New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day Traditions – Candles, Food, Fun!



Happy New Year 2009! May the year of our Lord 2009 bring you abundance, knowledge, strength, health and prosperity to you and your family for generations to come beyond the horizon that anyone can imagine!

I hope that you have made (and will keep at least one) New Year’s resolution (I have) and that you will use your quiet times thoughtfully in prayer and contemplation to bring about the outcome that you want to see.

Here is a little about New Year’s traditions around the world. Enjoy!

New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day Traditions

There are many ways that different cultures welcome in the New Year, but one thing is common that they have is lights, noise and food! Take a moment and read about how you can meld some of these traditions into a memorable ceremony for your home.

It is almost Universal that every home needs to be as clean as it possibly can. This means moving furniture, catching those “dust bunnies”, washing windows and for some, taking down the Christmas tree and cleaning up the pine needles as my family has been doing all this past week!

Many will spend the New Year’s with guests and visitors and if you are going to someone’s home, bring them a bottle of wine or champagne so that they can toast in the New Year in style. the sharing of food is also common, with certain traditional foods being made and consumed for a brighter year. In Greece, for example, January 1st is the feast of St. Basil, so traditional cakes baked with silver or gold coins in them are baked with the person retrieving the coin from their slice of cake being especially lucky that year.

In the Southern United States, many families make a feast of baked ham, black eyed peas with ‘pot liquor’ (the liquid from the peas), collard greens and cornbread. The greens symbolize green backs or “folding money” and the cornbread as “gold”. Some make their greens with a coin in the pot and some make a certain dish named “Hoppin’ John”, which has the black eyed peas and rice in a casserole type dish. While my family is from Louisiana and we prefer our black eyed peas over cornbread, we will be having a spiral cut ham and okra with our meal.


Here is a recipe for Hoppin’ John from the website:


In Brazil, practitioners of the indigenous religions of Santeria, Candomble, Macumba and Zarabanda create little boats of cardboard and fill them with little perfume bottles, candies, liquor and sweets, along with petitions and cast them adrift on the shore for the Goddess Iemanja/Yemoya/Yemaya to accept. If your boat is taken out to sea, you wishes will be granted that year.

No matter what tradition you follow, make sure you buy a new broom for the New Year, make sure the kitchen cabinets are full of nutritious foods, light white candles on the hearth or the family dining table and at midnight, open the front door and raise a toast to the incoming New Year 2009!



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