Meet the Ciardellas

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    • #391

      Hello everyone! We are Chris and Anh Ciardella, and we hail from Auburn, California. It is a small mountain town located in the Sierra Foothills and is absolutely not the type of city that comes to mind when you think of California.

      Chris is the City Engineer for our city, and I stay home with our two children: two year old Peter and 9 month old Lucy. We’ve been married three years and are slowly working on building an intentional family culture. Lately we have been seeing more and more how important beautiful liturgy is, so we make the hour-long drive each Sunday to go to TLM, and occasionally a Melkite Divine Liturgy so our children can get a sense of other aspects of worship in our Church.

      I enjoy gardening and cooking, although I am a terrible baker. I love reading but it takes me forever and a day to finish a book these days. Chris’s hobby includes learning about the latest trends in technology and building his own computer (which he rarely has time for lately). As a family, we enjoy hiking together and spending time on the lake. We’ve never tried camping with kids yet, but I am itching to do it.

      We cannot wait to get to know all of you! We have been praying for a strong Catholic community to connect with, as it can feel a bit lonely and confusing navigating family life in a counter-cultural way.

    • #417
      Tanya Castellino
      Participant

      Hi Anh and Chris
      sounds like you have a beautiful young family and you’re setting up your family beautifully in these early years!
      We have 4 kids aged 3 to age 9….and are in sydney Australia. Look forward to getting you know you better
      Tanya and Daryl

    • #431
      Allegra Viola
      Participant

      Hello Chris and Anh! I have to ask — have you ever read The Seven Silly Eaters by Mary Ann Hoberman? The first two children are Peter and Lucy I think. It’s a favorite book over here so I wanted to recommend it!

    • #464

      Thank you, Tanya. We are looking forward to meeting everyone and learning from others as we navigate our new family!

      Allegra- you are the second person in the past month who told me about that book! I had never heard of it before but now I have to read it to our kids. I always welcome book recommendations!

    • #467
      Allegra Viola
      Participant

      I believe mine got it as a gift from a booklist on this blog that I recommend: https://goodbooksforcatholickids.com 🙂

    • #476
      Anita Moffett
      Participant

      hello~ I too am a gardener and cook! But sweets are my weakness and I do alot of baking too! What do you grow in your CA garden? I love learning about the different seasons of different locations and how they compare to our seasons here in Ohio.

      • #521

        Anita – I bet I can learn so much about gardening from you seeing as how you live on a farm! I’ve only started backyard gardening just two years ago, but we have a couple of raised vegetable beds and flower containers. You can pretty much grow things year round in CA, as we don’t really have frost! I’m still tinkering with the schedule to get a year round harvest, but all the cool weather veggies can be grown through winter. My lettuce, bok choy, sugar snap peas, etc. were producing until March!

    • #522

      Allegra, I had never heard of that blog! Thank you. My oldest is only 2.5 and I’m already collecting a lot of classic books I want to read to him. I recently enrolled in the Hillsdale online course called Classic Children’s Literature, and now I can’t wait to read The Wind in the Willows and Winnie the Pooh to my little ones.

    • #527
      Ann Best
      Participant

      Anh, if you ever want to talk books, definitely count me in! I love getting recommendations from people and my kids go through books FAST. With little ones, sometimes the repeated readings of books get a bit intense. Important developmentally, but intense. 🙂 I’m sure you have several that you can just do from memory by now!

      I visited an aunt in California years ago and she took me to lot of different places. The Sierra Foothills are a gorgeous area – I loved being in Northern California. It is such a great place for exploring and hiking. You must have so much fun!

    • #540

      Ann, I am ALWAYS wanting to talk books. I am getting tired of re-reading the same books, haha. But I’ve found the rhyming ones are much easier (and more delightful) to get through multiple times.

      Northern California is beautiful, especially the more north you get! I grew up by the beaches but have found that I really love living in the mountains.

    • #542
      Ann Best
      Participant

      Where I grew up it was pretty flat too, near Lake Superior, so got to spend some time near beaches too, but now that I’m in PA, I’m loving the hillier country and mountains. Just so beautiful – I love being outside! I always feel better when I can be outside for a while.

      Our kids love to read and be read to so much and I do too! Before I found the RAR podcast, we were doing a ton of reading just because my mom always put such an emphasis on it – she read to us all the way up through 8th grade. Being able to get some suggestions about what to read has been helpful. Right now our 18 month old is firmly digging in and refusing to listen to much other than the “Biscuit” books – every other line seems to be “Woof! Woof!” It’s hilarious!

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