Photo by Dave Zajac

Raeleen D’Agostino Mautner, Ph.D.

None of us gets through life unscathed by loss. Over the course of our lifetime, we lose people we love and situations that give us security (relationships, jobs, homes, self-confidence, finances, etc).   In order to declare victory over loss we must ultimately reaffirm our commitment to LIVE. And not just tolerate living, but it is our mission to live fully, or live a dolce vita, a sweet life, so characteristic of what the traditions of Italy represent.  Life is the greatest gift we have, and we cannot let it slip by unappreciated. From the time I was a little girl, living with extended family in a “little Italy” neighborhood, surrounded by parenti and compaesani, I was exposed to the Italian ethics of hard work and accomplishment, loyalty and love, and the joy of turning the small pleasures in life into a celebration. When what is important to us falls away, these are the blessings that still  remain, and renew our passion for LIFE, in all of its vivid colors, through all of its ups and downs.

Like you, I am no stranger to loss.  As a result of my journey,  I have  figured out what it means to me to fully live.  For me, one route to serenity lies in the traditional Italian lifestyle habits  and wisdom that I grew up with and that I later on studied through my psychology and cross-cultural research.  I am passionate about my personal Italian prescription for well-being and happiness, no matter what life hands us: Spreading good cheer, primping a bit so that you feel good about yourself, building close relationships, making love a significant part of your life, and safe-guarding your health by  eating fresh, locally grown, home-cooked foods. It is also important to actively seek or create the  dolce, little rituals that soothe, comfort, and make ordinary life become extraordinary.  You will find lots of blog posts  right here on this topic that I know you will love. If you are Italian, Italian-American, or just love all things Italian, you will resonate with my “old world”  approach to shaping your precious life into all it can be.

For 2015 my focus is on AMORE, and what Italian thinkers throughout the ages can teach us about love. it is the topic of my upcoming book. Love is one of the most important components of a live well-lived, and on my AMORE tab you will find inspiring insights and hands-on suggestions for living a well-rounded life filled with love. Feel free to send the link to my articles to your friends and acquaintances if you find them interesting, but please no violation of copyright–all articles are the intellectual property of raeleenmautner.com and should be credited as such.

There are so many simple ways that we can help ourselves live happier , more meaningful lives.  LOVE is the new focus. We will explore romantic love and beyond. Relationships with Friends, Family, Co-Workers, Neighbors–they are all fair game on the Amore tab on this site.  Feel free to weigh in with your comments and thoughts. I LOVE to hear from my readers (no spam or advertising please).

Disclaimer: My articles and advice in no way substitute for professional help when needed.

May love, peace, and joy, be with you as you fill your life with AMORE  for 2015.


I am passionate about bringing my work to those of you who resonate with what I am about. Here are some ways you too can drink in my prescription for  la dolce vita:

RADIO: THE ITALIAN ART OF LIVING WELL  Radio Show  is broadcast every Monday morning from 7-8AM. We bring you Italy headlines, beautiful Italian music, sumptuous recipes, compelling interviews with Italians and Italian Americans making an impact on our society, mini-language lessons and my own brand of self-help insights from an Italian cultural perspective.  Our theme song is sung by classical cross-over artist Micheal Castaldo.  Tune in live on 88.7fm or stream in from anywhere in the world: www.wnhu.net (click on the upper left hand button “listen live”)

FACEBOOK: VISIT MY LEMONSintoLimoncello  Facebook page  AND press LIKE for lots of interesting articles on Italian cultural topics.

TWITTER: FOLLOW me on Twitter  for pearls of everyday self-help wisdom.

NEWSPAPER: READ My WEEKLY ADVICE COLUMN in the Italian Tribune.  You can also send me your questions about any area in life you would like my insight on. If your letter is chosen for publication I will use a pseudonym so as not to reveal your identity: raeleenmautner@gmail.com.

BOOKS (both chosen as the OSIA book club selection (Order of Sons and Daughters of Italy in America):

Dolce Vita reveals all you need to know to help you live the sweet-life through the simple traditions of Italy. It reminds us to slow down and learn to make each day a celebration of LIFE. Readers have told me it has turned their lives around and reminded them of what really counts.

