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Christmas in Sicily

Maria looked from one to the other confused.
“To our parents?” she asked.
“Sit down - here mangiare” Nonna gave her a
cookie. “Let me explain Ï When I was a
little girl in Sicily around Christmas my
friends and I would get together and write
letters to our mamma and papa telling them
how much we appreciate them and how much we
love them. We’re not taught to write letters
or lists of what we want Ï that would be
rude Ï but was most important was our
appreciation of all that our parents did for
us throughout the year and these letters
would be read after our Christmas Eve
dinner. All the children would stand around
our parents and read our letters aloud in
front of the family.”
“Wow, I can’t wait to tell how we do
Christmas tomorrow at Show N Tell Ï what
about the tree Nonna Ï when do we put up a
tree? or don’t we have one?” Maria asked
reaching for another cookie.
Nonna looked at Maria and smiled. “Yes,
Bambina we too have a tree, although it
wasn’t until I was expecting your momma that
we had one.”
“Momma, I remember having a tree when I was
about two.” Maria’s mother said.
“Yes and if you ask you’re brothers they
would tell you we didn’t have a tree until
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