Once Christmas is over, all of the presents are unwrapped, and the trash is thrown away, all that’s left is to sit back and wait for the New Year to roll in.
Along with the partying and traditional food around the world that is associated with New Years, are quite a few traditions and superstitions.
So, along with the presents such as giving your mom the gift of access to the 1890 census records so she could trace her family tree, enjoy this article on a few of the New Year’s traditions of the past.
Making New Year’s Resolutions
One of the biggest traditions of New Year’s in the past and that is still around today is the practice of making resolutions on New Year’s Eve. This is a tradition that has been handed down for generations. You sit and make a list of the things you’re going to change about yourself or the goals you want to meet and then you’re supposed to stick to them for the following year.
One interesting fact about this tradition is that older generations actually stuck to and completed their resolutions, that doesn’t happen much today.
Decorate a New Year’s Tree
This tradition goes back to the 1600s and, while you don’t see it much today, it could still exist in some places. This practice is mostly reserved for Russia, but you can, of course, decorate your own New Year’s tree as well. Some suggestions include the following.
Party hat tree
Antique clock tree
What all of these trees have in common is they celebrate the conclusion of the current year, the start of the upcoming year and the passing of time.
Eating Certain New Year’s Food
There are too many New Year’s food traditions to list, but pretty much every culture believes that you should eat certain foods on this special day. In Chili, people eat lentils. In the south, residents enjoy collard greens, ham, black-eyed peas, and cornbread, all of which are symbolic for everything from luck to money in the New Year to come.
This is one tradition that has stood the test of time and will be around for many, many, New Years to come. Not only is it a tradition, but it also lets you enjoy a ton of yummy food at the same time. What could be bad about that?
Toasting with a Traditional Drink
The origins of this tradition have been difficult to track down. Some say that toasting in the New Year with champagne goes all the way back to the time of Julius Caesar. Others disagree. This is one more tradition that has stood the test of time, and you can find revelers everywhere raising their glasses in a toast as the New Year’s ball drops at midnight, ready to toast to a brand new year of happiness. Of course, it’s possible that other traditional drinks are used to do that toast as well.
Giving a Gift
In the past, the gift-giving didn’t stop after the presents were opened on Christmas morning. Gilded coins and nuts were handed out as a part of a Roman tradition. Different cultures have different gifts. While that tradition isn’t as prevalent as it once was, it’s certainly a way to extend gift-giving during the holidays, just in case you’re looking for more presents.
These are just a few of the old New Year’s traditions celebrated in the past. Some of them are still around today. Which traditions does your family honor? Share them in the comments.