New Year’s Day Food Traditions

  • Eating noodles at midnight is customary at Buddhist temples in Japan.
  • A German/Pennsylvania Dutch tradition is to eat pork and sauerkraut on New Year’s day for good luck.
  • It is the tradition of Bosnia & Croatia (both of former Yugoslavia) to eat what is called “Sarma” or beef wrapped tightly in cabbage to bring good luck in health and wealth for the upcoming year.
  • It is a Cuban tradition to eat 12 grapes at the stroke of midnight. The 12 grapes signify the last twelve months of the year.
  • German folklore says that eating herring at the stroke of midnight will bring luck for the next year. Herring Salad recipe.
  • Eating pickled herring as the first bite of the New Year brings good luck to those of Polish descent.
  • In the southern United States, it is believed eating black eyed peas on New Year’s eve will bring luck for the coming year.
  • Also from the south comes the custom of eating greens such as cabbage, collard greens, mustard greens, kale or spinach to bring money.
  • One more from the Southerners: eating cornbread will bring wealth.
  • The Southern custom of eating greens can be found in other cultures as well, although the cabbage can take many forms, such as sauerkraut or even Kimchi.
  • In the Philippines, it is important to have food on the table at midnight in order to insure an abundance of food in the upcoming year.
  • Boiled Cod is a New Year’s Eve must in Denmark.
  • OlieBollen a donut-like fritter is popular in Holland for New Year.
  • Black-eyed peas, fish, apples, and beets are eaten for luck at the Jewish New Year’s celebration (not celebrated on Jan 1).
  • Another tradition from the Philippines is to collect 7 different types of round fruits. The round shape of the fruits signify money and seven is believed to be a lucky number. Set on the dinner table on New Year’s eve, the fruits are believed to bring prosperity and sound financial status for the coming year.

Other New Year’s Traditions and Superstitions

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Marriage or Civil Union??

Many people are too hung up on the word “marriage”. Marriage was/is a religious institution and our government does not belong in the church. Everyone: man and woman, man and man, woman and woman, should be allowed to enter into a union together as a couple regardless of what others beliefs are; if they are together its their business, no one elses. If people then want to get “married” they can go to church and have a ceremony. If your religion doesn’t support a marriage between same sex couples then people can convert or just remain as they are– legally bound in a union. Every couple in the US that gets “married” has to get a legal document stating that they are wed in a legal relationship that is recognized by the state. That is why when people get divorced they have to legally dissolve the relationship. People can get “married” all day long in a religious ceremony, but that doesn’t mean it will be recognized by the state until they apply for the license legalizing their union. That doesn’t mean that the person you are in a union with is not your husband or wife; because when two people enter into a union, whether they chose or do not chose to have a “marriage” ceremony in the church, they then become one another’s spouse with all the legal connotations associated with it. The battles being fought here are becoming too wrapped up on the language of who and who should not get “married”. The state, or the government’s, only place is to help us govern the legal rights and obligations that come when two people agree to join their lives. Many politicians say that they agree with civil unions, but disagree with same sex “marriages”, but the government’s only concern should be with the legal union regardless of the sex of the individuals entering into it and allow the churches to decide on which individuals should be allowed to “marry”.

New Year’s Day Celebrations, History, and Traditions

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New Year’s Day:

New Year’s Day is the first day of the year, in the Gregorian calendar, falling exactly one week after Christmas Day of the previous year. In modern times, it is January 1st. In most countries, it is a holiday. It is a holy day to many of those who still use the Julian calendar, which includes followers of some of the Eastern Orthodox churches, and is celebrated on January 14th of the Gregorian calendar due to differences between the two calendars. It is usually celebrated with fireworks.

Modern Practices:
January 1st marks the end of a period of remembrance of a particular passing year, especially on radio, television, and in newspapers, which usually starts right after Christmas Day. Continue reading