Happy New Year!!!!!!!
New Year’s Day is the most important holiday for Japanese.
It is said that TOSHIGAMI(歳神)- the deities of the year, come to each household with good fortune. So to welcome them, the house is cleaned by the end of the year and the entrance is decorated by KADOMATSU(門松) and SHIMEKAZARI(注連飾り).
Many people go back to their hometown and stay at their parents’ house- family members gather together on this day. We eat special foods named OSECHIRYORI(おせち料理) and ZOUNI(雑煮), and drink special alcohol named TOSO(屠蘇).
Children can get OTOSHIDAMA monetary gifts from their grandparents, relatives and so on.
We visit a shrine or a temple to pray for good fortune. First visit of the year is called HATSUMOUDE(初詣).
I wish you good fortune and health.