New Year’s Tradition: First Footer Superstition

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As many people recover from their New Year’s Eve celebrations, my family is already on the doorstep of my mother-in-law’s home. There’s more to our visit than just a social call. You see, my mother-in-law is a superstitious person. She will scolded you if you put new shoes on the table (as in a recently purchased pair still in the box). Don’t even think of having an open umbrella in the house, not even the front hall . New Year’s Day, the start of a brand new year, brings a whole new expectation when it comes to superstitions.new_year_traditions_superstitions

On New Year’s Day it’s all about the First Footer, a superstition that believes the future of your year ahead is based on the first person to cross your threshold on the first day of the New Year.

Usually my husband is very polite, holding the door open for people at the mall, helping an elderly person up the stairs or letting someone with one item go in front of his two shopping carts full of stuff. But all this changes on New Years Day.

When we arrive on New Year’s morning at my mother-in-law’s house, my husband dashes in front of everyone on the walkway to get to the door first. Not to open it for us, but to make sure he’s the first one through the door, that he’s the first footer (or lucky bird). And if you want it to be a lucky year that person needs to be a dark haired man. A blond or red-haired person is bad luck and a woman? Well, let’s just say historically people were encouraged to deter woman from crossing the threshold first, even if it meant using a gun. Thank goodness my mother-in-law likes me.

So every New Year’s Day, my husband is the first one invited into my mother-in-law’s house before anyone else. Thank goodness New Year’s Day is only one day. Are there any New Year superstitions you or your family believe in?

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