Aloha! I’m Val, and I haven’t the slightest idea of how to explain who I am. What I CAN tell you is that my craziest decisions are the ones that shaped me into the person I am today so…

Let’s talk about those!

In 2010 I created my blog Balancing Val to document the huge change I was making in my life. I decided I wanted more out of life and didn’t want to stay stuck in my home town on the Jersey Shore forever and began expressing my thoughts, personality and things I was interested in. I chose the name Balancing Val because I’ve never been one to be completely settled on something. I have always been balancing passions, careers, hobbies and major life decisions.

My REALLY old but precious posts can be found HERE

I went to culinary school! Not only was this culinary school about health and healing but it was also in the great New York City. Deciding to take this leap was a huge step in my life and an unforgettable experience that honed one of my passions and surely was a driving force that led me to where I am now.


I moved to Hawaii! For zero reason other than I wanted to challenge myself. I felt a strange pull to do so which was really out of the box for me. I knew no one, had no money and no job lined up at all. I had my hounds tooth suitcase and a fresh culinary school certificate and pretty big balls apparently.

I cooked for Rock Stars! My first job out here was something out of a movie. I worked for a catering company that fed all of the major bands and musicians that came out to the island. I don’t know why I was given this amazing opportunity and I never worked so hard in my life (at the time) but I forever can say that at one time I was a celebrity chef, right?

I got married! For so long, the reason I threw myself into the middle of the pacific ocean away from my comfort zone was just to challenge myself. There were many times I thought about leaving or giving up. Sometimes living here felt like a dead end but there were times that I felt this gut feeling that I needed to stay just a bit longer for a reason I couldn’t put my finger on. Mike and I met on a dating site in the summer of 2012. We had 2 good dates and then I abandoned him to continue working on my career and myself. At the time I didn’t have much and I didn’t really feel that I deserved to give myself a less than stellar version of myself. He continued to work at his job as a submariner on the USS Texas. A year passed and we reconnected and EVERYTHING was different. I never fell in love so fast and questioned myself often. For all of the things I balanced, Mike felt like stability. He felt like my right leg! We ended up getting married on a Saturday in a beautiful state park with a few friends present. Simple, beautiful, and forever it will continue.

Check out our Wedding (eloping) Story

I created and part own a restaurant in Miami! This one STILL shocks me. After working as a chef for a while, I met some amazing people. Motivated people who want more out of life and happen to share the same passions as myself. When things weren’t working out for the restaurant we worked for, we decided to boldly make one ourselves with little knowledge. THIS was for sure the hardest I’ve ever worked in my life and I am proud to say that it continues to run successfully in downtown Miami no matter how little or big my role may be with this major life accomplishment.

Check out Jar + Fork Miami

Created SkinnerTV! Mike and I have created a channel documenting our lives and all of the things we go through good and bad. It is an amazing hobby and being able to look back at how much we’ve grown and what we did in our younger years is definitely a treasure that we will have forever.


We are finally ending our time in Hawaii and moving to Charleston SC where we will have a more stable home life and be able to travel more and I will be able to start over once again as Balancing Val.

I can be found on: