As the Spanish music began, Ilenne was escorted down the long church isle by her loving godparents.
The Quinceañera cort, made up of her cousins, siblings, and friends that are "like her siblings" followed her to the front of the altar to witness her becoming a young women.
The sanctuary was filled with people who have made an impression on Ilenne through her first 15 years of life...childhood schoolmates, family, and friends all gathered for a beautiful mass that was spoken by Father Rick in both Spanish and English.
At the end of the mass, Ilenne spoke about how she is ready to leave her childhood behind and move on to more grown-up ways...she then gave flowers to Mary while silently praying for her guidance.
It was an AMAZING night celebrating Ilenne's 15th birthday and I am so happy that we were able to be there to capture her special day!
I was blessed to have Ilenne as one of my music students at St. Andrew Catholic School for 4 years, and it was so neat to see her grow not only in music but in her faith...
I will admit, that I got choked up several times during the day, so I have THREE favorite moments from the day...
FAVORITE MOMENT #1:
During the reception, Ilenne does a special dance with the girls in her party as well as the boys, and at the end of the girls' dance, her little sister, Franny, brought her the "last doll"...The "last doll," or ultima muneca, is a traditional symbol that represents the quinceañera leaving behind her childhood and the toys of a young girl in exchange for the more grown-up interests fitting of a young woman.
The quinceañera begins her ceremony in flat shoes, symbolic of her childhood. During the reception, her father will kneel at her feet as she sits in a special chair, removes the low heeled shoes of her childhood and replace them with her first high heeled shoes. Then the two will dance a father-daughter dance... This one made me tear up as all father-daughter dances do...I can't help but think of the day that Craig will dance a father-daughter dance with Lydia and Lily... ;(
(and because Ilenne and Francisco are SO COOL... they did a "costume change" and danced the Pasa doble! I felt like I was at "Dancing with the Stars!")
As I mentioned before, Ilenne was a former music student of mine, and I got SO EMOTIONAL about how many of her classmates came to her celebration! Here are 18 kids that I miss SO MUCH from St. Andrew Catholic School! I can't believe that they all just finished their Freshman year of high school! BOO HOO!
But enough of my whining and crying...
Here are a few more of our favorites from Ilenne's AMAZINGLY FUN Quinceañera!
Cumpleaños Feliz Ilenne!
Lisa and Sommer