Hello, I’m a Sephardic orthodox girl and I have questions about the nine days. We moved to a new apartment 7/1/15. I Don’t have dairy dishes or utensils yet, is that something I could buy and use during the 9 days? Also, the Halacha of not eating meat, does that pertain to toddlers as well? I have a 20 month old toddler who is somewhat picky eater. Thanks for your time!
Shalom, Thank you for your question (although for some reason I only received it today, I hope my answer will still be of some help to you). As to buying things in the nine days, the Talmud says that we lessen buying and selling during these days. However this refers mainly to buying important items, especially those that bring us much joy – such as wedding dresses and jewelry. Normal household dishes and utensils that you would not say the blessing "shehecheyanu" over are permitted. As to eating meat (and drinking wine) the custom of the Sepherdi communities is not to eat meat from the 2nd of Av until after the fast. Of course it is permitted on Shabbat, and also at other "mitzvah meals" such as a brit etc. Small children who are so young that they do not yet have any understanding of the concept of mourning for the loss of the Temple are permitted to be fed meat – a 20 month toddler certainly falls in this group, and may be fed meat (see Yalkut Yosef, Moadim, page 570). May we be blessed to see the rebuilding of the Temple speedily in our days.