Friday, March 30, 2018

S H A L O M !

Wishing you Peace,
Good times
Good health and 
happiness on
Passover and



(see you next week!)

Thursday, March 29, 2018

3 Coffees and New Life in Yeshua

Our picnic under the cherry blossoms started with three coffees from 7-eleven.
Well, really it started long before that.  It started 19 years ago when I came to Japan.
I was pregnant with my daughter, and my husband came ahead of me to find us a place.  I remember standing at just about this same spot, with her in my belly, getting ready for when she would be born!
It was my first Cherry Blossoms season in Japan!

Yesterday my husband, daughter and I had a cherry blossoms picnic in the morning to see her off on the day that she will be going away for college!! I got three coffees to have with the homemade matzah.  As she won`t be here for Passover, I thought to bring a little matzah to our picnic beforehand. 

In Japan, many new things take place under the cherry blossoms,  like entrance ceremonies to school, new job transfers, and it is like a new year starts in spring under the blossoms!! I think it is the only country I know of where the school year begins in springtime, and all the new positions and job moves.  So it is a national renewing! I love that the season goes so well with Passover.   I am thinking that really, my blog has a misnomer!! More than Challah and Cherry Blossoms, Matzah and Cherry Blossoms go together for the timing of Passover and Cherry Blossoms!!

Well, this post is just meant to be light and full of blossoms so I will just share some photos and wish you blessings to  enjoy the season wherever you are, hope there will be much blossoming and renewal in all our hearts and lives!! Much Love, Shayndel

H A P P Y     P A S S O V E R

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Making Matzah (post in Progress)

Whoever eats food with hametz in it is to be cut off form the community of Israel-- it doesn`t matter whether he is a foreigner or a citizen of the land.  Eat nothing with hametz in it.  Wherever you live, eat matzah !   --Exodus 15:19~20 
Matzah is not available anywhere near where I live, but there are two places that I know of in Tokyo where we can order it. Praise God!
I ordered some Matzah for this Passover and thankfully it arrived on time!
But I still wanted to try to make it!

One of my friends who is observing Passover this year for the first time will be attending a seder (Passover meal, the word itself means `order`).  She asked me how to make it.    I think its beautiful that many people who are not Jewish are beginning to understand that the Passover is not just for Jewish people but for all who call on His name.   We remember the Exodus from Egypt and being set free.   The bread had to made in haste.  We remember that Yeshua died for our sins and set us free.

While making the matzah, it is a wonderful time to meditate on all of the story of Passover and of our Salvation. 

I will include some scriptures and notes. 

 The people took their dough before it had become leavened and wrapped their kneading bowls in their clothes on their shoulders.   ---Exodus 12:14

 You are supposed to roll the dough out very thin! Be sure to dust your working surface with flour so it doesn`t stick once you roll it ! Mine probably should be a little thinner, as the baking time should be short!
 When we pierce the Matzah with a fork, we remember Yeshua`s body that was broken and pierced for our transgressions.

But He was pierced 
because of our transgressions,
crushed because of our iniquities.
The chastisement for our shalom
was upon Him,
and by His stripes we are healed.

--Isaiah 53:5

Spring Cleaning in between the Blossoms

cleaning to get to any last crumbs that might be lingering in the corners of the refrigerator drawer, the cabinets, the floor...

the view inside our refrigerator after the Passover cleaning!

after clearing out the `chametz` a shelf is free for the Matzah!

This day is to be a memorial for you.  You are to keep it as a feast to ADONAI.  Throughout your generations you are to keep it as an eternal ordinance.  For seven days you are to eat matzot, but on the first day you must remove hametz from your houses,  --Exodus 12:14~15

It happens so fast once the first blossoms start to open.
The approaching weeks before Passover also have that same excitement as we are coming into the season of new life and Resurrection.  Passover and Cherry Blossoms come around at the same time.  God`s plan is so perfect, and there are reasons for His seasons!

 When doing the Passover cleaning I have a kind of desperation to go into those deep corners of the cabinet and the refrigerator to get out each crumb and dust that is accumulating.
Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit , bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.  --2 Corinthians 7:1
Then it becomes like a race to get the hametz (anything with leaven) out of the house and clean the cabinets before the blossoms fully open.  Just when you just want to be outside all the time, you know that you need to clean out the `hametz` which takes some time indoors. 

