About

 

A treasure chest full of stories, recipes, images, travels, traditions, and culture of My beautiful Italian country.

Ciao!
My name is Maria Giovanna. I was born and bred in Italy. I lived in my hometown of Avellino, in the Campania region, until I was 28 years old. In my hometown I met my wonderful husband. In my hometown is where my two amazing sons were born. As a child, I dreamed to be an architect. My dream came true as I graduated in Architecture from the University of Naples, Italy. My life in Italy was simple, surrounded by family and friends. There were two constants in that life: a passion for traveling to always discover new places and the pleasure of cooking for friends gathering around the dinner table.
During the Fall of 1990 my simple life took a sharp turn. My husband, a scientist oncologist, was offered a grant for a one year research in the USA. Me, being me, impulsive and always open to new adventures, I jumped on the idea without even considering that I had a 2 years old toddler and I was pregnant with my second child! The date was set, April 25, 1991. My second born was exactly 3 months old. With six pieces of luggage, one carriage and one stroller we embarked the flight from Rome to NY and we finally landed in DC. My first memory is the view of the Washington Monument from the cab’s window. My husband was assigned to a lab of the National Cancer Institute’s laboratory located in the branch in Frederick, Maryland.
The one year research turned into two, then four. Life was good, I learned to speak English (I still have my Italian accent), I made friends, I started working in an Architectural firm, the kids started school and were involved in a myriad of activities.
In 1998 surprisingly we won a Visa Green Card for permanent residency in the USA. It was time to make a decision. You can probably guess…we are still here in quaint Frederick, Maryland.
I now live with my husband Giovanni and our Goldendoodle, Vera. They call us “empty nesters”. I really do not like this term. It feels lonely and that not the way our life is. My boys have grown up, have graduated, and moved out of the house but, they are still very much so part of our home. They didn’t fly to far away and they are back to the nest more times than you can count. We are not empty nester, we are a family whom has grown from four to six.
I practiced my architectural profession for 15 years. I treasure that experience and the friendships I cultivated while on the job. In 2010, my passion for cooking, my love for traveling, and mostly my desire to preserve, pass on, and spread my Italian culture, led to the creation of Sharing MY Italy. I realized that being away from Italy gave me an advantage. I didn’t have to deal with the nuisances, politics, and issues linked to everyday life. From this side of the ocean I could simply appreciate and reconnect to Italy’s rich culture, ancient history, variegated cuisine, melodious language, amazing art, inspiring design, breathtaking views, and relaxed lifestyle. I have taught Italian language, given cooking lessons, and I have designed custom private trip to Italy. In 2014 I had the privilege to plan and led a group tour in Italy for the ILR program of Frederick Community College of Frederick County, MD. From 2013 to 2016 I served as volunteer chairwoman & event planner of Festa Italiana of Frederick, a fundraiser event to benefit Habitat for Humanity of Frederick County MD. After a slow start, the event has raised more than $50.000 in two years. Serving as a chair for a non-profit was a rewarding and eye opener experience but it was also took all of my time (literally). I gave up my teaching and I freed some time for traveling.
In the past few years, I have been fortunate to be able to travel often, in Europe and Asia. Mostly however, I travel in Italy. I go back to familiar places and I explore new ones. Everywhere I go is a new discovery, a new food, a new piece of history, a new smell, a new color, a new pair of shoes! Italy never stops amazing you!
I owe a big thank you to my husband for his unconditional support. I am truly lucky to have him always by my side. Thank you to my two amazing sons for always reminding me how awesome I am. These two have my heart. Lastly, thank you to my daughter-in-law and my younger son’s partner. I needed some girls power in my life.
To all of you who are reading this post, Grazie mille for stopping by!

78 thoughts on “About

  1. I stumbled onto your blog while looking at Ragu Recipes. Very enjoyable reading, and a subject very dear to me. Technically, I’m American…but one side of my family is from Lioni and Naples, and came to the states in the early 1900’s. Sadly, the stream of time has taken most of them away, only two second generations are alive now. But I have great memories of food, family and wild reunions. Thanks for the nice blog.

    Like

    1. Matt,
      I am so happy you found my blog and I am especially happy if it brought happy memories to you.
      I hope to be more active on the blog again soon. Things got a little crazy and I haven’t been able to focus on the blog as much as I would like to.
      I hope you will be back and keep find the reading enjoyable.

