Friday, January 6, 2012

Italian Stereotypes

My resolution about entertaining at home gets underway for the year tonight.  And we are going to have a very full house. 

We don't have a particularly spacious home -- I think it's about 2,000 square feet, but it's spread over 3 levels.  So the first floor is garage, laundry, guest bedroom, guest bathroom and hubby's closet and the entryway.  Second floor is kitchen, pantry, half bath, and then a big open space that is split into living room and dining room (and there's a little porch off the living room).  Third floor is a bigger porch, our room, bathroom, and my closet.

Our dining room table has never had more than 10 people around it.  And we've only done 10 people twice I think -- once for book club, and once last year at Thanksgiving (and then 3 of the people were little kids).  It's cozy, even with both leaves in the table. 

We only have 6 dining room chairs, so we'll have to bring up chairs from the garage that go with the kitchen table that we have stored there. 

I don't have a headcount for tonight, which is really stressing me out. 

Typical Italians, right?!  The main stereotype I have about Italians is a love of food and company (unfortunately, I think the second stereotype that I and many others have is not a positive one).  For tonight's dinner party, we are hosting a bunch of friends from our Italian conversation group from several years ago.  One woman who was in the class has moved to Sweden with her husband (we actually got to go visit them in 2010), and she is back in town for a month around Christmas. 

We thought it would be fun to get the old gang together to visit with her and her husband, and since I'm organizing it and didn't want to ask someone else to host it, it's at our place.  We could have gone out, which is actually what we've done for all our reunions over the last few years, but I really have wanted to have all of these people over for dinner, anyway, so this is the perfect excuse.

What I didn't count on though was that it might be more people than we can easily accommodate.  Our head count is at 10 for sure.  And there are 7 others that haven't responded, but being Italian, I'm guessing they're coming as well.

I need to decide in the next hour if we should go ahead and bring the entire kitchen table up from the garage and set it up in the living room -- that would allow a lot more space, particularly if we add a leaf or two to it. 

If it's just the 10 of us, I'd rather all be at one table.  And if it's 12, I think we could squeeze in.  But if it's 14 or 16, I think we're better off with a second table.

The more I think about it, I don't think we have enough chairs!  We have 6 dining room chairs, and I think we have 6 kitchen chairs.  Guess hubby will be going over to the neighbors' place after lunch and seeing if we can borrow all 4 of their kitchen chairs! 

I guess I'd better set it all up just to be safe.  Wow.  This is going to be a colossal undertaking.  Thankfully they're all good friends so I don't care too much if it's not perfect.  I wanted to do some of this set up last night, but we went out to dinner with one of hubby's co-workers and his wife, and then to see a play with them (Diary of Anne Frank, it was really good). 

So now it all must be done today -- and I have to work today!  And I have to go in to the office because one of my favorite attorneys from Colorado that I retain for all our lawsuits there is going to be in town and we're going to out to lunch with her. 

And I have to cook.  Making a shiitake-zucchini lasagna and eggplant parmesan, and a spinach-artichoke dip to start.  And then other people are bringing another appetizer, a salad and a dessert.  So that at least won't be too daunting.

But I definitely need to stop writing and get busy!! 


  1. OMG. The food sounds amazing... got room for one more? ;)

    Have a great time!

  2. The thing about us (Italians) is that we love having our loved ones around us. You're right, we don't care about if it all looks perfect (although my mom and grandma were pretty obsessive about always setting a beautiful table), but we always make sure we have enough food and room to have any late arrivals or last minute additions at the table(s).

    And I have no idea what your other stereotype might be. ;) Our great skin? Our beautiful hair? Our loyalty? Yes, I'm sure those are what you mean. :P