Throughout my years in middle school, my friend Lili and I would attend an annual Passover celebration that was put on by her family. I would look forward to this event as soon as the last one ended, counting down the days until I could celebrate once again.

From chocolate covered matzo to hidden gifts, this celebration never failed to excite, and crazy aunts and uncles who piled tables ceiling high with steaming food made the celebration incredibly enjoyable.

Passover is a holiday full of traditions, but this celebration just added to the fun. While hiding the matzo is a common practice, Lili’s family made it that much more interesting by making it chocolate covered, as well as awarding us with a prize.

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Her uncle, who we swore was insane, would ask us an abundance of ridiculous questions which we had to answer in order to receive our reward. It was impossible to keep a straight face, and we would end up rolling around in fits of giggles. We would then be so riled up that during the service, when we were to be quiet, we couldn’t keep our laughter in.

Mealtime was the best part of the entire night. There were tables on tables covered with so many dishes that the tablecloth was invisible, and mouth-watering smells circulated through the room, making everyone ravenous.

From matzo ball soup to beef brisket, every food imaginable was just waiting to be consumed. We all sat around one big table, enjoying our meal as laughter and chatter drifted around the room.

Once the service was over, we would all sit around, eating dessert and drinking – apple cider for the kids, and wine for the adults. It was almost as if time would stop – it seemed we sat there for hours.

I swear we covered every topic imaginable – we talked about everything from school to how the earth worked, and I remember those conversations being some of the most interesting ones I’ve ever had.

Those nights spent at Lili’s house were some of the longest I’ve ever had, and the most fun-filled as well. From delectable dishes to scintillating conversations, these celebrations were incredibly enjoyable, and have created some of the best memories I have.

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