      Like

  2. Sharon Iacoi

    Hello MariaGiovanna, I really enjoyed reading your blog and the scruptious receipts. Especially your lemon cello. I met you last year at Gilbert Ortega Gallery in Scottsdale Az. You gave me your business card. My grandparents were from Calabria. I have so many good memories of her cooking. My favorite was her easter bread and cookies. Im diffently going to make your lemon cello receipt. It was so nice meeting you and your husband. Ciao! Sharon

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    1. Ciao Sharon,
      I am so glad you found my blog and that you enjoy it. It was a pleasure meeting in Phoenix…everyone loved the gifts. Please let me know how the Limoncello will come out.
      Ciao
      MariaGiovanna

      Like

  3. I love your blogs, your photos are very beautiful. I’ll be back… I also have a second blog on old pictures.
    piallat.wordpress.com
    SENSUALITE | La beauté à l’état pure

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  4. Ciao Maria Giovanna (which is my mother in law’s name by the way, but she goes by Giovanna),
    I just found your blog today looking up your pictures of pesto alla trapanese (which, once again, my trapanese mother in law makes wonderfully). My life is the mirror image of yours, an American living in Italy. Look forward to reading more!

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  5. Hi Maria Giovanna,

    I just stumbled across your blog and wanted to stop in to say hello. I’m 1st generation Italian. My family immigrated to Canada in the mid 50’s from Campobasso. My husbands family is from Avellino and also made the journey around the same time. I was very excited to see you were from there as well. I’m looking forward to book marking you and following your blog.

    Buon Anno!

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    1. Hi Jenn,
      I am so glad you found me. It is really true that the world is small…your husband’s family from my own hometown!
      I hope you will enjoy what you find on my blog and if there are any memories that you would like to share please do.
      Happy New Year!

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    2. Carmela

      Hi Maria Giovanna and Jenn,
      My parents were born in Casacalenda, Campobasso(Molise) I also have many friends in my home of Toronto who were born in Avellino. I love your blog as I am always looking for recipes.
      Grazie!
      Carmela

      Like

  6. ajaytao2010

    MariaGiovanna nice reading about you. Italian lady architectural student & settled in USA.

    Thanks. I invite you to visit my blog Ajaytao2010@wordpress.com,
    Browse through the category sections, I feel you may find something of your interest.

    Like

  7. Peripatetic Eric

    I enjoy following blogs of people from countries other than my own so I can see things through a local persons eyes. Especially from countries I would like to visit someday.

    Like

  8. Hi,
    Would you be interested in writing a guest blog post on our blog, http://www.womenstravelblog.com/ ? We are a PR 2 blog whose audience enjoys reading anything about travel (e.g. “Top 4 Places for Women Travelers”, “The fun and excitement of Solo Traveling”, “Turkey land of Holidays”, etc). And, of course, you’ll receive a FOLLOWED link to your blog or page of your choice. Please let me know if you’re interested. I think you’d be a great fit with our audience, and we’d also like to talk with you about other partnerships.I have few more travel sites and blogs for link exchange and article exchange if interested please feel free to contact me

    Talk to you soon 

    Ratna Sharma
    ratna.fp@gmail.com

    Like

  9. We went to Italy last year. It was a dream trip for me, and I loved every minute of it – Rome, Pisa, Florence, and especially Venice. We’d love to live there someday, so in the meantime, I’ll read your blog for inspiration. Thank you!

    Like

  10. Ciao Maria,
    Just came across your lovely blog and find so much in common. I too love all things Italian and try to spend as much time in Italy as possible. My husband and I will celebrate our 25th anniversary in 2 days, and our gift to each other is another trip to Italy. I started a blog two years ago while in Italy and love documenting our adventures with photos. Yours are wonderful! Best of luck with your continued adventure.

    If interested, my site is blogginginitaly.com

    Grazie!
    Giuditta

    Like

      1. You’ll have to wait a bit…our next trip is NEXT summer…but there should be some posts between now and then! I have many posts still to write from this past summer.

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    1. Hi Meg, thank you so much for the nomination. I am truly honored, however, coming back from Italy I had many things to catch up with plus dealing with an awful cold and I am very much behind with my blog. I was planning to post a travel journal to share some of my pictures, the wonderful places I have been and the delicious food, but I haven’t had the chance to do so yet.
      I cannot promise to follow up with the award but I will try my best, in a meanwhile congratulations to you and thank you again for thinking if me.

      Like

  11. Hi my name is Alberto from north east of Italy ( Udine)
    I just star With my blog of recipes of italian tradition.
    Your recipes are wery good.
    Ciao, saluti dall’ Italia.