When I was cleaning I realized this bit of wisdom---you can`t clean with a dirty sponge.

In the same way, when our heart is full of `dirt` and `sin` and we haven`t sought God to clean our heart, and we bring all that into our lives, it is a little like that isn`t?!
Well, calling our hearts a dirty sponge sounds a little strong, but as I think about it...well, yecch, it is!
 We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment.  We all fade like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.   ---Isaiah 64:6 
We keep collecting the dirt and our hearts are like that sponge, and we go about life not even knowing how dirty it is. I had no idea until God showed me through Yeshua!! It will be exactly four years ago tomorrow that I was saved through Yeshua! I  just realized that while writing this, this year it will coincide with Passover!  

God cleans out our hearts, like the way we look into find the `hametz` in the cabinet.  He searches our hearts and makes us clean!!  That is  what God does through Yeshua, the unblemished Lamb who is the Passover Lamb who came to take the sin of the world!!
Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!  --John 1:29
Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD:  though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.   --Isaiah 1:18
The blood of Yeshua cleanses us from sin.  Yeshua is the beginning, the middle and the end. He was there in the Exodus and before; He was there in the Temple and He will be there in the Revelation when the streets are sparkling clean and the river of the water of life will be there bright as crystal,

flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the city`s street. 
--Revelation 22:1~
The message of the gospel is so simple and beautiful.
We are like that sponge, and we need to be made new (as in my metaphor of the cleaning when we can`t get anything clean with the dirty sponge) and often we don`t even know it! But  God knows that. He made us. He knows us.  And He loves us.  That is why He gave us His only Son who died for our sins. 

Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me.

---Psalm 51:10

God Bless you and have a great week!

Monday, March 26, 2018

Cherry Blossoms Ball

From Heaven they fall....

do you recall the cherry blossoms ball!?
  Happy Spring to all !

Spring Postcard

I am my beloved`s 
and my beloved is mine.

--Song of Songs 6:3 


He browses among the blossoms.


Matzah Delivery! Spring Haiku

Sing the first blossoms

  Passover draws near

 a ring on the doorbell

Matzah is here!

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Shabbat before Passover

Shabbat diary

This week was the Shabbat before Passover.

I have started clearing out all the`chametz` (things with yeast) and cleaning the cabinets.

Its funny the challah this Shabbat came out much less "puffed up" than my usual Challah.
Ordinarily I would have minded that, but this time it seemed perfect for the week before Passover.

As we prepare to remove all yeast from our homes for Passover, it just seemed to make sense that the challah too were beginning to reflect the season.  Yeast is said to represent pride, our ego, and sin.  We eat unleavened bread for one week as commanded by God for the seven days of Passover, and these weeks before are a  time to prepare and clear out the leaven from our cabinets and from our hearts.

So these humble challah seemed right.

It was also a special Shabbat in our home, as my daughter will be leaving for college next week! It was her last Shabbat home before her new and exciting time of living on her own begins.

For the dinner, I made a brisket!  (recipe LINK below and on sidebar, ours was smaller,  for 3, and cooking time was one hour and a half) It came out perfect!  I  decided to make it a feast tonight while my daughter was still here.  We had celebratory dessert to celebrate her entrance to school.    I usually don't eat sweets but it was a special day!! My daughter chose the "Mon Balon" , a chestnut creme tart,  I chose the sakura cake! , and so my husband got the Roll Cake!

This offering, with cakes of leavened bread added, he shall offer along with his thanksgiving sacrifice of well-being.

--Leviticus 7:13
יג  עַל-חַלֹּת לֶחֶם חָמֵץ, יַקְרִיב קָרְבָּנוֹ, עַל-זֶבַח, תּוֹדַת שְׁלָמָיו.

