bargainjewess

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I HAVE A NEW SITE!

In Uncategorized on March 29, 2009 at 9:13 am

To read all of my new posts (and old posts), please visit: http://bargainjewess.com

This site is now being retired.

To sign up for my new RSS Feed, click here http://bargainjewess.com/feed/

You can always follow me on Twitter @BargainJewess

Please leave your comments on my new site!

Getting used to the Job Search Face To Face

In Uncategorized on March 25, 2009 at 5:45 am

We live in an Internet society. We all use Facebook, and Twitter, Gmail and Google. Most people search for jobs via Careerbuilder, or Monster or various other job websites and half the time their resume goes in the garbage. Don’t get me wrong, I love the Internet and think it’s great for so many things, but in today’s job market one must be inventive, and creative if you really want a job.

I was laid off a little over a month ago and was really starting to get itchy not having a job. My parents taught me that hard work is good for you and I hate to have nothing to do. ( I choose to ignore cleaning my house) I made up my mind that today I would indulge in the forgotten art of pounding the pavement. I called my dad and asked him where the big fashion companies resided. I ran to Kinko’s, printed out a bunch of resumes, and was on my way.

I stopped into the closest building and started searching around for the directory. The doorman saw me looking lost and asked if I needed help. I figured why not tell him my story and make a friend, worst he could do was nothing. Turned out making friends is always smart, because the doorman had the hookup of all the companies hiring. I basically now have a job plus two other potential jobs in the bag and I only hit one building.

If you feel like the Internet search is getting you nowhere, get off your butt, make a ton of resume copies and hit the places you want to work. People love go-getter’s and if you’re a charmer all the better. Learn the art of talking to random strangers, people are frequently nicer than you think especially in this city with the unfriendly reputation.

Don’t get discouraged if they just take your resume and then turn you away. Plenty of places just took my resume and sent me on my way but I kept going. Remember that you are fabulous and have everything to offer. It’s all in the attitude. Hope my words of advice inspire and give hope to those searching. I know how rough it can be.

XoXo

Arielle Aka BargainJewess

Orthodox Jewish Feminism

In Uncategorized on March 19, 2009 at 3:55 am

When I was growing up I yearned with a desire to be just like the boys in shul and be called up to read from the Torah. I yearned to feel that intense connection to God, that I so clearly did not feel sitting behind curtain number 1. I always felt a profound sense of loss that I could never participate fully in the minyan or make an actual contribution to Judaism other than raising Jewish children or baking challah.

In my bais yaakov upbringing I felt stifled by the de rigueur chumash, navi, and mishlei, things that were appropriate for girls to learn but never quite stimulating enough for me. I wished to learn gemara; to be treated as an equal. I would watch the men dance with the Torah on Simchas Torah and feel a profound sense of loss that it was not me. That I was merely relegated to sit and watch.

After I got married I suddenly discovered a whole network of Orthodox Jewish Feminists. Women who yearned for more. For the first time in my life I danced with a sefer torah, and I found out that there were people who would teach me gemara, or how to lane megilla, and suddenly the Judaism of my childhood seemed to have shifted to a Judaism that could with time be inclusive.

In my shul recently there has been a search for a new Rabbi. The biggest questions on many people’s minds are what role will women play? Will they be able to dance in the main sanctuary with a sefer torah? Will we have a yoetzet? Will there ever be a female shul president? Suddenly before my eyes the patriarchal Judaism is taking stock and realizing that women feel excluded and if they sit on their haunches and do nothing, the already small orthodox movement will grow smaller.

I attended the Yeshivat Chovevei Torah Dinner recently and at the panel discussion the question was raised “Is there a moral imperative to have orthodox female rabbis?” It’s a question that will shock many and while there are many more pressing issues on the table it is something to think about as the dynamics of our community change.

I was so excited the other night meeting the famous blogger Jewess, otherwise known as Rebecca Honig Friedman, who brought to light the whole Mt. Sinai Shul announcer controversy. I am inspired by women like my friend Orly Lieberman who is changing the way we view Taharat Hamishpacha and doing an amazing job educating kallot. I am inspired by female scholars like Sharon Weiss Greenberg, Miriam Segura Harrison, and Ruth Balinsky. These women sit and learn gemara in a beit Midrash just like men, something I never thought growing up could be a possibility.

I feel blessed to live in a community that takes women’s issues seriously and I hope in my lifetime that there might just be an orthodox female rabbi.

Networking and How it Can Help You

In Advice, Uncategorized on March 18, 2009 at 2:36 pm

According to Malcom Gladwell in his bestselling book The Tipping Point, networking is the key to getting you a great job. Most of the people with the fabulous jobs got them through networking or so he says.

