Interview With Galit Breen

Once upon a time I was a TRAVELER. I met amazing people and ate delicious food. All was well with my world.

And then, I started my real life.

I became a STUDENT earning a BS in Human Development and an MA in Education. I became a classroom and reading TEACHER. I met a man on the internet (When it was still gasp-worthy and new.) and became his WIFE. Shortly after that, I became a MINNESOTAN. He still owes me one for that.

But the biggest earthquake shake to my soul was becoming a MOM. The interrupted sleep. The crying. The diapers. Did I mention the lack of sleep?

But there was also the attachment, the touch, the bungee cords to my heart. Sigh.

Today my labels are woven together. Tightly. A wife of one! A Mama of three! And a brand new puggle owner! Of one, people. Just one new puppy, thankyouverymuch.

To keep me grounded and to add to the lack of sleep factor, I write.

I’m deep into my first novel and I write about that here.

I also blog about my sparks- Motherhood. Parenting. Books. Literacy. Writing. Feminism. Balance. Mojitos. And Chocolate.

1.     How did you come up with the name These Little Waves for your blog?

My name Galit -pronounced Gu-leet- means little wave.

“Like a wave in the ocean, not a wave good bye.” I’ve been explaining it that way my entire life.

So the waves are me, yes. But they’re also my family, my stories, and my words.

2.     Your blog posts always have a high number of comments. What is your key to success?

I build my relationship with my readers. I visit their blogs, leave comments, and tweet their work.

Blogging karma is good, bloggers are kind, and blogging friendships are built this way.

3.     How do you handle commenters who make negative comments?

Privately, with my husband, I hem and haw over what to do and say.

But publicly, on my blog and through emails, I either let it be or approach it as a conversation or a dialogue starter.

Most often that’s exactly what it is.

4.     How are you involved with Write On Edge?

I’m an assistant editor at Write On Edge.

As a team of seven we come up with writing prompts, share content, and secure guest posts to support our writing community.

5.     What kind of writers participate in Write On Edge?

Write On Edge writers are looking to flex their writing muscles and practice their craft, and to do both within a supportive community.

6.     What other blogs do you participate in?

Memes are a great way to connect with other writers.

Some of my favorites are Monday ListiclesJust WriteiPhone Photo PhunPour Your Heart Out, and Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop.

7.     Besides the blogs, what other social media do you use? Do you combine the professional and the personal?

I tweet (a lot) and use Facebook (a lot) and I do combine the professional and the personal- doing both under my real name.

I’m building connections and branding myself- which means theres nothing else to be, but me.

8.     What is a puggle? Does it need to be solved?

Cute. Very cute.

A puggle is a blend of a pug and a beagle, which means that our puppy Louie is pure adorable and pure trouble.

9.     What spiritual or religious traditions did you and your husband grow up with?

My husband, Jason, was raised Catholic and I was raised Jewish.

10.  What are the differences in your upbringings and the upbringing you want for your own children?

We both believe that religion, spirituality, and faith are learned and want to gift our children with the chance to do just that.

We’re trying very hard to teach them that this process is long and that they don’t have to “know” or “decide” any of it right now.

11.  Is it possible to separate Jewish religion from Jewish culture? Are they intertwined?

It is possible. I was raised very culturally- my family celebrated every Jewish holiday and ate every Jewish food, but we never said a prayer, went to synagogue, or talked about God.

This is quite common, but tricky to find a community to be within, though.

12.  How did How to Teach Children Religion and Spirituality Without Shoving it Down Their Throats come about? What happened to it?

Oh my, that was a facetious “working title” – but I did love it.

Before I launched These Little Waves I wrote a weekly column for TC Jewfolk and was known as the Minnesota Mamaleh.

The articles that resonated with readers the most were about Jason’s and my approach to sharing our beliefs with our children without expecting them to take those beliefs on as their own.

I have a first draft written about how we did that with our young children. I needed to step away from it for a little bit, so it’s sitting and waiting for right now.

But I am extremely passionate about this topic and will dig back into it soon.

13.  What is the difference between teach and indoctrinate?

To teach is to share information and let the learner interact with it and make it their own.

To indoctrinate is to say this is it, whole and complete, swallow it.

14.  Have your children ever decided something was a tradition when you had never thought of it that way?

Our family is BIG on traditions- so everything from Monday morning pancakes to Friday night candles are considered traditions at our house.

15.  What spiritual traditions will your family share between Thanksgiving and the New Year?

We celebrate Shabbat most Friday nights, they’re our quietest times as a family.

16.  What secular traditions will your family share between Thanksgiving and the New Year?

We share all things winter- sledding, snowmen, hot chocolate, gingerbread houses.

Our Hanukkah and Christmas traditions are secular as well.

17.   What is your favorite electronic or digital writing tool?

I swoon for my laptop.

18.   What is your favorite non-electronic writing tool?

I love writing freehand in a notebook.

19.   What is the most persistent distraction from writing?

Oh Twitter, how I love my Twitter.

20.   Who shot first, Han or Greedo?

I had to ask my husband for help with this one and he ended the re-editing of the Star Wars scene explanation with, “And it looked really bad.” Hmm.

I edit my blog posts a lot. If something doesn’t read right, I smooth its edges.

But the essence or feel or meaning or character building that I put out there- that, I am wary of shifting. People notice that more than they notice what verb I choose.

And I’d hate for anyone to say, “And it looked really bad” about my changes.

AmyBeth, thank you so very much for having me here! And thank you for reading my words. I’m thrilled to meet you.

The shortlink for this post is http://wp.me/p1qnT4-uF

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About AmyBeth Inverness

A writer by birth, a redhead by choice.
This entry was posted in Interviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Interview With Galit Breen

  1. Ann says:

    Galit, I loved learning more about you and especially appreciate the way your differentiated “teach” and “indoctrinate.”

  2. Galit Breen says:

    Thanks so much for having me here today!

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