Masquerading Our Way In 2012

Welcoming The New Year Of 2012 With A Masquerade Ball

Inspired by this year’s first weekly photo challenge titled “Launch,” I decided to revise this post because to me this post signifies how I launched my New Year of 2012. Blasting my way off to a brand new year, was a night of well celebrated fun among friends and family.

To welcome the New Year, my friends and I decided to hold a Masquerade Ball this year. Starting that night, we are going to leave behind the woes of 2011 and greet the incoming year with fun and happy events, of humor and laughter, of positive vibes and well wishes, of being loose and letting go, to pursue happiness and celebrate life to the fullest one day at a time.

As we enter the door, we were greeted by the cheers of our friends. They were wearing their colorful masquerade masks. I had to look twice to see who’s behind those masks. After bringing in our “White Elephant” exchange gifts, it was time to wear our own masquerade mask. My wife got help from her girlfriends while I struggle to put mine by myself. I was trying to be self sufficient. The mask kept on falling, covering my eyes. It has this long and heavy beak. I thought it looked cool, I just didn’t realize it wasn’t practical. My wife eventually came to the rescue and tied it to a perfect fit.

It felt weird wearing the mask pretty much the entire night. It’s like you have this thick hard skin in front of your face. My wife was getting annoyed too since I kept hitting her face with the long beak of the mask. Discomfort aside, it kind of felt cool to wear it. There’s this sense of mystery and a feeling that all you want to do is have fun, fun and more fun. I guess in a way, it brought that happy and playful person in all of us that night. Heaven knows we all needed to chill and celebrate after making it through the year 2011.

This photo reminded me of the “Vogue” music video of Madonna. I bet my lady friends felt like supermodels that night. Personally, I think their were more beautiful and real than any woman in those vain magazines. Sorry, I’m not much of a fan of “vanity.”

Cucumber And Lemon Race

My friends kept shouting at me in between their laughter, “Sway! Sway more,” as I  tried to move the lemon towards my team-mate at the opposite end. laughing and a bit embarrassed, I shouted back, “I’m trying.” Unfortunately, I wasn’t swaying in an uncoordinated way and my aim sucks. When everyone finished the relay. I was still at the same spot where I started. They gave me a second chance and we had a rematch, this time I was able to move it half-way. Yes, I need to practice with the swaying part! Maybe, I’ll win next year.

Celebrating The New Year With Friends And Family

It’s not so much how we celebrate the New Year but of whom we celebrate it with. We can greet the year with pizza while watching our favorite DVD movie or be at the park watching the amazing fireworks or be at a party enjoying a glass of champagne. In all of these, the most important thing is that we are celebrating the event with the people we care about and whom we shared wonderful memories. These are the people we can be ourselves with, have a great time and even be foolish for the sake of fun and not worry of what they think or say. These are the people who we can share ourselves with, good or bad, without the mask.

The Apple Dance

Time to make more noise as we were nearing the midnight countdown. Couples were made to dance while an apple was placed in between their foreheads. We did a try out and I was confident my wife and I will win. But just when I was getting into my groove following the music’s beat, the apple started to move. A few more dance steps and giggles, down went the apple. The game master announced, “First couple out!” Oh, well it was fun while it lasted. This couple in the picture won. Amazing dancers with perfect coordination. Kudos for a well-earned victory!

The New Year’s Eve Countdown

10, 9, 8…4, 3, 2, 1, Happy New Year! With loud trumpets and shouts of “cheers,” we all greeted 2012 with full joy, hope and optimism. As we raised our glass, we all wished each other a year of bountiful blessings. Blessings of happiness and a beautiful, meaningful life for all.

The night went on with more games, lots of dancing, more laughter and fun, of stories that made our 2011 a year to remember and of our dreams for the New Year. Nobody really talked about resolutions and goals. Everyone just enjoyed each others company and shared warm wishes for 2012. Everyone was just happy that another year of wonderful possibilities started and we were all there to witness it.

