Fiesta Time

My daughter Gretchen was born in New Orleans lived in Piedmont, Calif., for 20 years. She returned to New Orleans to attend college, finished law school at Tulane University and worked for Couhig Partners for three years. Now she’s Chicago bound, but will never completely say goodbye to her friends and family here in New Orleans.
Gretchen decided on a Mexican-themed party and her friends (girls only) were the most important guests, so she called them first and then I sent the colorful invitations!

She left the decorations to me, so I got out my favorite authentic Mexican sombreros, mini bull piñatas and serape I bought in Mexico. I hand-painted margarita glasses and plates I found at the Dollar Tree and then added large piñatas from Party City as decorations. On the table were colorful potted Vinca plants in hot pink and white from Landscape Images that completed the look.

Gretchen chose the menu from Superior Grill. The ladies started with margaritas, chips, salsa, guacamole and cheese quesadillas. For dinner, steak and chicken fajitas, mini-chimichangas, refried beans, Mexican rice and more!

The margaritas were Gretchen’s family creation that’s sworn to secrecy. A great recipe I also love is called Killer Margaritas from Tila’s in Houston (see box for recipe).

Gretchen’s friends surprised her with two airline tickets so she can come back to New Orleans whenever she wants.

Gretchen went to Orient Expressed and gave each friend a polka dot card carrier with her new business card in it – she wanted all of them to visit her in Chicago!

It was a fabulous night with lots of laughter as the girls talked and reminisced while looking at the photo album that Katie had made for Gretchen. There’s so much more camaraderie to come because friends never say goodbye just “Until next time!”

Killer Margaritas
Juice from 3 limes (about 1/3 cup)
Juice from 2 oranges (about 1 cup)
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 1/2 ounces Cointreau
2 1/2 ounces Grand Marnier
5 ounces Cuervo Gold tequila
Salt for glass rims
Thin slices of orange and lime for garnish
Shake the juices, sugar and liquors with crushed ice in a cocktail shaker and serve in a glass rimmed with salt. Garnish with a slice of orange and lime.
Makes 2 “killer” drinks or 4 regular cocktails

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