Dia de Muertos isn't one of those holidays that I've always celebrated. But with each year that passes, I embrace it more and more. So much so, that I had planned on building my first Altar de Muertos this year for my grandmother, who passed away in December of last year. But with my suegra's (mother-in-law's) recent passing, the pain and loss is still too fresh for us and I couldn't bring myself to build an altar for anyone.
Earlier today, we visited El Panteon (cemetery) to take flowers to my suegra, and then walked around to admire all of the beautiful altares, with various ofrendas (offerings) that included items like cigarettes, tequila, beer, and pan dulce (Mexican pastries). Seeing all of the different ofrendas got me to thinking about what I'd want my family and friends to include in my Altar de Muertos, some 50+ years from now. So, I've compiled a list...
Suggestions for my Altar de Muertos:
(In no particular order)
- A toy laptop and/or tablet, to represent my love of blogging and social media.
- A camera, because I'm constantly taking pictures. My hubby jokes that my camera is glued to my fingers.
- An American flag, because no matter how long I've lived in Mexico, I'm still an American girl at heart.
- A Mexican flag, because I've come to love this beautiful country as my very own.
- A cookbook, to represent my love of cooking.
- A rolling pin and whisk, because I love to bake.
- A bottle of Mexican Coca-Cola, because it's my beverage of choice. Glass bottles only, please. No plastic!
- A bottle of red wine, because it's my grown-up beverage of choice.
- An eyebrow pencil, because I can leave the house without any make-up on, just not without putting on my eyebrows first.
- A Spanish/English dictionary, to remind everyone that I worked as an ESL teacher.
- Gerber daisies, because they're my favorite flower.
- A Jack-O-Lantern, to represent my love of American holidays.
- A Cow, because it's my favorite animal.
- Something leopard print, like maybe a scarf, to please my inner Peggy Bundy, who makes most of my wardrobe choices.
- Candles: In lieu of the traditional veladoras (candles), I'd prefer vanilla or cinnamon scented candles, because I like things that smell sweet, like dessert.
- Food offerings: I'll be happy with pretty much anything, just don't forget to include coffee, chocolate chip cookies, Sabritas adobadas (seasoned potato chips), and Dulce de Calabaza (candied pumpkin).
- Personal items: Books, movies, and music cd's, because they brought a lot of happiness to my life.
I know this list probably seems kind of morbid, and in the past, I never would have even considered posting something like this out of fear of jinxing myself, but sometimes I can be a little dark and twisted. But most of all, I like to think that it's because I've come to accept, appreciate, and really like Dia de Muertos.
What would you suggest for your Altar de Muertos?