Back in the Day Stories

Easter Bread

Every year, for as long as I can remember, Mom baked Easter bread. The loaves were perfectly braided and shone with a glossy finish.  As they baked, the house filled with home sweet home aromas heralding spring. Mom never cooked or baked small. There were five kids, a husband, and […]

A Day Begins

  My mother’s grandmother was the matriarch of the family. Every detail of home life was dictated by her. Despite the strict force, the woman aimed to keep her charges well, safe and loved.  My mother told this story many times. She was raised in a multi-generation home on West […]

A Ghost Story

It was a cozy two-bedroom cottage on a dead-end street. It was my husband’s, Matt, grandparents’ house. In 1980, his grandmother, Oma, died quietly in her bed.  Six months later, Opa passed away in the guest room of an old acquaintance in Florida.  His body was shipped to New York […]

Sweet William

Many Italian-American families, like mine, christened first born sons the paternal grandfather’s name. Second born sons were given the maternal grandfather’s name, and the third sons wore their father’s name. Daughters’ names similarly honored the matriarchal line. Families were littered with Vitos, Paulos, Marias, and Christinas.  It was a mystery, […]