Cast Blog: #RHONJ

Marking Territory

Jacqueline Laurita offers her take on the vineyard hookup.

The trip continues, and despite what some of our campers are complaining about, I think they are having a pretty good time over all. I heard a LOT of laughing. I know they enjoyed camping together (even though they may not admit it), but I could tell everyone got a little more excited when we reached the Lancaster Estate and Vineyard. It was so freakin' beautiful! The owners of Lancaster Estates were very generous to allow us all to stay there, and they were so gracious. I wanted to move in! They were such warm and kind people. Their wine is excellent too!

Although we were having fun, the main reason we went there was for business and everyone knew that ahead of time. We hoped to have fun along the way while sharing this experience with our friends. My husband and nephews were meeting with Levendi about the possibility of expanding their brand into different territories around the country, starting in the North East. My family has been drinking Levendi's wine for years, but it was very hard to find. Levendi has great wines at a reasonable price. Their chardonnay is delicious. I think you all should try it.
I was disappointed to see how clearly Joe Giudice was trying to get the viewers to see how much he was not enjoying the wine tasting and how he was ready to leave mid presentation. I would have thought he might have wanted to support his friend a little more than that. That's OK though, Levendi is doing great, even without Joe Giudice's approval.

I'm all for being silly and having fun, but there is a time and a place for everything. Joey Gorga making the Lancaster lion look like his Tarzan package probably wasn't done at an appropriate time, but you know what...I couldn't help but laugh my ass off when he did that. Hello, California! Jersey has arrived! It's OK, honestly, we love Joey anyway. Everyone was drinking. We've all had those moments. I felt bad for Kathy on this trip, because I could tell that she must have been feeling a little left out of the family bonding that was going on between the Giudices and the Gorgas, although she was happy for them. After Teresa and Kathy talked, Kathy had thought that they had resolved their differences and were moving forward, but she still felt the tension and distance between them. I felt bad that Kathy was left out of Teresa's toast, because I could see the hurt in her face. Rich was using his normal sarcastic, witty sense of humor, but I think he felt bad for his wife, so he was lashing out on Teresa a little more than usual. This only starts the vicious cycle all over again. I think Kathy was just getting frustrated with making an effort and not feeling like it was sincerely being reciprocated or appreciated. I understand why she was feeling that way.

Why can't everyone just learn to communicate properly, forgive, and move on? It takes two to resolve a conflict. Sometimes you'll find that when you talk to the person you are having conflict with, you will realize that your perception of what happened was not intended to hurt you in the way you originally thought. Sometimes, if you can admit your own wrong doings, explain your actions, and apologize for them, it makes it easier for others to understand why you did what you did and helps them to forgive and move forward. Sometimes people are just too stubborn to see another person's view point, so they can't forgive or move forward. Sometimes you can forgive someone so many times that you are so fed up that you don't want to move forward. I think all of the above could be going on here in our group.I was glad that Teresa finally somewhat admitted in the RV to Melissa that she did in fact do more than just pose for pictures in those articles in the tabloids and that she did say things about her family and friends after she had been denying it for so long. Teresa finally admitted that she said what she said in the articles, because it was how she felt at the time. I can respect that, but I just wish she would have been this honest and upfront to everyone (including Caroline) and just admitted this in the first place instead of denying it the way she did originally. Caroline may have been more forgiving at that point. It was Teresa's denying and not taking responsibility by owning up to what she said and how she really felt at the time that was partially the reason she was upsetting everyone. Nobody thought she was being sincere. Melissa told Teresa not to trash talk her family and friends again in the tabloids and then gave her a pass for it. Melissa just wanted to move forward. Like Teresa said, "Once the article is out there, you can't take it back! There's no use crying over spilt milk." Once in a while though, people like to hear you admit to doing what you did and give an apology for it. That was my point anyway. I thought Teresa just should have come out with it and said, "Yes, Caroline, Kathy, and Melissa, I did write that stuff that was not nice about you in the book and in the tabloids because I was upset with you all at the time for X,Y and Z. I am really sorry for doing it and offending you, but I would love to move forward now, and I won't be doing that again." I think most would have respected that answer or would have thought she was being more sincere with wanting to move forward. Instead, everybody was watching their back waiting for the next hit.

