El Dia de los Muertos
In Mexico and parts of South Texas, Nov. 1 is called el dia de los muertos, or "the day of the dead."
It's the time of year when people honor their dead ancestors by visiting the cemetery, making altars to the dearly departed that contain flowers, their favorite foods, toys, photos, etc.
Mexicans really know how to celebrate their departed loved ones.
Mama's grave site today will be festooned with flowers, helium balloons and other colorful tributes left over from yesterday, in addition to zillions of new floral tributes just for her.
Today also is my mother's mother's birthday, so we figured Mama planned on this day to be interred as a tribute to her mom.
My siblings and I did a lot of pre-planning for this day, so we've had the luxury of adding a lot of little touches at the last minute.
My sister Jan arranged for an opera singer to perform "Ave Maria" at the end. For the "ashes to ashes" part, I mixed up some soil from Bethlehem, sand from a Southern California beach and some dark purple glass glitter.
I think all of my siblings purchased some serious bottles of aged whisky, rum and wine for the wake. A friend of the family produced a fantastic video tribute to Mama that we'll view at the wake.
The funeral is in four hours.
I feel like I'm going to a party celebrating the merry life of my Mom.
I'm in a state of grace this morning, just waiting for the miracles of the day to unfold.
Benedicta tu in mulieribus
Et benedictus fructus ventris
Ora pro nobis peccatoribus
Nunc et in hora mortis nostrae
See you soon, Mama.