Catholic School, Latino Family Traditions

Ash Wednesday and Lent, Memories of Catholic School

  Today is Ash Wednesday, a Catholic tradition that marks the start of the Lenten season. Or to us Catholic school kids, who'll never forget, it's time to give up something for 40 days to remind us of sacrifice. Everyone strolled around the neighborhood with their ash crosses on their forehead, a mark of a… Continue reading Ash Wednesday and Lent, Memories of Catholic School

Family, Latino culture, Latino Family Traditions, Parenting

How Tamales Make My World A Better Place

Every December, I write about making tamales, and this year is no different.  Our mother has made tamales for over seventy years, longer than her children have been alive. And her mother made tamales before she was born. And her mother, back to the days of maize and metates. Something is wrong with my universe… Continue reading How Tamales Make My World A Better Place

Art, Family, Latino culture, Latino Family Traditions, Writing

The Ortega Adobe – A House of Dreams

A couple of months ago I wrote about Ekphrasic Poetry. There is also such a thing as creating a story from a photograph, or Ekphrasic Prose. This story is based on a painting housed in our county library. The Ortega Adobe is a California landmark that still stands 160 years after it was built.  … Continue reading The Ortega Adobe – A House of Dreams

John Riley, Latino Family Traditions, Mexican American War, Mexican and Irish culture, San Patricios, St. Patrick's Day

The Irish Mexican Connection

There is an Irish connection in my family. My maiden name has Irish roots while my mother's maiden name originates from Mexico via Spain. My nieces, one of whom is named Erin, are of Irish and Mexican heritage and I have a cousin born on St.Patrick's Day. (Okay, that last one was a stretch). Besides… Continue reading The Irish Mexican Connection