Every year, we get to celebrate New Year’s Eve together with the whole family. We always have Media Noche to welcome yet another year as we bid goodbye and give thanks to the year that was.
Tomorrow, I will be busy in the kitchen preparing baked mac, fruit salad, empanada, and cathedral (jelly dessert). My other siblings will also be preparing something for the evening. (We usually set up just one long table for the four houses inside our compound). We’ll be preparing some parlor games for the kids as well.
The kids are particularly very excited, I’m pretty sure it’s because of the gifts (they only get to open their gifts on new year’s eve, only in our family I think, most families open their gifts on Christmas) and the fireworks, of course!
Every year, no matter what the circumstances are, we always try our best to pull off a new year’s ‘party’ for the whole family. It doesn’t have to be literally a feast, big or fancy, it just has to be something that we can all sit together to as we welcome another year.
As part of Filipino traditions and beliefs, every household (may vary depending on one’s own interpretation of course) should have:
A feast for the whole family to devour as 12midnight strikes.
A set of fireworks to light up as you welcome the new year.
Anything that could make noise, from the typical ‘torotot’ (trumpet) to empty cans tied to bicycles (which will make noise as you drag it along). – the whole point is to drive away all the bad stuff, spirits, or vibes or whatever you may call that.
A handful of coins in your pockets – supposedly to give abundance in terms of wealth.
Any polka-dotted clothing – again to bring forth or to invite wealth.
Jump as twelve-midnight strikes – to make you taller.
Open all windows and turn on all the lights inside the house – to invite all the blessings.
Have 12 different kinds of round fruits on the table – again, to attract abundance
Pay any debt you may have – so that you could start the year with a clean slate.
I actually grew up with these traditions. Back then I don’t really understand half of it ( I think even up to now, haha!) or probably I don’t really care. I just jump with all my might to become taller they say (in my head though, I’m just thinking if everyone’s jumping but me, I might end up as the shortest kid in school, so I might as well just jump!).