We have a great back-to-school tradition in our family. My son's school has a lovely mural painted in the main hallway, and when I took him in for his kindergarten orientation, I snapped a photo in front of it. And then I did it again for first grade, and second grade, and just this week, for third grade.
It's quite remarkable to look at the photos.
And of course, this milestone-marker got me to thinking about Elul. (Is anything else really on the brain?)
How often do we "check up" on ourselves - how much have we "grown" in the last year? How much has changed about ourselves and what do we hope will change in the next year? I know parents who do all sorts of milestone-markers with their kids - they fill out questionnaires or conduct yearly video interviews. But what about as adults? How do we track our progress? How do we tell if we've missed the mark or hit the nail on the head?
And that's what Elul is for. We're almost halfway through. Are you checking in with yourself?