NEW YEARS 2016 – The history of the “beginning”.

Happy New Year’s Day

Hope you enjoy this piece on NEW YEARS, it’s traditions/customs, food, superstitions and toasts.  It also includes the history of New Years.  Please add your own comments.

BTW:  HAPPY NEW YEARS EVERYONE!!!! 

 

New Year’s Day is a national holiday celebrated on January 1st, the first day of the New Year, following both the Gregorian and the Julian calendar. This New Years’ holiday is often marked by fireworks, parades, and reflection upon the last year while looking ahead to the future’s possibilities. Many people celebrate New Year’s in the company of loved ones, involving traditions meant to bring luck and success in the upcoming year. Many Cultures celebrate this happy day in their own unique way. Typically the customs and traditions of happy New Years involve celebrating with champagne and a variety of different foods. New Years marks a date of newly found hapiness and a clean slate. For many celebrating New Years, it is their opportunity to learn from the prior year and make positive changes in their life.

New Year’s Day Holiday History

New Year’s is one of the oldest holidays still celebrated, but the exact date and nature of the festivities has changed over time. It originated thousands of years ago in ancient Babylon, celebrated as an eleven day festival on the first day of spring. During this time, many cultures used the sun and moon cycle to decide the “first” day of the year. It wasn’t until Julius Caesar implemented the Julian calendar that January 1st became the common day for the celebration. The content of the festivities has varied as well. While early celebrations were more paganistic in nature, celebrating Earth’s cycles, Christian tradition celebrates the Feast of the Circumcision of Christ on New Year’s Day. Roman Catholics also often celebrate Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God, a feast honoring Mary. However, in the twentieth century, the holiday grew into its own celebration and mostly separated from the common association with religion. It has become a holiday associated with nationality, relationships, and introspection rather than a religious celebration, although many people do still follow older traditions.  Despite these so called “Facts” on the history of New Years, we also have that “other” history which of course deals with the Middle East.

The celebration of the new year on January 1st is a relatively new phenomenon. The earliest recording of a new year celebration is believed to have been in Mesopotamia, c. 2000 B.C. and was celebrated around the time of the vernal equinox, in mid-March. A variety of other dates tied to the seasons were also used by various ancient cultures. The Egyptians, Phoenicians, and Persians began their new year with the fall equinox, and the Greeks celebrated it on the winter solstice.

New Year’s Day Resolutions and Traditions

While celebration varies all over the world, common traditions include:

    • Making resolutions or goals to improve one’s life.
    • Common resolutions concern diet, exercise, bad habits, and other issues concerning personal wellness. A common view is to use the first day of the year as a clean slate to improve one’s life.
    • A gathering of loved ones: Here you’ll typically find champagne, feasting, confetti, noise makers, and other methods of merriment Fireworks, parades, concerts.
    • Famous parades include London’s New Year’s Day Parade and the Rose Parade in Pasadena, California. Superstitions concerning food or visitors to bring luck.

 

This especially includes circle-shaped foods, which symbolize cycles. The reasoning behind superstitions is that the first day of the year sets precedent for the following days.

A common superstition specific to New Year’s Day concerns a household’s first visitor of the year—tradition states that if a tall, dark-haired stranger is the first to walk through your door, called the First Footer or Lucky Bird, you’ll have good luck all year.

Also, if you want to subscribe to superstition, don’t let anything leave the house on New Year’s, except for people. Tradition say’s: don’t take out the trash and leave anything you want to take out of the house on New Year’s outside the night before. If you must remove something, make sure to replace it by bringing an item into the house. These policies of balance apply in other areas as well—avoiding paying bills; IF ONLY THAT WHERE TRUE on SUNDAYS TOO, when we begin a new week 🙂 , breaking anything, or shedding tears.

    • Toasting

Toasts typically concern gratefulness for the past year’s blessings, hope and luck or the future, and thanking guests for their New Year’s company. In coastal regions, running into a body of water or splashing water on one another, symbolizing the cleansing, “rebirth” theme associated with the holiday.

** My toast as always is:

Make everyday a new day, one to make up for any errors you might have had the day before.  Never take anything for granted, especially times with loved ones, we never know how long were going to be on this earth, so cherish every moment.

New Years Food

American Citizens often celebrate with a party featuring toasting, drinking and fireworks late into the night before the New Year, where the gathering counts down the final seconds to January 1st. Some might even get a kiss at midnight. Many English speaking countries play “Auld Lang Syne,” a song celebrating the year’s happy moments.

Americans often make resolutions and watch the Time Square Ball drop in New York City. Although much of this celebration occurs the night before, the merrymaking typically continues to New Year’s Day. Football is a common fixture on New Year’s Day in America, usually the day of the Rose Bowl. Some foods considered “lucky” to eat during the festivities include:

Circular shaped foods
Black-eyed peas
Cabbage
Pork

***Go figure those foods are something I would AVOID on any day of the week, and definitely not New Years.  My lucky foods are; Doritos, Chex Snack Mix, White Cheddar popcorn. 

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One thought on “NEW YEARS 2016 – The history of the “beginning”.

  1. Lori, I really enjoyed this post. Funny, I have done similar ones for almost every holiday, but never New Years. I wonder why? This was a delight as much was new to me. Stay well and keep in touch.

    Much love, Micki

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