7 Tips on Surviving an Italian Family ...

No one can tell you how to survive an Italian better than...an Italian herself! Thanks Djamila for the highly entertaining post!

Whether they're your in-laws, your neighbors or your own family, spending time with these lovely (and loud!) people can drive you crazy. Being born and raised in the Netherlands I've actually only just come to realize how much my Italian background affected me. For one thing I have been fed sarcasm my entire life, so please bare with me here. I know how loud and nosy and sometimes even obnoxious we can be, but I kind of always forgot that that's not really the 'standard' way of doing things in non Italian families. Below you'll find my seven tips on surviving an Italian family, with a hint of sarcasm.

1. Bring Your Etiquette!

This one kind of goes without saying right? Well you would be surprised of how much gets categorized as rude. Entering the house without saying hello to everyone? Forget it. Leaving the house without saying goodbye? Even a bigger no-go. As a member of the family you're expected to say where you're going, what you'll be doing, with whom you'll be doing that, what time you plan on getting back and of course(!) whether you'll be home for dinner or not! For me this just became routine but I can imagine my friends can get a little overwhelmed by all the questions. You didn't think the family would hold back just because you brought company, did you? If anything they will also ask your friend tons of questions, bring up embarrassing stories about you and try to feed them like they're poor little orphans. Some other pointers: ask whether it's OK to keep your shoes on or not, when presented food try to accept at least once but never eat everything, never ever wear a hat or cap while eating at the table. My grandfather literally took a cap of a dinner guest his head and swung it out of the kitchen one time. Talk about etiquette grandpa..