The party is at our house and here are some of the traditions we have adopted.
* Champagne toast I have no idea where this started and why it is done.
* Eat 12 grapes. This is a Spanish custom. The 12 grapes symbolize the 12 months of the year and the folklore is that if you don't eat the 12 grapes you will have a month of bad luck for every uneaten grape.
* Toss a bucket of water out the front door. Not sure where it came from but the water used to be the actual dirty water from the final cleaning of the home. It the whole out with the old in with the new idea. Now we use clean water and its purely (no pun intended) symbolic of the dirty water.
* Eat lentils. This I believe originated in Europe. Lentil soup is a soup full of small round green beans which symbolize an abundance of coin and financial wealth in the coming year.
* Wear yellow underwear. I was told that this is a Costa Rican custom for good luck. I do know that yellow is always considered 'lucky' with the birth of a child. I think that dates back to pre-sonogram days when people didn't know the sex of the child so if you bought decidedly blue or pink clothing you jinxed the actual sex of the baby. So, I will go with yellow symbolizing luck, what the heck.
* Parade around the perimeter with luggage. No idea where it came from but we were told that it is to promote travel in the new year. It's fun and we are easily amused. It's has actually become a favorite of guests to either do or watch because we look quite foolish.
I know there are many other traditions around the globe. I think I may have to research this a bit and add something new for next year. LOL!
Have a safe and Happy New Year!