Close up of my sugar skull-themed Dia de los Muertos nail wraps, courtesy of Kate Marie Maher’s Jamberry Nails. You can find this design and hundreds of others at her online Jamberry boutique.
The Jamberry nail wraps last about 2 weeks on fingernails, and 4 weeks on toes. It took me about 20-25 minutes to apply mine, although it was my first time so I imagine I’ll be getting faster with practice. I love that there are no glues or liquids involved; you just heat the nail wrap with a hair dryer for a few seconds, apply it to a clean nail, and cut/file any excess away to complete the process. That’s it!
Above: To be… or not to be… a white chocolate sugar skull that you can fill with other candies.
Below: A huge sugar cookie that is literally the size of my face and decorated like a calavera/sugar skull.
Wondering what the story is with all the colorful sugar skulls in this post?
While most everyone is familiar with Halloween, you may or may not also recognize a holiday called el Dia de los Muertos. The English translation is the Day of the Dead, and it is a Mexican holiday with Pre-Columbian roots observed throughout Mexico and around the world in other cultures.
According to our friends at Wikipedia, the holiday “focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died. The celebration takes place on October 31, November 1 and November 2, in connection with the triduum of Allhallowtide: All Hallows’ Eve, Hallowmas, and All Souls’ Day.”
According to Francis Ann Day, author of Latina and Latino Voices in Literature, the holiday goes something like this:
On October 31, All Hallows Eve, the children make a children’s altar to invite the angelitos (spirits of dead children) to come back for a visit. November 1 is All Saints Day, and the adult spirits will come to visit. November 2 is All Souls Day, when families go to the cemetery to decorate the graves and tombs of their relatives. The three-day fiesta is filled with marigolds, the flowers of the dead; muertos (the bread of the dead); sugar skulls; cardboard skeletons; tissue paper decorations; fruit and nuts; incense, and other traditional foods and decorations.
So basically it’s a time to honor your lost loved ones, but not in a somber, mournful way. Instead, you celebrate by painting your face with a calavera design, construct memorials to your loved ones with gorgeous orange marigold bouquets, delicious food, and lighthearted and colorful decorations, and spend quality time with your living family as you celebrate and commune with your ancestors.
P.S. If you missed it on my Instagram feed, you have to check out these chocolate-covered Oreo cookies. They are so decadent and the Oreo is just a little bit chewy from being enrobed in chocolate. Sooooo good, and they are on sale right now.
Disclosure: All cookies and candy featured in this post were gifted to me by Dylan’s Candy Bar. My Jamberry nail wraps were a gift from Kate Marie Maher.