b’nai mitzvah

Amelie Bluestone Daughter of Karen and Steven Bluestone, Thursday, July 30 at Congregation Rodef Sholom in San Rafael.

Leo Ashla Cramer Son of Berit Ashla and Aron Cramer, Saturday, July 25 at Temple Sinai in Oakland.

Danielle Jonas-Delson Daughter of Mindy Jonas and Jonathan Delson, Saturday, July 25 at Congregation Rodef Sholom in San Rafael.

Elise Jonas-Delson Daughter of Mindy Jonas and Jonathan Delson, Saturday, July 25 at Congregation Rodef Sholom in San Rafael.

Jenna Nativ Daughter of Lisa and Moshe Nativ, Saturday, July 25 at Congregation Beth Am in Los Altos Hills.

Simon Thue Son of Elisa Stern and Anthony Thue, Saturday, July 25 at Peninsula Temple Beth El in San Mateo.


Triple play b’nai mitzvah

Harry Kraus (left), Hannah Engle and Coby Kraus with the Kiddush tablecloth made by their great-grandmother

First cousins Hannah Engel and twins Harry and Coby Kraus see each other often — getting together at family events, attending the same synagogue and sharing many friends. So it wasn’t too surprising when the cousins — separated in age by a little over two months — told their parents they wanted to have a joint b’nai mitzvah. Their families couldn’t have been more pleased.

In a way, the July 18 ceremony at Peninsula Temple Sholom in Burlingame completed a circle begun 33 years ago when Hannah’s mother, Jill Engel, had her bat mitzvah at the synagogue. Three years later her sister, Julie, followed suit.

The girls’ grandmother, Bessie Mintz, even crafted a Kiddush tablecloth, first embroidering Jill’s name in English and Hebrew, along with the date of her bat mitzvah, and then Julie’s.

Mintz, now 89, recently did the same for great-grandchildren Hannah, Harry and Coby, adding their names to the ceremonial cloth, which was brought out again for the joyous lifecycle event.

Mintz joined the cousins’ parents — Jill and Marc Engel of San Bruno, and Julie and Edward Kraus of Redwood City — as well as their grandparents, other relatives and friends, for the occasion.

The family is especially close, noted Jill Engel, who lives 10 houses away from her parents and “22 minutes — door to door,” from her sister, “but who’s counting?”

“All members of the family have been involved in some way to make this day happen,” Engel said.

Greenbrae resident Andrew Dick, visiting Israel for a family wedding with his wife, Estelle, and three children, took this shot of 4-year-old Eli at the Western Wall in Jerusalem on June 7. Proud grandmother Molly Dick sent the photograph to J., noting that Eli, a student at the Osher Marin JCC’s preschool in Tiburon, seems to be stretching out his hands to the haredi man and Israeli soldier on either side of him — a future peacemaker?