Lydia learns that a physical-therapy aid is assisting the football coach in getting an edge over the competition. Jackie has an unpleasant encounter with Victor's mother. Paulie and Plum elope when Dolly won't accept their engagement.
Lydia helps an actor bring authenticity to the role of an Italian-American from New Jersey. Jackie's romance with Ray is threatened when his past catches up with him. Lydia has her own share of drama in keeping her new beau a secret from Dolly.
Jackie's conflict over leaving for Mexico with Ray or staying in New Jersey with a visiting Abigail puts a strain on her friendship with Lydia. Frank has difficulty in accepting a generous gift from Plum. Lydia is charmed into getting Mack's irresponsible brother a job at the sports clinic.
Cucina DeLucca silent partner Paulie doesn't stay quiet for very long after distant cousin Lorenzo arrives from Italy to help in the kitchen and ends up making drastic changes to the restaurant's menu and ambiance; a laid-up Jackie thinks that she's witnessed a murder.
As Paulie's birthday approaches, he discovers that Jimmy is gay. Lydia finds a new apartment right above the Cucina and reunites with Mack. Frank and Dolly get an unpleasant surprise when they enter Lydia's new place without knocking. Lydia discovers that Jackie and Mack had a brief affair fourteen years ago.
Lydia and Mack decide to move in together. Dolly and Frank are unhappy and decide to use reverse psychology on their daughter by pretending to like Mack. Jackie worries that Adele won't be able to cope with running the salon in her absence. Lydia begins to lose interest in Mack when she learns that he doesn't want children. Adele throws Jackie a surprise baby shower. Mack moves out of Lydia's apartment; Jackie goes into labor at the salon and Eric delivers her baby with the help of Dolly and Lydia.
Lydia advises a jock to pursue his dreams, encouraging him not to drop out of college. Jules returns for her grandson's christening; Jackie begins a quest to find her father. Paulie and Plum talk about having children. Jackie asks Frank to be Victor Francis' godfather.
Plum discovers that Gavin is the new teaching assistant assigned to her class. Valerie comes to the rescue when an attractive divorced friend tries to seduce Frank. Plum convinces Paulie to sit for the sergeant's exam, despite his lack of confidence. Lydia meets Gavin in the library and, unaware that he's Plum's ex-boyfriend, invites him to be her "non-date" for Plum's birthday party.