La Befana is Coming to Town
Holidays & Traditions

La Befana is Coming to Town

While Italian children believe in Babbo Natale (Santa Claus), they also have La Befana, an old witch-looking woman who rides a broom and delivers presents on the night before Epiphany, (Epiphania) which is celebrated January 6. This marks the final day of the stagione natale, the Christmas season. There are different accounts for the woman who inspired this legend, … Continue reading

Is Santa Claus Italian?
Holidays & Traditions

Is Santa Claus Italian?

“Is Santa Claus Italian?!?” exclaimed seven-year-old Daughter as she was watching the animated movie “Rise of the Guardians.”  Alec Baldwin voices Santa Claus, who does speak with an accent, although I’m not sure that it’s intended to be Italian. “Mom, listen to him!” she implored, and then really focused on the next few lines of dialogue. … Continue reading

Christmas in Italy: 5 More Reasons to Celebrate!
Holidays & Traditions

Christmas in Italy: 5 More Reasons to Celebrate!

Here in America we have twenty-four shopping days in December until Christmas, but in Italy, the holiday season starts a bit earlier, lasts a bit longer and is sprinkled with more official celebrations. Image Credit In fact, there are five holidays other than Christmas and New Year’s which are part of Italy’s stagione natalizia (Christmas season). What … Continue reading

What is Il Giorno dei Morti (All Souls’ Day), and why is it important in Italy?
Guest Writer! / Holidays & Traditions

What is Il Giorno dei Morti (All Souls’ Day), and why is it important in Italy?

My path crossed with Rachel Vermiglio Smith’s in a most unexpected way at the Palazzo Tornabuoni in Florence a few years back, and we have been good friends ever since, despite being 6,000 miles away. She is an Italian art history expert, and being American with dual-citizenship, she provides a unique perspective to all things Italy. I’m so excited to feature Rachel as a guest writer for today…enjoy! Continue reading

Holidays & Traditions

Of Saints and Chocolates

Of Saints… In celebrating Valentine’s Day, I never thought beyond cards, candy, and perhaps some extra hugs for and from my loved ones. It wasn’t until my sweet mother-in-law gave Daughter a children’s book about St. Valentine that I connected the holiday to an actual person. Valentine’s Day, just like Saint Patrick’s Day, is the feast day of Saint Valentine, as designated … Continue reading