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'Real Housewives of New Jersey' recap: A Giudice Christmas

Dining and DrinkingChristmasHanukkahThe Real Housewives of New Jersey (tv program)

It’s the holiday season in New Jersey! In this week’s episode we got a glimpse of how the ladies of the Garden State celebrate the Christmas season.

Teresa: The episode started off with Teresa and her family setting up and decorating their Christmas tree. Correction, it was Joe setting up the tree. Milania said to her father, “I’m a girl, I’m not a boy, you set up it up.” Way to reinforce traditional gender roles, Milania…

For Christmas, Teresa got Milania an Easy Bake Oven and I’ll admit I was very jealous of the 7-year-old. My mom never bought me an Easy Bake Oven and she knows I’m still bitter about it and just because the Giudice’s are having legal issues, don’t think they aren’t able to splurge on their kids. Teresa and Joe gave their four daughters electronic dogs and then when they looked disappointed ... surprise they got a real dog! Lucky, lucky them.

Throughout the episode, we really saw the vulnerable side of Teresa. She kept saying how she is trying to be a strong for her family but you could tell she was about to break down inside. She told her brother Joe that a woman came up to her in Costco (of course it was Costco ... could you be any more like a housewife?!) and told Teresa she is praying for her, which made Teresa feel good. The episode ended with Teresa telling Joe that this won’t be their last Christmas together.

Teresa’s quote of the night: “We’re normal,” she said in regards to how they celebrate Christmas.

Dina: Let me first start off by saying that Dina’s new tagline for the opening is the best I’ve ever heard: “I’m back to bring the zen, namaste bitches.” While everyone else was in the Christmas spirit, Dina was not. She said that she hates it because she’s never had a good Christmas and apparently her bird just died.

In this episode, Dina continues to deal with Lexi being a high school senior, who will soon leave for college.

Dina goes out to lunch with Nicole and they bond over their divorces and kale. We find out that Dina initiated her separation with her husband Tommy, whom she is still living with. It’s safe to say that this friendship has begun to bloom. I’m interested to see how this friendship will pan out this season.

Dina’s quote of the night: “For Christmas this year I’m getting a bundle of divorce therapy sessions and some Percocet.”

Melissa: We find out that Melissa and her family sold their house and are building a mansion in Franklin Lakes. In the meantime they are, “shacking up in a rental,” according to Melissa. Now before you start pitying them ... don’t! This rental house is definitely bigger than my parents’ four-bedroom house. The news of the Gorgas moving isn’t new. On a reunion episode for a past season, Melissa said her family moved because they didn’t want their kids going to school with Teresa’s. However, on this episode, Melissa said that the real reason they moved is because Joe wanted to be closer to work ... interesting, very interesting. I wonder if she would say the same thing if she and Teresa weren’t getting along.

Melissa also organizes a family dinner with Teresa and her cousins Kathy Wakile and Rosie Pierri. The two cousins were featured on past seasons of "RHONJ." At the dinner they exchange gag gifts. It was really nice to see the family all getting along.

Also in the episode, Melissa and her family play in the snow and her husband decides to prove that you can’t get your tongue frozen stuck on a pole. He was wrong.

Melissa’s quote of the night: “Contrary to popular belief I'm not the master of the pole,” she says and she sticks tongue on the frozen pole outside. This is a reference to past seasons when Melissa was accused of being a stripper.

Amber: Two episodes into the season and I can already tell that Amber is batsh-t crazy. But she is the kind of crazy that I find entertaining and not annoying .. yet. Amber gets in the holiday spirit by decorating gingerbread houses with her kids. Oh and she also makes her kids do a timed fire drill because she believes Christmas is the most dangerous time for fire. After the drill, she and her husband debriefed with the kids about what they did right and wrong. My parents’ version of holiday season fire safety was not letting me light the Hanukkah candles.

Amber’s quote of the night:“ Having four kids wasn't on my agenda. I used to think children were disgusting beings.”

Nicole: As stated above, Nicole and Dina have lunch together and bond over their divorces and kale. Also, like Dina, Nicole thinks that Christmas is a sad time because her sons, who she has joint-custody of, spend Christmas Day with their father.

In the episode, Nicole’s parents named Santa (No, I am not kidding you) and Sal, expressed how they will be sad when she moves out of the house. Nicole even said, “It's going to be hard moving out from my parents house because I don’t like change.” I’m pretty sure I said the same thing when I moved out of my house and went to college. Nicole is a middle-aged woman with two kids saying this. Hasn’t she already experienced moving out of her parents house?

Nicole celebrates her first Christmas with her boyfriend Bobby and is disappointed in the wine holder shaped like a stiletto.

Nicole’s quote of the night: “I’m not a materialistic person, but what a boyfriend gets you is telling,” she said about Bobby’s Christmas present to her.

Teresa, with the emphasize on the eh:  We find Teresa and Rino preparing their son Giovanni to enter the business of the family restaurant. He doesn’t want to go to college and would rather work in the restaurant. Sometimes I feel that people in New Jersey, besides Amber and Lexi, don’t want to go to college, but then I remembered that everyone at University of Maryland is from New Jersey so maybe it’s just a "Real Housewives" thing?

Teresa reveals to us that they are opening a new restaurant and she is in charge of the design. Meanwhile Rino takes Giovanni to the restaurant to teach him to cook. It is evident that Rino has no filter whatsoever. While teaching him to cook, Rino gives the following comparison: “it’s like a woman, all the flavor is underneath.” Yes, he did say that. I guess Rino’s multitasking by giving Giovanni the sex talk all while teaching him how to cook?

Sal’s quote of the night: “Tradition keeps society alive. Only the Hebrews and the Chinese keep tradition these days.”

It seems like everything is going pleasant in New Jersey. But as they always say, there is usually a calm before the storm and I think next week begins the drama.

P.S.: I really miss the Manzos and the Lauritas.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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Dining and DrinkingChristmasHanukkahThe Real Housewives of New Jersey (tv program)
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