Today in My History
While You Work
Cast (updated 7/16)
TWENTY YEARS OF PINATAS
31 December 2020
We've lived in Davis for 47 years and while we have been to New Year's Eve parties, mostly it feels like we don't really do anything for New Year's Eve. We had two competing parties that we had to choose between for many years. One was hosted by The Psychiatrist and his wife. Most of the people we have known the longest in Davis attend this party, where lots of music is played and sung, there is a huge table of goodies people have shared and, for many years, at midnight a soup made of black eyed peas was served.
At some point a party of people who belonged to the Davis Comic Opera Co. was hosted by one of them. This was a much smaller party and the attendants were all people somehow connected to DCOC. The hostess was a fabulous cook and always made two different soups and two fantastic desserts. I loved this party, especially the conversation. But after several years, the hostess of the DCOC party decided she was tired of hosting and stopped the party, so we went back to the psychiatrist's party.
It was the party where we found out who had died, who was sick, who had which body part removed or replaced, etc. As people started dying, it kind of faded away after ~40 years. Now we are back to doing nothing on New Year's Eve and I will probably be asleep before midnight.
When we were at UC Berkeley, we belonged to the Newman Club, where we dated and married and started families. There were five couples who all married within 3-4 years of each other and among us we had 22 children (a 23rd was added when the kids started going to nursery school, and Eric and his family joined us). When we started buying houses, we all bought places that were close to each other.
We never had New Year's Eve parties because we didn't want to leave our kids on New Year's eve. In 1965 Char and Mike, who lived in Alaska at the time, were in California for the holidays and the five families got together for a New Year's Day party, since they had two girls and there were three other babies/toddlers in the group. I was pregnant with Jeri.
Between that New Year and New Year 1966, Char and Mike moved back to Oakland just before daughter Jenny was born (six weeks after Jeri was born). In 1966 we had another New Year's Day party, the only year when every family had a baby.
We had such a goodtime that by 1967 it was just assumed we would all get together for New Year's Day insead of New Year's Eve, and now that the kids were getting older, someone decided to have a piņata for them. It was a homemade piņata and entirely too thick for little kids to break, so one of the dads had to break it with a hammer.
This was also the year we took the first group picture of "generation 2" with Father Quinn, the priest who was responsible for all of our marriages.
This is how our group came to be known as the Piņata Group and for the next twenty years, we had a New Year's Day party every year, every party with a piņata, every party with a group picture of whichever Generation 2 kids are there (this picture is from a Gen 2 50th birthday party)
So many memories. The year after the kids destroyed Concetta's basement we moved the party to Tiny Tots nursery school for a couple of years, and after that the kids were old enough that we could trust them to have a party at someone's house again.
The kids grew up together for many years and when they get together now it's like they are cousins. After we stopped having the parties on New Year's Day, we continued to have piņatas whenever we got together for social interactions. Sadly, we don't have piņatas any more because the person who made them for so many years now has Alzheimers. The last pinata we had was for a funeral.
The video of the day is a terrible quality video but it is a
memory of all of those piņata parties. The kids always lined up youngest
to oldest and even today, as adults, when we have an event where we bring a
piņata, they still line up youngest to oldest, though the youngest is 50 now!
PHOTO OF THE DAY
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This is entry #7588