I have yet to prove Gladwell’s theory, but I do think that in today’s economic situation networking is an extremely important tool in finding opportunities and meeting the people who can steer you in the right direction.

You can find networking events in almost any field, let the Internet be your resource. A fabulous new networking event is called Parnasafest. They have had two events in New York, one last night, as well as one in Washington DC. They will also be hosting an event next week in Woodmere. Initially I went to Parnasafest to help my husband one of the founders, but I have found that it can be a great resource for me as well. In fact last night I made a great connection.

Although you might think these things are a waste of time, and sometimes they will be, overall these are tools to help you beyond the job search websites. Another way to put yourself out there is through the use of Social Media. Get yourself on Linkedin, Twitter, and Facebook and start networking.

Linkedin is a strictly professional website that allows you to post your work experience, connect with colleagues and those you’ve done business with and you can also search for jobs.

Facebook started as a a tool for kids on college campuses to connect but has become a way for just about anyone to keep in touch with people they would otherwise have no contact with. Facebook is great for promoting your business or events and keeping in touch with those who may be able to help you in your job search.

Twitter is the most interesting of the bunch and probably the most lucrative. Sign up with a username and start tweeting about anything and everything. You can follow a lot of job websites and I happen to know people who have found jobs through twitter.

The most important thing is to put yourself out there. Don’t get discouraged if your resumes go unanswered and the future seems bleak, because somewhere out there is a fabulous job for you. I just know it.

Best of luck in the job search.

For more information check out the following websites:

Http://www.parnasafest.org

Http://www.Linkedin.com

Http://www.Facebook.com

Http://www.Twitter.com

XoXo

Arielle Aka BargainJewess

NYC FREE

In Uncategorized on March 17, 2009 at 2:04 am

New York is one of the those fabulous cities that has a million activities all free.With the warm weather approaching the city provides more and more opportunituies for those with a beer budget to enjoy all of it’s champagne pleasures.Most of us are either feverishly searching for a job, or working doubletime to keep the one we have.

In the downtime you have, which is all the time for the unemployed, why not enjoy all the fabulous free NYC has to offer.

Want to see a new dvd release or read the latest bestseller but can’t afford it? Head to your local public library. you can get books and dvds on just about any subject. All you do is sign up for a free library card. There are also free lectures on every topic under the sun as well as free computer classes given in many of the branch libraries. Also stop by the Human ad Social Sciences library on 42nd street. It’s free to go in and is full of magnificent architecture and frequently has interesting collections of letters, photos, and the like all free. Also pick up a catalog that will show you all the events taking place over the next few months while you are there. For more info check out http://www.nypl.org

Looking for a free blowout or color? Stop by Loreal studio on 15 Mercer street. Have a consultation and get free color and blowouts plus product just for being a guinea pig.

Looking for a chic new haircut? Check out Craigslist under free stuff, salons are frequently looking to have their stylists try out new styles and need models. So if you’re really jonesing for the new Gwyneth mid-length cut check it out.

Craigslist also has a listings for classes and activities which are often free. Check frequently sometimes there are free ballroom dancing classes or even yoga.For more Info http://www.craigslist.com

The Cinema source is a website that allows you to to sign up for free movie screenings. You have to wait on line and there is a chance you won’t get in, but they are free. Check it out at http://www.thecinemasource.com/screenings/

New York is full of beautiful parks. Nothing is nicer than sitting in one of New York’s beautiful parks people watching and enjoying the scenery. One of my favorites is Bryant park. They offer free wireless internet, free chess lessons, and a reading room all free. Fore Info http://www.bryantpark.org/amenities/overview.php

Another great New York Park is Fort Tryon Park, located in Washington Heights the northern end of Manhattan. Fort Tryon has gorgeous landscaping, and is steeped in history dating back to the American revolution as a sight where Washington fought the brits. The sweeping views of the Hudson river and New York city are spectacular.While you’re there stop at the cloisters, a division of the Metropolitan Museum of Art full of beautiful artwork. Donations suggested.

For a really magical experience when the weather isn’t too cold take a walk at dusk across the George Washington Bridge. The city views will take your breath away as will the magnificent colors of the sky as they fade to night.

As the spring approaches more freebies will be available. Keep reading Bargain Jewess for the latest information.

XoXo

Arielle

The Fashion Conundrum: Does being fashionable clash with being tznius?