Lemons into Limoncello is an Italian cultural perspective on getting through life’s challenges and loss. It has been called “inspiring” and “uplifting”. Some readers have left it on their bedside table when going through tough times, and said that even turning to a random paragraph has helped them get through even their lowest points. I hope it does the same for you.

Both books make great gifts for yourself, or to let someone in your life know how special they are to you. Click on cover to purchase through Amazon.

Living la Dolce Vita

Lemons into Limoncello


(The background image of lemons, is an original oil painting by my cousin Giuseppe De Filippo, who resides in Calabria with his family.)

25 Responses to “Welcome-Benvenuti”

  1. james Fraulo January 10, 2013 at 10:40 AM #

    Dear DR. Mautner,
    My name is James Fraulo and I work with Domenic at the courthouse in Derby. He has told me a lot about you and I decided to Google your name to educate myself more. I have just finished 8 months of chemo as I had Stage 4 B-Cell Non-Hodgkins lymphoma and was given a week to live on April 21,2012. The thought of my wife, 9 year old daughter and 11 year old son being without me made me decide right then and there I was going to finish strong and live with cancer …not die. GOD, Mind over matter, and my awesome Italian upbringing gave me the courage to get up every day and live…even after I had 8 hours of chemo and was dry heaving because I had nothing left in my body. My will is strong. I no longer coach two soccer teams, drink, eat fast/bad food etc and I didn’t smoke. An Organic and holistic lifestyle have helped me on this journey.Everyone asks me how are you alive? How did you do it? You inspire me Jim…I just pray that one day I can help someone else. Even though I do have two life saving awards, I want to help cancer patients to make better choices and live longer. Keep Smiling is what I say now…LIFE IS GOOD. I even have the t-shirts. Thank GOD for people like you…the world needs more love and compassion.

    • raeleenmautner January 10, 2013 at 6:50 PM #

      Dear James,

      What an amazing story! I would love to have you on my radio show to share this with my listeners if you are willing and interested. Please drop me an email at raeleenmautner@gmail.com and we will take it from there. Thank you so much for writing. I know you willl inspire others! Much good health and happiness,

      • James Fraulo May 23, 2013 at 11:47 AM #

        Dear Dr. Mautner,

        I just wanted to let you know that the choice of organic, healthy eating and lifestyle changes has once again proved to be a significant factor in my journey from Stage 4 B-Cell Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma to remission. After my chemotherapy session’s were over, I was told I still needed to endure Chemo maintenance every 6 weeks for two years..At my last maintenance session, I was told that they would see me next….in 3 months.

        I tried to correct them but it was not a mistake. They told me to follow the path I am on and not look back. I just cut 9 chemos out of my life, Dear Lord thank you so much for hearing the prayers and giving me a second chance. Keep smiling, Life is Good, so FINISH STRONG PEOPLE and BELIEVE that you can do it too!

        Today is May 23,2013. I was given one week to live on April 22, 2012.
        You are the power…don’t relinquish it.

        James Fraulo

      • raeleenmautner May 24, 2013 at 6:07 AM #

        Dear James,
        You are truly a walking miracle! Your journey of healing is so inspiring to me and to my readers. Please come back and post whenever you wish. Our thoughts and prayers are with you for continued vibrant health and joy!!!!

      • James Fraulo September 2, 2014 at 5:06 PM #

        Hello Raeleen,

        I just wanted to let you know that I am one chemo treatment away from being done, after 2.5 years. GOD has given me the strength to live and fight these past few years and I am so lucky for it. I just wanted to let you know as you were very instrumantal in helping me find the strength to go on.

        James fraulo

    • LuAnn January 20, 2013 at 8:54 AM #

      Hi James, I am your second cousin. I saw your Aunt Sharon and she told me about you. I have been praying for you and it is so good to see your progress. I went to school with Raeleen. So glad the two of you connected. Small world, and yes life is good!

      • raeleenmautner January 20, 2013 at 9:12 AM #

        Luann! I had wondered about the last name and if there was a connection. Please stream in live tomorrow morning and listen to our interview! http://www.wnhu.net 7AM.

