It’s 2007!! I hope everyone had a safe and happy New Year’s Eve! Ours was rather uneventful. We went to a friend’s house and watched a movie and came back home around 10. The kiddies went to bed and Corey and I watched a movie until it was time for the ball to drop. We missed Dick Clark this year, viagra but we got to see the fun on CNN. This was one of those nights I was missing friends and family. We’ve had some pretty awesome parties in Michigan for New Year’s Eve and this year we missed out. We’re excited for this next year! Unfortunately the start was rough for Corey as he watched Michigan lose the Rose Bowl, viagra but I strongly believe that won’t temper the rest of our year! I can’t wait to see what God has in store for us this year!

I thought I’d share some Colombian traditions on New Year’s. We were very entertained watching people do all sorts of crazy things outside our window. I got the explanations for some of it off of the internet because I’m still figuring out what it all means, but I thought it was pretty interesting!

Suitcases – At the stroke of midnight we heard all sorts of yelling and celebrating. We looked out the window and people were running through the streets carrying suitcases. Here’s the meaning of that:

In Colombia, people traditionally wear yellow on New Year’s Eve in hopes of a good year ahead. The evening is usually shared with family and friends; dinner is usually served at midnight. At midnight, you can still see some people take their suitcases out for a walk, in hopes that they’ll travel in the next twelve months.

Mr. Old Year – I had heard about this one, but I didn’t actually get to see it happening, although we may try this one out next year:

Burning “Mr. Old Year” is a New Year’s tradition in some cities of Colombia. It requires the participation of the entire family. It is a lot of fun; they fabricate a big stuffed male doll that represents the old year. Then they stuff the doll with different materials. Sometimes they put some little fireworks in it to make it more exciting at the time they burn it. Also, they put things inside that they don’t want anymore, objects that can bring sadness or bad memories. These things will burn with the old year, meaning that they want to forget all the bad things that happened during the past year. They dress the man with old clothes from each member of the family. Then, on New Year’s Eve at midnight, they set the doll on fire. This symbolizes burning the past and getting ready to start a happy New Year without bad memories of the past.

And one more for you:
People eat 12 grapes on New Years at midnight to ring in the New Year on a good note. The grapes are a sign of health and prosperity. After the grapes are eaten, people hug and kiss and speak blessings on each other.

Oh, and as there seems to be nearly every night for one reason or another, there were tons of fireworks!

Happy New Year!!
~Tona