Thankful and Grateful

On October 12, 2016, our house caught on fire. It was Yom Kippur, also known as the Day of Atonement, the holiest day of the year in Judaism.

The kids had an “unassigned” day from school so everyone was home. Gary and I were fasting, doing some errands around the house, kids had some homework to catch upon nothing out of the ordinary. My mom called and told us to come to her house to end our fast around 5pm. We got dressed and left just before 5. The kids had school the next day and it was a Wednesday, so we couldn’t stay too late. My sister left before us, she has a 2 year old she needed to get to bed. My daughter asked my mom to tailor her Halloween costume, so she needed to try it on to make adjustments. About 7:30-7:45, My brother in law calls my cell, he says “Marina your house is on fire!”. I think he joking, he’s yelling ‘I’m not kidding’. I grab my purse and Gary and I run to the car. On the way I call my neighbor to get details. My kids are at my folks house, we have an indoor cat, Chloe, and my beloved German Shepherd, Jack is outside. Im freaking out! I need to get to my animals!  We get to my street and it is blocked by lots of fire trucks, I had to leave my car and run up to my house. When we get there Gary is allowed into the backyard to get the dog, a little later a big strong fireman brings out our kitty cat. My parents came with my 14 year old son, and he’s very upset. On the way over my mom was running and fell not noticing the fire hoses everywhere. It was a surreal night to say the least.

Im sharing this because I want to say “Thank You”. Thank you to my neighbors and to the neighbors who called 911. To all the neighbors that have come by since to ask if we need anything. Thank you to the Firemen that responded so quickly, and have come by again to ask how we are doing.

I am “Grateful” that it ended the way that it did. No one was hurt! The fire started in the garage, we are not sure what the cause is, but the boy’s bedrooms are above the garage, and are the most affected. Im grateful we weren’t sleeping or even at home at that time. I am grateful no one was hurt!

Some of you may know that we have been planning to remodel for sometime now. Yet there’s always one thing or another that’s been holding us back. A couple of days later my 6 year old says to me , “I think God wanted this so that we can remodel our house.” Brayden is an old soul, his intuition is beyond his years, I think he may be right. Sometimes things happen and at first we question it, but then we figure it out as this is the way it was supposed to be. MAYBE? It’s been a stressful 2 months, with no end in close sight eventually there will be a light at the end of the tunnel, but first we have to get through all the charred.

This has been a trying year and I’m ready to see what 2017 has in store for us. I am GRATEFUL & THANKFUL for our family and friends for the time we have spent together and for the future that awaits us.

Happy Holidays & Happy New Year


The Struggle is Real

First post…’s early in the morning the kids are still asleep. I just got back from a spin class, so bear with me, this could be just all the endorphins but while I was sweating I was thinking #thestruggleisreal. Yes, the struggle is real!

Don’t get me wrong, I love my workouts, it’s my therapy, both mentally and physically. But I love food, and I love to sleep in. I started going to my spin class back in March of 2015, and I was hooked. Not until a year after did I realize that I needed to change my diet as well to get  the results I was looking for. I enjoy cooking, all kinds of foods, and it’s fascinating to me to try different kinds of recipes. But if you’re trying to lose weight it’s a struggle to find a balance between yummy and low-calorie. Also I’m a huge carbivore. Coming from Eastern Europe, a piece of bread is worth its weight in gold. Give me bread over any meal and I’m happy. So I’m questioning, why is bread bad? Isn’t it all natural? Hum, I’ve got to do a little Google research. I also have to say that the studio where I work out is a huge source of motivation for me. I see most of the same people day in day out and everyone is helpful and encouraging. They help me be a better mother, a better wife and all in a better version of myself, besides make me sweat. In the meantime I’ve got 20lb. more that I would like to shed, go to Paris and probably gain it all back with all the yummy fully loaded calories.

Another struggle for me, is work life balance. I have 3 kids, 17, 14 and 6 years old, so they keep me busy. I’m sure just like any other parent. I’m also trying to get my photography business up and going. Which is all me, the doer, the photographer, the retoucher, the studio manger, but at the moment mostly I’m the procrastinator!

Most of my family and friends know I’m not very chatty, but I do feel that I have to push myself sometimes to get out of my own way. Hopefully, this blog will help me do that, and maybe it will relate for some of you and help us connect.

Thank you always. Cheers!