This past week has been super hectic and I am just sitting down to post my blog about our cake party! I can not believe I am actually writing this. We have been planning this party for a whole year and counting down for 250 days, and now it is behind us. Two Fridays ago, we had an amazing time celebrating our accomplishments over the past eleven months. We worked really hard and made it through our first school year. We could not have done it without the loving support of our friends and family. So, it was fitting to celebrate this milestone with them.
Our house was hopping by 5:45 AM on Friday morning. By the time I woke up, the girls were dressed and dancing around. We had eight cakes to ice and platter and then we had to figure out how to transport all our party goods and desserts to the park where we were having the party. I am so thankful for the wonderful suggestion to have the party at a local park, and borrow tables and bathroom access from the shul next door. Erev shabbat is not the time to have tons of people eating cake in our house. My in laws graciously brought their car over and helped us bring all of our party supplies to the park. We set up the tables and spread out our cakes. Between our cakes and the ones our family brought we had about 12 cakes to start off the party.
At 10AM our friends started trickling in with cakes and cookies in hand. Each person that attended the party had been such an integral part of our aliyah experience. They each helped us in their unique way, and we are so grateful for all their assistance and guidance. It was so special to celebrate this milestone with our aliyah family; the three families that made aliyah to Ramot at the same time as us have become part of our honorary family. We are so fortunate to be able to go through this crazy journey with them. Although the idea for the cake party started with just our immediate family, it grew to include our aliyah family whose children also made it through their first year of school.
Someone mentioned to me that I looked so happy at the party. I answered that of course I am ecstatic. It was surreal to have made it to that point. We have been thinking about how it would feel to complete our first year of aliyah. I shed many tears worrying about how our children would cope with making aliyah. I was worried about how they would make friends, learn the language and progress academically. Once we moved, all my fears became a reality. As we jumped into the school year, I realized just how difficult our klita was going to be. Each afternoon I would listen to my daughters express their frustrations about the days events. I am not going to sugar coat it, making aliyah is rough. As the year went on homework gradually became easier, the girls made nice friends and their grades reflected their academic successes. And at that moment, I was standing at our cake party, celebrating our accomplishments. We made it! I can not tell you how proud I am of our children for doing what I am not sure I could have done. We always tell them that they are doing something harder than anything we ever had to do - and they are doing it so well! So, we ate lots of cake and enjoyed a fun party with friends. Our cake party was a success and so was our first year as new olim! I can not wait to see what next year will bring. Of course, there will be new challenges, but I am confident that we will make it through just as we have this year.