Archive for No Stress Giving

Jewish Housewarming Gifts: About Mezuzahs (Mezuzot)

Why a Mezuzah is a Great Housewarming Gift

One of the ways you can identify a Jewish home is by the mezuzah that marks the door frame. The word “mezuzah” is Hebrew for “doorpost,” and the plural form of the word mezuzah is “mezuzot.” The torah instructs Jews to “write these commandments on the doorpost of your home,” which is why people place a mezuzah on their doorposts.

What is a Mezuzah?

It’s a long narrow case that contains a scroll with the Shema prayer inscribed on it – the holiest Jewish prayer.

There are many kinds of mezuzot, some more traditional, some contemporary, all crafted to contain this special scroll. Sometimes a mezuzah will have the word “Shalom” on the outside, or some are decorated with Jewish symbols.

Jewish housewarming giftThis gorgeous pewter mezuzah, with the shin in the form of an olive branch, embraces peace – in the home, in the heart, in the world. It comes with contrasting brass screws and paper scrolls, is for use indoors or out and measures approx. 4.5″x1″.  It’s also Handmade in the USA. $44.99 – Send One Now

Not only do people put mezuzahs on their outer doorposts, but sometimes also on their interior ones. So anyone who follows this Jewish tradition who’s buying a new home will appreciate a mezuzah as a housewarming gift.

mezuzah as housewarming giftThis mezuzah is so pretty, it would be appreciated in any doorway. It is made by hand painting, followed by a variety of materials meticulously arranged inside the delicately cut stainless steel frame. $127.99 – Send One Now

Even if they have one mezuzah already, there are plenty of doorways in every home! That’s why we think a mezuzah is a wonderful Jewish housewarming gift. See more ideas for housewarming gifts here.

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Passover Hostess Gifts Made Easy

JoinouremaillistSo, you’re invited for the seder! Mazel tov! Someone else will do the cooking and the worrying. You just have to show up. Right? Well, yes, but it’s so nice to bring a gift for your host or hostess.

So, nu? What should you bring? Passover hostess gifts can be tricky. If your hosts observe the holiday traditions, they have been working very hard to clean the house and banish all traces of chametz (leavening.) You may love to cook or bake, but they may not be in a position to accept home-prepared food items. Flowers are nice, but the first seder night is on Shabbat* so the Sabbath-observant hosts may not want to handle cut flowers after the sun goes down.

A thoughtful seder guest does have some nice, worry-free options when it comes to Passover hostess gifts:

MoradDuoLgKosher wine is a welcome seder gift, as guests are obliged to drink four cups of wine during the ritual meal. Don’t worry, you are not limited to the syrupy-sweet Concord wines of your grandparents’ generation. Many stores now carry fine kosher wines to please the most sophisticated palate. Choices include Israeli imports, derived from Merlot, Cabernet, Chardonnay and other popular varietals. Choose a white wine to complement the gefilte fish, and a red to go with the brisket. Be sure the wine is clearly labeled “kosher for Passover.”

Passover Cookie Platter, Challah ConnectionPassover desserts also make a lovely gift. Never in the 3,000-plus years of Passover observance has a single Jew complained that there were too many desserts. Bring or send a basket of their favorites: rainbow cookies, macaroons, chocolate-covered matzah, seven-layer cake, candy, nuts, fruit and more. You’ll be invited back every year!

Passover Judaica items are the way to go, if you prefer to give a gift that will last beyond one evening, Challah Connection offers a beautiful selection of Passover Judaica. Trivets from Israel can be a beautiful addition to the seder table, and a decorative match box cover will remind them of you every time they light Shabbos and yontif candles, all year round. If the seder guests include young children, some Passover games and books will keep them engaged and make the seder a fun, educational experience for the kids and their parents.

Challah Connection will deliver your gift directly to the hosts’ home, so you don’t have to schlep. And every Passover gift basket at is certified kosher for Passover. You can share the joy of the holiday and experience the freedom of knowing your gift will surprise and delight your hosts.

Visit and order your hostess gift. Then buy a gift for yourself, too. Enjoy!

* Passover begins on Friday evening, April 3 in the year 5775 (also known as 2015.)

