Forget the Siesta, it’s time to Fiesta!

by HEAB on June 16, 2013

Today is Charlie and Katie’s first birthday and yesterday we threw a little fiesta to celebrate!

There was a coloring table…

Nonna (my mom) made gluten free cupcakes for our wheat-free guests.  She used a boxed mixed and then doctored them up with homemade chocolate fudge and lemon buttercream icings.  We’re all about the frosting around here.

And Grandma (CD’s mom) made a delicious rice salad.  Seriously cannot wait to make this again myself.  Recipe at end of post.

Below are some of the other delicious eats, including the best ever guacamole.  Ina Garten has never done me wrong.  We also served black refried beans topped with cheese, chicken nuggets (picked up from a restaurant), Chuy’s creamy jalapeno dip (LOVE!), fresh veggie pizza, and fruit.

I had fun during nap time this week decorating our chalkboard using these markers.  The markers wipe away with water and can also be used on windows.  So, I wrote directions to drinks and outdoor activities on our back window.  Pretty sure I’ll get a lot of use out of these markers over the next few years.  Oh, and I forgot to snap a photo of CD’s drink set up.  He packed a wheelbarrow with ice out back and filled it with bottled water, juice boxes, sodas, and beer.  I got the idea from Pinterest, and it was a lot more fun than the typical cooler.

We found most of the decorations on Amazon….

I love the above banner and plan to use it in the new baby’s room.

The cupcake toppers and gift bag tags are from Etsy, and the gift bags themselves contained little fiesta themed trinkets from here.

We had a pull string piñata filled with bracelets, ink stamps, miniature decks of cards, and bouncy balls.  The adults all laughed watching the kids fill their little plastic bags when the goods fell to the ground.   I think Summer walked away with the biggest stash.

Rice Salad Recipe


  • 4 cups cooked rice (I used brown short grain)
  • 2 (8 ounce) cans of whole kernel sweet corn, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (16 ounce) sliced black olives, drained and rinsed
  • 1 package cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered (depending on size)
  • 1/4 cup red onion, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, finely chopped.  Red or orange add more color.
  • 1/4 cup parsley or cilantro, chopped

Dressing Ingredients

  • 1 cup picante sauce
  • 1/2 to 2/3 cup Italian dressing
  • Fresh lime juice to taste (we used 2 limes)


  • Combine all ingredients except for dressing.  For the dressing, shake picante sauce, Italian dressing, and lime juice together in a large mason jar and then add to salad.
  • Options: Use black beans instead of olives or add marinated grilled chicken, steak, or shrimp.  For marinade: 1/4 cup lime juice, 1/4 tsp garlic salt, 1/4 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp coarse ground black pepper.  Marinate meat for 2 to 4 hours before grilling.

Happy Birthday Charlie and Katie – I still can’t believe you’re one!  Your dad and I have loved every minute (well most of them anyway!) of our first year with you.  Today is also Father’s Day, and I as I sit here next to CD enjoying a quiet moment together (C & K are napping, and Summer is playing with Grandma and Grandpa), I feel blessed to be married to such a wonderful man.  CD, thanks for the being the father that you are to Summer, Charlie, and Katie, and for the father you will be to baby #4.  I love you so much.