Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Greens and Peas...

We aren’t big on traditions in our house. For Thanksgiving, our tradition has become one of me getting up super early to run the Atlanta Thanksgiving Half while CR turns the channel to the news and tries to catch a glimpse of me. In our almost 20 years of marriage, we have only put up a Christmas tree once that I can remember. We used to be out of town most Christmases and that was our excuse. Now I think we are just lazy in that regard. It would require someone to take the tree down and all… I have lights on our fake ficus tree. I usually plug them in on Christmas Eve. It is truly festive. :)

Our New Year’s is not totally devoid of tradition, I do partake in black eyed peas, collard greens, ham and cornbread on New Years Day. I thought this was a common tradition but in reading yesterday, I am now wondering if this just might be a southern thing. You tell me… Have you heard of this? Here is the story...

Apparently, greens and peas guarantee a prosperous year. The tradition comes from Civil War days and is folklore so there are other versions of the story. When the Union troops came through and pillaged the land, the only thing left behind were black eyed peas and greens to feed the livestock which southerners used to survive. The greens are said to represent dollar bills and the peas represent coins. Toss in some cornbread to represent gold and you have good luck, wealth and hope for good things to come. I am not sure where the pork comes in to the picture. I did read that the more pork you have the more you luck you will have so pork chops, pork loin, bacon and ham for everyone! (BTW if you have any uncooked greens left over, you can tack them to the ceiling for good luck. I guess that is a southern version of mistletoe? I will probably pass on that tradition…)

Happy New Year one and all!

6 comments:

Tina @GottaRunNow said...

So sorry about the New Year’s Eve accident. Only recently, I've learned about the southern food traditions - interesting. I've considered making something special for New Year's, but can't decide: healthy food as a good start to the new year or sugar-laden. Hmm...

Julie @ Hotlegs Runner said...

Wow, what a story! Sorry to hear about that accident.

Not much on new years traditions except more FOOD ;p

That Pink Girl said...

Oh yes, we can't have New Years Day withoug black eyed peas and cornbread! I think you are right, it is a Southern thing. Do they even eat BEP up North? Do they?

Amanda said...

Wow - that's a very sad story on regarding the New Year's Eve accident...Sorry to hear that happened.

As for the tradition - I grew up in Washington State and have been in Arizona for a long time now and I can't say I knew anything about this one. In fact, I don't think I've ever had black eyed peas or collard greens - yes, I've heard of them, seen them on TV - just never tried them.

Happy New Year!!!

Bethany + Ryan said...

Hi, thanks for the follow, and now i've found your blog! I see that you are doing Goofy's Challenge too! how fun! Both Ryan and I will be doing it too. It's his first time. best of luck to you! happy new year!

Jennifer said...

I love the southern tradition of greens, peas and cornbread! Something new for me when I moved south 11 years ago. Happy new year to you and yours!