I remember going to Feast Days when I was growing up. My grandfather is from San Juan Pueblo (Ohkay Owingeh), just outside of Española, NM. My mom would take us to visit on holidays and special occasions. I didn’t always want to go – it was a long trip, my great aunts would pinch my cheek, and they put chili in most of the food. But oh how I loved the dances. I remember thinking how fun it must be to dress up in those elaborate costumes and dance the day away.
I am so thankful now to have those memories. So when mom asked if I wanted to go to the San Juan Feast Day this year – my first year living back in since 2002 – I couldn’t say “yes” fast enough! I was so excited to see our family, to eat the food I didn’t enjoy then but can’t get enough of now, to feel the beat of the drums and watch the dancers perform. But most of all, I couldn’t wait to share this day with my little ones.