“A Very Jewish Summer” I Evoking Childhood Shabbat Memories, Prehistoric Cookie Style!

Welcome “A Very Jewish Summer”, a weeklong blogging event celebrating Jewish traditions, with a summer flair! We’re excited to kick off this event with a post related to celebrating Shabbat with young children in the home.

The idea for this post began a few weeks ago when we baked some dinosaur cookies for a birthday party for a four year old that goes to the temple preschool with Elaine’s youngest.

Now, usually when we bake – we chat, we kibitz, we kvell and commiserate – and as we made these adorable prehistoric treats, we thought about that “Dinosaur Shabbat Song” … the one with an origin so difficult to find … the one Shabbat song that most preschoolers learn, with it’s catchy tune and lyrics (and impossible correlation to Shabbat)!

So as we decorated these tasty treats we talked about our Shabbat traditions, our joy in celebrating the week on Friday evenings, whether it be at home or the Family Service at our temple … we also joked around about putting kippot on a couple of these guys for this post!






If you’re not familiar with the song, we’ve posted the lyrics below and a link to Linda Arnold’s cover of the song, “There’s a Dinosaur Knocking”, where you can listen to a sample for free!


There’s a dinosaur

Knockin’ at my door

Knockin’ 1-2-3

There’s a dinosaur

Knockin’ at my door and he wants to spend

Shabbat with me

Well, he wants to light the candles

He wants to drink the wine

And he wants to eat the Challah

‘Cause it always tastes so fine

To listen to a sample of the song click here.

How do you celebrate Shabbat and make it fun and relaxing for your children? We’d love to hear from you, so please don’t be a stranger and make sure to check out the amazing posts by our amazing co-bloggers starting tomorrow with our new friend Dena’s post at Chai and Home, http://www.chaiandhome.com/!


A Very Jewish Summer

Yenta Mamas is proud to participate in the first inaugural A Very Jewish Summer! Five bloggers from the United States and Israel are getting together to present stylish and clever ideas to inspire your summer. Each day from Monday, June 17 to Friday, June 21 a new post will be published by one of the bloggers on the topic of summertime, Jewish crafts, kosher food, and entertaining style. The blog roster features the leading emerging Jewish blogs today.

This year’s roster includes:

Sign up at YentaMamas.com to receive the posts via e-mail.

Queen for a Day! | Purim Queen Cookies

It’s Purim again! Last year we made some Queen Esther and King Ahasuerus cut out cookies using bright and vibrant colors to help us retell this biblical story of good over evil (http://yentamamas.com/purim-is-coming/). This year we kicked around the idea of making grogger (noisemaker) cookies or Esther’s crown and Haman’s hat … but none of those ideas were that inspired. Then, just this morning, I was looking for a cutter and came across this little tulip we have and bingo … an idea was born and I said to Elaine, “Look! Mini Queen Esther Cookies!” (it doesn’t take to much to make us happy around here) … so we baked a batch for our friends and got to work with the fun part!

First, we iced the top of the tulip to make her crown, applying a small amount of disco dust (edible “pixie dust” like stuff) to the wet icing to give her crown that royal sparkle.

queen crowns

Then we filled in her beautiful porcelain face. Next, we gave her some perfect red, pretty lips.

Of course no queen is finished without an abundance of hair.


Lastly, we gave her some eyes to see and “blushed” her cheeks to give her a rosy glow.


Queen Esther

Isn’t she just the most darling queen you’ve seen in a while?

Did Anyone Ever Tell You, “It’s what’s inside of you that counts …”? | Valentine’s Secret Gift Boxes

Well it’s true! Especially when it comes to these fun Valentine Cookie Boxes we made for our families!

To start, we baked the sides of the boxes, selecting cookie cutters that would work for the size of the secret compartment we needed (enough space leave our candy surprise therein).

After the cookies had baked and cooled, we got to assembling by using one of our whole cookie hearts as a base, piping a small amount of Royal Icing along the edge and setting our cutout cookie on top.

