Long before Andrew died, I was familiar with this holiday. I was introduced to it back in high school during the fall when Halloween rolled around, but in reality, it has nothing to do with the "holiday" of Halloween that we celebrate which decorates with dark colors, skeletons, and gore. The Spanish holiday is a celebration of people. Not scary people, but people who are loved and remembered.
In college, I shot a news story down near Union Station in Los Angeles at Olvera Street. This street is an outdoor Mexican marketplace with vendors covering narrow brick paths. They also have some interior rooms converted to museums about the Spanish culture and their rich history in Los Angeles. During October and November, they house a big exhibit on Dia de los Muertos. I remember interviewing people and cutting a story all about recognizing and celebrating the lives of very important people that I did not know. Who knew I'd be 28 years old and experience the heartbreak of losing my very own special loved one.
It's a colorful holiday-- one that is decorated well with vibrantly painted skulls, beautiful Papel picado, and hoards of food. It's a birthday party for the dead.
Having a loved one I miss terribly out there, it was only fitting to recognize him today in my own little ceremony of Dia de los Muertos by creating a craft with Benjamin and celebrating with a bit of a Mexican feast in honor of his brother who should be turning 3 years old next month.
|Benjamin's contribution was the top blue. I helped adjust the scissors and there were two cuts. Then he was over it.|