Life brings adversities in different shapes and forms. For Mike and me, our road has not been an easy one but I can truly look back now and say it has formed who we are today. This blog post is dedicated to two women who were on those difficult rides right along with us – my mother Angela and mother in law Anne.
My mother was born in Limosano, Italy and came to Canada in 1956 at the age of six years old. Coming to Canada meant a new adventure, a new life full of opportunity and a life of adapting to an unfamiliar culture. Not only learning and familiarizing a new language, my mother had to overcome her fears and make a new life in a foreign country where she had no friends, no familiar surroundings or any history in. My mother is a survivor, she's very strong willed and a fighter. After growing up in Canada, she made it her home where she later married my father Vince and raised myself and my three other siblings. I like to think of myself as Canadian born and raised with a lot of Italian flare. Passionate about life my mother always raised our family with tender, love and care and emphasized the importance of family; “family will be the only ones who will love you at the end of the day when everyone else is tearing you down.”
My mother had the biggest impact on my life as a child, teenager and adult today. As long as I can remember she was always there. When I swam twice a day, she was right there getting up with me at 5 am chipping away at the ice on the car ready to take me to practice. She was the one who taught me how to mix fresh ricotta, with garden herbs and delicately layer noodles with a perfected meat sauce for her rendition of traditional Italian lasagna. It didn’t matter that I was 12 years old, it was imperative I helped in the kitchen and understood the artisanal elements of cooking. Little did she know that smelling fresh Chocolate-and-Pistachio Biscotti’s baking in the oven and watching her cook with ease and what looked like little effort, were the little seeds planted that inspired my passion for food.
During our barn fire in 1995, we lost our entire family of livestock. Any devastation always is accompanied by new beginnings and during this time is where both Mike and I grew the most. Both my mother and my mother in law were there every single day either helping with daily chores or taking the kids. Both mothers alternated on hosting my family for dinner or cooking at our place and had a constant presence during this dreadful time. They were both a pillar to lean on in a time of need.
Much like my own mother, my mother in law Anne is full of spunk, and always puts family first. She would always look after the children when they were young and would enjoy doing so. Mike and his parents travelled a lot during his childhood doing missionary work in third world countries. They spent a lot of time in Peru, working within the Peruvian community. My mother in law is fearless and was a big influence on both Mike and I when we were newlyweds telling us to chase after our dreams and that we were the only ones to make our dreams come true. She is not afraid of adversity and hard work. Living in Peru gave her worldly eyes by seeing beyond the comfort of her own home.
Mike’s mother had a huge influence on the formation of Beretta Farms because she was the first one to start out with the delivery service. She would personally go and hand deliver products to customers and retailers. Mike’s mother was a woman of many hats in the beginning of our business. She took orders, wrote our newsletters and made sure every “T” was crossed checking grammar twice. With her guidance and help, Beretta Farms had a strong foundation to start off on and to this day we are so grateful and fortunate to have such a strong woman and influence on our lives.
To both women, thank you for your endless support over the years. The whole family thanks you from the bottom of our hearts. – Happy Mother’s Day to you both.
Cheers to these two beautiful women in my life!