This scripture is from the Torah reading in Parsha Tsav from this past week.  The Hebrew verse contains both the word `challah` (in the English in this case, "cakes")  and `shalom` (peace, well-being).  Two of my favorite words!!   It also contains the word `chametz`, which is the word for leaven, which is what we must do without on Passover.  I love that all these words are in this verse which we read in the readings just before Pesach (Passover).  And it also contains the word "Corban" which means "offering" or "sacrifice".  Oh, and it also contains the word `todah`which means Thanks.  I think this verse is very amazing to meditate on all these things as we prepare for Pesach.  Heavenly Father, we give You thanks for this Passover and for setting us free from bondage in Egypt.  We give thanks for the Lamb of God, the Bread of Life, who became the ultimate offering for our sins.  He sets us free.  He is our Shalom.  Yeshua.  To You we give Thanks!!!

Shabbat Shalom!
Shavu`a Tov!!

Blessings and Love,


Note and recipes:
A recipe variation that I discovered this Shabbat.
I wanted to make Chicken Marsala as one of the dishes.  When I went to the wine shop to buy wine  I saw a small bottle of local wine called Pione.  Pione are grapes that are grown unique to Japan!! Pione wine is from grapes grown in our Prefecture!  So I changed the Chicken Marsala to Chicken Pione, and may add it to my Challah and Cherry Blossoms Cookbook!!

The base recipe I used, with a few variations, for the Chicken Pione is from Joy of Kosher, THIS recipe for Chicken Marsala.

The recipe I followed for the brisket is THIS recipe from Torey Avey`s blog. My variations in this recipe  include, 1.   reduced the recipe greatly as ours was for 3 people, and so reduced accordingly; ginger instead of garlic; Japanese Tensai-to for the brown sugar.  I recommend making it using your variations.  P. S.  I was very happy, my daughter asked for this recipe to take with her!!  Along with recipes for some of her favorite Japanese dishes!

Love and Blessings and Shalom!♡ Shayndel

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The Color Pink, and what is our Purpose?

For You have created my conscience.
You knit me together in my mother`s womb.
 I praise You,
for I am awesomely, wonderfully made!
Wonderful are Your works---and my soul knows that very well.

Psalm 139:13~14

I guess its no surprise,
I like the color pink!!

This week a particular pink has been pursuing me.
First I received  a potted plant ~~~ with pretty pink flowers that look like crepe

Then I took out a pink sweatshirt to wear from my cabinet that I hadn`t worn in a year.

Later I went to do some of my worship dance homework.
One was a prayer.

I was going to change into a white dress, but I felt that the Lord wanted me to keep on the pink sweatshirt, so I did the upload with the pink sweatshirt.  Wearing the pink sweatshirt I felt like a child.  This is the prayer I prepared.  It is for all who are seeking purpose from our Father in Heaven to align with His Vision.  Playing now on this video here:

Have a blessed day!
♡ Shayndel

 He made known to us the mystery of His will, in keeping with His good pleasure that He planned in Messiah.  The plan of the fullness of times is to bring all things together in the Messiah---both things in heaven and things on earth, all in Him.  

--Ephesians 1:9~10

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Nissan 1!

Nissan 1

I took a bicycle ride to the park to see if the cherry blossoms were blossoming.
I knew they probably weren`t quite yet, so I took a cherry blossoms ball with me to bring some pink.
The trees were dotted with buds, buds, buds!

I stood on the grass and threw the cherry blossoms ball
into the sky! 
Maybe the pink would profusely pour down on the trees and the buds would blossom!
This is what happens around now in the month of springtime.
Everyone is looking up!  To see if there is a blossom yet!
Birds are busily finding them first.

People ask each other, did you see any blossom?
Not yet, not yet!
Anticipation is in the air!

A little girl joined me, and we both took turns throwing the cherry blossoms ball up to the sky!  She saw it was fun, and when she threw the ball up, it landed on the tree!  The tree now had pink!! A pink cherry blossoms ball in the cherry tree.  She jumped up to try to reach it, but it was too high.  She ran and got her jump rope to use it to move it and loosen it and get it down.  It worked! 

The ball was set free, but now the jump rope was in the cherry tree!

She pulled on it and it came down too.

We played a little more with the ball, throwing it up to the sky!
She told me her name, smiled,  and when it was time we said,
good bye.

Happy Nissan 1! *

*The first day of the first month, Nissan, of the Hebrew calendar