She's such a great girl, isn't she? He's such a good boy, I know.
Soon you won't be able to refer to them as kids anymore, it's time for their Bar and Bat Mitzvah!
You remember the day they were born, you might even recall their parents as kids, and now these kinderlach are all suited up to join the burden of the Mitzvahs with all the excitement that comes with it.
Several cultures and religions have their own version of Bar and Bat Mitzvah. Tracing these different traditions back, reveals that there's something very special about that age - 12 for girls and 13 for boys. It's the time where kids grow up, leaving behind their time playing with toys on the rug.
Instead of looking down at their simple yet fascinating forms of childish entertainment, they now begin to gaze forward and even upwards, to the sky.
These newly proclaimed teens of 12 and 13 are at the age where they start wondering about the world they see around them, asking the more difficult questions.
It's a (not-so) scientific fact, that a toddler can repeat the word "Why" up to 60 times a minute. They grow up and stop wondering why the letter S makes the sss sound, but as they join adolescence, they start pondering the more intriguing puzzles this world presents them with.
They don't always share their questions, as we wish they would, but a lot goes on in their heads at this age. That's why we, the jewish people, welcome our kids into their Mitzvahs and responsibilities at this age. We know their heads are in the right place for it.
At the time for their Bar and Bat Mitzvah, our young teens are expected to know their Mitzvahs, be able to read their portion and lead the tefillah. They're old enough to be in charge of their own fate, at least spiritually.
We are obviously around to provide guidance and support, but we, as parents, no longer carry the burden of their Mitzvahs.
The sources to this important rite of passage go all the way back to the Mishnah and Talmud.
Like many other elements in our ancient tradition, we can see the reason behind it. Many Mitzvahs make a lot of sense and are actually rooted in the fundamental basis of our behaviour as humans. The fact Bar and Bat Mitzvah boys and girls are handed their spiritual fate at this time, can easily be associated with giving our kids something to look forward to. Feeling like grown ups, easing into real life with this ceremony and the responsibilities that follow.
Even though they're still the same person they were the day before the party, they feel different. They feel like the world now has different expectations of them.
With such a significant birthday and celebration, we as guests and participants are expected to take part and help the Bar and Bat Mitzvah boy or girl enjoy their special time with a well thought present.
Finding just the right gift for this occasion isn't the lightest task as it requires combining the interests of a 12-13 year old along with the fact that this is a meaningful time for them, spiritually.
As always, we at Shalom House are here to help you get just the right gift for all the Bar and Bat Mitzvahs you're invited to.
Our Bar and Bat Mitzvah gift category holds a variety of fun and meaningful gifts for you to choose from. We have gathered a few of our favorite items for you here -
The Rainbow Tulip Glass Goblet is a wonderful option for the birthday boy or girl, as we know they are now permitted to lead the Kiddush on their own and actually account for anyone listening. This goblet is a fun choice as it encourages the young adult to take part in an important Mitzvah, develop their leadership skills as they chant before a group while using a colorfully decorated goblet they'll be sorry to leave behind.
This Shema Sterling Silver cuff is a fashionable reminder of our roots. As a stylish accessory, it holds a marvellous bling, and as a traditional element, it keeps the wearer focused on where they came from and who's looking out for them at all times.
The Ruby and Diamond Menorah Star Necklace is an exquisite piece of jewelry, made for people of all ages who are able to appreciate fine things. The menorah necklace holds much significance as it reminds us of our holy temple in Jerusalem, lighting up the huge space around it with the light of only 7 candles and endless kedushah.
The Mazel Tov Baseball is a fun and affordable option. As a part of a wide collection of decorated baseballs, you can add it on top of another gift or get the entire set. It's sure to make the recipient smile and can even be tossed around the yard, during a special birthday game. Just don't forget to let the birthday boy or girl catch the ball from time to time.
The Prayer Collection Baruch Kiddush Cup is for the more serious Bar and Bat Mitzvah boy or girl. You know the type, a sincere young adult, with the weight of the world already on their shoulders at 12 or 13. When they do the kiddush for the entire family, they put their hearts into it. Allow these young leaders to celebrate the Shabbat with a beautifully decorated kiddush cup they'll be proud of.
The Guitar Mezuzah is a part of our wide collection of fun Mezuzahs which can be suited to almost any hobby and style of room. Give the Bar and Bat Mitzvah boy or girl a judaica piece that will keep Hashem on their minds while keeping their friends asking.
We could go on telling you about all the great options to get the happy Bar and Bat Mitzvah, but it's time for you to have some fun of your own as you maintain your reputation as the BEST gift giver EVER.
We wish you and your family many happy and healthy returns, Mazel Tov!