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Passover, the Jewish holiday that celebrates the story of the ancient Israelites becoming free from slavery in Egypt, begins this year on Monday, April 18. The holiday continues for eight nights during which time no leavened foods are eaten, to remember that the Jews fled Egypt before their bread had time to rise. Instead, Matzoh is eaten. Other Passover traditions include having a festive meal, the Seder, when the ancient story is retold to the next generation with the assistance of a Haggadah.
For the festive Passover meal, an elegant table is a must. Also a must - keeping the kids content while the Haggadah is read - Seders are known to go late into the night.
My favorite picks for the younger set are The 4 Questions Finger Puppets ($17) - great for keeping the kids entertained for at least a few minutes
and My Little Dishes Passover Set ($17) because even the youngest at the table deserve special holiday dishes.
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You can also amuse the kids with these Passover crafts or choose from ready-to-go options including a kit to Design Your Own Seder Plate ($15) or a book you can use to create My Haggadah Made it Myself ($25; FYI--a Haggadah is a Jewish text that sets forth the order of the Passover Seder). All good for at least a few minutes of peace at the table.
For the adults, I love Studio Alim's Imprint Seder Plate ($189) for both its gorgeous design and because it is made in Israel.
Looking for a new twist on the very old tradition of Passover? Consider adding an orange to the Seder plate, which according to an article on My Jewish Learning was begun in the 1980s by the feminist scholar Susannah Heschel "as a symbol of inclusion of gays and lesbians and others who are marginalized within the Jewish community." This tradition continues to evolve, as does the very items on the Seder Plate.
The Kitchn discusses some of these new additions in The Seder Plate and New Traditions, and I must admit I am considering making a change or two to the Seder Plate at our celebration. I only wish it could look as beautiful as the one in our main feature.
To all those celebrating, Happy Passover! What are your favorite holiday traditions?
Anna Sandler is a contributor to Momtrends.com. She also writes a personal blog atRandomHandprints.comabout life in scenic New Jersey with three kids under the age of eight. Momtrends was not paid for this post.