As a Japanese person, myself, end of the year towards New Year is very important.
End of the year, we do a big cleaning for the house and take down all the dust from one year. This purification ritual preparation for greeting the New Year God, Toshigami sama.
Started in 17centry !
Well my house is always clean so I do think I have to clean at end of the year anymore..
But I love cleaning, there is a fresh spririt and new beginning of the year.
The New Year festival with its own coustom since 1873.
My best part of New Year is we cooked special food before New Year and just eat and eat get full and fat with your family. These food will last for three days for all the family.
The food that we prepare have each have meaning for example : my favorite stickly rice call mochi, ( good harvest) sweet potato with chestnuts, egg roll, black sweet beans (health), herring roe (to have good family life).
We decorate our entrance of the house with bamboo call kadomatsu “gate pine“ decorated both side of our entrance.
We are welcoming the god and ancestral sprits to our house. Tipically made by bamboo, pine and plum tree which represent longevity, good life, respectively, royality.
There is also very common these days is Shimenawa decoration for the front door.
It is like Christmas leaf but it is made by rice straw or hemp. There is a special way to tie these rice straw. It is absolutely beautiful.
This shemenawa will chase away the evil spirits from your home.
I think I am ready for 2019;)