Just an Italian Girl Living in a California World

I found this website a while back (http://thetruesize.com/) where you could overimpose the size of one country with another, so I took my beloved Italy and put it over California just to get an idea… It wasn’t a big surprise to me to find out the length of Italy is fairly comparable to the length of California. Italy is long~! I am often asked how different is living in the US compared to living in Italy… actually the most common question is “which one is better”, and I am always at odds answering that question because it’s not really a matter of “what’s better”, since each have their good and their bad, a lot has to do with the culture,Read More

It’s All About Family

… and just like that, it’s over… We got back from Italy late last week and I am sitting here pondering how it went so fast. But the truth is, it didn’t. It didn’t feel fast, I can still feel the warmth of my family and the beauty and love that surrounded me. And while the trip was rough on Nicky, he’s glad he went. The flights we took to get there were from Los Angeles to Paris for 11 hours and then Paris to Turin for 90 minutes with Air France, and coming back we took Alitalia from Turin to Rome for less than an hour,  and then Rome to Los Angeles for 12.5 hours. I can’tRead More

Cherishing Their Lives

My love of genealogy sometimes makes me want to know more about my ancestors other than their names and dates. It makes me want to push forward and learn more about them as people, as human beings that lived a very different life than I am right now. I wrote about the life of my great-aunt Caterina in a blog a few years back, we were so lucky that she was interviewed for a book and by doing so told stories I never heard, and even my dad never heard. It was amazing. In 2012 I took it upon myself to do something similar for myself, my children and future generations. I compiled a list of questions toRead More

You Can Take the Girl out of Italy, but…

While I was born and grew up in Italy until I was nearly 18, I’ve lived in the United States almost 2/3 of my life, and yet, there is something magical about Italy I can’t shake off. Something about Italy and Italians and they way they think, eat and do things that resonates with me in ways I can never really explain. I am what I am and I don’t want to change a thing. Yes, even though I assimilated fairly well in the American culture (if I do say so myself) I am still Italian at the core and I refuse to “shake it off”. 😉 Just last week for example, at a cooking class, the teacher, myRead More

Cultural Reflections

Not too long ago I enjoyed watching a really amazing documentary on PBS called the “Italian Americans“, which told the tale of the plight of Italian immigrants and how they were treated and their contribution to American society. I wasn’t aware of this, but the unification of Italy in 1861, which was meant to strengthen the country and defend its citizens, didn’t exactly accomplish this for the people that lived in Southern Italy, a mostly agricultural and poorer area of the boot, which drove them to cross the ocean to explore a better life. Southern Italians have slightly darker skin (unlike Northern Italians) so they were discriminated against. So much so that half of them returned to ItalyRead More

It’s All About The “Vibe” & Italian Musings

One particularly amusing thing about being able to call two countries my ‘home’ (Italy & the US) is that at times I don’t feel neither is, that I am this weird mutant, where I don’t belong in either, yet I feel both are my homes. How can that be? I was in a grocery store in Italy with my sister and her 3 month old little girl a couple of years ago, I had my camera with me and while chatting with her, when I saw these cakes in the bakery department, I took a picture of these delicacies without thinking I was doing anything ‘wrong’. A few minutes later this girl came out of the bakery andRead More

I Heart Firenze

Have you ever had a Deja-vu? A feeling of something being so incredibly familiar that should not be at all since you never saw it before? That is Florence for me. Firenze. Even though I never once thought about it, it was the first time in my life where I started wondering about reincarnation. Not sure I believed it, but I did not know what else to think. A few years later I got the same exact feeling about Boston. Even though I’ve never been to Boston, anytime I see a postcard or a picture of Boston and the name of the city is not mentioned, I *KNOW* it’s Boston. There is no ‘wondering’ or questioning, I just know,Read More

What is the American Dream anyway?

“Everywhere around the world, they are coming to America”… that’s the words of a song  by Neil Diamond which always pulled at my heartstrings. America always enticed me, and while I never planned to live here per se, the idea of adventure, success and fun was always synonymous to it. I grew up in Europe, Italy to be exact. I never realized how different growing up there was until I now compare my son’s childhood in the US with my nieces and nephew back in Italy. There is no comparison. Apples and Oranges.  I can’t even say that one is better than the other, it all depends on what is important to you. Having lived in both places, I haveRead More