Most people think an Italian woman is short with olive skin, dark hair and pleasantly plump. Doing a lot of cooking, keeping quiet when it comes to her husband’s business, gardening, and taking care of the kids. Let me be the one to burst your bubble….that’s not how it is in today’s world.
Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t think my grandfather ever changed a diaper in his life. My daughter was the first baby he fed baby food. Once we were old enough to eat pasta (maybe 6months) he would happily put some on our highchair, along with a meatball (cut up) and a slice of Italian bread and talk to us about how great a cook grandma (Nonna) was!
Today, some of us are blonde (I’m mixed Northern and Sicilian), I would think I’m not round, and I’m 5’8″..OK so I’m 5’3″…..yeah I’m short…whatever…that one stands…and so is every one of the girls in my family. I like to think of myself as vertically challenged.
We Italian women do love to feed our family and friends, the more the merrier. We love our fresh basil, parsley, and veges from the garden to make the sauce. We do however, hold full time jobs and our husbands DO help with all aspects of raising the kids…..including changing diapers. If we stay home while raising children, sure we’ll do most of the work…but today it’s a team effort!
Our families are loud, they fight, they love each other and there’s certain traditions you need to keep. At holidays it would be blasphemy not to have at least 5 courses (Trust me, I’ve tried) Tell your mother you’re JUST going to make lasagna... she show up with 8 courses to go along with it and say she was cooking it anyway and made too much!
Another tradition is going to the Italian Festivals (ah vest). One is in June on Wooster St in New Haven, CT. This is our Little Italy. I’ve been going for as long as I can remember. I’m sure you heard of Pepe’s or Sally’s Apizza.. Old Blue Eyes used to come to get pizza here. Everyone was related to someone on Wooster St. I would always visit the Sacco’s (Tony and Lucille’s). Maria or Sandy (Sacco) would call me over to give me fried dough…..they always made the BEST. I would stop in the club and poppy would hand me a couple bucks so I could complete the night with a Libby’s Italian Ice………..I felt like royalty. Today, Wooster St is still apart of lives and if you should ever come to CT…it’s a MUST DO!
We learn young to be loyal, give people respect, keep the family dirt in the family, always back your friends, but don’t take no crap! It’s still a no-no to live with someone or have a baby without being married. You will hear about it…with a pointed finger, a mama mia, and a glance up to God, but once the initial shock is gone…they will stand behind you!!!
We are not all “connected” with the MOB and if someone was they wouldn’t tell you. We are hard working, law abiding American citizens! Most important if you’re a good friend, you become family!
Vivi bene, Ridi spesso, Ama molto