Today is Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead. I enjoy celebrating this as it reminds me of growing up in the Southwest. I’ve always loved Mexican folk art as well, and really love the ideas behind this holiday.
Jack and I made Pan de Muerto last night, which you leave out with other goodies for the spirits who come to visit, on this day when the veil between our world and theirs is lifted. It’s filled with orange and anise, a little sweet and a little bitter, just like life.
On top you can make a skull and bones as well, and that was Jack’s job this year. He made a pretty awesome skull, although the little bones sort of slid down the sides as it baked. It’s still delicious!
We also left out pumpkin tea, Mexican chocolate spice cookies, Jack made a special bowl of his leftover Halloween candy (he even unwrapped them so the “good spirits” specifically could get at the sweetness), he also put out coins and I added a squash, some candles, the sugar skulls Jack made in art class, and this cool little Our Lady of Guadalupe light I got ages ago in Phoenix.
This year I was especially glad we did this. Chris and I both lost old friends who were very young and died suddenly. Just this week a good friend of our family passed away as well. In some odd way it comforts me to place these ofrendas out for them. It makes me feel like the distance is less, like those spirits still walk among us.
Even if those spirits are really just memories, I’ll take it.