Memories on Dia de Muertos

  Remembering love is never wrong, because while our bodies die, love does not. It simply changes form, just like us. Honoring that with grief, tradition, and symbols is a good thing. We all die. Reflecting on death and facing shadows can only make us appreciate the light and the richness our lives have within them.
Courtyard of Fiesta de Reyes, outside of Tienda de Reyes in San Diego, where we found Armas' work.

 Day of the Dead, Dia de Muertos or Dia de los Muertos, is a Mexican holiday that is celebrated throughout Latin America and has rich and long standing Aztec roots of its own, but it coincides on the calendar with All Saints' Day & All Souls' Day because of the Spanish and Catholic church's influence. It is a day to honor and remember all of our loved ones that have passed on.
Every year, I do spend the month of October and first few days of November thinking about loved ones gone and ways to remember and honor them. When my husband and I were in California last month, we saw this little piece and had to bring it home. It is the perfect addition to the sconce that holds our sweet girl's ashes. She is certainly "always in my heart".  

*You can find the artist, Theresa Armas, on Facebook, Instagram, and Etsy. Though she's on a short Etsy break. (She's super busy with Dia de Muertos events!) You can favorite her shop  and sign up to get a notification when she's back. :)

A few years ago, when Miss Muffie the maltese was very sick and on her last few days, I put up our small Christmas tree because she always loved sleeping under it so much. It was in early October when she got sick, so we decided to have a Halloween tree to give her that little pleasure one last time. I decorated it with purple and orange lights. I hung fall decor on it. I put her bed under the tree. She laid under the tree every day until it was time for us to take her pain and make it our own. 
We've put that tree up in October ever since then. Her bed and urn go right under it, too.

This year, I took some craft supplies and decorated the tree with butterflies to symbolize the souls of those that have left us, since they are always a symbol of transformation and peace for me. 
Simple supplies: burlap or other material, pipe cleaner, wire, craft paint, ribbon, wire cutters, scissors.

Some of the larger butterflies are made from burlap.
One side is plain with black embellishments. These designs remind me of our bones, or bodies. The other side is gold glitter, symbolizing a transformation. 

After tomorrow, the large butterflies will come down, and we will start our November gratitude tree.

   But seeing them on the tree is a nice reminder to stop and be thankful for the people (and animals!) that have enriched my life. To be thankful for every breath, for it is fleeting.  
So, I think the small butterflies can stay on the gratitude tree. ;)

I created a treasury on Etsy of items that I thought might be helpful in honoring our loved ones, and a few that bring back special memories for me. Enjoy. :)
How do you honor your loved ones?
Leave a comment, I'd love to hear what you do. :)

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