Friday, December 26, 2014

New Year, New Resolutions

   The holidays are slowly fading, and along with having to put up the lights and tree and ornaments until next year, a lot of us are starting to think about the new year and the resolutions that we make for that ‘fresh start’. Although most of us in western culture celebrate New Year's day on the first official day of the Gregorian calendar (January 1st), there are many different unique dates and New Year celebrations around the world.

  So don’t worry if you slip up and don't drop those extra pounds, learn a new language, or quit smoking, because here are five other chances to get your resolutions in order.

  Chinese New Year - every year the changing date falls between Jan. 21 - Feb. 21, depending on when the new moon of the first lunar month falls. In 2015, the celebration is February 19th. The 15-day observance is the most important of the traditional Chinese holidays and is known as "Spring Festival." This year it the 4,712th Chinese year, and is the Year of the Sheep (or Goat), or more specifically, the Year of the Green Sheep or Wooden Sheep. This should be a lucky year, as Sheep is one of Chinese lucky animals, and treated as an auspicious animal.

  Jewish New Year - Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year. It is celebrated in autumn on the first two days of the seventh month of the Hebrew calendar. For Jews, it is a time of introspection and to look back at their mistakes over the past year and plan changes for the one ahead. The holiday is marked with the eating of apples dipped in honey as a symbol for for a sweet new year. Most often the day is spent in a synagogue, as it is one of the holiest days of the year.

  Islamic New Year - also known as the Hijri New Year. It falls on the first day of Muharram, which is the first month in the Islamic calendar. Special prayers are said and the appearance of the new moon is recorded in mosques. This fairly quiet new year celebration is on Oct. 15 in 2015, but traditionally, Islamic New Year begins with the first sighting of the new Moon crescent in the month of Muharram, so date may vary with location.

  Thai New Year - also called the Songkran is celebrated from April 13-15. One of the main activities is the throwing of water. Thais throw containers of water, use water guns, and even garden hoses to soak each other. The water is symbolic in the hopes that is will bring good rains in the new year. All Buddha statues and images are also cleansed for good luck and prosperity.

  Ethiopian New Year - also called Enkutatash, meaning the "gift of jewels." It will be on Sept. 11, at the end of the big rains. Dancing, singing, and celebrations happen as the people celebrate this spring festival. Some cities have spectacular religious celebrations although it is not exclusively a religious holiday.

So with all these chances at new years and fresh starts, why not make a resolution to save more money in the new year? TBGoods can definitely help with that! Check out either of our stores, in Alachua and in Gainesville. You can even shop online 24/7, even at midnight on New Year's Day (whichever New Year's Day you celebrate!)

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