Happy Hanukkah from Japan

Happy Hanukkah everyone!  Yes, I am a little late, but better late than never.  Right?

Last year I tried to get my friends together for a Hanukkah party but the close proximity to Christmas and lots going on made it difficult.  This year I decided not to even try and just celebrate at home with my husband.

That was until my friend Emily asked if I was having a party.  I said no and she told me she would love it if I did.  Emily is an amazing woman so I was not surprised that within days she secured a room on base with a kitchen right in the midst of holiday season.  In nothing short of a (Hanukkah) miracle, we had a location, so all that was left was getting the word out.  Emily had learned about Hanukkah as a child and wanted the same experience for her children.  I quickly learned that some of my other friends also really wanted to celebrate with me.

So last Saturday, on the last day of Hanukkah, I threw Misawa's first (or what I believe to be the first) Hanukkah party.

Here is Emily helping me get ready.
I found Hanukkah plates and table cloths last year on base which meant that I had them for the party this year.
So cute!
I made matzo ball soup and latkes.  I know matzo ball soup is not your typical hanukkah food, but since my sister and I don't eat meat we always had matzo ball soup at every holiday.  Now a holiday just isn't a holiday without it!  I was really excited to see that I had so much room to cook.  Trust me, this room will be on my list of places to reserve for future parties.  It was awesome!
I make my latkes from the box mix.  Grandma always did when she hosted the party, so making them just feels right.  I think next year I plan to make them from scratch, but the thought of it not smelling like grandma's house from frying up the mix makes me a little hesitant to give up the tradition.  At the same time, I know I really should be making them from scratch.  We'll see how it goes.  I have a whole year to figure it out.
I decided to order a cookie cake.  My friend here has a cookie home business and does amazing work.  She did not disappoint this time!  I love how this turned out.  Amazing!
Emily made some rugelach, which are a kind of Jewish cookie/baked good.  They were awesome!
Since everyone else there was not Jewish, I went over the story of Hanukkah, explained the traditional foods, taught the kids to play dreidel and lit the menorah.  We had an awesome time.  I am really thankful that Emily asked me to do this.  I am also really thankful to find that so many of my friends cared and were interested in learning more.  It was a lot of fun.  I hope we can make this a Misawa tradition.

QUESTIONS:  Did you go to a Hanukkah party this year?  What is your favorite holiday tradition?  Di you host any parties this year?


Gina; The Candid RD said...

I love matzo ball soup! And, I love that chocolate chip cookie cake (my favorite!). Looks like you and your sister did a great job. Nick and I are throwing a couple small get togethers, but we'll mainly be guests this year. And, I'm completely ok with that!!

Anonymous said...

yay hanukkah! we usually have my mom over for dinner and gift giving. this year she bought way too much baby crap - LOL! Home Goods is not your friend! haha!

See you soon! <3Mer

Jessie said...

I'm so glad you were able to have a Hanukkah party this year! That kitchen looks fantastically roomy - perfect for all the yummy foods you made! And the cookie cake is just beautiful. Your friend is very talented :)

We had a few dinner parties lately, but nothing holiday-related. It's nice to keep it low-key this year!

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