The Lighter Side: Q&A with Erin Wolfman May

Erin Wolfman May

By Ellen Futterman, Editor-in-Chief

Erin Wolfman May

Communications Director at Temple Israel

How long have you worked in the Jewish community?

Eight years. April 2, 2013 was my first day on the job at Jewish Federation of St. Louis (yep, I remember the exact day).  Prior to that, I was in nonprofit marketing, but wanted to make a move to work in my faith community. I’m so glad I did. 

In one or two sentences, can you explain your job?

They pay me to do what I love. I get to use my creativity in a multitude of ways to showcase Jewish life, share our stories, and connect us all to one another at Temple Israel and beyond.

I know you are married to Matthew May and have two children Zoe, 8, and Josh, 6. What has been hardest for you as a working mother during the pandemic?

The most difficult thing about working while homeschooling (for a full year!) was prioritizing what I needed to get done and what the kids needed to complete each day to keep us all afloat. And even though that part was really tough – don’t get me wrong, I’m elated they are back in school and being educated by professionals – there were countless moments that outshined the tough ones.

Taking lunch break walks as a family and foraging for bonfire logs and sticks (because all grocery stores were out for some time) and having ‘brain break’ backyard scavenger hunts. Ordering a box of random veggies from a local co-op and ‘figuring out’ what we were making from scratch for dinner as we opened the box. Staying up a little later and sleeping in a little longer with all the kids and two dogs in our king-sized bed because no one had to catch a bus or iron a shirt for the office.

And doing Shabbat, from challah to Havdalah, each week without fail because there were no other obligations. Those are the things we’ll remember most about COVID and carve out space for in our lives moving forward.

What has been your favorite pandemic purchase?

We got a second dog for our daughter. Not my favorite pandemic purchase, but my daughter would disagree. Mine, however, is a Vitamix blender. We’ve taken our cooking game to a whole new level.

What do you and your husband like to do when you have a date night?

Ha! That’s funny. A what? On the rare occasion we have kid-free time, we enjoy just being together. A hike at a local trail and lunch somewhere with an outdoor patio may be the favorite. I know I married the right one because we can still talk for hours about nothing and have the best time. No fancy date required, but we’ll take that, too!