Celebrating New Years Day has it’s origins in the harvest seasons of ancient societies. How many New Year’s Days were celebrated each year, depended upon the number of harvests they enjoyed throughout the year. Some years they celebrated as many as three or four New Years Days, in a single year!
Their New Years Day celebrations were observed by, replacing old clothes with new, clearing everything old out of their homes, wearing disguises and masks while making loud and terrific noises, in order to drive out any evil spirits that might still be lurking around from the old year.
Many people believe that how they spend New Years Day is directly related to how the rest of the year is going to go. With that in mind, many people try to make the most of New Years Day by spending it with friends and family and eating such, ‘good luck’ foods as; Black-Eyed Peas, Rice, Cabbage dishes and Pork meats. A cabbage roll made with pork sausage and rice, with black eyed peas on the side sounds pretty good to me.
Once the excitement of the Good Luck dinner has settled, here are a few ways you can have some family fun on New Years Day.
+ Create a time capsule for the coming year. An old cookie jar, or perhaps an empty popcorn cannister left over from Christmas, would make a great capsule. Be sure to put it in a place that it is visible, so that capsule worthy events can be added throughout the New Year. Include things that are significant to you, your family and loved ones. These can be achievements, awards, special moments, and even the smallest things that you want to remember as especially significant of this year. Then, on New Years Eve next, make it part of your family celebration.
+ Try something new. Everyone in the family agrees that ,on New Years Day, they will try something new. It can be a food they’ve never been willing to try before, going to a place they’ve never been before, or playing a family game they’ve never played before. But, it has to be new to each member of the family to really signify the meaning of New.
+ Forecast the future. Every member of the family gets to forecast what they believe will happen in this New Year. To make it easier, you can have a list of questions to jump start the predictions. Decide how many predictions everyone gets to make, then hand out enough slips of paper so that everyone can write one prediction per slip of paper. These can be predictions directly related to family and friends or they can be national or international predictions. Once everyone has written their predictions, put the predictions in a large manila envelope, seal the envelope and put it away. Make it a part of your next New Year’s Eve celebration, to take your prediction envelope out and find out how many of your predictions came true
If you run out of fun before you run out of New Years Day, start a round robin discussion of what things each person thought were the best things about the past year. You might even include a discussion of what things, in particular, each member is most looking forward to in the New Year. It’s fun, it brings family and friends closer and gets the New Year off to a great start.