Photos: Courtesy Dana Tabaria
Baby Izzy Tabaria, Zechariah Yisrael Yehuda, who is named after his maternal grandfather Yisrael Yehuda ben Chaim Refael — Judah Friedman — of blessed memory. The pillow baby Izzy is lying atop is part of the Bris Kit package his mother Dana Tabaria, and aunt Aliza Goldstein, created in memory of their late father.

Bris kit eases tradition prep

By Deb Silverthorn

#WelcomeToTheTribe is the heartfelt message behind Aliza Goldstein and Dana Tabaria’s Bris Kit as they welcome baby boys to the covenant and our Jewish community. These sisters, having served nearly 50 families with three and five children of their own respectively, are on a mission to ease the path for new parents.

“The first week after having a new baby can be very hectic and stressful. It feels good to know we have helped many parents be a little less stressed the days leading up to their bris,” said Goldstein.

Florida natives Goldstein and Tabaria are the daughters of Mindi and the late Judah Friedman and the sisters of Josh (Becca). When their father passed away unexpectedly, the day after one of Goldstein’s sons’ own bris in 2018, the two decided to do something meaningful in his memory.

“From our own experiences, and sharing so much of our lives together, we wanted to do something very much mom- and baby-related. As very close sisters, we love having a project to work on together,” said Tabaria.

Goldstein, a graduate of Weinbaum Yeshiva High School, and Tabaria, a graduate of Spanish River Community High School, each attended Phillips Beth Israel Nursing School. The sisters both became labor and delivery nurses. Once the Goldsteins joined the Tabarias in Dallas, the two both worked at Medical City Plano.

Eli, Aliza’s husband and a graduate of Akiba Yavneh Academy, and Lior, Dana’s husband and also a Florida transplant, also started a business together. Their business  supports a staff of more than 30 members of the Jewish community. The husbands and wives working together, their children attending Gan Menachem Dallas and Torah Day School of Dallas, the families are bonded in many ways.

Dana Tabaria (left) and Aliza Goldstein, formerly the Friedman sisters, are the magic — and mitzvah makers — behind the Bris Kit.

The Bris Kit is free of charge but a donation of $18 is recommended. Inside the kit is everything and more parents could possibly need in advance of, and after, a bris ceremony, as recommended by local mohels Rabbi David Shawel and Rabbi Zecharia Sionit.

“So many baby boys are starting their Jewish life off as a great merit to Yisrael Yehuda ben Chaim Refael, zt”l,” said Rabbi David Shawel, who has performed thousands of brises in his 40-plus years in Dallas. 

“Mazel tov to these wonderful sisters, these lovely young women, who have so much kavod for their father and the covenant of our people,” said Shawel. “Through their initiation of the Bris Kit, really such a beautiful gesture and the necessary coming together of so many items, they are helping a lot of new parents in a very busy time.”

The kit includes gauze, ointment, diapers and wipes. There are multiple bris outfit options; a bris pillow for holding the baby and keeping him comfortable before, during and after the ceremony; wine; a Kiddush cup and more.

Sisters Dana Tabaria and Aliza Goldstein make their Bris Kit available to new families. The duffel bag and package includes everything needed to prepare for a bris.

The sisters have two complete Bris Kits on hand, at times rotating them in and out more than once in a week. Through word of mouth and the mohels, the sisters are always happy to oblige a requesting parent.

“It’s definitely a beautiful and special, but also overwhelming, time once the baby arrives. We didn’t know we were having a boy,” said Rivky Simon. She and her husband, Rabbi Aharon Simon, very much appreciated the benefits of the Bris Kit when their son Sadya Meir arrived last year. “Someone mentioned what Dana and Aliza could provide and in ‘a minute’ we didn’t have to do anything.”

The Simon family moved to Dallas, for Rabbi Simon to lead the Cheder Lubavitch Dallas day school, not long before their son’s arrival. Without local family, they were grateful not to have to go out and gather all the parts and pieces they’d need for the bris. With three older daughters, this was new territory for them.

“It’s clear what to keep, what to return and you don’t do anything but put those items back in the pack. They do it all,” said the mother of four. “It meant we could focus on other things.”

After welcoming their second son, Chaya and Yitzy Adelman also found the Bris Kit helpful. Good friends with Dana, Chaya too was glad not to have “one more thing” to worry about.

“Everything was clean and fresh and it was all ready to go. When we were done, we packed it back up and dropped it off,” she said. “We avoided running around for everything and it was a huge help.”

Their father’s life was centered on helping others. Their mitzvah in his memory is bound to do just the same.

“We say it includes everything you need,” Tabaria said with a wink, “other than the baby, the mohel and the knife!”

To arrange to use the Bris Kit, message @dallasbriskit on Instagram or email danatabaria@gmail.com or dallasmohel@aol.com.

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