I forgot the salt

I am excited to be making the Russian style sour kraut called kapusta by hand.  I remember my father making it in large buckets when we were kids, and it is the easiest thing to make, so delicious, and amazing for digestion.  I was making it and had cabbage and carrots, the only ingredients you need, and I kept on kneading it and squeezing it, and even put it in the jar, and kept wondering why there was no juice, it usually gives off a juice right away.  Then it hit me, I forgot the salt, one ingredient is missing, and it changes the whole recipe, once I put the salt, when I was squeezing it, it looked like rain drops.  I am actually very inspired to start making Challa, I enjoy the kneading with my bare hands, but my husband would have to put together the recipe, he is the chef, and always seasons everything I make, I am truly blessed, ready to have 15 people over for Rosh Hashana, and I want to make a traditional round Challa, http://www.aish.com/h/hh/rh/guide/Why_Round_Challah.html.

Forgetting one ingredient is a metaphor for life.  I had a Yoga class on Friday morning and we were talking about how in dance and in most everything else in life there is a perfect way to do something.  In Yoga there is no perfect way, and as a Doula I see that in birth there is no one way, each experience is completely unique and different for each person and each baby.  Each person has to trust and listen what their body is telling them, it is great to be inspired by others, but we will never be anybody else other than ourselves.  I like to say that Everybody is different, there is Nobody that is exactly the same, there is no perfect way, there is no one way, there is just your way.

The other side of going with the flow and doing what is right for you, is having some structure and discipline.  In exercise there is form, alignment, and core, and if it is not followed exactly, over time injury can occur.  I love that form and alignment is universal, but how we express it in each person is unique, we are all different proportions, flexibilities, levels, and energies.  Everyday we are different, so important to check in what feels good in the moment.

As we get ready to celebrate Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, I remember a great explanation for the Torah and how to lead a Jewish life. It is similar to getting an appliance or some kind of machine, and for it to work properly you need to read the instructions, one thing is off and it may not even turn on.  The Torah is the Jewish instruction booklet how to live a balanced, connected, happy, and spiritual life.  I love to keep learning, and I enjoy hearing what my children are learning.  We eat apples and honey as a symbol for a sweet year ahead.

So excited to celebrate tomorrow night,

Coach Yulia

I Love Our Jewish Life

Honoring everyone that perished and supported on September 11, and so proud that Israel has the only memorial that honors every victim outside of the United States, and a Hatzola ambulance was the first on the scene at the World Trade Center,

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hatzalah.

Every day I feel grateful for our Jewish way of life, what Judaism stands for, how I am raising my kids.  We are preparing for the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashana, going to our new family on the first night, my new sister-in-law and all the new cousins, so much fun.  Then the following night we are having a full house of friends, and our kids friends, we are all so excited for all the celebrations, delicious food, and all the good wishes for a happy, healthy year, full of success!

My kids decorated Rosh Hashana cards in their Jewish school that they go to every day after their public school, they are so excited to eat apples and honey.

Enjoy the video below to get you in the spirit,

For those of you that do not know too much about it, you will see my good friend Doda Mollie demonstrating with song,

Shabbat Shalom,

Coach Yulia

WHIRLWIND

I am still processing our trip, our family, friends, my family, and I keep on coming across articles that articulate important methods of how to live a balanced life, communicating, happy, and connected.  Speaking of connections, Southwest Airlines was really a wonderful experience, small lines, punctual, open seating really flowed, easy for families, easygoing approach to customer service, and very comfortable.  The best part was on the way home we got in line before a tour group of 50 lined up behind us.  I am always in awe of how life works, and I choose to notice the positive and focus on being grateful.

FAMILY

We had a disagreement with some of my family on the concept of sharing.  I read somewhere that forcing your kids to share what is special to them is not such a good lesson.  If my kids choose to share I acknowledge it, but fully support their choice no matter what it is.  This was also an interesting point on not giving kids everything they want, my kids won’t be seeing phones or tablets, I don’t think ever.

http://www.theguardian.com/global/2015/sep/01/depriving-your-kids-of-toys-great-idea?

Taking care of our spouse is as important as taking care of our kids,

http://goodmenproject.com/featured-content/how-to-be-married-with-kids-and-still-have-frequent-sex-hlg

My husband says I explain too much, and talk to much with the kids, and why not?

http://parent.co/30-questions-to-ask-your-kid-instead-of-how-was-your-day/

 

WORK

I am so excited to dive right back into the work I love after our trip.  I just had the most amazing Pilates workout at www.thebodypilatesbh.com, check out their daily class schedule, private also available.  Affordable, top-notch instructors, in the heart of Beverly Hills offering a calm, focused, and fully equipped studio.  I also am ready to offer an Arasys Demo Party in your home or office, find out what this celebrity secret is all about, gather your friends and book yours today, www.coachyulia.com/arasys-inch-loss, contact coachyulia@gmail.com, or call 323.377.0707.

