August 1998 – When we spent several months in Italy in 1998 so that my parents could help me take care of Nicky, I had the opportunity to have my little guy spend quality time with my Nonna Rina, which is Nicky’s great-grandma (BisNonna). We would go visit her often and she would always ask for kisses. It was so sweet. I miss her dearly, but I know she had a long life, passing away only a couple of months short of her 102nd birthday. The following is from my book “Butterfly Child”: “When we came back from our trip we had a fabulous party for my grandma’s 95th birthday. It was a day I will never forget. This is the grandma that lost a baby girl on her 8th month of pregnancy in the mid 1940s who told me that I would be happy someday and that pain wouldRead More →

My little sister was a big surprise in our family. One could say she is and always will be our greatest blessing, one that, however, my parents were not planning on. This meant that from the time she was born our vacations had to be… ahem. Cheaper. So, every year between 1973 and 1981 (and beyond, 1981 was my last summer with them) my family spent our summer vacations in the house built by my grandfather in the village in Italy where my dad was born and his family originated in. While enjoying the scenery and the tranquillity of the place among a few sight-seeing trips, we used to go visit his uncles and aunts, now quite old (some even approaching the century mark). My grandparents had about a dozen siblings combined, most of which lived a very long life, and at the time, while I was bored to tears visiting with oldRead More →