Heart Box 3 cookies


Herat Box bottom layer

Herat Box bottom layer


Heart Box Middle Layer



Next, we added our secret candy surprise!

Heart Box with m&m Then we decorated the tops of the cookies boxes.

Heart Box decorated tops

Then we piped around the edges of the cutout cookie and carefully placed our third layer to the top. Our boxes were complete … well almost!

IMG_6024Phew, now if only we can keep these little treats a secret for just a little longer!

IMG_6023 IMG_6028So … what do you think? What would you add to the interior of your Cookie Box if it were up to you? What do you think our kids will say when they shake their handsome Valentine’s treats tonight and they hear a little something click inside? Shhh … we can’t wait to find out!!


P.S. Our kids loved them and were totally surprised!

“Jar of Hearts” | The Perfect Valentine’s Gift

Not even the sad lyrics of Christina Perri’s song, “Jar of Hearts” could have stopped us from jonesing to do something special with these Mason jars we just purchased!

So, with love in our hearts, we set off to bake and decorate even more Mini Heart Cookies to fill these precious pots of love to the brim! Two dozen hearts fit into one jar, how adorable (and if you’re numbers person like April is, how perfectly balanced)!

 Our kids are so excited to deliver these to their favorite teachers tomorrow!

IMG_6008 IMG_5995
Jars of Hearts

I’m Nuts About You! | Valentine’s Cookies

Well, we reached for the stars this week in Valentine’s Day preparation and in return we got some love! Everywhere we turned, there was a little piece of love! Check out these coordinated Valentine’s Day Treats and Teacher Gifts appropriately titled, “I’m Nuts About You”!


Each adorable gift we made included a hot pink Squirrel (complete with a handsome bow tie), a fully flooded Acorn and Mini Heart and a Message Cookie. How cute are these?

Nuts Teacher GiftThen, moving on, we made Mini Heart Valentine Gift Bags for classmate and friend giveaways, boy were these cute and plentiful! We made over 200 of these suckers! Wow, we have a lot of love to spread, don’t we?!
IMG_5946 Mini Hearts in Bag

Happy 2013 | Cookie photo booth props

Photo by: Waldman Photography

Photos by: Waldman Photography

Happy 2013! Thanks to Waldman Photography we had a super fun photo booth on New Year’s Eve! My girls had a blast posing for the camera and I think the adults did too. We took our annual family photo with our “New Year Sunglasses.” (I really need to make a collage of my family in our glasses from all the past years!) The best part was that of all the Yenta Mama cookies were put to good use (see cookies here). Check out some of the fun!

Photo By: Waldman Photography

Photo By: Waldman Photography

Karen_headshot-WaldamanPhoto-8x12-51 Karen_headshot-WaldamanPhoto-8x12-45 Karen_headshot-WaldamanPhoto-8x12-40

RR 2013

Happy New Year…Party on a Platter!

Hope your party plans call for champagne, hats, streamers, and fun! We decided to make everything needed for a New Year’s Eve party!

We are looking forward to photo prop fun with the sunglasses, bow ties, and hats.

We are sure that these won’t last long tonight! Hope your New Year’s Eve is full of sweet memories. Wishing everyone health and happiness and lots of cookies in 2013!

Jewel Colored Holiday

We want your opinion? We decided we much prefer these royal, jewel-tone Christmas cookies over the traditional red and white. Of course we have made both this season. Which do you prefer? To those who celebrate…have a Merry Christmas!

For comparison…..Here are the traditional red and white!

Holiday Angels

We are busy making teacher gifts for the holidays. This years theme is “Thank You for Teaching our Little Angels.” We love the simplicity of red and white together. For other angel inspiration check out sweetsugarbelle.com who did a beautiful tribute post to the families in Connecticut.  Enjoy!


Next year in Jerusalem!

We know that this statement is traditionally made at the conclusion of the
Passover Seder, but we couldn’t help but to make that small wish as we
decorated these Yom Kippur (Break the Fast) cookies! We hope our vision of
that classic Jerusalem skyline was seen with ease, especially when paired
with our colorful shofars, stars of David and dark red holiday apples!