I FOUND FAME ON RE­AL­ITY TV BUT … She’s a well-known “Brav­olebrity,” but the Manzo’d With Chil­dren star has made it her mis­sion to stay grounded

In Touch (USA) - - News -

Caro­line Manzo tells In Touch why she doesn’t miss RHONJ.

She starred on The Real House­wives of New Jersey for seven years be­fore land­ing her own Bravo spin-off, Manzo’d With Chil­dren, but straight-shoot­ing Caro­line Manzo has never got­ten caught up in the trap­pings of fame. “The re­al­ity TV thing is my job, noth­ing more,” in­sists the 55-year-old mom of three (Al­bie, 30, Lau­ren, 28, and Chris, 27) with her hus­band of 32 years, Al, 56. “You can’t let fame go to your head, and you can never for­get where you came from.” The Jersey girl talks to In Touch’s Ja­clyn Roth about be­com­ing a grandma (Lau­ren is ex­pect­ing her first child in early 2017), the health scare that changed her life and why she doesn’t miss House­wives.

What’s the se­cret to a last­ing mar­riage on re­al­ity TV? CM: I pri­or­i­tize. My pri­or­ity has al­ways been my hus­band and my chil­dren. In TV, ev­ery­thing has a shelf life, but fam­ily is there un­til the end.

Do you think some House­wives let fame get in the way of their mar­riage? CM: Yes, but fame is non­sense. The minute it starts af­fect­ing your life in a neg­a­tive way, you have to walk away.

Are you hap­pier post- RHONJ? CM: I am very happy now. I love do­ing Manzo’d. It’s a com­pletely dif­fer­ent an­i­mal. It’s a lighter feel­ing.

Do you have a re­la­tion­ship with Teresa Gi­u­dice at this point? CM: There is no re­la­tion­ship, and we are both fine with it. We are just com­pletely dif­fer­ent peo­ple.

Are you in touch with any­one from the show? CM: I see Jacque­line [Lau­rita] and I talk to Dolores [Cata­nia], who I adore.

A lot of House­wives get Botox and fillers. Are they over­do­ing it? CM: If it makes you happy, do it. But I am very com­fort­able with my face. Your face is your face! I would never touch mine.

You had a re­cent health scare af­ter find­ing a lump in your breast — how are you do­ing? CM: It turned out to be some sort of crazy in­fec­tion. But it was a three-, four-month scare.

What a re­lief! CM: Oh, yes. And a wake-up call. I started to zone in on my health — I ex­er­cise more and eat mostly lean turkey, chicken, un­pro­cessed veg­eta­bles and fruit. I’m down 15 pounds and feel a mil­lion per­cent bet­ter.

You’ll need the en­ergy now that you’re go­ing to be a grand­mother! CM: I’m so ex­cited! I’ll cer­tainly be spoil­ing her in many ways. … There will al­ways be candy and cup­cakes at Grandma’s house!

What makes you hap­pi­est in life? CM: Oh my God — my hus­band and my chil­dren. With­out them, my heart would stop beat­ing. ◼

KEEP­ING IT REAL “The per­son you see on tele­vi­sion is the per­son you’re go­ing to meet face to face,” says Caro­line. “I’m just a reg­u­lar mom from New Jersey,” says Caro­line (with her hus­band and kids in the early ’90s).

CLOSE FAM­ILY “It’s a fun sea­son,” says Caro­line, film­ing Manzo’d With Chil­dren

with (from left) Al­bie, Lau­ren, Lau­ren’s hubby, Vito Scalia, Christo­pher and Al. MOV­ING ON Caro­line with her for­mer RHONJ cast­mates (from left: Melissa Gorga, Jacque­line Lau­rita, Kathy Wak­ile and Teresa Gi­u­dice) in 2013

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