I mentioned that we decided to have a party to decorate sugar skulls for Day of the Dead.
First things first, the party? Was such fun! It was a little hard to schedule right in the busy week before Halloween, but it was worth it. The Kid and two of his buddies decorated skulls first, then they went to watch a movie (The Book of Life, appropriately) and the grown-ups did a batch of skulls, too.
But then--because we had the skulls after all--I decided to set up an ofrenda and have a special Day of the Dead dinner.
It was fairly simple. Sweet Husband and I decided to make it an occasion to celebrate and tell stories about our grandparents who have died. We lit a candle for each one, and prepared a menu (chili and cherry pie) that we thought would have been approved of.
Even beyond making skulls or decorating, the story telling part was where it was at.
Sweet Husband had some great yarns to tell about his grandparents (the time they caught a monster fish and helping his grandpa while he volunteered at the Wichita Zoo), and I even had a few good ones about my grandpa (who used to pull our toes to wake us up in the morning)--but the really funny part was a story I told about my grandma.
She died young enough that I don't have a lot of memories, but one that I do have is about a time when she bought me a balloon with "E.T." on it and I accidentally let it go when we got outside. I intended it to be a story about how she comforted me afterwards, but the Kid got so hung up about the balloon.
Did you get another one?
Where did it go?
Mommy, I'm so sorry about your balloon.
For serious, he was near tears over my thirty-years-gone balloon.
And he's been so persistent about it, too. We kept trying to move on to other stories, but--even the next day--the Kid kept bringing us back to, "Now tell me about the balloon just one more time?"
I'll confess, Sweet Husband and I have gotten some very good chuckles out of it all. And I like to think that, wherever people go when they die, our loved ones are getting a good laugh out of it, too.