I'm obviously not a big fan of religious ceremonies, but Val's family has a funny way of celebrating that bucks the trend of over-the-top parties. Instead of congregating all week in synagogue to worship you-know-Who, we're spending the week repairing Katrina-damaged neighborhoods. Today we built and stocked a library for a local public school (I built the shelves in the photo below and my 6-year-old sanded them down). Tomorrow we're installing floors in a condemned home in the lower 9th Ward -- apparently we don't get the day off for either Christmas or Hanukah. Oy.
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