Sweet 15!

My little girl is a Quinceañera today!



In Hispanic cultures, when a young girl is turning 15 years old many hold a celebration akin to the Sweet 16 or Bah Mitzvah of the American and Jewish traditions. Mexico, Cuba, Puerto Rico and South American countries celebrate this birthday as the age a girl matures into a woman, and it's marked with several traditions.

Since our fusion with other cultures, this milestone has adapted different ways of observing this celebration, but these are the major components:

A Religious Mass – A Quinceañera mass is to celebrate her coming of age and to ask for guidance in her future as woman.

God Parents  or God Mother – Chosen as a person the young lady can go to for spiritual direction.

Court – Totaling 15 people and includes girls and boys.

Reception – These parties have taken on wedding-like proportions.

Other significant symbols incorporated into this coming of age are:

Changing from Flats to Heals

The Last Doll -Symbolizing the last toy the quinceanera will have as a girl.

The Waltz – This dance is with her court and 'Chambelan,' her escort during the celebration.

Our daughter is officially a Quinceañera, but unlike most in our over-commercialized culture where teens are made up to grow up much faster, our sensible young lady is not quite giving up her  Reva's for Betsy Johnsons any time soon — at least that's what she thinks today.

She has also announced that unlike the garish Sweet 16 parties many in our affluent society conspicuously throw for themselves — perhaps influenced by MTV's show of the same title — she has chosen to spend it with her family in an intimate dinner.

But, don't think she hasn't thought her decision through. She's pretty much following in my footsteps since 35 years ago (give or take a few years) I also renounced the soiree for something more long-lasting: a trip.

Our young girl has a level head on her shoulders and has seldom (notice I didn't say never) has needed to be in the social spotlight. Don't get me wrong, the only time she really enjoys being the center of attention is when she's on the pitching mound at a softball game, then she's in her element!

So, since our 'American-Mexican' daughter was not inclined to wear a ball gown, go to choreographed waltz classes or wear a tiara on this very special day, we will be marking this momentous occasion by celebrating her wonderful and unique self: she's a painter, a creative spirit, a nurturing friend, a loving daughter and sister, a responsible student, a conscientious citizen, a and more importantly, a compassionate soul.

What parent would ask for more?


I want to ask for more times together watching chick flicks, talking about fashion, getting her opinion on my (bad) outfits,  and her companionship.

These precious moments I thought would never end, seem to be less and less as she's growing up.  I know it's the way it's supposed to be, but I'll ask anyway and get what I can.

A mom never gets enough of her little girl (ahem!) young lady, right?

Today, without balloons as requested nor cupcakes at school to share with friends, we'll celebrate your wonderful person any way you chose to and I will try not to embarrass  you… maybe.

Feliz cumpleaños (Happy Birthday) to my almost-grown-up daughter!


  1. Anonymous says:

    Happy Birthday!

  2. Anonymous says:

    (from Melanie)

  3. Anonymous says:

    Good for her!!! Putting the kibosh on the party and going for a trip instead. I did the same thing and never regret it. ¡Feliz Cumpleaños!

  4. Anonymous says:

    This is such a beautiful post and what a beautiful tribute to your daughter. Congrats to her on such a special day and Kudos to you for verbalizing how much you treasure her.

  5. Anonymous says:

    pk so I cried reading your post ugh!! lol
    I tried to skip my Quinceanera as well, but my Family didn't let me, and now i know how they feel, my husbands Family does not belive in Quinceaneras, they say a sweet 16 for my girls is nmore than enough,
    To heck with that I say,
    as long as my daughters want it to be celebrated, I will. If my daughters choose to not have the lavish celebration that has become more commercialez that anything, I will be sad, but I will understand and TRY to respect it, lol
    Happiest wishes to your Beautiful Daughter and the Family 😉

  6. Anonymous says:

    Fantastic, lets all hope the coming years bring a safe and happy adventure through life as we are sure Mamarazzi had, full of fun and laughter as a result of a wonderful upbringing.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I second that emotion!!

  8. Anonymous says:

    Thank you Melonie!

  9. Anonymous says:

    I'm glad to know you did the same thing, Carmen! The memories of travel (and good food in my case) stay with you for evee:)

  10. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for your good wishes!

  11. Anonymous says:

    I undertstand the importance of traditions and some families really enjoy the planning and celebration. Embrace the tradition of the girls want it, that's the key. It will be a cherished memory they will not forget.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Felicidades to your daughter. I didn't have a Quince either. And I highly doubt my girls will at 15 either. Thankfully there are many other Mexican traditions to keep the culture in our family. I'm just not eager to formally encourage my daughters to grow up so fast! 🙂

  13. Anonymous says:

    Happy Birthday! How was the dinner? I hope you guys go somewhere special for her 15th and enjoy time together. Some of the best memories I have growing up are of family trips.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Hi Kaite,
    Dinner was wonderful!! She really wants to go to Europe, again, on her own! Boo, I want to go too!

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