Festive visitors

This week, Shabbat is babysitting.

“I’m the youngest of seven,” she says, “and sometimes I miss all the activity of a full house.”

She’s pulled out all the stops, bringing in heaps of toys and candy to keep everyone happy. When her eight fiery-haired nephews come spilling in through the front door, Shabbat instantly shifts from the perfect hostess to “the cool aunt.” It doesn’t seem to bother her that she’s about to have a house full of rambunctious troublemakers all hyped up on sugar.

“Let them have their fun,” she says when the youngest splatters olive oil across the tablecloth and the rug. “I barely ever get to see them. I want to make sure they enjoy their visit.”

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