  2. LuAnn January 20, 2013 at 10:14 AM #

    Will do and I will tell my family

  3. LuAnn January 21, 2013 at 1:27 PM #

    Wonderful show this morning. Thank you

  4. Renee Homick Sabetta January 28, 2013 at 4:52 PM #

    Hi. My name is Renee Homick Sabetta. I am jimmy’s cousin. I heard the show and am inpired to live better from a health food perspective. Thanks for the suggestions and knowledge Jimmy and Dr Mautner. Im buying hemp seed and coconut oil asap,
    Love you, Renee’

    • raeleenmautner January 28, 2013 at 4:57 PM #

      Love you too, Renee,
      Thank you so much for your comment! You have an AMAZING cousin. I know he is inspiring many many people as he has my listeners.
      God Bless,

  5. Isreal Saletta February 6, 2013 at 1:12 AM #

    Self esteem is your own personal view of yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally. Everyone has a different view of themselves, but keeping a positive outlook will benefit you more than a negative one. Many individuals suffer from low self esteem for a variety of reasons and need to build their self esteem in order to succeed in life. Remember, the only one who can make you excel is you and no one else. The same goes for self esteem. The only person who can build up?or consequentially tear down?your self esteem is you. Although other individuals may aide the process, the end decision is yours.;

    My own, personal web site

    • raeleenmautner February 6, 2013 at 6:00 AM #

      A positive outlook definitely does help, Isreal. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts!

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  7. Jean Incampo August 22, 2013 at 10:36 AM #

    I just finished Lemons Into Limoncello. I bought the book at the New Haven Library at your talk. Thanks for giving me such an inspirational view of life, and a recipe for Italian Cream Pie, which I’ve always wanted. Salud! Jean Incampo

  8. Angela October 13, 2013 at 8:34 AM #

    I so enjoyed your talk yesterday Raeleen at the Westchester Italian Cultural Center.
    You are an inspiration and I am enjoying the book Lemons Into Limoncello.
    I wish I had this resourse when I was going through issues in the past. I do believe God
    brings us to certain places for a reason. I send you Blessings and good graces from
    Our Lord and hope to follow you on your blog too. E

    • raeleenmautner October 13, 2013 at 9:01 AM #

      So wonderful to meet you yesterday, Angela! Thank you for your kind words, they mean a great deal to me.
      un abbraccio

  9. Rita October 16, 2013 at 7:42 PM #

    It was an honor to meet you at the Westchester Italian Cultural Center.
    Your presentation was inspirational! I just purchased your book and look forward to sharing it with friends and family. Regards, Rita

    • raeleenmautner October 16, 2013 at 8:17 PM #

      It was an honor to meet you, too, Rita. Thank you so much for taking the time to write. I hope you enjoy the book!
      un abbraccio

  10. Sarah October 25, 2013 at 8:52 AM #

    Your book lemons into lemoncillo is in my reach all day. It is a comfort to me as I try grappling with trauma in my life. It soothes me, calms me, anchors me and reminds me to count my blessings. I love how you wrote it , with such honesty yet hopeful. It is the book I turn to when I need to find stability in my world . I am an adult survivor of childhood abuse and I deal with trauma every day so to have comfort in the form of your wonderful book is healing to me. May you be blessed

    • raeleenmautner October 25, 2013 at 10:12 PM #

      Dear Sarah,
      Thank you for allowing my words to reach you and lift you up from your challenges.Your letter means a great deal to me; more than you will ever know. God bless!

      • Sarah Roe October 29, 2013 at 1:44 PM #

        Hi Raeleen, thanks for responding to my email. It meant alot to me to hear back from you. I have a question. Do you do sessions over the phone ? Just wondering Thank you Sarah

      • raeleenmautner October 29, 2013 at 5:25 PM #

        Dear Sarah,
        Unfortunately, my behavioral coaching practice has had to take a back seat to my speaking engagements and book signings. I very much appreciate your inquiry though. If you would like to drop me a line at raeleenmautner@gmail.com perhaps I can recommend a couple of resources/professionals that might suit your needs. warmest wishes,

  11. Hmm it looks like your website ate my first comment (it
    was extremely long) so I guess I’ll just sum it
    up what I submitted and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your
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    • raeleenmautner December 18, 2013 at 5:25 AM #

      Thank you for your kind feedback. The most important tip I can give you on writing a blog, is to give good content (info that is helpful or inspiring to your readers), make sure you polish your writing (you can do this on a word document before you put it into the blog site), and post consistently, whether it’s once a week, once a day, or once a month.

      Good luck. You can definitely create an awesome blog.

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