From Grapes to Gratitude: A Journey Through New Year’s Eve Rituals

As the Gregorian calendar turns its final page, many of us find ourselves participating in New Year’s Eve traditions and rituals. Whether rooted in cultural heritage, spiritual practices, or personal reflections, these customs provide a structured way for us to mark the passage of time, finding comfort in the idea that, with each passing year, we have the opportunity for a fresh start.

I’m excited to share some of the rituals that have become an integral part of my December 31st celebrations.

A limpiar se ha dicho!

Nothing symbolizes a fresh start like deep cleaning everything – your home, your car, your makeup brushes, the inside of your purse – todo! And if you want to take it a step further, clean or restore the energy of these spaces by opening all the windows of the house then safely lighting sacred smoke such as dry rosemary, palo santo or white sage in each room. Pro Tip: Listen to music that represents the energy of how you’d like to feel in the new year. I recommend this Mood Booster Playlist.

New Underwear

As a kid, my mom made sure that every December 31st we wore new underwear and as I got older, I made sure the color of the underwear represented what I hoped to bring in for the new year: red for love, white for peace and tranquility, green for money and yellow for success (Color interpretations vary across cultures).

Joy Jars

Years ago, my cousins and I gathered to create joy jars – a space to hold memories of all the things that brought us joy that year and on December 31st, we would go through the contents of the jars to remember and reflect on all those events, activities, people and experiences. Here is an example of one of mine.

Las Famosas Uvas

I remember doing this since as long as I was old enough to eat grapes!  Make sure that when the ball drops everyone has a cup of 12 grapes (1 for each month of the new year). They should be red, seedless, and very sweet! As you count down the seconds to the new year, eat one grape for each month of the year and make a wish each time. That’s 12 handy chances to call in what you want for the new year


Many cultures believe lentils bring good fortune, (the round lentils represent coins). This New Year’s Eve, fill your pockets with lentils or put them in a coin purse for prosperity. I remember my mom cooking lentils as an accompaniment to white rice or making sopa de lentejas for dinner or lunch on the 31st. Traditionally in Italy, a lentil stew is eaten when the bell tolls midnight, one spoonful per bell. 

Cash In Your Wallet

Don’t let the New Year catch you with empty pockets! Make sure there’s cash in your wallet, so that in the coming year you may always have dinero. I like to place a bay leaf in my wallet for abundance too because I want an abundance of love, peace, meaningful relationships etc.

As we step into the unknown of the coming year, I hope you will consider trying one of the rituals shared above or creating your own tradition. But regardless of how you celebrate, let’s continue to honor the significance of these practices because they bring the wisdom of the past, the joy of the present, and our hope for the future.

Happy New Year!

Known as The Manifestation Mami, Emily Jimenez helps busy professionals prioritize their wellness so they can live abundant and balanced lives through ceremonies, live courses and career clarity coaching. Learn more about her work at: