November 1 (11 1), was the first day of Dia De Los Muertos, or Day of the Dead.  They coincide with the Catholic holidays of All Saints Day and All Souls Day on November 2.  As Hilary shared in a post on her food blog, Dia De Los Muertos is not some Steven King horror novel, but rather an opportunity to celebrate and honor our loved ones who have transitioned.  Dia de los Muertos (  

Dia De Los Muertos has been feted in Mexico for over 3,000 years. Many folks observe these days by setting up shrines or altars for their loved ones.  Here is a photo of a portion of the altar created by my cousin.   Ever-smiling Jimmy is in the center and Hilary’s mother, Virginia, is in the foreground.   Our niece Morgan is on the left.

Solo, a store on Cedros Ave in our town Solana Beach, puts up an elaborate shrine every year.

Not coincidentally, the Day of the Dead coincides with what many believe is the time when the veil between our transitioned loved ones and us is at its thinnest, and “we are able to feel our loved ones from the other side, Angels, Guides, and our Higher Self in ways that feel clearer, stronger, and more real than ever.” [Sarah Renee]  SARAH RENEE – Home (

The week before our daughter Brittany reached out to Sarah Renee to schedule a reading.   We’ve had some phenomenal readings with Sarah, but it had been over three years since the last one.   Sarah, who is normally booked solid for at least a month in advance, told Brittany, “I’ve just had a cancellation for November 1.   Would 11 a.m. work for you.”

11 1 11  

“11” is Hilary’s most spiritual and meaningful number. 

Brittany grabbed the slot.  

Although the three of us have usually done readings together, I initially was not going to participate. I thought Sarah could bring more in for Brittany and Hilary if I wasn’t there.   The day before the reading, I got a big nudge from somewhere or someone to “Cowboy Up” and show up.   To say I was not disappointed is a huge understatement. 

About five years ago, Hilary set up an altar in our shared office. It’s there year-round.

There’s Mother Mary with baby Jesus on the left, an angel, Buddha, and a photo of Brittany and Jimmy, among other meaningful mementos and objects.  Our 24-year-old son, Jimmy, was accidentally struck and killed by a car in August of 2008.

Brittany came over about ten minutes before our reading with Sarah.   We both went into our office.   Hilary came down a couple of minutes later with a big smile on her face. 

“Take a look at this photo I just took of our shower upstairs.”

Brittany exclaimed, “Have you ever seen rainbows like those in your shower before?”

Hilary and I shook our heads, “No.”

A minute before Sarah called for the reading, Hilary exclaimed,

“Oh my God. Look at the altar!” 

The angel and Buddha were lit up by a spectacular rainbow.

We were stunned. 

Anticipating Britt’s question, I said “I have never seen a rainbow in this office.  Never!”     Hilary agreed.

We were awash in goosebumps when Sarah’s call came through.   We told Sarah about the rainbows and she too could not believe the synchronicity of it all.  

Jimmy came through loud and clear, as he always does.  It turns out, I was the one he really needed to connect with.   Perhaps I will share more later.  We’re still trying to process it all. 

Hilary’s mother, Virginia—or V V as we affectionately refer to her—waited very patiently and came through at the end of the reading.  V V transitioned in 2022 at the age of 95.  This was the first reading we’d had since she passed and it was a very special moment, especially for Hilary.   V V said, “I’m not as pushy or as loud as Jimmy, but I wanted you to know I’m here and looking out for my girls.”  Hilary has two sisters. 

We were all crying and emotionally charged and wrung out.   We agreed, it was the best reading ever, and it could not have come at a better time.  The veil was thin, we honored our loved ones, and they blessed us with their love, light and deeply healing messages. Their presence and essence. And rainbows.

They’re Back

November 2 was the second day of Dia de los Muertos, and we wondered, Is it possible they might show up again?   Oh yeah.  Big time.    [photos taken at the same time as the day before]

We are so very grateful for our Day of the Dead Rainbows.

We love you Jimmy and V V.

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Author Bios

Write Me Something Beautiful Authors - Casey and Jimmy Gauntt

Casey Gauntt

is a retired attorney and former senior executive of a major San Diego real estate company. He lives in Solana Beach, California, with his wife, Hilary. Casey grew up in Itasca, Illinois, graduated Lake Park High School in 1968, and received B.S., JD and MBA degrees from the University of Southern California.

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Jimmy Gauntt

was born and raised in Solana Beach and graduated from Torrey Pines High School in 2002.   A prestigious Trustee Scholar at the University of Southern California, he majored in English and Spanish. He authored six plays, five screenplays, and a multitude of poems and short stories. Beginning in 2010, the USC English Department annually bestows the Jimmy Gauntt Memorial Award—aka “The Jimmy”—to the top graduates in English.  Jimmy passed over to the other side in 2008 at age 24.

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