INSPIRATIONAL PEOPLE

Enjoy the picture and story below, of how one woman followed her own unique path, which was not the norm, and affected lives and took care of the needy, it was her calling, so beautiful, strong, and powerful how she lived her truth against all odds.

LIVE YOUR TRUTH,

Coach Yulia

Princess Alice was an unconventional royal who prioritized helping others over wealth and privilege. She devoted her life to good deeds and spiritual growth, and was notable among European royalty for taking Jews into her home during the Holocaust. Princess Alice stood out for another reason: she was congenitally deaf. Born in 1885 at Windsor Castle, Alice was the great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria. She learned to lip read at a young age, and could speak several languages. Alice was widely regarded as the most beautiful princess in Europe. At age 17, Alice fell in love with dashing Prince Andrew of Greece and they were married in 1903. Alice and Andrew had four daughters and a son. Their son Philip would later be married to Queen Elizabeth II. Alice communicated with her children mainly in sign language. During the Balkan Wars, Alice volunteered as a nurse, caring for patients, directing operations, and setting up field hospitals. King George V awarded her the Royal Red Cross in 1913. Political turmoil in Greece forced the royal family into exile. They settled in a sleepy suburb of Paris, where Alice threw herself into charitable work helping Greek refugees. Her husband left her for a life of gambling and debauchery in Monte Carlo. Relying on the charity of wealthy relatives, Alice found strength in her Greek Orthodox faith. She became increasingly religious, and believed that she was receiving divine messages and had healing powers. She yearned to share her mystical experiences and faith with others, but instead was dismissed as mentally unhinged. Alice had a nervous breakdown in 1930. She was committed against her will to a mental institution in Switzerland, with a dubious diagnosis of schizophrenia. Alice did not even get a chance to say goodbye to her children. Her youngest, 9 year old Philip, returned from a picnic to find his mother gone. Alice tried desperately to leave the asylum, but was kept prisoner in Switzerland for 2 1/2 years. During that time, her beloved son Philip was sent to live with relatives, and her four daughters married German princes. Alice was not allowed to attend any of their weddings. Finally, in 1932, Alice was released. She became a wanderer, traveling through Europe by herself, staying with relatives or at bed & breakfast inns. In 1935, Alice returned to Greece, where she lived alone in a modest two bedroom apartment and worked with the poor. The Germans occupied Athens in April 1941. Alice devoted herself to relieving the tremendous suffering in her country. She worked for the Red Cross, organizing soup kitchens and creating shelters for orphaned children. Alice also started a nursing service to provide health care to the poorest Athenians. In 1943, the Germans started deporting the Jews of Athens to concentration camps. Alice hid a Jewish widow, Rachel Cohen, and her children in her own apartment for over a year. Rachel’s late husband, Haimaki Cohen, was an advisor to King George I of Greece, and Alice considered it her solemn duty to save the remaining Cohen family. Alice lived yards from Gestapo headquarters. When the Germans became suspicious of her and started asking questions, she used her deafness as an excuse not to answer them. Alice kept the Cohen family safe until Greece was liberated in 1944. After the war, Alice founded her own religious order, the Christian Sisterhood of Martha and Mary, and became a nun. She built a convent and orphanage in a poverty-stricken part of Athens. Alice dressed in a nun’s habit consisting of a drab gray robe, white wimple, cord and rosary beads – but still enjoyed smoking and playing cards. Alice attended Philip’s wedding to Princess Elizabeth in 1947. The bride’s mother worried that having a nun at the wedding would embarrass the family, so she prevailed upon Alice to wear a simple silk dress and hat. In 1967, after a Greek military coup, Alice finally returned to Great Britain for good. She lived at Buckingham Palace with her son and daughter-in-law, Queen Elizabeth II. Alice died in 1969. She owned no possessions, having given everything to the poor. Before she died, Alice expressed a desire to be buried at the Convent of Saint Mary Magdalene on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem, but instead was laid to rest in the Royal Crypt in Windsor Castle. In 1988, almost 20 years after she died, Alice’s dying wish was finally granted. Her remains were sent to Jerusalem, where she was buried on the Mount of Olives. In 1994, Alice was honored by the Holocaust Memorial in Jerusalem (Yad Vashem) as Righteous Among The Nations. Her son Prince Philip said of his mother’s wartime heroism, “I suspect that it never occurred to her that her action was in any way special. She was a person with a deep religious faith, and she would have considered it to be a perfectly natural human reaction to fellow beings in distress.” For her devotion to helping others despite her own challenges, we honor Princess Alice of Greece as this week’s Thursday Hero at Accidental Talmudist.

