Saturday, February 14, 2015

#36~1981~Orange Park, FLA

Our daily life was exciting, busy, full of surprises: good, bad, scary and entertaining... We were on our own, we were making decisions, we were learning how to deal with different issues concerning business, children, parents, advertising, finances... But most of all we wanted to build a safe, happy place where kids could learn an art of gymnastics, bur also teach them life skills that they could carry on for the rest of their lives.
At that time we met a lot of people that became our good friends. One of them was a very nice gentleman - Claude Bass. He owned a local photography studio and was well known in the community. He would come and watch how we worked with the kids for hours, took photos and helped us more that he would ever know with simple business advice or just praising us for our work ethics or just giving encouraging smile.. Another family was Smith Family. Mary Smith had 3 girls and just "adopted" our family. We would spend a lot of time in her home...She also invited us to come visit her parents at the Amelia Island home where we spent wonderful weekends enjoying true southern hospitality, picturesque lake, huge pool, horse range.
I think around that time I started dreaming about having our own home, where Masha and Liz could have their own rooms, big yard to play, big kitchen for me to cook and entertain. I was definitely becoming an American!!!
On most of the Sundays we went to the beach to relax, play and have fun. We always brought a bus full of kids with us.
Our first building: Industrial Loop. Felix and my dad made the sign by themselves!

Mary Smith and Elizabeth Davidovich at the Amelia Island

Anastasia Beach with Marina Davidovich, Cindy Gossar, Masha, John Plunket, Katy Wolf.