Category Archives: Parties

David and Sergio’s Boxing Day Party

Yesterday was the Boxing Day party of my neighbors and I think the photos tell it all. Every year they add another tree. I think they are up to 8 now. Their Jewish tree is hung upside down!  Another tree is covered by cardinals. I don’t think I got a photo of it this year. At any rate, welcome to the party. Click on photos to enlarge.

See many more photos of the different trees plus explanations by Sergio HERE.

In Praise of the Party Mexicano!!!

I simply have to say a few words of praise about the ability of my Mexican friends and neighbors to party!  I’m accustomed to hearing the parties going on around me every weekend, sometimes until 6 a.m., but for the first time I had a party that wasn’t comprised entirely of older (my age) American and Canadian and Mexican guests, who usually depart politely by 9 or earlier if the party started earlier.

My party for those who helped with Campamento Estrella, however, consisted of an even number of “mature” gringos and young Mexican adults ready to PARTY!  After making two gallons of frozen margaritas, I for fun put two full bottles of tequila and shot glasses on each of the long tables I’d shoved together for the party to create one looooong table.  Perhaps someone would like a shot or to add a little strength to my somewhat weak margaritas.

At that time, I thought there would be 20 of us, but stomach flu and dengue fever and other illnesses depleted the number by half so we had LOTS to eat, luckily, which seemed to lessen the effect of two gallons of margaritas and the entire contents of the two bottles of tequila on the tables that disappeared during the 4 1/2 hours of the party.

Yes, we did shots.  Yes, when we lost the shot glasses, we ended up pouring the tequila into our mouths from 6 inches or so above our baby bird mouths, the crowd chanting “Judy, Judy, Judy, Judy!’ or whatever name was appropriate. Yes, we all wound up in the pool–at least Agustin, I and the “kids” did––still waterfalling tequila.  By then we’d gone through the good stuff and were down to the smokier reposado which is the scotch of tequila and not my thing.

Needless to say, even after sending food home with Yolanda and two of the Anglo guests who had to depart before the final course, (We’d had so many flautas and so much guacamole with before dinner drinks that everyone had to rest up a few hours before dinner.) I still have an entire huge pan of enchiladas, a quart of beans and an entire flan and salad left over so what’s a girl to do?  This afternoon I’m having three friends over for Mexican Train and enchiladas with all the trimmings.  One of the ladies asked if she should bring wine.  “No!”  (I still have ten bottles I bought for the party, passed over in lieu of tequila.)  Another asked could she bring any food.  “No!!”  I still have three dozen enchiladas, guacamole, salad, frijoles refritos, salsa and flan. No one gets into this house bringing more food or liquid refreshment. No one gets out until the food, at least, is all gone.

So here it is folks, my photo essay in PRAISE of the Mexican talent for PARTY.  Not so many photos as I was pretty busy making up more frozen margaritas and well, yeah–finding extra swimsuits for 7 people and dodging tequila shots.  And no, not a headache nor any hangover this morning.  I suggest Hornitos as a really good brand of tequila. The bottles went out with the morning trash, but here is a photo of the cap I saved for my scrapbook wall:

Here are a few shots of the enthusiastic guests.  No doubt they’ve already posted videos of the party on their Facebook pages, but I’m going to make do with these shots frozen in time:

(If you’d like to view them in a larger size and read captions, click on the first photo and arrows.)

My Day So Far

My Day So FarIMG_2900IMG_2896

My day started with a visit from Ellie, who came to do her weekly cleaning.  While I made us coffee, she washed windows, and just as I sat down with my cup and my computer, she held up this little fellow.   He was so tiny.  Also, unfortunately, he was not alive.  I hope by natural causes and not by Ellie’s hand!

Next on my agenda was my Saturday writing group.  There was a huge group this time–23 by my count.  We’re planning a reading for next week.  Here are two shots of the group.

