Sunday, January 19, 2014
Thursday, December 5, 2013
|Antoinette LaPreta, my grandma|
Fast forward 30 years. One day in the early 1980s Grandma was walking along a street in Queens, NY (nearby where she lived), and she spotted a gentleman she was sure was her brother. (She had not seen him in over 35 years.) She ran to him. They embraced, talked for a few moments, and she wrote his phone number on a tissue she had in her coat pocket. They promised they would always be in touch. Upon returning home, she emptied her pockets and discarded the tissue, thinking it was simply a used tissue. And that was the end of Grandma ever seeing her brother again.
|(I miss you, Grandma. xoxo)|
It's your legacy. It's our legacy. Pass it on.
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Sunday, November 17, 2013
While attending the Association of Personal Historians conference just last week, participants were called upon to share “food stories.” Well, I was first up. I recalled my husband and my first holiday together at my in-law’s home. My mother-in-law asked everyone to bring a dish. Well, big shot that I am, I showed up with a special recipe from the best cook I knew…Gaetana Parrini Tomasetti (my paternal grandmother). I carefully and proudly prepared Grandma’s stuffed artichokes. I presented my dish at my in-law’s house, and it was received with…blank stares. The silence seemed eternal. Finally, my youngest brother-in-law (one of seven), with shock in his voice, inquired: “What’s that?” “What’s that??! It’s stuffed artichokes!” “What’s an artichoke?” What’s an artichoke?? WHAT’S AN ARTICHOKE??! It’s a staple in every Italian household. I looked over at my perfectly stuffed artichokes. Sitting on the table next to them was pot roast where lamb should be, mashed potatoes where lasagna would normally be, pearl onions where I would typically see stuffed mushrooms. Something called mashed turnips. What’s an artichoke? WHAT’S A TURNIP?! Well, no one ate my stuffed artichokes that day (except me). But in all honesty, I didn’t eat ANY turnips. Although I will confess, just last Thanksgiving (2012) I *tasted* them. Keep in mind our first holiday together was 32 years ago, so it took me some time to get used to the idea of a turnip. (I still haven’t tried the creamed pearl onions.) That’s okay. My in-laws still haven’t ever tasted a stuffed artichoke.
Sunday, November 3, 2013
"He's Irish, Mom."
I hope you enjoyed reading this post as much as I enjoyed reminiscing. And now, for your listening pleasure, one of my favorite songs: "Get Together" by the Youngbloods. Ahhh, I bet you thought I was going to say my favorite song is "Pepino, the Italian Mouse." ;)