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Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Remembering the Dead

I very much like the tradition of remembering the dead who are important to us, who shape who we are today.  It is a part of the Jewish religion.  You light a candle on the anniversary of the death of a loved one, say a mourner's prayer, and honor their memory.  The Day of the Dead is another approach to this remembering tradition.  Instead having your own day of remembrance, there is one day when everyone remembers and prays.  There is a creepy clown mask component to it, but there are some entirely beautifully painted faces that come out on this day as well.  This year I am remembering my maternal grandmother.  I had a very close relationship with her up until the last decade of her life.  Dementia is a very painful thing to watch and watching her live with it strengthened my own beliefs that for me that is not living.  My memory of her is permanently affected by her struggles with cognition at the end of her life.  However, I do have many great memories of her, and one of the things that I have been thinking about this past year as I have gotten back into doing some handwork more regularly is that I got that at least in part from her.  The thing that I love about making things is that they are tangible, and unlike pretty much everything else I do, which is largely intangible and untouchable, quilting has an output that I sleep under everyday.  So thank you for that Gram.  Happy Day of the Dead.

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