Ringing in the New Year

It has always been a tradition in my family to eat black eyed peas on New Year’s Day for good luck.  Somewhere along the way, I was informed that I needed to add collard greens for good prosperity vibes.  When I arrived in New York City and offered to make peas & greens for New Year’s Day, everyone stared at me like I had 3 heads and just swallowed The Empire State Building!

“We just kiss at midnight,” is what I heard most often.  Okay, so it can’t just be my family and friends.  I feel there are others out there who must have New Year’s Day traditions, other than spreading mono.

Sure enough (whew!), after a quick google search, I found there are lots of NYD traditions out there!  [DISCLAIMER: I’m just sharing what I found from my google search, and we alllllllll know how, ahem, reliable the interwebs are! Feel free to correct…AND add your own!]

For example, did you know that in Equador they burn a scarecrow in an effigy of ending the old and starting anew?  In Spain, it’s eating 12 grapes…at once, because apparently it brings you good luck to look like a chipmunk.  If you’re in the Coney Island Polar Bear club, you take a dip in the icy Atlantic!  In Denmark they break plates–OOOPAH!! oh wait that’s a Greek exclamation!  But speaking of, in Greece they eat cake with a coin baked in and the person who finds the coin gets good luck all year long.  Austrians waltz.  Not to be confused with Australia, where it’s warm and sunny and my new years there seemed to involve a beach and heaps of champers!  In Ireland, they bang Christmas bread on the wall to chase away bad spirits.  If Irish Christmas bread is anything like fruitcake, I think it’s an amazing use for the fruitcake!

Obviously, there are many, many more out there, but regardless of how you celebrate–enjoy the day!

Here’s to a happy and prosperous 2014!  Happy New Year!!

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