By now, you’ve probably heard that former Real Housewife of New Jersey Teresa Giudice, has recently been released from prison. She and her husband Joe, were caught up in some serious money-related schemes, and now that she’s out of prison, he’s preparing to do his time. At least the judge was gracious enough to allow them to go in separately for the sake of their children.
Most people were only mildly surprised to learn that Teresa would be doing some time in the slammer, since she showed that she had a fiery temper and a tendency to want “the finer things in life” at any cost. And, we all remember the table-flipping incident on The Real Housewives of New Jersey.
Even though the Giudice family has been in the news a lot lately, there’s still a lot about Teresa that you may not know. Sure, she’s pretty entertaining on camera and has been dubbed the breakout star of the Real Housewives franchise (along with NeNe Leakes), but like any individual, there’s more to her than that. The other layers of her personality may not be as tabloid-worthy, but they are still part of what makes her who she is. And just who is that, exactly? Here are 12 things you didn’t know about Teresa Giudice.
12 She Had a Curfew—As An Adult!
Teresa grew up in a strict Italian Catholic family. She lived at home with her parents until she married Joe at the age of 27. Even as an adult, her parents gave her a curfew that she had to abide by. This likely has a lot to do with why she’s much more lenient with her own four daughters. She’s been accused of not being strict enough by fans and critics, especially when it comes to her oldest daughter, Gia. Some say that Teresa allows Gia to be too “mouthy,” and that she let the young girl start wearing makeup too early. Let’s just hope Gia doesn’t let her mom’s free-spirited parenting style go to her head.
11 She Loves Wearing High Heels
Teresa stated in an interview with Us Magazine that she wears high heels every day. She even says that she wears them when she’s going to the beach. While we admire her commitment, we can't help but wonder what that does to her feet! Sure, heels look great with virtually any outfit, and we definitely haven’t heard any complaints about her fashion choices from her husband. However, there are times when being fashionable gets out of hand, and this is one of those times. Of course, Giudice had to give up her high heel habit when she was in prison, but now that she’s been released even earlier than she thought (her February 2016 released date was changed to December 2015), she can get back to wearing heels that are reasonably priced, so she won’t land herself back into any money troubles.
10 She’s A Clean Freak
According to Teresa, she can’t leave her house until it’s “perfectly clean.” While this isn’t a bad trait to have, we wonder how she ever got anything else done, since the house that was shown on The Real Housewives of New Jersey was pretty spacious. Not to mention that there are four children in the house, and most moms would agree that keeping the house clean, even when you’re only taking care of one child, is a challenge. This further emphasizes the fact that prison must have been torture for Giudice. After all, those places aren’t exactly known for their cleanliness.
9 She Wanted to Be A Cheerleader—But Her Dad Said No
When Teresa was younger, she wanted to be a cheerleader. This really isn’t a big surprise, since we’ve seen that she has an affinity for short skirts and shouting. However, her dreams were quickly crushed by her father, who didn’t want her “jumping around with her skirt going up.” While he makes a valid point (kind of), being a cheerleader certainly wasn’t the worst thing Teresa could have done with her life. Maybe if she had been a cheerleader in high school, she could have gotten a scholarship, met another man to marry, and wouldn’t have had to do jail time for money fraud. But now that she’s a free woman again, there’s no use crying over spilled pom-poms. She settled for being a baton twirler in her younger days.
8 Her Favorite TV Show Is Dancing With The Stars
Back in 2011, Teresa said that Dancing With The Stars was her favorite show. Obviously, we thought her answer would be The Real Housewives of New Jersey, but she’s often complained about the way certain women treat her on the show, so maybe she likes Dancing With The Stars because it gives her an hour-long escape from her crazy life. Of course, she could have also mentioned the ABC hit because she wants to become a part of the cast one day. We’re not sure if she’ll ever get that chance, but if the show is still her “favorite,” she may want to start campaigning for it, since it could help her image.