As the dancing ball went round and round till 04:00 in the morning, I smiled with a thought that indeed life goes on no matter what. How we choose to face and embrace each turn is up to us.

This post is dedicated to the memory of my friend’s brother who died and left his family on New Year’s Day. He got to spend New Year’s eve with his family for the last time before his final exit from this world. I remembered my friend telling me that his brother told him one day, “I’m ready anytime, I lived a great and happy life. Just watch my family.” I didn’t dwell much on the topic because I knew my friend was silently in pain and grieving. Behind the mask, you can still see what a person is going through when you look into his eyes.

Wishing everyone the best for 2012. Just remember it’s not just how we celebrate life that matters but whom we celebrate it with. Whatever happens, we all need to celebrate each New Year as much as we can, build loving and happy memories as much as we can.

How did you said goodbye to 2011 and celebrated the New Year of 2012?

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About Island Traveler

A devoted husband and father who tries to make a positive difference in the lives of his family and friends. A person who finds inspiration and strength on those he loves and who loved him in all aspects of his life.
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91 Responses to Masquerading Our Way In 2012

  1. Kate Kresse says:

    That party sounds like it was such a joyous, happy wonderful time. What a fin idea—and I am so glad you and your wife and friends got to have such a grand party. Happy New Year! We had a quiet evening at home filled with game playing, delicious food, and hugs!

    • Thank You for the shared thoughts. Big party, small party, it’s how we welcome the New Year in our hearts and whom we share the beautiful memory of 2012 that matters the most. I would love playing games, delicious food and hugs…..You made me remember how New Year was when I was a kid with old folks…Have a blessed New Year….

  2. Looks like a beautiful time was had by all. May we all have a beautiful 2012

  3. sarsm says:

    Wow!! Your party looks and sounds phenomenal!! Happy New Year!!

    • Thank you. It was a fun night to be among friends. Most are from my school in college in our town. Small world considering all of us came from a foreign land and called Houston our new home.the kids had a great time as well. We’ve been doing this every year for the past 4 years. It’s a wonderful idea to spare one day just to let go, relive the fun memories of the past and embrace the possibilities of the future as a group, among friends and family. Happy New Year!

  4. Arindam says:

    What an innovative and fun way to celebrate. You people must had lots of fun that night. I specially like that idea of “Cucumber And Lemon Race”. I am going to give it a try with my friends one day for sure. Keep on celebrating every moment of life with this spirit bro.
    Wish you a wonderful year ahead!!

    • The Cucumber and lemon was hilarious! I thought I’m going to have an asthma attack from laughing. Oh, maybe that’s why I lost. I was to busy laughing to sway and move the lemon. It was a great night among cool and amazing people who love life and lots of laugh! Next Year their thinking of “Royal hats” like the ones we saw at the royal wedding. I don’t think the guys were wearing one though, right? Thanks for sharing. have a wonderful weekend my friend….

  5. Fergiemoto says:

    It looks like it was a fun way to welcome the new year! Happy New Year!

    • Thanks. It was a night to let go and just laugh to our hearts content. In a way, it was the kind of New Year we hope to have in 2012. A New Year of happiness, of peace, of meaningful relationships, of love that inspires, of smiles and laughter that helps us go through life’s challenges. Yes, there are problems but then there’s the option to face it with optimism and to face it with someone. And a smile always helps. Happy New Year….

  6. nelson RN says:

    That was a happy party! Looked like you had a nice time! What a way to start the year! Wishing you and your family the best in 2012!

  7. Fox@n says:

    Sounds like a great time. Love your mask.
    Great post man

    • The mask looks cool only it was heavy and kept blocking my vision and bumping on someone’s head….oh, well I chose it myself …..Thanks for the comment. have a great weekend.

  8. thirdhandart says:

    Looks and sounds like you had lots of fun! May you and your friends create many loving and happy memories in the coming year.

