Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy Hogmanay!

Hogmanay is the Scottish New Year's celebration. In various traditions it lasts as long as 4-5 days, but we basically just take a few of the ideas and apply them to our New Year's celebrating, rather than putting on a week long fire festival!
  • We light candles (or a fireplace when we have one).
  • Do some housecleaning or "redding"  in the evening, so that the year has a clean start.
  • Right after midnight we find the tallest, darkest-haired male in the house and send him outside so that he can come 'first footing' (the first person across the doorstep in the new year brings the luck of the year--tall, male, and dark-haired are all good for luck, while short, female, or red-haired are all bad luck).
  • If the first-footer brings food (and/or drink), that's extra good luck, so send him out with something so he can bring it back in! 
  • Ringing bells and toasting at midnight.
  • At midnight, open a window (or door) to let the old year out and the new year in.
  • Singing Auld Lang Syne is a Hogmanay tradition (although we don't do it, because I neither know nor like the song!)
  • Making New Year's Resolutions is also a scottish/hogmanay tradition.
Here are links with more details about Hogmanay traditions:

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