Friday, December 30, 2011

An Italian NYE - Cenone di San Silvestro

Believe it or not... this will be my first year celebrating a true Italian NYE dinner, or as the Italians call it "Cenone di San Silvestro". Traditionally, everyone goes to have dinner with their families where they make Cotechino con Lenticchie (Cotechino with lentils). Cotechino is a fresh sausage made from pork, fat back, and pork rind which is flavorful and tender. Yummm... can't wait to try it. Most people have dinner with the family whether at home or reserving at a restaurant and ring in the new year there. Then, the youngins go out to the clubs afterwards. Talk about knowing how to party! Normally you ring in the new year and are already drunk and done with the night... or at least I always was. =) My husband and I always either spent it by ourselves or with friends. This will be nice to be with family with baby and all now.

Let's hope 2012 is a good year for everyone! This year was rough for my friends and family and all around the world with the economic crisis, thankfully we were able to welcome Antonio into the world which definitely sugar coated the bad.


Friday, December 23, 2011

Vaccinations in Italia

If you happen to be raising a family in Italy, then one of the most common questions or concerns you may have are vaccinations for your baby. They are quite similar to the U.S. You will have them at 2 months, then 4 months, then 11 months, etc. However, the one difference is that these vaccinations are mandatory and administered by the City Hall. If you do not get these vaccinations done for your baby, the carabinieri (police) will come to your house. Crazy right? In America, many parents are now deciding to do alternate vaccination schedules and delaying certain vaccinations with all the controversy that has been going on about side effects, autism, etc. Although these alternate vaccination schedules are controversial in itself, Americans do have the right to discuss it with their pediatricians. Not in Italy....

As for the experience I had in bringing my baby.... we had to take him to the City Hall where there is a room that the nurse goes to administer the vaccinations. One morning in the week is dedicated to giving babies vaccinations. Monday from 10:30 t0 12:30. It is unorganized and simply disappointing. I get there to be surrounded by about 15 other parents and babies waiting as well. We are stuck in this small hallway and outdoors where it was cold and rainy. Once it was our turn, we went in, to what seemed like a jury. A table with 4 women sat there and I was asked to be seated. They took my baby's medical records to fill out and asked me a couple questions like if I breastfeed. Then they put baby on the table and listen to his heartbeat and then give him the vaccination on his thigh. Then we are asked to go outside once again and wait 15 minutes before leaving to make sure there are no side effects.

I don't expect it to be a day at the spa but a proper waiting room, a list for the order we go in, and seats aren't much to ask for, right?

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Wanting My American Christmas in Italy

I am all about the Italian Christmas and decorating my balcony with my Santa Claus climbing up the railing but I have been on the hunt for Christmas stockings and they are no where to be found! With baby having his first Christmas, I wanted to do the traditional American thing, and have a stocking with each of our names on them to hang at home. But, mission not accomplished. =( Every time I ask around, they say I have to wait for "Befana" on January 6th when they sell stockings... but those are stockings filled with candies for the kids. I guess our personalized stockings will have to wait another year until I can get them in America. =(

If you are in Italy, and have found someone who sells them, please let me know!