How to Honor Those You've Lost

A Manual for Everyday People

“The dead are invisible, not absent.”

—Saint Augustine

Many traditions mark remembrance of the dead, as well as belief in the thinning of the veil, when the world we see and the one we do not are closer than they are at other times of the year. These days—from Día de Muertos to Samhain, Halloween, and All Souls’ Day—intersect with the coming descent of winter, the dark season. In this season we tend to live more slowly and retreat indoors, where there is more stillness. Outside, the earth is cold and life is dormant. We are closer to living as the departed live. As such, it’s an appropriate time to remember them.

I put together “Seven Ways to Honor Those You’ve Lost,” a manual for everyday people—meaning my suggestions are simple, approachable and meant for ordinary, everyday use 💁🏼‍♀️—in preparation for All Souls’ Day (tomorrow), the day Catholics take time to honor their dead, but you don’t need to be Catholic to use its contents. Details on how to get your free copy are below.

In Italy, when my mother was a child, this was a day where they packed a lunch, walked down to the cemetery, removed the bones of their ancestors from their burial plots, and spent the day cleaning the bones. My Zia Lilina, her older sister, possessed the knowledge of whose bones were whose. She could pull them out, name them, clean them, and put them back in the same place, where they’d wait for her return next year. While I’m well aware we are far removed from such a practice, remembrance of the souls who have passed—in essence the souls of those who created us—is not only the right thing to do, it is, in a rather rootless world, a rooted thing to do.

If you’d like a free copy of my downloadable manual, “Seven Ways to Honor Those You’ve Lost,” simply email me your email address at, and I will send it to you. ✨✨

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