Yummy home made Mexican food, a dessert table, a home made ice cream cake, a princess piñata, beautiful Cal lilies and long elegant white, purple and hot pink gladiolas everywhere, streamers, and photos of the birthday girl on every table, and more than 50 joyful filled guests came to together to celebrate my fabulous Tia Juvi’s 90th birthday. The look on her face as she saw my house decorated in her honor and proudly put on her birthday queen t-shirt in my living room was absolutely priceless. Her first selfie, her first swings at her first piñata were also spectacular events to witness. What a treat to celebrate this woman, this survivor of countless tragedies including the death of all 3 of her children who has clearly mastered the art of dancing in the rain and in her case more of a level 4 hurricane.
To see joy beaming from her eyes, her smile, her voice and to know that I helped orchestrate this party, there are no words to express how I felt that day, just pure gratitude. Gratitude for the voice that said, we must celebrate this milestone with Tia Juvi, and she’s been a second mother to you!
And the ease of pulling off such a fabulous party because my primas Carmen and Eva also recognized this opportunity to unite and create a memory that we will cherish forever! We cooked for 3 days, decorated, planned and all it with laughter, joy and a sisterhood that I’d never known before.
At the end of all the festivities as we sat on my lovely patio and chatted with my Tia after most of our guests had left, my Tia Juvi shared that she had never had her own birthday party or a piñata. She was so happy and I fought back the tears as I truly felt her gratitude, love and joy!
I’ve cooked for far too many funerals in the last 4 years under the guise of our loved one’s celebration of life, but to actually put my heart and soul into cooking some of Tia’s Juvi’s best recipes at her 90th birthday party was a treasure that I will revere for the rest of my life.
Go share your love of cooking with some one special soon.
Sending you big hugs,