Flashback Friday: New Year’s

Mocha With Linda hosts a weekly meme called Flashback Friday. She’ll post a question every Thursday, and then Friday we can link our answers up on her site. You can visit her site for more Flashbacks.

How did your family celebrate New Year’s when you were growing up? Was staying up on New Year’s Eve a big deal? Was it a date night for your parents or was it a family occasion? Did your family have any particular traditions for New Year’s? Were resolutions emphasized? Did you do fireworks? Watch parades or bowl games? Were there church activities you attended? Did Christmas activities extend into the new year? Was the Epiphany a focus?

We never had a set tradition or routine for New Year’s Eve. Sometimes my parents went out, I think sometimes we got together with other people, most times we stayed home. We did get to stay up late, and I think we watched the ball drop in Times Square on TV. We did fireworks sometimes.

My dad probably watched football on most New Year’s Days, and I think maybe the kids watched parts of the parades in the morning. We did have black-eyes peas for dinner, supposedly for luck, though I don’t know what they were supposed to have to do with luck. 🙂 Resolutions were not a big deal, though I tried to make some for several years — it was more just a day to relax before school and work started back up.

When I started going to church as a teen-ager, my church often showed a film on New Year’s Eve and I think had some kind of refreshments afterward. I liked that then, but when another church did that when I was older, a middle-aged mom, I dozed through most of the film and was very cranky afterward. 😳 In subsequent years they played group games, and that made it much easier to stay awake and alert.

The church we attended for the last twelve years had a New Year’s Eve service, but not all the way until midnight: our pastor wanted us to be able to be home before the roads got unsafe with drink-impaired drivers. We usually lived in an area that did not allow fireworks, but last year Jason and Mittu lived outside the city limits, so we took a bunch of fireworks out there and made munchies and had a nice time. We haven’t talked about any plans this year yet. If we’re home we do usually watch the ball drop in Times Square on TV — there is just something about that moment that’s really neat. I remember the year of Y2K as they showed New Year’s celebrations in different countries, being relieved that so far none of the other countries had any problems as the clock turned to 12:00 a.m. and hoped that bode well for us, too.

We do usually take down the Christmas decorations around that time. Sometimes we shop. We don’t watch football and we don’t have black-eyed peas (I like them but my family doesn’t). 🙂 We have never attended a church that celebrated Epiphany, though some pastors mentioned it and they did note that the wise men came some time after Jesus was born (maybe as much as two years) and not while they family was still in the stable in Bethlehem.

So, though New Year’s Eve and Day are probably some of our most nontraditional holidays, I enjoy them as a last bit of vacation before the routine starts back up again.

4 thoughts on “Flashback Friday: New Year’s

  1. We were indeed similar in many of our traditions – or non-traditions!

    I remember watching the ball drop in Times Square, and it always seemed weird to me that it was different years in the same country!

    And Y2K was fun – we had the TV on all day watching the celebrations around the world, and I remember being a little anxious until everyone safely made it through “the other side” of midnight!

  2. I’m glad you brought up Y2K. I would have entirely forgotten it elsewise. My dad, despite being a huge computer geek (he’s been in his IT job for all my life), was not too concerned about the forecasted Y2K disaster. He never mentioned it except in derision until New Year’s Eve, when he bought a couple of brand new trash cans, washed them out thoroughly, and then filled them with water from the shower. “Potable water,” he said, “just in case.”

  3. I think the people who don’t really have a set New Year’s tradition are more abundant than those that do. My most consistent behavior is to stay home. There are far too many drunks out on New Year’s Eve and I don’t care to party with them and I certainly don’t care to share the road with them!

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