IMG_2905 IMG_2920

Next was a party at a new friend’s house on the mountain directly above the bull ring where the rodeo will be held for the next three days.  I met Jan when she came to my house to see my work at the end of the day right after the art walk. She brought pictures of her own work which is fabulous.  She, too, uses found objects.  As you can see by these photos, both her home and her work is unique.  We are planning a materials-gathering expedition together.

(Please click on first photo to view enlarged gallery.)






Thanksgiving Leftovers

Thanksgiving Leftovers

IMG_8727Leftovers. (Except for the dessert we hadn’t dipped into yet in the background.)


I’ll make these turkey and dressing  leftovers into a casserole to freeze and take to my writers’ retreat at the beach next week.


IMG_8755 IMG_8759Thanksgiving Leftovers

Much as I loved your thankful wishes,
I wish that you had done the dishes!

Actually, I’m kidding.  Many asked to help and I said no, I’d listen to a book and attend to what I needed and Yolanda would wash the dishes the next day.  Darn.  I wish I’d remembered to save more dessert for her.  I kept telling people to take it because I didn’t want to eat it myself!  I did get her a bit of pumpkin and pecan pies and whipped cream.  Should have saved her a “little of everything.” 


Party in full swing. Too busy to get many pictures.


Party winding down.  Everyone had fun by the looks of it and brought wonderful food, as you saw in my last post. The party started at 2 and by 7:30, it was just I and three very happy dogs–let out of captivity.

Show me how you spent the day!!!!




My ladies writing group is classy—never crass or gaudy.
Imagine my surprise, then, when I found they can be bawdy!
Just one impromptu potluck and a few bottles of wine
turned their metaphoric minds to matters far less fine.
For Jenny had just mentioned that a friend had lately lent her
a rather naughty film that nonetheless had really sent her
off into the paroxysms of unbridled laughter—
the kind that take you wave-on-wave and leave you aching after.
I’d been needing that for months—my life had been sedate
since my old gang had moved away and left me to my fate
of no last-minute games of train and late-night jubilation,
for though I still have good friends here, I lack that combination
of friends that I enjoy who all enjoy each other, too,
enough to create silliness to make my nights less blue.

“Bad Grandpa” was the film we watched, and though I must admit
I watched behind spread fingers for at least a fifth of it,
still the antics had us all just rolling on the floor
—starting with a snicker and then ending with a roar.
Scatology is not my thing, nor are pratfalls or shtick,
yet still I must admit to you, I got a real big kick
from this film filled with all of them, and so did all the others;
so as we watched, it felt like we were all sisters and brothers.
And as they left, I think we knew we’d shared a priceless treasure,
for there’s nothing that unites us like a mutual guilty pleasure!

The Prompt: When was the last time you watched something so scary, cringe-worthy, or unbelievably tacky — in a movie, on TV, or in real life — you had to cover your eyes?

Party of Twelve

The Prompt: Seat Guru—You get to plan a dinner party for 4-8 of your favorite writers/artists/musicians/other notable figures, whether dead or alive. Who do you seat next to whom in order to inspire the most fun evening?

I chose twelve guests, plus myself. The seating chart is below. You will have to imagine me sitting in the exact middle of the table shaped like a ring around me.

Dinner for 12 seat chart

Party of Twelve

I have planned the dinner party, set the table, cooked the food,
but decisions about seating charts is ruining my mood;
for I want to sit by everyone, hear every conversation,
and trying to choose only two is causing consternation.
I think, therefore, I’d put me on a chair right in the center
on a sort of lazy Susan so I’d be able to enter
every conversation and to listen in on all,
seeing how they fare just like a fly upon the wall.

I’d have a little foot pedal to spin me at my ease—
enjoy Chaucer with my salad and Jane Austen with my cheese.
Jesus Christ and Whoopi could gang up on Rush and tell
why he’s the one who’s going to be broadcasting in Hell.
Osama bin Laden would be seated ear-to-ear
with Mohammed who would tell him what all terrorists should hear:
that the truth of the religion has got lost along the way,
for no one who is enlightened wants to kill and burn and slay.
Steve Martin would be there for fun to loosen up Osama
and spar with Rush to get his mind off Hillary and Obama.

