Here are a few New Year’s superstitions, taboos, folklore and old wife’s tales.
Eat Black Eyed Peas and Collard Greens
Southerners know that if you eat green foods on New Years Day, it supposedly brings you money while peas reflect prosperity. Collards and black-eyed peas are the favorite!
Kiss Someone at Midnight
According to legend, the first encounter of the New Year can determine how you will spend the next 365 days.
Eat King Cake at Midnight
Yes, the cake most of us think of for Mardi Gras. If you find a golden coin or a plastic baby in yours, your year will be filled with wealth and prosperity, according to legend.
Open Your Doors and Windows
In the Philippines, they open doors and windows just before midnight to let out the old year and let in the new.
Eat 12 Grapes at Midnight
In Spain, the tradition is to eat 12 grapes at midnight.
Don't Eat Chicken or Lobster
NO chicken or lobster. Because both of those animals walk backward. You want to move ahead in the new year.
Don’t wash clothes
This is an odd one. According to folklore, if you wash clothes on New Year’s Day, you’ll be “washing for the dead” or washing a loved one away -- meaning someone in your household will die in the coming year.
If you have dust on your floor on New Year’s Day, leave it there. The idea is that you sweep out luck if you sweep on New Year’s Day.
Food in pantry
Make sure to have food in your cupboard before midnight. Think of it as an insurance policy -- if you have food on hand, you’ll continue to have food throughout the year, according to tradition.
Mysterious guest (and this may be my favorite!)
It's said that the first person to visit your home on Jan 1 foretells the kind of luck you can expect during the next 12 months.
The luckiest guest to have - A tall, dark, handsome man who brings you a gift.
Who don’t you want to cross your threshold first on New Year’s Day? A blonde, a redhead or a female should be barred from coming into your home first.
You should also ban gravediggers, doctors and cats from the mix.
The first person into your home needs to knock and be admitted. He or she needs to walk through the house and leave by a different door.
Oh, and one other thing -- those first in after midnight cannot have flat feet, cross-eyes or eyebrows that meet in the middle of their forehead.