7 She Loves Watching Football
Teresa definitely comes across as a “girly girl,” but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t enjoy a good football game. She states that she loves watching football with Joe, her husband. This is likely one of those things couples do to bond and spend time with one another, so we’d venture to say that if Teresa missed a game or two, she wouldn’t mind too much. However, we’re not ruling out the fact that she, like many women, has a genuine love for the sport. Maybe it’s best for her to stick to doing harmless things like watching football with her husband, since the last time she was a “team player” for him, it landed her in jail.
6 She Didn’t Get A Speeding Ticket Until She Was 35
That’s right. Giudice, who is 43, didn’t get her first speeding ticket until she was in her mid 30s! That’s a pretty impressive driving record. This is also an indication that she wasn’t getting drunk and speeding down the highway after a wild weekend on the Jersey Shore, or spending all her nights out clubbing as a younger woman, which is commendable (if, of course, all of that is true). Obviously, there are some ways in which her conservative upbringing paid off. Of course, a few years after the speeding ticket, she got a DUI. It wouldn’t be far-fetched to say that the stresses of life with Joe started to take their toll.
5 All Her Daughters (Except the Youngest) Take Tae Kwon Do
Teresa is proud of the fact that three of her four daughters take Tae Kwon Do lessons with their father, Joe. Joe is a black belt, and likely wants to make sure that his girls know how to defend themselves should the need arise. Tae Kwon Do is also great exercise and it teaches discipline. She has also allowed Gia to become a cheerleader, so perhaps the Tae Kwon Do will help her with the kicks that are included in her cheerleading routine. Luckily, Teresa didn’t need any of these martial arts skills in jail, since it has been reported that she was a very well-behaved inmate. Her husband, on the other hand, may have to rely on his “training” when he starts serving time.
4 She “Requires” 100 Kisses A Day From Her Daughters
Teresa has stated that she “has” to get 100 kisses per day from each of her daughters. This is a sweet sentiment, although as her daughters get older, they are probably irritated with mommy’s rule. However, it does show how much Giudice really loves her girls. Despite her crazy antics on reality TV and her legal troubles, it’s hard for anyone to deny that one of Teresa’s aspirations in life is to be a great mom. That’s likely one of the reasons that being sent to prison was so hard for her, and it was definitely one of the main reasons she wanted to get back home to her family.
3 She Loves Spending Time With Her Parents
Teresa has made it very clear that she loves her parents and is very close to them. She even stated in a Us Magazine interview that her favorite part of the week is going to Costco with her dad. How sweet. What looks like a strict childhood to the rest of the world was actually a loving and happy childhood for Teresa. She is also very affectionate toward her mother, and hosted her mom’s birthday party at her home in 2013. Giudice even Tweeted about cooking for her mother’s birthday, which shows that she loves doing things to make her parents happy.
2 She Reads To Her Children Every Night
As part of her commitment to be the best mom possible to her girls and to improve their reading and comprehension skills, Teresa reads to her four daughters each night. Even with her busy schedule that often includes book signings for her recipe books, television appearances and meetings with executives to help market her brand, Giudice still carves out a few minutes of story time each night. Even though her oldest daughter, Gia, is 15 now and her daughter Gabriela is entering her pre-teen years, we’re guessing they’ll tolerate story time for a little while longer, since they’re so glad to have their mom back home.
1 She Can Play the Saxophone
Most people know that Teresa is a devoted wife and mother (although Joe’s “devotion" is questionable), and that she loves to cook. We’ve also seen that she enjoys being a socialite and wearing stylish clothing, and that she’s not afraid of a little on-camera argument or two. What you may not know, however, is that Giudice is a saxophone player! She learned to play while in school and has apparently kept her skills up. We’re shocked that she hasn’t come out with a single or music video like some of her fellow Real Housewives. Sure, it probably wouldn’t go platinum, but it could buy her a few more minutes of fame.