The Happiest of New Year's
Scottish New Year's Customs
Hogmanay is a more important holiday in Scotland than Christmas. On the last night of the old year and the first few minutes of the new, Scots prefer to be in their own homes (or with friends). And they abandon their vacuum cleaner and sweep their floor -- so that the Auld Year is swept out just as the New Year is welcomed in.
After midnight, relatives and friends call upon one another in the early hours of the morning and the first few days of the New Year.
It's important that the "first foot" (your first visitor after Midnight) be a tall and dark man!
When you "first foot" someone, (that is to visit them for the first time in the New Year), it is customary to take some shortbread or tea or whisky or some token of good will.
And, of course, as the clock strikes midnight, not only the Scots but everyone sings Auld Lang Syne.
Although husband Jim's heritage is Scottish, we don't follow Scottish customs on New Year's or Hogmanay.
But, this year, I think, I'll bake some shortbread to take when I go visiting after January 1. I think that is a lovely custom!