrations! Cookies at the Ludlows the night before, Valentine-grams thanks to *Megan* at the Shekel Shak, and red heart suckers all around! 

The girls! Cookie time! We love the Ludlows!
Sometimes Sare and I sit in awkward postures and take awkward pictures on the day before Valentine's day. I.e. here.
Sugar cookies with Sam's mom's amazing, yet simple recipe. 
Joe L, Marcie, Natalie, Me, Sare, Josh L, Sam, Marissa L, and Malia L.  

Valentine-grams for 2 very loved people!
I got 5- not to brag or anything. Thank you Joe, Trav, Sarah, Amy my VT, and Abe and Jarom my HTs!
That 13 year old poetry from a movie gets me every time.

LOVE all around! xoxo


sorry kyler. 

Sometimes the Jerusalem Center students like to do service. Oh wait not sometimes. ALL THE TIME. I'm on the humanitarian committee and we organize service projects. Pretty easy because the Bentleys and the students before us plan everything out and we just execute. So every other week (at least) we have a service project in the parking lot. We blast the tunes, stand in the cold, and pack hygiene kits. As in 3500 kits in 2 hours. Mainly because Tucker and I fold towels at the speed of lighting. We love to serve. Like a boss. Then Sister Bentley makes us homemade cookies.


City of David

So we went to the City of David. 

In Brother Harper’s words, since I’ve been through Hezekiah’s Tunnel, I automatically know everything about him! Ok maybe not, but I really do feel like I know the story of King David and those other lovely people in Kings SO much better! Now, I know so much more the lay out of stuff and I can picture it in my head. For example, the city of Jerusalem is very hilly (they call it mountainous…psshhh) and you can be at one house looking far down on a house just 20 yards away, so I can picture how David looked upon Bathsheba and how easily he saw her. I am here in the dirty, dusty streets, the cobblestone ground and walls made of ancient stone. I’m here with the olive trees, the hills, valleys, and rivers. It is such a beautiful place and I have fallen in love with this place!

Kyle and Ster (we're ster-crazy)
So our City of David fieldtrip was very fun and exciting. If you can think of every adjective for fun or exciting, this was that.  The City of David is within a 3 minute walk from the center, but technically we’re not allowed in there alone. So we walked down with water shoes and excitement in our hearts! The City of David was the start of Jerusalem. King David came and took over the Jebusites (Jebus was what Jerusalem was before David came and turned it into Jerusalem), established it as a religious and political capital, brought the Ark of the Covenant, wanted to build a temple but couldn’t, and made a covenant with God that his posterity would bring the King of Israel.

  We saw some very important remnants of an old residence in the City. It probably was the type of house that Lehi and Nephi would have lived in….maybe it was their house!

remnants of....surprise....Royal Quarters!

remnants of living quarters!
We went through Hezekiah’s tunnel, which is connected to the Gihon Spring, where Solomon was anointed.