Happy New Year and Good Luck!

Most people I ask say 2010 was not a very good year.  And, now, as I write this, we are just hours away from a new year. Prosperity, health, wealth, strength and good luck are near! BUT, only if you do the right things to prepare.

I’ve compiled a list to help you out.

First, there are all the foods you must eat. Some foods must be eaten on New Year’s Eve, a few must be eaten on New Year’s Day and other food stuffs must be eaten at exactly at the stroke of midnight! If unsure when best to eat, I recommend eating all day and night! And, if some of these ideas have not been your tradition, you might consider adding them, just to change your luck.

  • Eat a few long noodles for long life! (Now, it’s important to note here that you must not to break the noodle before you eat it, therefore cutting your life short, so, my advice is to be careful not to choke which is not very good luck, at all.)
  • Eat meat! Meat means prosperity and strength. Eating meat on New Year’s means good luck all year long. I’ve read that brisket is popular, but, many traditions include pork.  Fish is important, too. Fish swim in schools and represent abundance. Whatever you do, do not eat anything with wings or your luck will fly away.
  • On to the greens! Greens represent wealth. Cabbage, collards, kale, green peas are all good for adding green backs to your new year. If you like sauerkraut, all the better, because sauerkraut also adds intelligence to the equation.
  • Black-eyed peas and lentils represent coins, indicating wealth, too.
  • Potatoes have roots deep in the earth. They (along with carrots, turnips, parsnips, etc) add stability.
  • Leave a bit of food on your plate on New Year’s Eve until after midnight to ensure a well stocked larder all year.
  • At midnight, eat 12 grapes, one for each strike of the clock and/or for each month of the new year. And, adding a 13th grape assures your good luck!
  • It is also prudent to add a coin to your baked bread and your peas while cooking.

Here are some more “to-dos” to insure good luck.

  • Jingle a change purse at midnight and keep a handful of coins in your pockets, too!
  • Hide some money outside on New Year’s Eve. Bring the money back inside on New Year’s Day to keep that money coming in all year.
  • Don’t let the first guest of the new year in your house be anyone other than a good looking young man who is carrying a loaf of bread.
  • Wear red underwear!
  • Hang a pine branch for longevity, a bamboo stalk for prosperity and a plum blossom for nobility.
  • At first toll of midnight, open the back door to release bad luck. Close the door before the 12th stroke and run to the front of your house to get the front door opened when the clock strikes 12 to welcome in the good luck.
  • Make lots of noise at midnight to chase away evil spirits.
  • Don’t sweep away the good spirits on New Year’s Day, but do sweep away bad spirits on New Year’s Eve, of course.
  • And, whatever you do, don’t forget to kiss your lover, right at the stroke of midnight.

Please share your New Year’s traditions so I can add them to my list, too!

Happy New Year and Good Luck!


Once in a blue moon


My friend, Dr. Rus D. Jeffrey, took this photo of a full moon in June 2009 shortly after his purchase of a new 1000mm lens. He has graciously allowed me to use it here! You can visit his website at http://www.DrRus.com

I hadn’t planned on writing another blog post before the beginning of the new year, but then I read that we are having a blue moon on New Year’s Eve (unless you are from Asia, Australia or one of those other South Pacific islands, then you will get your next blue moon in January)! 

Thinking this was pretty cool, I looked it up. In a nutshell, a blue moon is the second full moon in a calendar month, unless you are using the Farmer’s Almanac (which defines a blue moon as the fourth full moon in a quarter year). Who knew?

Now, back in our agrarian days, we lived and died by the moon phases. We knew when to plant and harvest crops and perform other rituals by the moon. There are normally 12 moons in a solar year and we gave folksy names for each of them, such as growing moon, harvest moon, snow moon. The 12 moons coincided with our 12 monthly “seasons” and all was right with the world. Well, except when we had 13 moons. That extra moon wreaked havoc, confused us and generally screwed everything up. So, some brilliant soul gave this extra moon its own name, “blue moon,” thus keeping the rest of the moons occurring in their normal order and at their normal times.

Cool, huh? Here’s more about blue moons:

Blue moons occur about once every two and a half years. Or put another way, about 41 times a century.

The last blue moon happened in 2007, when the first full moon of June occurred on the 1st and the second one occurred on the 30th.

This year, our first full moon this month occurred on December 2 and the second one occurs on December 31. This makes this New Year’s Eve extra special because a full moon on New Year’s Eve happens once every 20 years! (If you happen to believe that the crazies come out every full moon, we are going to have a double whammy this year!)

Our next blue moon – August 31, 2012!

If you are using the Farmer’s Almanac’s definition, next one is November 21, 2010 followed by one on August 21, 2013.

Of course, blue moons aren’t really blue. Unless, it is a blue (the color blue) moon. This is apparently a really rare event. According to Wikipedia, a blue colored moon can be caused by dust particles in the atmosphere, like in 1883 after the eruption of Krakatoa. The moon appeared blue for two years. Who knew?

Oh, there’s lots more about blue moons on the internet. Google “blue moon” if you want to know more.

So, there you have it! On this New Year’s Eve, make a toast to the blue moon.

Oh, and Happy New Year!