Mafuyu(^q^)/ :Hi guys! Happy New Year to the Year 2020~!! Stay with us at Goods Republic this year too! It’s Mafuyu from Goods Republic!!
Mafuyu(^q^)/ :Here’s the very first article in 2020! We, Goods Republic members, will share Japanese New Year along with Anime Goods, with you guys! Read this and you’ll know how the Japanese New Year is in FIVE minutes!!
【Happy New Year 2020!!】Five-Minute Reading! A Special Number for both Japanese New Year Culture and Anime Merch!
Mafuyu(^q^)/ :We’ll give you a quick explanation about what we often see in New Year or the Japanese traditional events in New Year! What do the things you see in Anime mean or relate with the New Year…? We’ll give you the answers to those today! Thank you for Goods Republic members who helped me take photos with Anime Goods! I appreciate your support!!
●鏡餅(Kagami Mochi / mirror rice cake)
It’s the rice cake for decoration we usually prepare at the end of the previous year, to welcome the God of the New Year.
In Japan, during the New Year, we “crack” this rice cake after decorating it (Cutting it with a knife means a bad luck in Japan), and then eat it. Some of them have a tangerine on top too.
We decorate it in front of the house or the building for the New Year. As mentioned above, we “welcome God of the New Year” with this decoration of matsu (pines) and take (bamboo).
By the way, the wreath-shape decoration shown below is called “Shime kazari = a sacred rope of rice-straw”. This one as well welcomes God, meaning “the space inside of the circle is filled with the pure air”.
Also, the one on the right shown below is another decoration for the New Year, called a “Rake [tool]”, “wishing to rake” happiness and money!
●おせち・お雑煮 (Osechi and Zōni)
It is believed that we prepare for this feast before the New Year so we can enjoy eating it during the New Year holiday (January 1st to 3rd). Various dishes with different colors and amount, can be seen according to each household.
Also, we often eat “buckwheat noodles on New Year’s Eve”, which we can easily make so we don’t get busy on the New Year’s Eve. We usually put some tempura and vegetables in it. We often realize, “Oh, yeah~ this year will soon be over…”, eating this.
We eat this soup with mochi (a rice cake) along with Osechi that is shown above. This is just like a miso soup but tastes a little thinner. The mochi in this soup is delicious being soft and sticky. Mochi is made out of rice so it’s filling and we can feel satisfied with this New Year’s dish. We sometimes use hardened Kagami mochi, shown above because it becomes soften.
This is one of the traditional New Year’s events, where we visit the shrine or the temple. There, we pray for safety and peace of the New Year, appreciating everything happened in the previous year. Some people visit the shrine where the famous God is enshrined and others visit the one which is close to their houses. Either way, we pray for the appreciation and peace of the New Year. I went to visit the shrine nearby too! It’s common to visit there from January 1st to 3rd! We often draw omikuji (a sacred lot) for the fortune telling for the New Year too!
“The animals that represent a luck” for the New Year. This year, it’s a mouse and more and more Goods which relate with mice or the chara that imitate mice are releasing.
Mafuyu(^q^)/ :As you can see the picture above, the chara we often see, can look more gorgeous with this special decoration, huh? Especially we can feel a dynamic image from Osechi and Zōni… They look delicious, huh? So guys! If you happen to see these kind of special stuff in Anime, remember what we featured today, like “Yeah! That’s ●●! I read the article about that!”!
Oki-doki! I’ll see you guys at the next article! Bye~!
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