Last weekend, we had the incredible privilege of traveling to Butler, Pennsylvania to attend a reunion for my mom’s side of the family. The reunion was for the descendants of my great-grandparents, and there were about 100 people in attendance.
It was so much fun to catch up with family members and hear stories of treasured memories. There was plenty of hugging, talking, and, like any good Italian event, a whole lot of delicious food.Zach and I both laughed at this conversation between one of my Nona’s sisters asked her son:
“Did you eat?”
“Yeah, I ate.”
“Did you eat again?”
Yep. You know that scene in My Big Fat Greek Wedding where the mom asks Ian if he’s hungry, he says no, and she says, “Ok, I make you something.” That’s pretty much how visits to my Nona’s house always went. I love it.
We played bocce ball, had a very entertaining egg toss, and spent lots of time catching up. There was also a lot of kissing, which Zach said reminded him of an Italian kissing booth. (He also said that I’m an awkward cheek kisser, which I hate to admit is probably right. I need to rehearse.) My mom’s cousin was generous enough to let us stay at her house Saturday night, where Zach tought everyone the Family game (one of our favorites) and we stayed up into the wee hours of the night just enjoying each other’s company. (My 94 year-old Nona was still up with everyone at 2am serenading us in Italian- amazing, right?) Basically, we had a great time.
As many of you know, my mom passed away when I was 13 months old. Although she’s gone, spending time with her side of the family always brings me so much joy. Not only are they an incredibly loving, hospitable, fun group of people, but they also help carry on her memory by telling me things about her I never would have known otherwise. (Like the fact that when my mom was born, my uncle got to be the one to choose her name. (if it had been a boy, my aunt would have gotten to choose) He chose Patricia after a cheerleader he had a crush on. So funny!) When we get together with my mom’s side of the family, I am constantly being told how much I look like her. I love hearing that because even though I never got to know her, it means a lot to be able to carry on her memory. For those of you who are curious, here are a few pictures: