NYC-versary: A Decade

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Wow. A decade. 10 years. July 3, 2007 we embarked on a crazy new journey of life. I left everything and everyone I knew and loved (except one) back in Maryland and moved to New York City. The Big Apple. Without a job. To chase my dreams. To discover myself. To pursue a career. To build a relationship. To be more independent.

We honestly thought it would last a couple years. We would experience something new and different. Get a great job to put on the resume. Live it up in one of the biggest cities in the world. Eat all the food. Have all the incredible experiences.

There were lots of trips on the Bolt Bus back to Maryland in those early days. We are both such family/friend oriented people and we never wanted to miss ANYTHING. So we were on that bus sometimes twice a month for different events and celebrations.

Two years passed and we realized we had not even scratched the surface of this city. There was no way we were leaving anytime soon. No matter that we lived in a 350 square foot one bedroom apartment with no laundry or dishwasher in a 4th floor walk up. We didn’t care. This was where we were supposed to be.

Part of the excitement of this city was the endless possibilities…so much to do…so much to see…so much opportunity…new restaurants going up daily, the theatre, the nights of dancing, the history, the people, the culture. We learned so much and we were never bored. There was always another adventure around the corner. So five years passed…then 7…now…today is 10.

NYC Engagement

Engagement photos by Misa Me Photography 2010

Throughout this past decade, we have had lots of visitors to give us great excuses to explore our city. We have made many friends (reconnected with some old and made some new). I spent 7 years working in the advertising/animation industry learning SO much about production and creativity and how things work behind the scenes. I was able to travel and work with two amazing people that will forever remain in my life as we shared so much together. I feel very grateful to have had this experience and it was WAY more than just “something to add to my resume” that’s for darn sure.

I played on many soccer teams, had girl’s nights on the Upper East Side, tried my hand at club promoting (which although it was fun turned out not to be my thing ;-)), I lived through the majority of my 20’s here, did rooftop yoga, coached high school girl’s soccer, made a whole crew of neighborhood mom friends in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn that I swear I would have lost my sanity without during those early months of maternity leave when I didn’t have a clue as to what I was doing.

My other half explored SO many different career options and ultimately paved such an incredible path for himself. I am truly inspired by his passion, work ethic and confidence every day. He also threw one of the BEST parties/events I have ever been to in the city (shout out to the Electric Moon Dance! ;-))

We celebrated an engagement, planned a wedding, got married, moved to Brooklyn, got a car (see ya later Bolt Bus!), started this blog, had two beautiful babies, I discovered a new career in online health + fitness where I am truly finding my purpose…all while living in this amazing city. We realized how much time we could actually spend at the beach in the summertime without driving too far. We’re actually sending our oldest child to SCHOOl in the NYC school system this fall, so it feels even crazier to know that we are now really raising kids here.

It’s crazy how many twists and turns, highs and lows, experiences and life changing monumental moments we have had since living in this incredible city. I literally still cannot believe that it’s been a full decade since we made this crazy-turned-amazing decision to move our lives here.

I am grateful for the most supportive, kind, hard working, adventurous, loving partner that has been here with me through it all. Zack, baby, I can believe it, but CHEERS to 10 years in New York City!

Looking forward to continuing our countless adventures and creating many more memories with you and our family. ❤

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Photo by Senshi Photography 2017

This holiday weekend will always have a special meaning for me on top of it being the Birthday of America. It’s basically the birth of our New York life together.

Wishing you all a wonderful holiday weekend! Keep safe. Sending love and happy times to you and your families today. We are off to Hershey Park for the day to chase some thrills and meet up with my brother in law, sister in law, nephew and niece! No matter how long we stay in NY, we will always make time for the fam. ❤

XO,

Gina

 

My WHY

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I have always been an athlete my entire life. Soccer & basketball were two of my main sports throughout childhood, high school, and college, and even beyond. I participated in my first race (an Olympic distance triathlon) at 22, and that opened up the doors for me to run 10Ks, half marathons, Tough Mudder, Ragnar Relay, and more. I love challenging myself, but also the feelings of satisfaction and accomplishment I get after completing something huge.

Since having my son, Nico, it has been hard to get back to that place of doing things for myself, especially fitness. I didn’t have time to go to the gym, and my membership soon became a waste of money. I decided I wanted to try P90X, something that had been on my bucket list for a couple years. Of course, you all know that is now impossible due to a second little one on the way, but I have not given up my goal of staying healthy and fit, so I have started PiYo (pilates/yoga) and plan to continue for as long as I can throughout my pregnancy.

When my company folded in September, I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do. I enjoyed production and animation (what I had been doing for the past 7 years), but I didn’t feel like my position in the industry as an agent was still as valuable as it had once been. I toyed with the idea of going into fashion merchandising as fashion has always been a passion and hobby of mine (as you know from this blog), but the hours were crazy starting from the ground up. I did a lot of research and informational interviews, and it just seemed like I would be spending a LOT more time away from my family. Now, I am not opposed to hard work. Actually, I like working hard at things I love. But I’m not in my early 20’s anymore, where I feel comfortable staying at the office until 9:00 at night. My priorities have changed. I have a family now, and I want to be able to see my kid more than 30 minutes a day and put him to bed at night.

I discovered a fellow fashion blogger who was also an athlete growing up (basically she is my West Coast alter-ego, love you Marion!), who decided to become a Beachbody Coach, get healthy, and help others along in the process. She was able to quit her full time job in just a couple months to pursue this full time. I decided that I had nothing to lose, joined her team, and took the plunge into the world of fitness coaching. So far it has been a wonderful journey. I am learning so much. I have hosted fitness challenges along with Marion, and hosted a clean eating challenge along with my partner, Karen. I love seeing people make positive changes to their lifestyle because I was able to give them a little push in the right direction. I love that I am able to build my own business anyway I like, and I can work on my own time on my own hours when it is convenient for me and my family. It’s still a LOT of work. But it’s work that I actually enjoy getting up in the morning to do and I don’t have to lose quality time with my family commuting back and forth on the subway every day. Not to mention, I don’t have to ask for time off, and if I want to plan a trip to Mexico in the middle of winter, SO BE IT.

