Starting full Chatzos in the week of Purim

A new member writes:

Hi everyone,

Since joining I’ve really been enjoying reading what everyone has to say, and I’ve been improving in areas, but this week I’ve decided to really give Chatzos all I’ve got.

So I started today and I got done 2 loads of laundry, the bathroom and all the dusting lekavod shabbos. I made a menu for the week and shabbos, so I can make a shopping list for wed.  I’ve even mapped out which foods I’m gonna make which day and what I’m gonna clean when.  This is something new for me I gotta tell you!

Its really nice to have people to share my accomplishments and progress with. It really gives me that extra push to do it all the way.
So my goal is to be ready for shabbos by the time I leave for work friday morning. I’ll just leave showers and warming up food for later.
I cant wait till friday when I’ll be able to tell you all that I’ve done it!

Have a great week and good luck to you all,
Rochel Leah

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The Positive Influence of a Husband

With seven kids under ten, and my epicuran appetite, all likovod Shabbos of course, I would literally work till licht bentchen.

One day my husband announced that he heard from his friend that he didn’t eat anything that was cooked or baked after Chatzos. He thought it was a great idea that we should adopt! Anything produced after Chatzos I would have to eat by myself! Whoa, easy man!

The following Friday, just as the clock chimed Chatzos, he entered my kitchen carrying a large empty laundry basket, and as he approached the fully laden counters and sink, he swished all my pots and pans and mixing bowls and glasses and cutlery, filling up the basket to the very top and marched it straight into the bathtub, pulled the curtains closed, and turned on the shower so that on Motzai Shabbos when he returns it to me it would not be all dried out and crusted.

At first I almost cried, but then we just laughed together. I knew I married a non conformist, but such creativity I did not expect. Eventually I learnt my lesson and when I heard his footsteps approaching I would quickly rinse off the last vistages of my gourmet menu. Even though he got me out of the kitchen, which was a biggie, there was still plenty left to do in the rest of the house.

Today B”H the little crew are all married, and you can’t really teach an old horse new tricks. So I am really very grateful to have joined your marvelous inspiring Chatzos Club, and slowly, slowly, with a fervent prayer in my heart, I’m learning to make different choices and let go.

May you all be blessed with feeling the warm love and protection of Hashems presence always.

Tzivie Tabak
Yerushalayim

The power of starting with just one thing different

From Shoshana:

I’m not a full-blown chatzosnik yet. However, I will tell you, and I’m sure you’ll agree, that the very *awareness* that this whole idea of chatzos generates has really made a difference in my Fridays and in my overall coming into Shabbos.

I really only began by taking a suggestion from Azriela to do ONE THING DIFFERENT, because I knew I couldn’t take on the entire chatzos commitment right away. Well, that one thing turned into many little things, because once I was doing THAT one thing, well, why not do another *little* thing, and another…So I was starting my cooking on
Wed. instead of Thurs. afternoon, which meant that I needed to be more “aware” on Tues. of what I had in the house, etc…I can’t say that my Fridays are spent alternating between boredom and putting my feet up and finishing sefer tehillim…I still have a waaaaaaaaay to go til then…. ( I work til 12, then kids come home in 3 shifts after that,
lunch takes TOO LONG…my living room is exactly that: the room where EVERYONE LIVES, so it’s ALWAYS getting re-cluttered…you get the idea!)

The point is, as much as last Friday I started getting cynical, like when you cheat too much on a diet and say, “come on, this isn’t working anyway, so who am I kidding– gimme another cookie!!” I realized that just because it can’t be ALL at this point, does it have to be nothing???? No way! Let me take the baby steps, do what I can, and even if it’s not perfect, it’s gotta count for SOMETHING. I desperately don’t’ want that cynical “yi’ush” to set in again this Friday (or let’s call it what it really is: the yetzer hara at his best!), so right now ‘m just telling myself to go back to the baby steps and try to do one thing different than last week.