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A More Beautiful Passover Seder

JoinouremaillistThis year, Passover begins at sundown on Friday, April 3. Whether you are a host or a guest, chances are you’ll be attending a seder, as Passover is the most widely celebrated of all Jewish holidays.

The seder is so much more than a meal. It is an experience that engages all of our senses: taste is primary, but we also hear the ancient story and our favorite holiday songs, smell the horseradish, and lean on a pillow, as we raise up the matzah and seder plate for all to see.

MDSPLargeThere is a principle of Judaism called “hiddur mitzvah,” beautifying or enhancing the mitzvah. When we perform a mitzvah — a religious obligation – it is not meant to be unpleasant. We strive to enhance the experience, and to make it even more memorable in every way. For example, Jewish tradition tells us to refrain from eating matzah until the seder itself, so that we can savor that first taste — which is much improved when you haven’t eaten it in a long time!

One way to add to the beauty and enjoyment of the holiday is to purchase Passover Judaica – ritual objects and books that are unique to the holiday – and use them in your seder, this year and every year.

If you are hosting a seder this year, you will want to have a beautiful seder plate. If you have a seder plate, think about adding a special matzah plate and a matzah cover, Elijah’s cup, even a new serving bowl or decorative utensil, can add to your experience.

This could be the year to replace your mismatched Haggadah “set” that you picked up for free at the local supermarket, and finally buy a beautifully illustrated Haggadah – or a whole set – to use and cherish at this seder and all the ones to come.

HamTrivLGIf you already have a full complement of Passover Judaica, Challah Connection offers a beautiful selection of Judaica items that are suitable for any occasion. Trivets from Israel can be a beautiful addition to the seder table, and a decorative match box cover will enhance your enjoyment of Shabbos and yontif candle lighting, all year round.

If you will be a guest at the home of friends or family, consider bringing or sending a beautiful Judaica item as a hostess gift. Challah Connection will deliver your gift directly to the hosts’ home, so you don’t have to schlep.

Visit and browse our Judaica items, as well as our marvelous selection of kosher for Passover gift baskets. And have a beautiful Passover!

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Corporate Gift Giving for Jewish Colleagues: Do’s and Don’ts

When you are sending corporate holiday gifts to Jewish clients, customers, employees, coworkers or even your Jewish boss, there are some do’s and don’ts to keep in mind:


Personal items are not appropriate for corporate gift giving, Challah Connection-Send anything that is too personal. A kosher food gift basket is the optimal gift for holidays including Hanukkah.

-Don’t send alcohol unless you know for a fact that the recipient drinks alcohol and there is no company rule against alcohol gifts.

-Review your company gift giving policy as well as the company policy of the recipient. There are often dollar and content restrictions on both sides.

-Don’t send different gifts to different people within the same office. You do not want to create tensions or questions as to why one person got “X” while another got “Y.”



Sweet Sentiments Holiday Basket, Challah Connection-Send a kosher basket that is large enough to feed the entire office.

-Send a kosher gift basket that every can eat. There are many food allergies that need to be considered—gluten free, nut free, sugar free. Do your research before selecting a gift to determine whether you need to address these.

-If you are sending to someone that is Muslim, a kosher gift basket will often be acceptable.

-If you have determined that alcohol is appropriate, wine from Israel is a special gesture (do not send alcohol to anyone who is Muslim—this is strictly forbidden).

California Dried Fruit and Nut Crate, Challah Connection-Send your gifts from a company that has a deep understanding of kosher food rules. You can determine if they do by asking a few questions such as: “What is your kosher certification?” or “What is the certification of Product XYZ?” If they need to ask many other people (and put you on hold for a long time), the company is not well versed in kosher/Jewish gift giving. The right company should also have a wide array of kosher gifts, not just 2 or 3. It is preferable to select a company where their entire shop is kosher (challahconnection and koshergiftbox are 100% certified kosher). Finally, the selected company should have experience with corporate orders and is willing to resolve any product or delivery issues that may arise.

-Be sure to include a gift message with your gift. Common corporate messages are “Happy Holidays, Wishing you a happy and prosperous 201X” or Happy Holidays, We appreciate your business and look forward to our continued relationship in 201X.” NOTE: Happy Holidays encompasses all December holidays without offending anyone. However, if you know that your recipients celebrate Hanukkah or Christmas, you can alter the introduction accordingly ie Happy Hanukkah or Merry Christmas.Rugelach Gift Tin, Challah Connection

Above are some of Challah Connection’s most popular kosher corporate holiday gifts.