I’d ask two people from real life to join us at the table:
Doug between the prophets so he’d finally be able
to be faced with the real men so he can sort out fact and fiction
and show it’s the religions that have caused us all the friction.
The men themselves had peace at heart and must bemoan the end
that power brokers bring the world to as their truth they bend.

The other person that I want to have here at my meal
is Ann Garcia, for I know her pleasure would be real.
Seated by Jane Austen, she would question her and tell
of her appreciation of the books she’s loved so well.
Barbara Kingsolver I’d seat upon on her other side.
She, too, would get much praise but also would have to abide
many interruptions from one listening from the middle,
for I’d be hopping back and forth like water on a griddle.

These people all are here because my curiosity
is whetted by my fantasies of what I’ll hear and see.
There is another guest that I’ve neglected to reveal,
but he is central to the plot of this illustrious meal.
Geoffrey Chaucer would be there to listen and relate
the story of this group of people that we love and hate.
So all the world could hear the tale of what we learned at table.
This earliest father of literature is surely the most able
to see the truth of character and spin a tale to tell
the truth of what will save our world from fire, brimstone, Hell!

And then, one final person I’d invite to be a guest
is Barbara Walters, who would come to interview the rest;
so we’d be sure that all received their moment in the sun,
and we could question them after her interview was done.

If you have any questions that you’d like an answer to,
most happily, I’ll ask them and pass answers on to you.
I will not mind a bit assuming this laborious task.
Just comment on this poem and say what you would like to ask
of Chaucer or of Jesus or of Whoopi or of Steve.
If they’re still here, I’ll ask them, or if they have chosen to leave,
I’ll channel them in poetry and say what I believe
they’d say if your request were one they could themselves receive.
But for now our party’s over and our guests have all departed.
Many better-fed, and (let’s hope) some more open-hearted!!!

P.S. The number of guests at my dinner party is coincidental. In no way is this poem meant to allude to another illustrious dinner of twelve plus one.

P.P.S.  Oops..Barbara Walters somehow got bounced off the seating chart.  I guess I’ll give her my seat and I’ll just roam around the perimeter, helping my sister serve the soup, but mostly just listening in and butting in. So this really should be called “Party of Thirteen.” I also had Will Rogers on my original seating plan, but he was somehow omitted.  It was my first time using the program that created the seating chart and it took me longer to get it together than to write the entire poem. Sorry Will, I’ll catch you later.  Perhaps devote an entire poem to you.



Laughter Schmafter

Laughter Schmafter

I used to roll with laughter most every day or so.
My parties were all riotous. No one would ever go
back home again till two or three or four or five or six.
And some would stay for breakfast, prerhaps hoping that I ‘d fix
my special chocolate waffles or orange berry strudels
or curried eggs or cheesy pie or strata made with noodles.
We’d story-tell and play charades and I admit, we’d drink
and stage our paper yacht races within the kitchen sink.
The guests might come in costume and some might bring a friend
for I had grown notorious for parties with no end.
When I was a teacher, I’d invite the whole darn staff.
Away from school, our hearts were gay. We dearly loved to laugh!
But this was years ago, my friend. Our hearts were young and gay.
Now that we’ve lived past sixty, we live a shorter day.
When I have my friends over to play a game or dine,
some find the spices don’t agree and others shun the wine.
Some have little dogs at home they have to feed by five.
Others have eye problems and find they cannot drive
after dark at all and so they have to leave by seven.
I guess our laughter’s done on earth. Perhaps we’ll laugh in heaven.

Daily Prompt: Roaring Laughter—What was the last thing that gave you a real, authentic, tearful, hearty belly laugh? Why was it so funny?