  9. Connie T says:

    It looks like everyone had lots of fun. The lemon game looks like a lot of fun. I once went to a party where you had to pass a tomato to another person without using your hands. We got tomato juice and seeds all over us.

  10. Caroline says:

    Wow, that sounds like a very fun way to welcome the new year! I’ve always want to attend a masquerade ball. Great photos!

    • Thanks. It feels great just to let loose for 1 day. No worries, no stress, just having a great time among friends and family. I wish we can do that everyday. Have a wonderful day!

  11. Frank Bishop says:

    That looks like more fun than anybody has any right to be having. Especially the lemon and cucumber race….

    I’m so suggesting it for my fiancee’s next bridal shower.

    • I bet the bridal shower will be a blast. Make sure you don’t tell anyone that there is a lemon and cucumber race…it’s more fun and hilarious when no one has a clue that they are going to be a part of the game or are familiar with the rules. It has to be both a shock and surprise kind of a thing. Last year we had the egg plant race, it was actually funnier and crazier but is a bit green! Everytime I replay the video I took, I laugh till I’m blue.

  12. Looks like you had a splendid time! Masquerade parties are fun! Happy New Year to you and your family! :)

  13. ceceliafutch says:

    What a beautiful post and a wonderful way to welcome in the new year! Thanks for sharing it with us. And the photos were fantastic! Everyone looks like they are having so much fun.

    • Thank you. It’s one party I won’t forget. In a way, I think in a way everyone who was there needed it after a year of work and going through life’s ups and downs. We all deserve to have fun, New Year or not. Stay blessed my friend.

  14. Elyse says:

    Next year, I presume I’ll be getting an invite! Sounds like the perfect new year’s party. After all the cucumber and lemon race will be blog worthy for decades!

  15. Louise says:

    What a great way to start the New Year! I love the games.

    Happy New Year!

    Cheers,
    Louise

  16. Angeline M says:

    What a great party….my invitation must have gotten lost in the mail :)
    I am going to have to have the cucumber/lemon game at my next party. That made me laugh.
    Have a wonderful 2012!

    • When I was playing the game and I was the only one behind, I didn’t know if I should laugh or be embarrassed. I guess I felt both. Sometimes it takes a funny game to help us realize that we all should laugh more, smile more, chill out more and celebrate more. Happy New Year to you and your family.

  17. tmso says:

    What an awesome party! You’ve given me some ideas… Thanks!

  18. Angelia Sims says:

    Oh my gosh! How fun!!! I can’t believe how long your mask nose was. HA! And all those games. Man, lots of beautiful love and laughter in these photos. Looks like a fabulous New Year! Happy 2012 to you. I will send a special prayer up for your friend’s brother…not an easy way to start the year…

    • Thank you, specially on the prayer for my brother’s friend. I was just talking to my wife how life can be so unpredictable. Today we are laughing and having the best of time but tomorrow we may be grieving from a loss. And with that in mind, I told her, “we need to enjoy and celebrate 2012 everyday for as much as we can. Tomorrow we don’t know what destiny has in store for us.” A toast to life and happiness. Wishing you and your love ones the best.

  19. Happy New Year IT! Now that is what I call a party! The photos are great. “The Apple Dance” sounds like so much fun. I bet the music was great. I just love the dance ball. I love to dance, so I know that I would have loved your party. Dance the night away! By the way, I’m sorry to hear the news about your friend’s brother. That was thoughtful of you to mention him in your post. Nonetheless, I hope that you and your family have a fantastic New Year. Each new day is a blessing in disguise. :)

    • We needed more dancers that night. It would have been cool if you were there. We did some modern ones, a few swing moves like “dancing with the stars,” all of which maked me feel young all over again. Obviously, I needed more practice. I had to mention my friend. I saw how happy he was that night and he was to go home that week to hopefully say goodbye to his brother before he leaves this Earthly place, but fate came too soon. I felt so bad for him. Happy New Year my friend. Blessings and more to you and your family.

  20. misswhiplash says:

    what a wonderful party!

