On New Year’s Eve, most of us wish for good luck in different ways. Some call them customs, some call them traditions, some call them crazy. Whatever you call them, you have to admit that there is no harm in practicing some of the most beloved, albeit whacky, New Year’s traditions observed in many Latin American countries. If nothing else, they are a fun way to focus your energy on what it is that you would like to manifest in the coming year.
Not sure what zany custom you want to partake in? Here are some options to choose from. You can even do more than one.
Top Hispanic and Latino New Year’s Eve Traditions
Get your kiss on.
Why do people kiss at midnight? Because it is supposed to ensure that you will be lucky in love all year long. If you are in a romantic relationship and don’t kiss your partner at midnight, you may be in for a year of coldness.
Eat 12 grapes.
Want good luck in the new year? Do like lots of Latinos do and pop one grape for every month of the year at the stroke of midnight. Some people make a wish with each grape they gobble.
Pick the right color underwear.
The trick to getting what you want in the new year is to wear the right color underwear, according to some. If you want peace, wear white. If you what money, wear yellow. If you want love, wear red.
Wear your underwear inside out.
OK, once you’ve chosen the right color, make sure to wear your underwear inside out on New Year’s Eve and then turn it back the right way in the first few minutes of the new year. Why? Because this will ensure that you have all the new clothes your heart desires in the coming year.
Clean your house.
Get your house in order by cleaning it up before the new year. This one just makes sense because if you don’t have a clean home at the end of the year, then you’re starting the new year with a dirty home and that doesn’t bode well for the rest of the year, now does it?
Take your luggage for a trip around the block.
Want to travel? Pack your suitcase and take a walk around the block with it at midnight. Make sure you pack it with things you would actually take on a trip to wherever you want to go. Like if you want to go somewhere tropical, maybe don’t pack a winter coat.
Throw a bucket of water out of a window or door.
The water represents your tears and you throwing them out is a way of letting go of past woes. Some people use a glass instead of a bucket. Your choice, but do make sure that you don’t accidentally throw the water on an innocent bystander. It’s got to be bad luck to be doused with someone else’s symbolic tears, don’t you think?
Eat lentils or put them in your purse.
Eat lentils on the last day of the year or right at the beginning of the new year in order to bring on financial abundance. If you don’t feel like eating lentils or forgot to cook some in time, you can put a handful in your purse and carry them with you all year so that money won’t be an issue. Maybe put them in a little plastic baggie first; otherwise, lentils coming out of your purse all the time WILL be an issue.
Cash in hand.
Hit the ATM to make sure you have cash that you can hold when the new year arrives so that you have a year-long flow of money coming your way. Not sure that holding a check or debit card would have the same effect, so stick to the efectivo for this ritual to be effective.
Hide money throughout your home.
In Ecuador, people hide money around the house for prosperity. The problem is that if you get too drunk to remember where you hid that money, someone else might find it before you do.
Sweep or don’t.
Some people believe that you should metaphorically sweep bad luck out the door at midnight, but others believe you shouldn’t because you might sweep out good fortune. Uh, maybe you should just vacuum to get rid of bad fortune while keeping good fortune contained or pick a different ritual.
Stand and sit, stand and sit, stand and sit.
Singletons looking to get married should stand and sit three times in a row at midnight to make their dreams of getting hitched come true. If nothing else, at least you get in three squats.
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