Spotlight On Today - 2015
Our extended family has enjoyed a number of simchas during the past year, and it is a pleasure to share the good news with you.
Noah Staple (great-grandson of Eva Lavine Bernstein) became a Bar Mitzvah on September 6, 2014, in Westfield, New Jersey, to the delight of his family and friends. According to his grandmother, Fran Nayowitz, “His Mom and Dad made Noah a spectacular afternoon party, but I must say, Noah planned and had input into all the details – the invites, his Tallis, the venue, the menu, and of course, his clothes – plus all the other particulars! We joked that at 13 years old, he had the potential to be a party planner.”
Jacob Ripps (great-grandson of Sadye Lavine Brown and grandson of Marvin “Buddy” Brown) celebrated his Bar Mitzvah at The Temple in Atlanta, Georgia, on May 9, 2015. Following in the footsteps of his older sister Emma, Jacob did an incredible job preparing for his big day and leading the morning service. Family and friends gathered later for a fun-packed evening of dinner and dancing. Jacob was excited to share his special day with his family, including his grandaunt and granduncle Doris and Bob Pletman and cousins Ed and Mike Pletman.
Lily Ertischek (great-granddaughter of Bess Lavine Cohen) graduated this June from Brighton High School, which is in a suburb of Rochester, New York. She especially enjoyed being editor in chief of her yearbook, The Crossroads. Her grandmother, Abbey Rasnick, is proud to report that Lily will be a freshman this fall in the honors college of SUNY Buffalo, part of the State University of New York system, where she received a scholarship. Lily would like to major in journalism.
Daniel Berk (great-grandson of Carl Lavine) graduated June 21 from Nanuet High School in Nanuet, New York. In the fall, Daniel will be attending Binghamton University, part of SUNY, with an undeclared major in the Harpur College of Arts & Sciences. He has recently decided to pursue his education in computer engineering. “To do this,” he says, “I will have to maintain a good work ethic and, more importantly, good grades to be able to transfer into the Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering.” His grandmother, Phyllis Berk, is certain that if “good work ethic” is the criterion, this website’s Designer & Manager will soon fulfill his dream.
Gabe Lazarus (grandson of Bess Lavine Cohen) reports that he and his family are settling on the East Coast. After five moves in ten years, crossing more than 20,000 miles, Gabe and his wife, Raquel Leon, are thrilled that his company has allowed him to be based remotely from the Washington, DC, area. They moved into their new home in Bethesda, Maryland, in August and “hope that this move sticks!” Their two children, Sofia and Jacob, ages 8 and 6, respectively, “have already given their thumbs-up to their new house and school playground,” according to Gabe. Needless to say, his mother, Freyda Lazarus, has memorized the Amtrak schedule.
Last but not least, The Lavines of Saratoga held its first get-together on July 11 at the home of Freyda and Alan Lazarus in Pompton Lakes, New Jersey. Thirty cousins, representing three generations, had a wonderful afternoon getting to know one another – or getting reacquainted after many years. There were mounds of good food and lots of liquid refreshment, not to mention a beautiful pool, perfect for the kids. The scheduled “entertainment” was a hands-on demonstration of the website by Daniel Berk, who showed us all how to become members. The next Spotlight on Today article will feature more pictures from this party, which was enjoyed by all attendees, as you can readily see from our group photo. If you were unable to attend this cousins’ get-together, we hope you can make the next one. We missed you!