Whew! Made it through another major party alive! It might not sound like a big deal to some, but Joe and I get obsessed when we have a theme party, and the Day of the Dead was no exception. Prep started last week when we made sugar skulls, because in our desire for authenticity we decided we just had to have these to put on the candle-lit, flowered altar we were creating for our departed family members. This turned out to be truly painful for me, as I might have some frankly, pretty awesome creative ideas, but when it comes to executing them, like, by using my hands? Suddenly I’m cursing the gods that the artistic gene my grandmother, father and sister have skipped me, and skipped me ruthlessly. When it came to squeezing the colored frosting out of baggies onto the sugar skulls themselves, Joe proved to have a deft hand, so he ended up doing four of them, while mine ended up being sort of a bewildered looking self-portrait. After messing up and re-doing the eyes about four times I was near tears and felt like a four year old wanting to smash it to bits! Joe=deft hand, Lori=daft hand.
Menu planning and food preparation is my job. Again, trying to keep in theme. This started on Wednesday where I put off until the absolute last minute possible making a grocery list for about 10 different recipes. My mind just got boggled writing that down. This year’s tasty treats included slow roasted Pork Loin with a Creamy Pumpkin Mole, Yucatan Shrimp Cocktail, Taquitos (the only thing besides tortilla chips I did not make from scratch and which caused a minor panic when the deep fryer caused all the outdoor lights to go off 45 mintues before party time and Joe wasn’t in costume yet!), Baked Goat Cheese with a Roasted Salsa, Sante Fe Trail Mix, Black Bean Hummus, a killer Seven Layer Dip, Mexican Wedding Cakes, Pumpkin Bread and Mexican Chocolate Cakes baked in skull molds. Ask me for a recipe if any of these sound interesting to you. I love to share good food!
Just as we finish the last of the decorations and I start pulling food out of the fridge and Joe disappears to dress into his costume, friends start to arrive, and it’s so exciting to see what costumes people have come up with, especially considering the theme. For the rest of the night I’m in a constant state of beginning conversations, nodding and wondering if my face is looking engaged enough with my mask on, then tapped on the shoulder to direct someone to the ice, or paper towels, or to the booverages (a new word I created recently for alcoholic beverages–booze + beverages=booverages), a serving fork, the bathroom, greeting new arrivals with a hug–all your typical hostess duties. There’s one room in our house that I always hope will get used during a party, and this year it did! There was guitar playing and singing! I even managed to sit down with Hannah for a while, and that (sitting down at my own party, and with Hannah even!) is a rarity. Joe, aka Muerto de Plata, or Silver Death, and I were Luchadores, if you were wondering. Check out Dead Hannah managing not to smile while getting a pile-drive to the stomach from Fuego Rojo!
To wrap it up, it was a long night, and a lot of hard work, but a great time to see old and new friends, feed them all with my love-food, and laugh and sing. Lots more great photos, but you most likely wouldn’t know anybody, except perhaps Betty Rubble (aka Bad Betty) who came with Fred and Wilma Flintstone and her husband, Barney. She seemed intimate with everyone…ahem. And of course you would know Sarah Palin (there were two–the horror!! and I was sadly disappointed not to get them together at the same time as I really, really wanted to get a picture of the two Palins kissing. Because I’m evil.).
I’m vacillating on next year’s Halloween party already. We were planning on a more traditional, medieval theme, but when Hannah said she would get her hair cut, styled and colored like Bowie for a Glam costume, I’m thinking we might have to go 70’s….