This year at our Passover seder, I experienced something deeply powerful which I had not felt in the context of Passover before.
One day, my daughter walked into the house after attending preschool.
“What’s wrong?” she asked incredulously.
“Why?” I responded, “Is something wrong?”
“Well,” my very bright 3-year-old answered, “the house smells like Shabbat and I know that today is not Shabbat.”
When my mother was alive, she neither checked email nor opened snail mail on Shabbat. Whatever missives – real or virtual – awaited her, she knew, would still be there once Shabbat had ended. This minhag was her way to step back and set the day apart.