Teaching little ones about loss and losing a loved one can be hard.
One common thing regardless of your religion or background is we have all lost someone that we have loved. Loved ones who have passed that left memories imprinted in our hearts. Loved ones that when you smell that certain smell, see an article of clothing, make a favorite recipe, go to a certain spot; your reminded of.
Dia de los Muertos is about remembering loved ones. The joy and love those loved ones provided. Celebrating the values, traditions, and memories left behind. This celebration happens on Nov 1st and 2nd where families have a celebration of life. Families each celebrate differently either by making an “ofrenda” an alter with pictures, favorite foods, sugar skulls, pan de muerto, and many other things that celebrate life.
So yearly my family participates in this holiday by going to the Mesa Center of the Arts where there is a big festival for Dia De los Muertos. We paint our faces, watch the dances, indulge in food, and purchase crafts from local vendors. At our home we have a designated table where we place pictures of loved ones and relics or things that hold memories for us. It’s been an easy way to incorporate this idea of celebration of life and what Dia de los muertos stands for.
I had the opportunity to experience Dia del los Muertos in Morellia, Mexico where I studied abroad back in college. And nothing can describe the holiday or the feels you get from seeing and experience it live in person. The colors are amazing, the sense of community, the traditions, the celebration the food! Overall hands down one of the coolest things I have ever had the pleasure to be a part of in my life!!
Here are some easy tips to start celebrating Dia de los Muertos in your home:
1. Create an alter or ofrenda
2. Make traditional meals or recipes that remind you of family and talk about the past memories of loved ones.
3. Get crafty- make paper flowers and papel picado (paper decorations)
4. Watch COCO- the Disney movie and discuss how you remember loved ones in your family
5. Attend a Dia de los Muertos festival and introduce new culture and traditions to your family