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Hanukkah family traditions

Melissa Chapman and her brood of three live in the urban concrete jungle of NYC. She writes Kids in the City Kids in the City a weekly column and blog for the Staten Island Advance, contributes to SheKnows, Time Out NY Kids Time Out N...

8 Tips for Hanukkah fun

Some may think the Hanukkah holiday is simply the Jewish version of Christmas and while there are some similarities (the abundance of presents and greasy finger foods, for example) the holiday's inherent meaning is about more than materialistic pursuits. Although receiving eight presents is a pretty darn good fringe benefit! Singer Mama Doni of the Jewish indie-rock bank The Mama Doni Band shares eight tips for eight nights of fun family togetherness.

Day 5: Honey, this Ain't Money

Everyone knows about Hanukkah gelt, (the Yiddush term for money) right? It looks a lot like change or gold, but it is actually made of chocolate! A fun thing to do on this day is go to the store with your mom or dad or babysitter.  Put the Hanukkah gelt in your pocket and then when you get the cash register, take your Hanukkah gelt and hand it to the person at the counter as if you paying with real change. Only let the joke go for a couple seconds, you are not trying to be mean, just a little silly!

Make sure your mom has real change ready to pay right away. Maybe the store owner will have a good laugh with you, and remember to wish him/her a happy holiday!

Day 6: Latke Man

There's a man out there in the universe who lives, breathes, eats, wears, cooks....who LOOOOOOOVES latkes, and his name is Latke Man.  What do you think latke man looks like? Draw a picture of this potato-loving' superhero. You can also draw his cousin, "Mister Knish". If you are really feeling' it, you can even dress up as Latke Man for dinner.  Moms, don't be shy, you can dress up as Latke Mom -- she has MAJOR potato-powers. (Oh, and if you're making latkes again on this night, don't forget to see which you like more...dipping them in apple sauce or sour cream.

Day 7: It is "Chanukah" or "Hanukkah"?

Everyone says the name of this holiday differently, but both ways are cool.  Something fun to do on this day is try replacing your "h" sound with the "chh" sound for a little while. You can say things like "chello?" or "chow are you?" It might make your throat tickle as well as give you the Chhhanukah giggles! Make sure to wish everyone a "Chappy Chanukah!

Day 8: eight Special People In My Life

It's the last night!  This is the night where you can pick eight people in your life; could be your mom, dad, grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins, friends... eight people who are special to you, and either call them (or if they are near you give them a hug) and wish them a happy happy Hanukkah and tell them how much you love them.

Tell us: Share your favorite family Hanukkah tradition! Comment below!

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