This website is a place to share what I have learned from the beautiful Italian women in my family who understood the best way to bring people together was around the dinner table. Growing fruits and vegetables in the backyard, raising chickens, cooking, knitting, sewing, and loving on us children, that is the legacy they left behind. As the only girl of seven children, I got to hang out with the women wherever they gathered. I was loved on and encouraged to try everything and I heard some great stories in the process. Today, my greatest joy is to sit at one end of the table, my husband at the other, and listen to the sounds of plates being passed and stories being shared.
The matriarch of the family was my beloved great-grandmother, Mamanika, seen here with her Revereware saucepan and soup pot that doubled as a mixing bowl for her legendary “S” cookies. She came to the U.S. through Ellis Island when she was sixteen. Sewing and knitting were skills she learned growing up in Sicily. Everyone loved her. She taught us to make seashell necklaces on the beach. She loved to shock people.
Her daughter, my dear grandmother, seen here on her Schwinn three-wheeler made the best spaghetti and meatballs. She was an amazing seamstress who did things like make my First Holy Communion dress. I adored everything about her, but especially the way she called me darling.
Her daughter, my mother, was beautiful, petite, tough, and a true Maker. Cooking veggies was her superpower, and a daily trip to the farmstand was a must. Twenty years ago she painted a watercolor of a chicken that is now the logo on my blog. There wasn’t anything she couldn’t make. My favorite memories were cooking with her and the sparkle and enthusiasm that came with searching for supplies when we got an idea for a new project. I miss her every day.
Mom’s baby sister, Rachelle, was more big sister than aunt to me. We grew up as neighbors in the coastal community of Bay View in South Dartmouth, Massachusetts. She is shown here on Christmas Eve making the Sicilian Seven Fishes dinner with the next generation of family. She fills a room with love and joy.
And then there is my husband, The Biscuit King who loves exploring the countryside and visiting farms with me. He intuitively knows when to slow down for a good photo op. His logical approach to life balances my passionate approach. To know him is to love him. His three sons and grandson love fishing, hunting, and making things with him.
Cooking for everyone in my kitchen makes me happy.
If you are enjoying this blog, please sign up to become a subscriber and consider sharing it with a friend!
Follow Judy’s Chickens on Instagram and Pinterest: @JudysChickens
© 2014-2018 Judy Wright or JudysChickens. All rights reserved. No photos, videos, or text may be used without written consent.