It’s Just Me

My uncle made a beautiful memoir about my Grandmother that just turned 100 years old.  It starts with a journal entry that she wrote as a young girl, and when I read it I had a huge realization.

Grandma Journal 001

It’s Just Me.  Out of all the family on my father’s side and my mother’s side, I am the only one that lights Shabbat Candles, we have guests every Shabbat, walk to synagogue, and this is what my kids know and will remember for the rest of their lives.  I feel so honored to carry on the traditions of my ancestors, to live a Jewish life openly and proudly, and teach my children to do the same.  Every morning my husband goes to synagogue to pray, my kids know exactly where he is, while we have breakfast, and once he comes back, we all get ready for our day.

I am named after my father’s grandmother, Yehudit, which means Jewish Girl in Hebrew, she was from the Caucasus Mountains, Grozny, Chechnya.  I feel proud of my namesake, and her observant life, and excited that my parent’s were able to throw me a full Jewish wedding, after taking us out of the Soviet Union where Judaism was just a nationality, no religion was allowed.

I really feel that living a Jewish life taps into my happy genes.  Yes I got them from my grandma Anna, passed down to my mom, and is now living in me.  Leading a Jewish life is about being present to your blessings, learning lessons from the challenging times, and being an inspiration and light in the world we live in.  My kids will follow this path, and it will serve their emotional and spiritual health, as well as evolving their intellectual side, and taking care of their physical health, because when we feel good, we can focus on what else life has to offer.

Be Happy,

http://www.jewishjournal.com/articles/item/can_happiness_be_taught_20070914/

Every day should be B’Simcha, always working on happiness,

It just makes sense to me, why choose anything else?

Coach Yulia

My Brain is Still Processing

This mother business is a doozy, each soul we bring into this world and raise is a completely different energy and individual.  The list above is just a morsel of the whole shebang, and the only way I stay sane is finding the happiness and lesson in every moment.  My happy bubble is sometimes unrealistic, I love living in my world of rose colored glasses, and when it gets popped, I quickly spring into action to restore my peace and the reality that I choose.

That is what my kids keep on hearing over and over when there are tantrums, dissatisfaction, or not wanting to participate, I tell them it is a choice to be upset or to enjoy it.  It doesn’t always work, and the tantrum has to pass, and my husband’s aunt just told me that her pediatrician said when a tantrum begins to just leave the room.  It is not easy for me to do that because the kids are all over me 24/7, on me, holding my hand, sometimes grabbing my clothes, there is no escape, so all I can do is stay in my bubble of happiness, ignore until it passes.

Yesterday’s episode in the pool had me thinking about timing, and how important it is in every situation.  In marriage, meeting the right person, even any situation in life, it is all about timing.  In dangerous situations the timing is everything, one minute extra and it could change the whole scenario, action has to be taken immediately.  In the life we live today, we always feel we need to be organized, have control, plan, set goals, and always move towards the future.  Of course it is important, but staying present saves lives, staying present brings joy and consciousness, staying present keeps us calm, mindful, and balanced.

My friend and I were talking about mindfulness, it is a science, studied in universities all over the world.  It is similar to meditation, but it is mostly about awareness, and being fully present when you are doing daily tasks, or just relaxing in a chair, and fully relaxing in the chair, not letting the mind literally run you ragged.  When I teach Yoga, or when I am supporting a laboring mom as her Doula, my mind and energy is in the moment, there is no other thoughts, my kids and work are the furthest thing from my mind,  I trust and feel what is needed in the moment, and I feel recharged, I love the energy exchange.

Be Present My Friends,

It will bring happiness into your life,

It will save lives,

Letting it Go,

Moving On,

Grateful,

Coach Yulia

It Happened

The drive from Boston to New York was super smooth, I am mostly talking about traffic.  We kept the kids calm with movies on the laptop, but some whines got through.  Thank God once we were passing by New York City, the views were exciting enough for them to pay attention and enjoy, the buildings, bridges, and especially the statue of liberty.  We arrived at my friend’s house, the three of us have known each other since we were seven years old, along with two other friends, total of five. We all moved from the Soviet Union in 1980 and went to an Orthodox Jewish School in Denver, Co. We are still close today, and as my mom says, our love and connection is deep.

The picture below shows the three of us with our families, and the expressions on my kids faces are the exact same expressions that they have had throughout our trip.  Not wanting to, unsatisfied, bored, I had to pick both of them up, they weigh 40 pounds each, luckily I have a strong core.  As you see I am trying to smile through it all!

