Don’t wash those clothes
This is an odd one. According to folklore, if you wash clothes on New Year’s Day, you’ll be “washing for the dead” or washing a loved one away -- meaning someone in your household will die in the coming year. Get your laundry wash, dried, folded and put away by New Year’s Eve.
Food in pantry
This is a no-brainer, but you should make sure to have food in your cupboard before midnight. Think of it as an insurance policy -- if you have food on hand, you’ll continue to have food throughout the year, according to tradition.
Buy the right kind of food
While you want food in the pantry and refrigerator, make sure it’s not chicken or lobster. Why, you ask? Because both of those animals walk backward. You want to move ahead in the new year.
Let the new year in
At the stroke of midnight, open your doors and windows. It lets the old year out and the new one in.
Save sweeping for Jan. 2
If you have dust on your floor on New Year’s Day, leave it there. The idea is that you sweep out luck if you sweep on New Year’s Day.
The first guest in your home on New Year's Day fills an important role in the coming year. It is said that that person (sometimes called a "first footer") foretells the kind of luck you can expect during the next 12 months.
Who is the luckiest guest to have? A tall, dark, handsome man who brings you a gift.
Again, a no-brainer.
Who don’t you want to cross your threshold first on New Year’s Day? A blonde, a redhead or a female should be barred from coming into your home first. You should also ban gravediggers, doctors and cats from the mix.
The first person into your home needs to knock and be admitted. He or she needs to walk through the house and leave by a different door.
Oh, and one other thing -- those first in after midnight cannot have flat feet, cross-eyes or eyebrows that meet in the middle of their forehead.
When the tall, dark, handsome man shows up with a gift, let’s hope it is black-eyed peas and collards. The combination, staples on Southern tables on New Year’s Day, are said to represent coins and green-backs. They translate into good luck and financial gains in the new year.
In many Latin American countries, grapes are eaten as the new year begins. Twelve grapes are eaten on New Year’s Eve -- one for each stroke of midnight. It is supposed to bring you good luck.
Make some noise
At the stroke of midnight, you need to get so loud that the ghosts of the past year are startled and leave your home.
Keep it in
Don’t take anything out of your home on New Year’s Day. Literally, nothing. No garbage goes out, no packages are taken to the car or luck will go out and not come back in.
Eat something that is in the shape of a circle -- think donut -- and you will have good luck.