Jane Moritz is Owner and Chief Maven Officer of Challah Connection and Kosher Gift Box, the premiere online purveyors of traditional kosher gifts for Jewish holidays, shiva, Jewish birthday celebrations and all Jewish gift giving occasions. Her companies have been “Creating Kvells Since 2002.”

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Introducing Lox, Bagels & Deli Baskets!

If you haven’t been keeping up with your calendar lately, Fathers Day is just around the corner! Surprise dad with one of these delicious deli-style gift baskets!

New York City is home to one of the most famous and authentic Jewish brunch foods – lox and bagels. However, we understand that not everyone can easily make a trip into the city to enjoy this delicious meal. That is why at Challah Connection we are introducing the NYC Brunch Basket. Packed into a lovely woven basket, the lucky fressers (eaters) will receive a half pound of smoked salmon, 6 tasty and chewy toasting bagels, cream cheese, and much more! Purchase this today for $109.99, and you don’t even have to deal with all of that Manhattan traffic! Click Here to learn more!



Remember back when mom and pop would take you to the Jewish deli around the corner, and all of the distinct aromas that you can still make out from miles away? Well here at Challah Connection we have created a similar experience that you can enjoy from the comfort of your own home! With this Kosher Deli Deluxe Basket comes 6 tasty and chewy toasting bagels, a quarter pound of smoked salmon, 2 full pounds of our favorite kosher salami from Hebrew National, as well as Eli’s European Rye Bread. Purchase today for $249.99, and Click Here for complete details on this special offer!



Looking for a simpler version of the Jewish deli experience? Well we have just the right Jewish Deli Gift Crate, which is perfect for any occasion! Securely packed in a wooden crate are a 2 lb. Hebrew National salami, Eli’s European Rye Bread, real deli mustard, 2 cans of Dr. Browns Cream Soda, and much more! Purchase today for $119.99, and Click Here for complete details.

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Just the Right Gifts for Rosh Hashana

rosh hashana breakfast basketHostess Gifts for Rosh Hashana

So you’ve been lucky enough to be invited to a delicious meal to kick off the Jewish New Year – now what can you do to say “thank you”?

After cooking for the Rosh Hashana crowd, your hosts won’t want to think about cooking the next meal! So surprise them with a perfect New Year’s breakfast! Send a Rosh Hashana gift basket including a delicious honey cake, some Bellagio coffee and an assortment of teas, and a jar of Sarabeth’s honey. Instead of dreading the post-meal dish washing, they will go to bed dreaming about a delicious, no-fuss breakfast you’ve provided. And you’ll be the first guest they invite back to break the fast!

Jewish New Year Gifts for the College Crowd

Rosh Hashana tower gift for college students

New college Freshmen can feel lonely on Rosh Hashana. For many it’s their first Jewish holiday spent away from home. Sending a gift for them to share with roommates, dorm residents and friends will kick off their New Year with joy. Everyone loves getting that little “you’ve got a package” slip in their college mailbox. Challah Connection’s Tower of Tradition gives them an exciting bunch of delicious little packages to unwrap and enjoy. They’ve love the traditional fresh apples and honey, rugelach, and amazing chocolate caramel apples. It’s a great way to share their Jewish traditions with college buddies. Or choose to send them a basket of Rosh Hashana essentials: challah, apples and honey, babka and rugelah (yes, we consider rugelah “essential”!). We have many other kosher gift baskets to choose from, too – just visit the website.

Kosher Gifts for Corporate Giving

Corporate gift for Rosh Hashana Jewish New Year

If you’re in need of a Jewish New Year gift for colleagues or clients, especially if you need a kosher gift, our elegant wine gift crate will always be a hit. A bottle of Binyamina Cabernet Sauvignon, delicious smoked sockeye salmon and flatbread crackers, some rugelach and fancy cashew nuts as well as a box of chocolate truffles – what could be a better way to say Happy New Year? The dark seagrass tray is a stylish accessory they’ll want to hold on to. It will always remind them of your thoughtful gesture.

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It’s Graduation time!

Graduation is upon us! At this time of year many parents, grandparents, friends and relatives are searching for the perfect gift–one to congratulate those who have labored many hours in the library studying and writing research papers in order to earn the degree and better themselves for the future. Graduation is a significant event in one’s life and a perfect time to reflect on one’s Jewish beginnings! Here at the Challah Connection, our goal is to make gift giving easier for you by offering appropriate and beautiful gifts. So of course, we have the perfect gift for graduations of many sorts!

One of our favorites and many of our customers’ favorites as well, is the beautiful Judaic Framed Art by Caspi. Recently, a customer who purchased the Business Blessing Judaic Framed Art (below) for her niece, emailed us to say: “My niece loved her graduation gift! She’s going to hang the artwork up in her new office. Thank you!” Since these artworks are so popular, we wanted to give you a behind-the-scene glimpse of their origins with Eran and Mickie Caspi, the delightful couple who own and create Caspi fine art.

Eran gave us really strong points as to why he believes the artwork is so popular. His primary reason being that “the artwork is just beautiful.” The images in the art are pleasing to the eye. The secondary reason is the price. Caspi’s already framed artwork costs less than going out and getting your own artwork framed! As Eran said, “It’s a work of art available as a framed gift ready to go!” And the framed artworks titled “The Lawyer’s Creed” and “The Healing Arts Prayer Framed Art for a Medical Professional” are top sellers for graduation.

Mickie, the artist behind the framed work, attributes her inspiration from everywhere. A certain type of architecture that’s appealing to her, or more evidently scenes of nature, are things that motivate her to create the images in her art. Mickie also likes “to incorporate Jewish motifs and scenes into the art work.”  Many of the poems include biblical aspects as well! Whether it be in the text, such as the  Lawyer’s Creed containing quotes from the Deuteronomy , or in the art with the  Maimonides Prayer, depicting Moses’ brass serpent.  These pieces of art truly come from the hearts of the owners, in an attempt to enter the heart of your recipient. The time and effort behind these pieces of art make it a gift to be cherished.

When we asked Eran if he believes that Caspi’s framed Judaic art is a perfect gift to receive to congratulate one’s accomplishments he replied “Absolutely!” Adding that, “When people receive these framed poems they are getting beautiful works of art. What we have heard from those who have purchased the artwork is that their recipient is touched and moved by the pieces.” So if you are still searching for the perfect graduation gift, do not hesitate to go to our website and order a Framed Judaic Gift. You and your recipient will both earn congratulations!

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Eight Stress Free Nights of Hanukkah

My friend Erica was babbling into the phone.  Something about evil and December and a plot to drive people crazy.

“Erica,” I said. “How many cups of coffee have you had today?”

“Four, but that’s not the point.”

“Okay…well, why did you just say that you loathe the month of December?”

“Because…between my family, and my in-laws, and my office, and my husband’s office, and my kids’ and their friends, and my friends…I just got out a calculator and realized that I have to purchase 64 gifts for Hanukkah this year.”

“Wow.  Well, you don’t have to get really expensive stuff.”

“That’s only one issue.  It’s the combing of websites, it’s the clicking through order forms.  And then I finally order it, and the company wraps it in Christmas paper.  That’s why I’m calling you.  I thought, well, maybe I’ll just ask Challah Connection to send out 64 chocolate babkas.  Or 64 blue and white cookies.”

“Erica, we could do 64 babkas, 64 Hanukkah Candy Platters, whatever you want,” I said. “But don’t you want your gifts to be…you know…unique as the people you’re giving them to?”

“That’s too much to hope for.  Isn’t it?”

“What if I told you that I could send 8 nights of wrapped Chanukah gifts to one address for you and you’d only pay one shipping charge?”

“You have such a service?”


“It’s a Chanukah miracle.”

“It’s just something Sherry and I thought of to help busy people–like us.”

“But I really only need to do 3 nights for my sister’s kids.”

“No problem.”

“You mean, I don’t have to run out and buy tape and wrapping paper and Hanukkah gelt and a menorah and something nice for my Aunt Betsy like maybe…oh, God, what can I get Aunt Betsy?”

“How about “A Treasury of Jewish Holiday Baking” wrapped and shipped for the first night?”Jewish Holiday Baking

“She’ll love that.”

It was music to my ears.

Here’s to a stress-free Hanukkah!



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