Do you have a ritual that you perform every New Year’s Day?
I think most people have some ritual associated with the holiday. Many of us don’t even know why we do them…we just always have.
My wife and I have practiced some silly ritual every year since we have been together I think. The first that I remember was that on New Year’s Day you are supposed to do at least one important activity that you want to make sure you do all year. Later we picked up that one should eat cabbage. Guess what has been included in every New Year’s Day dinner since?
This year, to insure our happiness and financial prosperity, we put the “pedal to the metal” and went all out.
Before I continue, I want to acknowledge an article from Bellesprit Magazine titled Belle’s New Year’s Stuporsitions. I recently interviewed Belle Salisbury on Paranormal Filler and I got the idea to follow the guidelines in the article as closely as possible. Go to the article to find even more traditions than I have listed here and to find out some of the lore behind them.
Before New Year’s Eve
The entire house should be clean before New Year’s Day.
This has to do with sweeping all the negative energy out of your home. While it makes sense, in practice the correct procedure is hard to follow in my house. You are supposed to sweep the dirt to the center of the room and then apparently keep it for a few days. We vacuumed. Partial credit.
The New Year must not be seen with bare or empty cupboards.
Easy enough. Stocked up on food (Fritos in particular). Check.
All debts should be paid before the New Year.
I am not sure how one can get rid of all of their debts for this one. We just made sure all the bills that were due were paid. Partial credit.
Make sure any unfinished projects are completed before New Year’s Day.
My entire life is defined by unfinished projects. FAIL
Plant a new plant or tree before New Year’s Day.
We plant trees and stuff all the time. Mother Earth should be happy. Pass.
Make a list of things that you have done during the old year, both good and the bad, and then burn it outside.
Didn’t even attempt this one. Maybe next year.
Place a dollar bill under a new loaf of bread to insure that you have food all year long.
Place a dollar bill under a New Year Calendar to insure that you will have money all year long.
Still pretty easy. We took it a step further and put dollar bills under all of our new calendars (which we never hang until New Year’s Day) and I stuck one in my date book just to be safe. Check.
Place change in your left pocket to bring change to you in the New Year.
This meant that I had to wear pants, but I made it through the evening. Check.
The wallets of everyone in the household should be stocked with money to guarantee prosperity.
I hope I did this one right. We took our “bail money” stash (hey, you never know) and put it in my wallet. Unfortunately, this made my wallet too fat to carry with me so I hope that isn’t an issue. I did however tuck it under my pillow for the evening. Check.
Forgive friends and family for any misunderstandings and disagreements they may have had that year so they can make a clean start of the New Year.
Already taken care of. I can’t think of anyone that I am currently pissed at. Check.
The Japanese ring bells 108 times on December 31st to chase away 108 troubles.
Sounded tedious. Fail.
To keep out evil spirits and misfortune hang a rope of straw across the front of your home.
Being a farmer I do have access to straw. However, being me, I do not have the patience to make a rope from it. Fail.
On the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve every door in the house, and even the windows, should be opened to allow the old year to go out unimpeded.
Technically we didn’t open every door. There were only two of us. And no, I did not open the windows. It was cold and this house costs enough to heat without airing it out during a winter night. Incomplete.
We kiss those dearest to us at midnight to share a moment of celebration with others but also to insure that those affections and ties will continue throughout the next 12 months.
Make as much noise as possible at midnight. You are not just celebrating; you are scaring away evil spirits.
I wanted to fire off a few rounds in the air from the .38. Anita wouldn’t let me so we just laughed really loud when we opened the doors. Pass.
When the New Year begins laugh as loud and hardy as you can! This is believed to bring good luck in the New Year.
See previous. Check.
New Year’s Day
Nothing is to leave the house of the first day of the year.
This was a new one on me. We have made every effort to keep everything in the house with one exception. We chose today to plant our Christmas tree despite the rule listed previously. We always get a live tree and plant it in the yard. I felt that planting it today (along with a charmed stone I had been carrying) would be a great gesture to the earth. Better Pass.
Everyone should refrain from using foul language and bad or unlucky words.
Probably @#$&ed that one up. Fail.
Anything in the shape of a circle is good luck because it symbolizes coming ‘full circle’ completing a year’s cycle.
Powdered Donettes for breakfast? I don’t mind if I do. Check.
The hog, and thus its meat, is considered lucky because it symbolizes prosperity.
Pork chops for dinner? Not a problem. Check.
Eat collard greens or cabbage for money in the New Year.
We substituted spinach and cole slaw. Work with me a little, universe. Check.
Eat black-eyed peas to bring luck in the New Year.
That was a really good dinner. Check.
Do not use knives or scissors on New Year’s Day as this may cut away your fortune.
I had not heard this one before, but I managed by eating the pork chops with my hands. I did miss having gravy though. Check.
On New Year’s Day you are not to wash your hair because it would mean you would have washed away good luck for the New Year.
I probably won’t take a bath either. It’s my day off. Don't judge me. Check.
Do not do laundry on New Year’s Day as to do so would be to wash away your good fortune.
It was surprising easy to talk Anita into following this one. Check.
Do not pay loans or loan out any precious goods on New Year’s Day.
Not a problem. Check.
Above all else, remember, whatever you do on New Year’s Day, you will be doing all year long!
And that’s why I am here and you have this to read. Check.
Happy New Year, everyone.