THE HOT TEMPER
Despite a few bumps (husband Joe got a DUI in January; an "investment property" was foreclosed upon), "life is pretty good," says Giudice, 38. After angrily flipping a table in the first season's finale, she now has a fourth daughter, 8-month-old Audriana, and says Joe still wants to try for a boy: "I'm like, 'No way, we have our hands full!'"
Manzo, 48, bragged last season that her family was "thick as thieves," but husband Albert isn't quite so big anymore. After a doctor's warning, he lost almost 100 lbs. after lap-band surgery. "I never knew a thin Albert," she says. "It's incredible." Meanwhile her daughter Lauren is dating son Albie's best friend. "There's tension," Manzo says, "but they're working through it."
THE LONE WOLF
After last season's catfighting, "I've stepped away from the pack," says Staub, 47. That doesn't mean her life has been drama-free. In November, Staub's altercation with former BFF Laurita's daughter Ashley landed the group in court. "I was terrified," Staub says of the night she claims a chunk of her hair was ripped out by the teen, "but it does make great TV, how much they hate me."
THE HAPPY HOMEMAKER
"Last year I was very stressed out trying to conceive," says Laurita, 40. Thanks to 11-month-old Nicholas, "I'm having a lot more fun." Except for when daughter Ashley, 19, ended up in court over assault charges brought by former pal Staub. "People warned me about her, but I gave her the benefit of the doubt," she says of Staub. "Now I can't look at her."
THE RELUCTANT DIVA
After tangling with Staub last season, "it was a very dark period for me," says Manzo, 38. When she began finding threatening notes in her mailbox last summer, "I called the cops a few times and stepped up security. Now my house is like Fort Knox." But Manzo says-gasp!-she's buried the hatchet with Staub. "I don't like drama," she says, "and maybe I'm abnormally forgiving."