  21. Sabina Brave says:

    I’m not a party animal, but I wish to be there ;) :)
    Have a wonderful day, weekend and year ahead :)

    • Thanks Sabina. I wish you were there too. And yes, I’m not a party animal myself. Only on rare special occasions. Can’t even stand the noise inside a dance club. Getting old? Perhaps! Have a great day my friend.

  22. Looks like you and your family had a grand time. Have a blessed 2012.

  23. aRVee says:

    So much fun here. What a way to greet the new year my friend. What’s great about it is that you did it with your friends, bonding time with them is one of the best time spent.

    What happened to you during the cucumber race? haha

    Thanks for sharing…

    • Since I move to Houston, this group are like my family. We help each other out through thick or thin. Yes, they do know how to have fun and it’s always a great to bring back happy times in college. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Have a wonderful day.

  24. john tugano says:

    Happy new year Bro..I hope I’m not late to greet you.hehehe..That was a sort of a happy bonding Bro,still you’re hiding hehehe..Anyway I wish you all the best this year,success in your career and good health to you and your family.

    I like the apple Dance..hehehe

    • The apple dance was groovy and fun. But just when I started to dance to the beat, the apple fell. Hmmm….better luck next year for me. Happy New Year to you and your family. Stay blessed Bro, 2012 is going to be a great year for all of us….

  25. jeanne says:

    What a great party!! Lots of fun and laughter to usher in the new year. Wishing you a year of abundant blessings. enJOY today!

  26. Sunshine says:

    Thank you for sharing your New Year’s party…what a grand idea with lots of fun and happy faces!
    I didn’t realize you already had the 7×7 Link Award but I’m just letting you know I thought about what a great place you have and wanted to share your place with others. :) http://wp.me/p1RzUf-sW
    Abundant blessings to you and your loved ones.

    • Thank you my friend for the generosity. I appreciate the thoughtfulness. It’s alway an honor and a blessing to receive an award. What a great way to start the year. Happy New Year. Wishing you and your family all the wonderful blessings for 2012.

  27. Pingback: Launch (Weekly Photo Challenge 2012) « Cardinal Guzman

  28. Looks like a great eveningand masks are such fun!

  29. misspinkles says:

    that looks like a rocking party!! awesome way to bring in the new year!

    • Thanks. Nothing can be more grand than welcoming the year among friends and family with masks, dance , games , funny stories and delicious food. No alcohol drinks involve other than champagne. Just coffee and lots of laughs!

  30. Pingback: Weekly Photo Challenge: Launch « Flickr Comments by FrizzText

  31. jhirzel88 says:

    You had a little bit of dancing going on with that apple. That’s a new way to dance. I’ve never tried that myself. I went to my mom’s friends clubhouse for New Years. The family is Greek and they had a club gathering for the people on their island. There was lots of Greek music, and lots of drinking. My mom was totally drunk for the first time in over a year. She was still drunk when she woke up the next morning.

    Oh my gosh, “Vogue”! I just watched the video. That’s like my favorite song by Madonna. I like the beat of that song.

    • I haven’t been to a Greek Party. I bet its fun. I’ve seen it in the movies and everyone seems to be having a great time. Wow, your mom got drunk. It happens. Sometimes we don’t know that we had to much until the alcohol hits us. So, you like Madonna’s Vogue video,huh? She’s totally cool. She rocks in the 80’2-90′s….

  32. B says:

    It looks like everyone had a great time! The party I attended shared the same theme! I hope you have a great 2012!

  33. Sony Fugaban says:

    Just like the meat of my earlier comment (on your posts for WPC’s Winter), life will still be happy and beautiful if we choose to look at and concentrate on positive things. What a coincidence! Both of us have experience, respectively, something unpleasant during the special days of the holidays. Nevertheless, we have chose to paint the brighter side. My deepest sympathies to your friend’s brother.

