In Mexican culture, death is viewed as a natural part of the cycle of life and the Dia de Los Muertos is an occasion for celebrating the lives of departed loved ones. With its origins in Aztec traditions, the festivities center around alters. These are decorated with offerings of food and flowers in the belief that for one day of the year the dead can be enticed to return to celebrate with the living. Brightly decorated calaveras, or sugar skulls, are laid on the alter and embody the departed person. La Calavera Catrina or Dapper Skeleton presides over the festivities with her wide-brimmed hat and floral wreath.
El Dia de Los Muertos is not as a day of sadness but a day of celebration because for one day of the year departed loved ones awake and celebrate with the living.