My goal is to get to the point in my business where I am contributing financially to my family again, and hoping to surpass what I was making in the production world. I have seen so many success stories not only from my coach, Marion, but from others on my incredible team. I am confident that if I push myself to my full potential, that I will be able to achieve that goal.

I want to set a good example for my son and future baby in terms of a healthy lifestyle and also a happy career. I also plan to help as many people as possible to achieve their goals both in health/fitness and also anyone else that may be looking for a little financial freedom.

This post was a bit more long-winded than I intended, but I thought it was a good time to share my WHY and my current story with life, health, career, etc. We all have our own journey, and right now this is mine.

Make it a great week ya’ll!

XO,

Gina

Confessions of a Stir Crazy Mama

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Well, this isn’t exactly how I planned to spend my first week back as a stay-at-home mom.  Yes, you heard that right.  I am currently a stay-at-home mom again as of last Thursday…the last day of my company’s existence as we know it.  The news came as a bit of a shock in terms of the timing, although when I think about it, I’m not really surprised.  I always knew the day might come when my boss got tired of the business and would want to retire or move onto other things.  I guess I never realized I might still be around (in the company) at that point.  It’s bittersweet for me.  It’s the place that I have called my second home since moving to the Big Apple with two of the only co-workers I have ever known in this city.  I have changed so much since my beginning there as a young twenty-something, and I have learned so much about advertising, production, animation, and so many other areas I had the opportunity of dipping into during my last seven years.  I have had the chance to meet and work with some incredibly talented and amazing people, be included in fabulous events, and learn the ins and outs of an industry from a rare point of view.  I am ever grateful for the mentorship, friendship, flexibility, confidence, trust, concern, and kindness my boss has shown toward me over these last several years.  As a newcomer to NY, it can be scary to embark on a journey in such a large city, but I felt welcomed immediately and knew that I had people that I could count on in my life through my work.

It’s bittersweet, because although I am sad to leave the comfort of my job and my day-to-day relationships, this does mean I get to spend more time with my son while I figure all of this out.  I also get the chance to start fresh and maybe try something new.  I have thought about trying something new from time to time, but then I always get sucked back into the day-to-day, and I lean on the comfort of my security with where I am at.  Now, I have no excuse for not pursuing those dreams.  I don’t even necessarily know if I have figured out exactly what those dreams are…but I know have the time to soul search, dig deep into myself to figure out what I am passionate about, determine what my strengths are, and possibly marry all of that together.  I do know that I want to continue working in some way, shape, or form.  I like having a job outside of the home where I can be someone other than “Mom.”  I love being Mom, but I also love creating and thinking and producing and connecting…doing all of the other things I know I am capable of in my life and in my career.  I have enjoyed the balance in the past months since I have finished with maternity leave between home life and work life.  I think that works best for me and my family…for my sanity…for Nico to grow comfortable with others…for my husband in regard to my sanity haha.  I would like to find a way that I can continue that balance going forward.  I don’t want to rush.  I want to enjoy this extra time with my baby while I can, because I will never get it back.  And I want to make sure my future decisions are based on careful, well-thought-out, heart-and-mind-fulfilling planning.

All that being said…this is not the way I planned on spending my first week back at home.  I was super excited to take Nico out on playdates, catch up on blog posts, find some time for soul searching and career planning.  And the most I have managed is two loads of laundry in four days.  I have basically been immobile on the couch or bed, feeling like I have been hit by a ton of bricks.  I have been bound by high fevers, chills, sniffles, body aches, head throbs, and a gnarly looking sore-throat…the absolute works.  I’m not even able to care for myself, let alone a small child.  My husband had to come home from work just to take me to the doctor, because I couldn’t get there by myself with the baby (and I also didn’t want the baby in the doctor’s office with a bunch of sick people.)  It’s a miracle he hasn’t gotten sick yet, and I’m praying he doesn’t.  Turns out, I think I have strep throat, and no wonder I am so miserable.  I have not been feeling like that supermom I thought I would considering I have a full week of quality time alone with my son.  Instead, it’s me moaning on the couch while he tries to play with his toys alone, wondering why I won’t play with him.  It’s him bringing me toys and books up onto the couch, saying in his own way “come on mom, you used to be fun.”  He’s been acting out, I think in defiance to my current state of being couch ridden.  Refusing to eat his food, refusing to take his naps, and demanding milk constantly.  Yesterday was an all-time low in regard to us spending time together.  I thought I might literally go insane and found myself wishing for the day to just end so I could go to sleep and feel better, and that is just sad.

However today is a new day.  I think the meds are finally starting to kick in, and it’s the first morning I woke up feeling not 100% miserable.  I am even contemplating a walk later…if I can just get the rain to cooperate.  Nico woke me up this morning with a kiss on my cheek complete with a MMMMWAH sound, and it just melted my heart.  No matter how trying our day together was yesterday, I know that little guy has an ultimate love for me, and I have it just as much, if not more for him.  When I woke up, I knew today was going to be a better day.  And as I’m typing, Nico is taking a nap, so we are already on the right track.  Although I haven’t gotten 1/10 of the things on my “first week back list” checked off I know I just need to be patient, regain my health, keep my family happy, and everything will work itself out in the end.

XO,

Gina