In beauty, Religion, Uncategorized, Women on March 1, 2009 at 5:30 am

There’s a widespread mentality in certain Jewish circles that being on the cutting edge of fashion and style is not in the confines of tznius– the Jewish dictates of modesty. In my years in bais yaakov teachers went so far as to tell us that being on the cutting edge of fashion was clearly against the laws of tznius. That a girl who was dressed extremely attractive was drawing unnecessary attention to herself. I was told that this rule also applied to sweatshirts or t-shirts with chest logos and even dark nail polish. All of these things fell under the guise of what is know as prust or improper for the Jewish girl/woman.

I’ve veered pretty far away from that line of thinking and most of those people today would definitely call me a shiksa in my jeans and tichels/hats/occasionally sheitel and they really would have run the other way if they met me in my non-hair covering phase. Although I’m certainly no halachic authority, I went to bais yaakov after all(where they teach you just enough to get your MRS) and I certainly hope no takes this as any psak or halachic ruling I would like to speculate on this further, especially as this seems to a topic on many of my fellow j-bloggers minds……

A Jewish woman is considered a princess in Hebrew, a bas melech. The daughter of a king would only be kitted in the finest of fashions and of course would set the fashion tone for the entire country. She of course would never be dressed in any way that would disrespect her father the king but she certainly would always be expected to look more beautiful and put together than anyone else in the kingdom. The same goes true for the Jewish princess.

I honestly feel that an orthodox Jewish women should always be as fashionable and as classy as possible. There are many ways to look fantastic without baring it all. In general the women I find the most elegant are those who choose to cover it up rather than let it all hang out. Obviously just because you wear a skirt doesn’t mean that you are classy, or elegant I have seen many pants that are more modest that certain skirts. I’m also not here to get into debates on pants, short sleeves, how you cover your hair or any of that sort thing, in my opinion each person must do what they feel comfortable doing and it is between them and God.

Yet I think that each Jewish woman and all women should think of themselves as a princess and therefore there is nothing wrong with wearing stylish fashionable clothes so long as they aren’t thigh high and cut down to the belly button. I think that if you dress stylishly but elegantly you are still tzanua and in no way breaking any tznius code. I think that when people tell you otherwise they are steering you away from looking and feeling your best.

As a Jewish princess you should buy the best clothes you can afford, the best head coverings and conduct yourself with grace and class. There is no one in the world that will argue with you that you are not tznius if you follow those rules.

In a related albeit different topic I see many ads and in store displays showing head covering styles popular among Jewish women. In this month’s Vogue there is a Ralph Lauren ad showing a woman wearing a chasidic style turban, but Ralph’s real surname is Lipschitz after all and he grew up in the 50’s in the Bronx he probably saw plenty of those. I was also recently in Zara and I saw a mitpachat style tichel on a mannequin’s head, this could also be due to all the Muslims in Spain but I’d rather think that this is the influence of the stylish Brooklyn and Israeli chicas rocking the mitpachat.

I think that it’s important to remember that what narrow minded people tell you isn’t always halacha, and that tznius and fashion forward can go hand in hand, and not only not be polar opposites, but heighten the honor and grace of the Jewish woman.

March Beauty Freebies

In Uncategorized on February 24, 2009 at 2:41 am

Looking to shop but no dough for you to do it with? Have no fear the March Freebie is here. At a few beauty counters across the country free samples are being given to those who ask.

  • Prescriptives the custom foundation specialist is giving away free mini vials of foundation perfectly matched for you. The counter in Lord and Taylor is also giving free makeovers and gift with purchase if you make an appointment for March 11th or 12th.
  • Clarins counters are giving mini tubes of Hydra-quench cream spf 15 across the country.
  • Fresh Stores are giving mini sugar lipglosses at all stores.
  • Bliss spas and select beauty outlets will be giving out trial versions of Soapy soap
  • At Estee Lauder counters across the country you can get a free ten day supply of  foundation matched to your skin.
  • Sephora is giving out Smashbox Lipgloss minis in Aura.
  • La Mer counters will be giving free facials and mini jars of Eye Concentrate. Call the counter ahead.
  • Darphin counters will be handing out stimulskin plus divine lifting cream.
  • Molton Brown will be giving out Heavenly Gingerlily shower gel perfect to pack for your next vacation.
  • Kiehls stores and counters will be giving away Grapefruit exfoliating Body scrub.

Hope this brings some cheer to your march.

Arielle aka Bargainjewess.

Learn to Dress Your Body Type…..