What happened you ask? Everybody was swimming and having fun, and in a flash of a moment, my little one got onto a floatie in the pool, and then next moment my husband noticed he flipped, without hesitation I jumped into the pool fully clothed.  Everything is fine, Thank God, all we can do is feel grateful, there are no other emotions, no what ifs, no fear, no anger, just feeling so blessed that everything turned out ok.  I was so impressed that he instinctively kicked and used his hands, kept his head above water.  Hopefully now he will be more cautious, he was careful before to stay above water because he has tubes in his ears, things happen, have to stay alert, react quick, and trust that everything will turn out ok and we are doing our best as parents.

The Joy of Parenthood,

OY!

Fun, Scary, now relaxing with my husband’s family,

All is Good,

Thank God times infinity,

Coach Yulia

              Notice the black dress when I first arrived, and the green dress in the picture above before we left

It’s Happening, Take Two

image

I wrote most of this blog this morning, but was waiting to get this picture since yesterday, it was taken when I first saw my grandmother.  We had a beautiful potluck, 26 people, a delicious cake, took some photos and then just hung out.  When I got back to my computer, what I wrote was gone. The picture above was texted to my phone and didn’t want to transfer into my computer, it wasn’t going through when I emailed it, and FINALLY, it just came through, and I am trying to remember what I wrote this morning before the celebration.

Everything was beautiful, she was beautiful, didn’t change at all since we saw her at 95.  Enjoyed getting to talk to everyone, kids played nicely, and now so happy to be headed towards home.  One more stop tomorrow at a childhood friend for a labor day party, and then to stay with my husband’s family.

Ready For Home Sweet Home,

Not Easy With Kids,

Glad We Did It,

Now Ready For School, Work, and Routine,

Coach Yulia

Family Foibles

Five years ago all of my side of the family celebrated my grandmother turning 95, five years later we are here again, with more kids added to the mix, Thank God.  Tomorrow is the big day, we all got together today, and it was amazing seeing each other again, so many hugs, amazing how kids have grown up, and families have grown.  Although we are all family, we have different philosophies of raising our kids, and it is amazing to see.  We are originally from the former Soviet Union, and then some from the United States, others from Greece and different parts of the world, and now with our spouses from all over the globe as well, our family units are totally different from each other.

Our kids are also all different ages, and mine are in toddler mode, and super clingy, and take turns acting up, and all want mom 24/7.  Hopefully tomorrow everyone will be rested from their travels, and all the kids will be less overwhelmed by the crowd and the occasion, and we can all just chill and enjoy each other, and celebrate my babushka.

Coach Yulia

IMG_3384[1]

Having fun with Dedushka

Ride The Waves

IMG_3377[1]

This picture was my favorite part of our road trip, it really was quite miserable.  One kid was throwing up non stop and the other ones took turns crying over dramatically, and this was our few hours of silence.  We have been quite adventurous with our travel, specifically road trips, two summers in a row we got a huge RV and travelled cross country.  The first year my baby was only 4 months old, the best sleeper ever, and just dealing with two was manageable.  The following year was literally hell, my baby just started walking and kept trying to go up to my husband who was driving, I had to be creative with blocking his way.  The other ones were going stir crazy, even with TV, a full kitche, toys, and tons of planned activities, we swore no more road trips until they got much older.

My amazing grandmother is brining my whole side of the family together again, and honestly it is manageable, but hard, kids are not fun sometimes, but being with the whole family together is worth it for me.

They say that eventually we will laugh at the memories,

OY!

Shabbat Shalom,

Coach Yulia

Two planes and a car

Yesterday was actually the best travel day I have ever had.  We didn’t have to hold our kids hands, they all had a backpack with books, toys, and a change of clothes inside.  The first plane was short and sweet, Southwest has Open Seating, which at first seemed a little scary, but it actually flowed so nicely, very easygoing, big comfortable seats.  I sat with my daughter and my husband sat with our two boys, next to me in the aisle seat sat a six foot five gentleman, and he was raving about Southwest.  Then we had a two hour layover which was the best thing ever, I put on a movie for the kids, we all had lunch, and just had a chance to stretch our legs, and the kids ran around a bit as well.

The second leg was supposed to be four hours, but turned out to be three, the kids did some of their homework, and at the very end when they were getting restless, the stewardess asked them to help stock her sodas and help open and close cabinets.  We got all our luggage quickly, the only hold up was at the rental car, there was a line, but the kids found a friend to play with while we waited, so it was all good.

My friends have a beautiful house in New Jersey, we are just relaxing until everybody gets back from work and school, and then we are going to play and BBQ, Woo Hoo!

Feeling Relaxed and Happy,

Coach Yulia

IMG_3361[1]

My little guy practicing his selfies