|From Black Snow Comics - Via Pinterest|
Here in Arizona (and many places around the world) Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) is a heavily celebrated, three day celebration from October 31st through November 2nd.
Breaking it down:
October 31st - All Hallows Eve - Young ones make a Children's altar to invite 'Angelitos' (spirits of dead children) to come back for a visit.
November 1st - All Saints Day - Altars are made for spirits of the adults who have passed to come back for a visit.
November 2nd - All Souls Day - People go to the cemeteries of their relatives and loved ones who have passed and decorate their graves/tombs and leave marigolds, muertos (bread) and sugar skulls (cookies). Families celebrate their loved ones lives and remember them by saying prayers for the departed and by sharing stories with each other.
*You can find a more thorough explanation on Wikipedia under Dia de los Muertos - summarized by Frances Ann Day (Latina and Latino Voices in Literature (Frances Ann Day), Greenwood Publishing Group, page 72)
The decorations and pictures used to symbolize Dia de los Muertos and the Day of the Dead can look a bit morbid or offensive to some people.
Here where we live, we're used to seeing many paintings, figurines, sculptures and the like - so it's not offensive or morbid to us.
It's honoring those you love through art.
Just like any other holiday or celebration.
We have many loved ones who have passed on.
Family and friends who we miss, but are blessed to have had in our lives.
We choose to celebrate their lives by honoring their memories and celebrating their souls.
Knowing quite well how much richer our lives are because of them.
Believing they are always here, within us, guiding us and helping us as we go through our own lives.
Here's to our loved ones.
To the Celebration of their lives.