Wednesday, December 28, 2011

How are you preparing for the New Year?

My friends are all getting ready for the new year:

One friend has paid down all of her debts, and reminded me that we have a decades old debt to pay back a college roommate.  We'd bet on who would have the worst childbirth story, and the "winner" with the most gruelling story would get a vacation paid for by the other two.  Now in our mid-40's, we're pretty certain that contest has officially ended, and we're going to pay up in 2012.  A college reunion trip is in the works!

Another friend is exhorting us all on FB that it's time to put away the Christmas decorations already.  Ours will stay up until after the New Year's celebration--one more party to go.  Though the tree is coming down this week to make room as our house is not that large.  I find the idea of tearing the tree down the day after Christmas a bit abrupt, as I want the holidays to linger.  (Surprising, given how stressed I've been this year)

I feel the urge to clean.  It doesn't strike often, but I like the idea of a clean house to welcome in the New Year.  It's also when I check all the lightbulbs inside and outside to replace any that have burned out.  I am amazed that one house, built recently in a development of cookie-cutter homes, was designed with 5 different types of ceiling bulbs!?

My friends of Japanese descent have a special soup they eat on New Year's morning for good luck--can't remember the details--not having had any (hint!).

My Korean friends celebrate by making mandoo (dumplings) and "eating one more year" of rice.  Koreans in Korea count themselves another year older on January 1, but I think I'll stick to the Western method of waiting until my actual birthday--it buys me another 9 months!

When I lived in Cleveland, a coworker told me it's good luck to eat port on the new year, so as to always have plenty.  Chicken was bad luck on New Year's Day as it presaged a year of "scratching" for food.

What are you doing to prepare for the New Year?  Or are you in survival mode like I am?

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