Rostraver woman living the sweet life in the Valley

| Tuesday, July 7, 2009

MONESSEN - The flowers at Monessen Florist bloom and smell as sweet as those found anywhere else.

But even the amazement of the shop's flowers sometimes take a back seat to the charisma of Christina Tomich.

Tomich, 46, of Rostraver Township, is as bubbly and vivacious as any flower in full bloom.

"She's a breath of fresh air around here," said shop owner Loren Carroto.

Tomich has worked at Monessen Florist for more than 1 12 years, having come to the business after working as director of sales at The Willow Room in Rostraver Township.

"I got to know Loren while at the Willow Room and we really hit it off, so when I left there this place seemed like a natural for me," said Tomich.

"I really love it here. There is such a family atmosphere and I thrive in that because family has always been so important in my life."

Tomich works in sales at the flower shop and when asked if she helps with the floral arrangements, she laughed and said, "Oh, heavens no. I don't do that."

What she does do is contribute to the shop's morale with her effervescent personality.

"I just like being happy," she said. "Life is good. It's just how I choose to be. Why be miserable?

"Ask my kids. They will tell you I am way too happy in the morning."

Tomich and her husband of 26 years, Mark, have three children: Jillian, 21, and Stephanie, 20, both students at the University of Pittsburgh, and Mark, 18, a senior at Belle Vernon Area.

Stephanie Tomich is a cheerleader at Pitt while the younger Mark is a track and soccer standout for the Leps.

"I love doing things with my children," she said. "Anything family-oriented I am for. I attend every sporting event and that has kept me running everywhere. We recently took the kids on vacation to Punta Cana. That was a lot of fun."

As for her husband, whom she described as her "junior high sweetheart," she said with a laugh. "We've been married for 26 years I still love him. Figure that out."

Tomich says she loves living in the Mid-Mon Valley and would rather be no place else.

In fact, she says, there is one aspect about her that most people may not know.

"I was born in Indianapolis and didn't move to the area until I was five," she said. "I've been here ever since. Most everyone thinks I was born and raised here, but I wasn't."

Anything else about her that people may not realize?

"Yes," she gushed. "I was one of the first girls to be allowed to play baseball in the Rostraver Little League."

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