    Like

  12. Ciao MariaGiovanna! I found your blog searching for snippets about Bundt pans and Italian cakes (which I am writing a blog post about). And I can’t believe how many commonalities we have – both started our blog 9 months ago, both are sharing Italian cuisine, culture & a bit of travel (except I am in Australia and from Northern Italy). Amazing! I will enjoy reading your blog posts. Paola x

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    1. Paola, I am so glad you find me…it is really true that the world is so small! It’s indeed amazing how much we share. I will be traveling in Italy for the next three weeks but I will visit your blog upon my return. Ciao! x

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  13. Hi MariaGiovanna, wonderful blog you have here. I’ve always been in love with the Amalfi Coast. I, in fact, have a painting of it in my living room. You are the first person I’ve met from there. Very nice to meet you.

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  14. freetravelconsultant

    Hi Maria, I liked your blog 🙂 I am about to take off for a long weekend in Verona (which I hope to write about on my blog-www.freetravelconsultant.com). If you have any tips, please let me know:) I will be following your blog-great idea!

    Like

    1. Thank you so much for following. Lucky you, spending few days in Verona . . . I hope you will catch an Opera at the Arena, it’s a great experience! Looking forward to read all about 🙂

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      1. freetravelconsultant

        Hi Maria, yes, that is the plan:) Hopefully we will see Carmen..Only one opera but I have a feeling I will repeat this trip next year an with extensive stay 🙂 i will try to take some food pictures-maybe you could help me about those tastes I might like there..Cheers! 🙂

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      2. You should try the local cuisine, I suggest you try one of these (or all): La taverna di Via Stella – Osteria Mondo d’oro – Trattoria al bersagliere. You must taste the Risotto all’Amarone! Waiting to hear . . . Have a great time!

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      3. freetravelconsultant

        I love risotto-will try that one..wrote the names down you mentioned-hopefully I will find them and try out. we reserved tables for dinners, but at lunch time I would like to see one of the options you mentioned:) thanks for your tips! much appreciated:)

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      4. freetravelconsultant

        Hi Maria,

        Just got back from Verona! WOW! It was amazing! I could not find the restaurant you mentioned, but tried Risotto d’all Amarone! (will write about it on my blog soon)..was so yummy! thank you for your tip:) if you write about the receipe-please let me know..i am certainly interested..Best!

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  15. Hi MariaGiovanna! You are so sweet for nominating me for the Very Inspiring Award. Thank you! I really enjoy your blog. My husband and I went to Italy on our honeymoon 13 years ago. I’d love to go back again…but until then, thanks for letting me do so a little vicariously.

    Like

    1. Hi Marney, thank you for truly being an inspiration . . . who would have been more deserving! I hope my blog will bring back happy memories of your honeymoon and may be in the future I will help you with your next trip to Italy. Welcome to my blog and congrats on a well deserved award!

      Like

  16. Caio, So glad to “meet you”. We share the same interests – cooking great Italian meals, traveling to Italy, and helping arrange trips for our friends. Thanks for stopping by our blog, and hope you enjoy it!

    Susan and Wade

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  17. Hi, So thrilled I found you. I would like to spend about 3 months in Oltrarno in the Spring of 2013. I am looking for a small apt. not on a street where there is a lot of cars and motor cycles, the noise pollution will keep me up all night.
    Around Santo Spirito is perfect for me. A nice side street with air cond. and WIFi. I hope you can help me. I have been looking for months. I don’t like these ultra modern apts. I like Florentine decor. Thanks so much.

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    1. Ciao Letizia, grazie mille for the nomination! I am honored to accept. I love your blog and I have just found out that you live in Borgomanero. My brothers and nephews live in Novara! I will be there in September.

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      1. I would love that! Who knows may be you also know my niece . . . her name is Serena Galasso she works with Teatro Coccia and also with all the local festival, Jazz, Film, and so on.
        I will keep in touch when I am there!

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  18. MariaGiovanna, I’m looking forward to an opportunity to learn more about Italy, which sadly I don’t know enough about yet! I love everything about cultural exchanges, and as I too am thinking of settling abroad in a foreign country, I am sure I will be able to relate to your some (if not many) of your experiences. All my best!

    Like

    1. Thank you for following my blog. I hope you will keep enjoying what I have to share. I have experienced that once you move away from your country, you learn to appreciate it a little more and in a new unexpected way. Best wishes to you!

      Like

  19. Bill Fehlinger

    Professoressa: Checked the blog and it is great. Had fun in class today.

    Grazie! See you next week.

    Bill Fehlinger

    Like

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