Growing up far from my big fat Italian roots in Chicago, the only cultural underpinnings that piggybacked into my adulthood were a determination to learn the language, a magnetic draw to the arts, and a ravioli recipe. So I knew that if I wanted my kids to have even a minor sense of their cultural identity – beyond pasta and hand gestures – I had to put in the effort. When they were little, I imposed some of my awkward and limited Italian into their lives, but with meagre success. It was also during those years that the idea of living in Italy took hold. I couldn’t imagine a better way to weave the language and culture into their lives.
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