Review of Journey Together: 49 Steps to Transforming a Family

By Daniel D. Stuhlman, AJL ReviewsJourney Together: 49 Steps to Transforming a Family

“…this book connects seven sefirot of Kabbalah to the 49 days of counting the omer. Each one of the weeks has one of these concepts as a base and each day is paired with each of the other concepts. For example Chesed (loving kindness) is the base for week one. Pairing gevurah (strength/discipline) with chesed recognizes that for health and growth there are times when love is restrained by discipline. The author gives examples and wisdom from the Bible, rabbinic literature and contemporary sources. Then the author connects these ideas to advice for family relationships. Each chapter ends with questions for further discussion and thought.

This book made me think about kindness, strength, truth, eternity, humility, bonding, and leadership and how combinations of these concepts temper and reinforce each other.”

AJL Reviews


Discipline with Harmony: Parenting and Counting the Omer.

by Sarah Hermelinjourneytogether5

Years ago, when I was first starting my career in education, I taught a girl in her last year of high school. She was a doctor’s daughter, came from a good family, had many friends, earned excellent grades and did not behave with chutzpah. One night she was arrested along with her college-age boyfriend when he sold narcotics to an undercover police officer.

I found out the next day at school and was shocked. I also discovered that her parents, who could certainly afford to bail her out of the county jail, had chosen not to do so and, rumor had it, they were not even going to visit her.

I was floored. I was a young teacher, not yet a parent, and I was working towards my Masters degree in counseling at the time. I began to visit my student in jail, bringing her books and homework as an excuse to spend time with her and talk to her during what turned out to be a two-week stay behind bars.

Sitting in her cell, dressed in the standard-issue orange jumpsuit, she gradually came to terms with the fact that her parents were not going to bail her out (at least not right away). She also had to think about what it meant that they would not even come to visit her. She had to think about this so-called boyfriend. She had to think about her once bright dream of going to university drifting away forever. She had to think about what on earth she had done, and the situation she placed herself in.

Behind the scenes and unbeknown to their daughter or me, the parents were struggling to do the best thing for her. They were consulting night and day with professionals and had retained a good attorney who was later able to successfully argue that their daughter deserved probation for this first-time offense, given her age, her clean record, and, as I recall, the undercover police officer’s confirmation that she was not part of the sale. She was able to return to high school and later attended university.

Over the years, I have thought about this girl and her parents many times Continue reading “Discipline with Harmony: Parenting and Counting the Omer.”