In Advice, Fashion, Shopping, Uncategorized, Women on February 17, 2009 at 4:28 am

In my fledgling days of advising people on what to wear I’ve come to realize that a very important aspect is knowing your body. What do I mean knowing your body? Well you need to know the good the bad and the ugly. Say you have a tiny waist but a big butt. The goal is to draw as much attention to your waist and keep the attention off our bottom. In that vein here are a few of my suggestions on how to flatter your figure. If you’ve got an hourglass shape you know that finding clothes that properly hug your curves is no easy task. Hourglasses tend to have a big bust small waist and big hips. They also tend to be shortwaisted making them appear even bustier. V-neck sweaters shrink your bust and hug your curves well. Stay away from anything ribbed, ruched, or horizontally striped it will only make you look top heavy. Those with hourglass figures need to wear fitted tailored clothing. Men’s shirts are also great if you love button downs. They won’t gap like women’s shirts just make sure you have the sleeves shortened and the shoulders taken in. Avoid empire styles which can make you look pregnant. Pencil skirts, wrap dresses, full skirts, v-neck cardigans tailored nipped in jackets all suit you. Also make sure to invest in good foundation garments such as bras that properly support you. A well fitting bra can make you look pounds slimmer. For the pear you’re skinny on top with thin arms, and waist but your bottom half seems to be taking up way too much space. To compensate wear brightly printed tops with solid bottoms. Bootleg or flared pants with a crease lengthen the body and make thighs look slimmer. Try wearing interesting fun tops that draw attention to your upper half and keep the bottom simple. Stay away from overly full bottoms which will only make you look bigger. Try wearing a skirt, tights, and shoes all in the same color. This will give the illusion of a long lean line and make you appear taller and slimmer. Stay tuned for my next post on the apple and straight/banana body types. Embrace your body and learn to clothe it properly. When you dress for your body type you’ll learn to love all the things you used to hate. If you need help shopping for a big event or just to buy a new wardrobe check out my page on Bargain Jewess Consulting. I can help you achieve any look at any price. Arielle AKA BargainJewess

How To Take an Exotic Vacation Without Leaving Home

In Uncategorized on February 11, 2009 at 1:00 am

This past Sunday my husband and I participated in a wonderful dinner that took us to Cuba. Our good friends Yael and Josh Haller have started a Washington Heights cultural food club. We meet biweekly and choose a cuisine for which every one makes a dish. This week we did Cuban and the food was great. This is an inexpensive way to host dinner and enjoy your friends. Although we only did food, you can decorate your apartment/home in traditional decor from a party store and download some music that goes with your culture. You can also serve traditional alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverages. 

There were some fabulous dishes like Pappas  Rellenas- deep fried mashed potato balls stuffed with meat, Crushed Cuban potatoes, and Cuban hamburgers. Dani and I contributed Arroz Con Pollo- Chicken with rice and for dessert Bunuelos- deep fried dough rolled in cinnamon sugar. The whole meal was amazing and there was lots more delicious food that I don’t know the traditional cu ban names for. The Arroz con Pollo was fabulous and I will include a link to it, at the end of the post.

Some ideas for cuisine:

Cuban

Thai

Japanese

Swedish

English

Australian

Chinese- Not what you get in an American Chinese restaurant.

Caribbean 

Italian

Spanish

Portugese

Russian

Indian

Greek

And the list can go on and on. With the economy what it is and this writer having been laid off yesterday I will keep updating you on fun, fabulous ways to have fun, keep your spirits up and still enjoy your life. 

Kisses,

Arielle AKA Bargain Jewess

P.S. Check ou this site for the recipe http://www.tasteofcuba.com/arrozconpollo.html

Want new clothes? Host a Clothing Swap

In Uncategorized on February 3, 2009 at 6:12 pm

For most of us the end of 2008 and the beginning of 2009 has not been much of a shopping year. With people losing their jobs at a rapid pace and everyone else fearing they will, most of us are holding onto our money as tight as can be. So how does the fashion forward reccesionista deal. One of the best ways to get new stuff without spending a dime is to host a clothing swap. Contact a few friends, have each of them bring a few items that they no longer want. Clothes, shoes, accessories, etc. Have a table or tables arranged with space for each item. Owners of items bargain over exchanges and choose who gets what. Size doesn’t matter invite all friends.

If you want to have food either the host provides or do potluck and have everyone bring stuff, in addition to the clothing they bring. This can be a fun way to get something new and interesting, that you don’t have to pay for. It can also be a great way to get your friends together, and make some new ones. You can also turn it into an opportunity to do good by taking any unwanted items in good condition and donating them to a good will, shelter, hospital or local chapter of dress for success.

A few ground rules.

Make sure you tell everyone that anything they bring must be in new, like new or very good condition. That means, no stains, no tears and no odors.

Everything must be clean.

Purses must be free of debris and emptied out.

Last but not least happy hunting.