Melissa made a good point that I kept trying to make myself. Once Teresa decided to put her business on the cover of a magazine and answer all of their questions, it no longer made it just her and her husband’s business. She opened it up to the world. If I decide to do a cover for a magazine, the same rules would apply to me, and I know that. If I put it out there, you can bet I've discussed it with my family and friends. What hurt me was that Teresa opened up to a tabloid but never opened up to me, one of her best friends. It hurt a little. That's all.I am happy that we celebrated Caroline's birthday together in such a beautiful place. I was very touched by what her kids said about her in their toasts. They have a really strong bond. Definitely something to admire.

I'm not going to comment on what came out on this episode regarding Joe Giudice, because I feel that it is such a sensitive matter to talk about, and I am sure it was very hurtful for Teresa and her family to see. Despite our fighting, my heart hurt for her. That is all I will say on that matter.

As far as the sex they had in the vineyard, I think I understand more now why she chose such a time to make a scene. I was wrong thinking that it was entirely about her trying to take the spotlight away from Caroline. I think somewhere in her mind, she was marking her territory. In my opinion, she should have just peed on him, kicked up some dirt, and walked away.

Next week looks like all hell breaks loose. You can watch what happens. I may have to shut my eyes through it all again. That all was just a little too much for me to handle at the time. The drama in Jersey never ends.

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While you're at it, check out the pictures and video Ashlee made about our families’ stay down at the shore:

I hope everyone is enjoying the rest of the summer. Best wishes to you all! XOXO!

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Amber: Is Dina Coldhearted?

Amber Marchese dishes on her first reunion and why Dina Manzo confuses her.

Hello Housewife friends!  Welcome to the jungle baby! My first reunion was a wild ride. Call me sick and twisted, but I had an unbelievable time at the reunion when most, I have been warned, dread it. I felt like it was “The Great Purge” and when I went home I was felt relieved of any built up tension. I don’t care if anyone has a grudge against me, my slate is clean and I harbor no ill feelings towards anyone. I love to argue my point, and I truly stood by all of my convictions this season, so I was ready to say exactly what was on my mind, and then some. 

I know the twins and I went at one another pretty hard, but that is what the reunion is all about. It is an opportunity to get it all out and potentially understand one another's position better. Then we can each make our own decisions as to where we want to go with our relationships. I am very much the type of person that can say some of the meanest things and sling mud, but hug it out at the end forgetting anything negative that was said. It just rolls off my back. I actually think it is healthier to say what needs to be said, and then move on.

One thing I did question after the reunion was if Dina actually has a heart or if I should start calling her the Tin Man. I actually have not figured her out yet. Is she really just a coldhearted bitch, or has she been hurt so many times that she has become warped and jaded. I feel I don’t owe anyone any reason as to why I call cancer “the cancer,” but I will give it once more anyhow. “The cancer” is “the monster” to me. It is a way for me to take away its power and to minimize it. “It” destroys lives, so “it” does not deserve a name. It is just “the cancer” -- it was “the monster” or “the dragon.” Although Dina claims to have an understanding of how devastating cancer is to a family, her actions and blatant lack of empathy proves otherwise.

In addition, I did not think it was appropriate for me to interject into family quarrels at the reunion; however, this is something that I feel strongly about. I have met Jaqueline and I have spoken to her on many occasions. In the very short time that I have gotten to know Jaqueline, I know and have empathy with the struggles she has caring for Nicholas. I felt that Dina’s interpretation of her nephew was callous and completely out of touch with reality. The only thing that keeps playing in my mind is, "You know nothing John Snow."  No, thank God, he is not hooked up to machines with cancer; however, what the Laurita family goes through is extremely difficult on a day to day basis that will continue on for a lifetime. It is emotionally and financially devastating. Although, Dina "visits" children with cancer, at the end of her visit she gets to go home, leaving it behind and goes on with her daily life. Since Dina does work with children with cancer, I pray that she can abstain from a self-absorbed lifestyle and become a loving, involved aunt. 

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