    Anyway, I think I have to agree with your friends. You need to sway more. :-)

    • Ha, ha, ha…I do need to practice with the swaying part. Don’t worry, I’m trying to get back on my groove for 2012. I agree with “Nevertheless, we have chose to paint the brighter side.” Regardless of what we go through, there always a reason to be thankful. Everyday, my family reminds me that there’s so many things that I should be grateful for. More that enough to celebrate each new year. Wishing you and your family all the joys in life…

  34. Pingback: Masquerading Our Way In 2012 | this man's journey

  35. eof737 says:

    Looks like you had quite a blast… I’m thrilled for you and send you prayers and blessings for a phenomenal 2012. Well deserved… love the launch too! :-)
    ♥Happy ♥New ♥Year ♥To ♥You! ;-)

  36. Now, that’s a sumptuous looking party! :)

    Happy New Year!

  37. yi-ching lin says:

    beautiful and fun way to share the New Year’s. and i love that your son makes you feel like Superman! (smile)

  38. cocomino says:

    I like “nobody said their resolutions and goals. ” It’s happy for everyone.

    I pray your brother’s friend.

    • Yes, no resolutions! Just live each day to its fullest potential one day at a time. Thanks for the prayers. The incident made me more realize that we need to spend as much quality time with our love ones as much as we can. Life doens’t give guarantees, we can only hope that we lived it well. Thanks…

  39. Amar Naik says:

    lot of fun. nice interpretation

  40. Pingback: Weekly Photo Challenge: Launch [grandpa teaches the "American Pastime" to Brazilian grandkids] « 3rdculturechildren

  41. MikeP says:

    Yes the party looked great… being with family and friends is the way to go. The sway thing will come with time, although I can’t guarantee it. Just like we can not predict the future, just make it better than we left it. Sorry about your friends brother.. loss and its effect can be felt everywhere, but a new year can bring a new beginning.

  42. Jo Bryant says:

    these are great photos – the party looks like a blast

  43. What a fabulous idea for a party. I have been to masquerade balls during Mardi Gras. But, to have the theme for New Year’s eve is so refreshing. It is the best way to bring ring in the New Year as you are taking hold of a new you once you have removed the mask.
    I went to a traditonal Columbian party. It started at 8p.m. and didn’t end until 6 a.m. There was food constantly being brought in by the over 100 guests. Dancing was upper most. No one was allowed to sit. Didn’t matter how much you had to eat or drink you were burning off every single calorie. Ironically, all ages were present and even seniors were getting their groove on. It was party hardy all night long.
    Belated New Years 2012 wishes to you and yours …. !!!
    It has been a pleasure visiting your blog and having you stop by and comment on mine. I have posted my New Years wishes for everyone on this url. Hope you stop by and read my good wishes for all.
    Blessings,
    Isadora
    http://insidethemindofisadora.wordpress.com/2011/12/31/a-toast-for-the-new-year/

    • Colombian Party sounds like like an amazing event to be. Everyone dancing and having a great time is indeed a party to celebrate and remember. We all deserve to have a bit of joy and unforgettable memories, more that a New Year has began and an old one has passed. Happy New Year to you my friend. I wish you love, happiness, good health and a peaceful 2012…..

    • Thank you. Colombian Party sounds fun and exciting. Non-stop dancing and an amazing group of friends and family…unforgettable! Wishing you all the love, joy , good health and endless happiness for 2012. It’s a brand New Year promising a brand new life for all of us. A toast to life’s adventures!

  44. pix & kardz says:

    looks like you all had a wonderful time. impractical or not, your mask is definitely unique!
    thank you for sharing your launch into the new year.

    • Thanks. The mask was a bit uncomfortable. It was hard for me to move around , even get a good picture. But for the sake of fun, it was all worth it. Wishing you a New Year full of amazing things, people and events….

  45. The Hook says:

    Looks like a good time was had by all!

    • It was a great time for all. I laughed so hard , I thought I’m going to have an asthma episode. It felt awesome to unwind for a day and just have a clean, unforgettable time with family and friends.Thanks….

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