If you don’t know much or anything about Dia De Los Muertos or Day of the dead, here is a little bit of information about it.
Over the years I heard very little about dia de los muertos. My dads side of the family doesn’t celebrate holidays so we never did anything for this day. I didn’t actually come to hear of it until I went to college. At first I thought it was simply another version of Halloween but after looking into it and talking to some of other students I learned that its much more than that.
Dia De Los Muertos is celebrated over two days November 1st and 2nd, although some start celebrating on October 31st.
According to the legend at 12am November 1st the “angelitos” or deceased children are allowed to spend 24 hours with their loved ones. Then on November 2nd the adults are given 24 hours with their loved ones.
During this time the families and friends of the deceased will pray for and honor those that have passed. Rather than be saddened or mournful they celebrate by doing the things that the deceased person enjoyed in life. They will often clean and decorate the grave sites of loved ones and adorn it with their favorite foods, drinks and mementos (oferendas) to welcome those that have passed. Along with this they also in some parts spend the all day and night at the grave site.
- Sugar skulls are made and decorated in beautiful and bright colors and will have the name of the deceased written on it.
- Mexican marigolds are the “flower of the dead” these flowers are used in decorating the graves and oferendas.
- Pan de Muerto – Bread of the dead is also placed on the oferendas.
- Oferendas – alters to the dead
- Calaveras – Skulls
- Calacas – Skeletons
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