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Being Pregnant in Italy

It’s impossible to fully understand pregnancy until you’ve been pregnant. We all have an idea, but beyond that there’s really no preparing. I spent hours with my £36 What to Expect When You’re Expecting book shipped from the UK to my otherwise-Italian speaking home, desperately searching for answers. Is that normal? What about that? Holy hell what… Read more »

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The Language Barrier: When The Two Families Meet

Marco and I had been married for nearly four months when our parents met each other for the first time. My parents had met Marco, and his parents knew me and each had to hold that as good enough for a marriage. Trans-atlantic relationships being what they are, the two sets of parents had never… Read more »

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Autumn in Italy: Chestnuts

“Are there any: Pumpkin patches Corn mazes Apple picking Hay rides In Milan or nearby?” This post on an expat women’s group perfectly explains fall in America. Those are the fall activities. That is how you celebrate a temperate climate’s best season.  Fall in Ohio means weekend trips to the orchard, spiked apple cider and getting lost in… Read more »

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When in Italy, Get The Cheese

“Wait,” my Italian father-in-law commanded, as I reached for a slice of cheese on the overflowing cheese platter. “Start with the brie, it’s the weakest. Then try this soft taleggio. After, the branzi and then you can finish with this gorgonzola,” he said, using his knife with a flourish to indicate each type of cheese…. Read more »

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Italian Pizza: Neapolitan vs Roman

My first experience with Italian pizza was at a touristy joint in Pisa. As my mother, grandmother and I rested our feet after a visit to the Field of Miracles (that’s actually what it’s called) we all three openly gaped at a young girl, maybe 13, as she polished off an entire pizza. AN ENTIRE PIZZA.  We were… Read more »

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A Note on Italian Time

Let’s dedicate some time to … time.  We all generally follow the same societal standards of time: a decade, year, month, week, day. Seasons, minutes, appointments, dates.  And yet how we relate to those standards of time is radically different across cultures.  “On time” in Germany seems to mean at least five minutes early. On… Read more »

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Italy: North vs South

Let’s talk a little bit about the north-south divide. Most countries have it. The food, culture, languages and economies of the north have nothing to do with those of the south in India, Argentina, Mexico, Italy. In some of these countries, both areas are accepted and prized. More often, however, an undercurrent of competition and entitlement… Read more »

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How to Make Pasta Like an Italian

I sat with three close Italian friends and my Italian husband as they, some quite literally, rolled with laughter. “And then, and then,” my friend Marco said, gasping for breath between laughs, “They cooked the pasta for TWENTY MINUTES!” “It’s like cooking it in a pressure cooker!” my husband agreed. “I’ve heard that they add pasta… Read more »

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Maya Angelou: Wouldn’t Take Nothing For My Journey Now

A friendly reminder from a courageous, intelligent, loving being: Maya Angelou   “Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try to understand each other, we may even become friends.” – Maya Angelou in Wouldn’t Take Nothing For… Read more »

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Tips for Tourists: How to Do Italy Right

We already have a very succinct, but very precise Manifesto for any and all travelers in Italy (Check it out here, it’s important) but I believe there’s more explanation needed for first-time travelers in Italy (and even repeat offenders!) Everyone wants to seem like a local when they travel,  here are some ways to help:… Read more »