I took this photograph on my aunt's birthday from this past weekend. We have a beautiful arrangement on our table where we place candles around her photograph. My family all had their own way of acknowledging her special day.

I've always loved how the Mexican culture celebrates their passed relatives and I like to subscribe to their ideas. They encourage visits from the souls of the departed by assembling altars with items, foods or beverages appreciated by their loved ones and will set seats for them at the table when the family gathers to tell anecdotes. They'll leave out these specific offerings (ofrendas) to welcome spirits home and something about honouring the life of someone with physical gestures tailored to their preferences resonates with me. I value the time and effort taken to respect a soul with tangible gifts, treating them as visitors stopping by on their journey. I believe that taking time to appreciate our loved ones brings us an important sense of peace and understanding. It gives us a fuller perspective devoid of the habit to mistakenly place emphasis on that which is actually insignificant.

One of my dreams is to visit Mexico during Día de los Muertos with photographs and items of my loved ones to take part in the holiday around the brightly-coloured marigolds and sugar skulls. Of course, I would have to joke to my aunt that I didn't listen to her advice about Mexico being a country to skip when travelling. So perhaps I will rather begin to celebrate the 2nd of November in this way at home. Sending much love to you, Auntie Lynnie.

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