Favorite Things from Hanukkah

December 07, 2012

Hanukkah begins tomorrow night, so we’re in the spirit of sharing great memories and traditions from past celebrations. I talked to a few people in the office here who celebrate Hanukkah to hear their stories.

Bryna, a member of the Deltek team, remembers one very “surprising” Hanukkah from when she was young. It was a tradition for her parents to go out on Saturday night, so she and her siblings stayed home. This particular year they were all old enough to stay back without a babysitter, so they enjoyed a kid’s night-in. A travel agent happened to call that night, confirming their travel details for a trip to… Florida! This was news to them all- it must have been a surprise Hanukkah gift. But Bryna and her siblings didn’t say anything to their parents, whilst they ruin the surprise. They kept their lips sealed as they received cards each night for Hanukkah, promising them bathing suits, flip flops, and more… all leading up to an IOU for a trip to Florida. The kids couldn’t keep the secret in any longer, so they had to tell mom and dad that they knew all along! Despite the fact that the kids were in on the secret a bit too early, they enjoyed an unforgettable trip to Florida.

There isn’t just one Hanukkah that I remember. What stands out instead are the traditions that we made sure to repeat year after year. The evening would begin with dinner; we’d have homemade potato latkes and sweet applesauce at least a few nights. Then we’d fill our clay menorah with special Hanukkah candles that came in a variety of colors. Arranging them in patterns was my favorite activity. Then we would read the candle lighting prayer as we lit the candles. I must admit- my brother and I were eager to tear open the small mesh bags of chocolate coins that my grandma would mail us. I can remember at least a few times that we did this sitting on the kitchen floor, as we spun dreidels around without concern for all the game rules that we were breaking. And at the end of the night, I would sit patiently in front of the menorah as I watched the candles melt down to their end.

Katie’s Clay Menorah

We hope these stories are getting you excited for the holiday to begin. What are your favorite things from Hanukkah? If you have a tale or tradition to share, we’d love to hear! Post it in a comment here.

Happy Hanukkah from everyone on the Kona team!

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