Happy New Year, 2021!

It was usually at the start of misa de gallo when we prepare for our flight to go to our hometown, excited to shop for our pasalubongs and wrap them to give to our aunts, uncles, cousins, niece and nephews once we arrive home. We would then gather to have our Christmas party and then New year celebration all in the same house, and we wouldn’t forget to celebrate our Lolo’s birthday, which was on January 3. It would be an endless celebration, endless eating and so much fun. That was our yearly tradition.

This year was different. There were no gatherings, no new year get together and no going to church for misa de gallo, but it does not mean that we did not celebrate Christmas, new year and attended misa de gallo. We did, and we all did it online. A new normal, a different kind of celebration.

We had our two part Christmas celebration, from December 24 to 25, New Year’s party and our Birthday bash for our dear Lolo, all done via zoom. Of course we started our party with the Holy Rosary, we then proceeded to the prepared games for our uncles, aunts, cousins, niece and nephews to take part. We may not have our usual games, but we still could have fun with online Pinoy henyo, Bingo, Guess that tune, and many more fun games that my sister – our forever host – prepared. We even had prizes for the best fruit presentation!

For our new year celebration, we prepared a simple feast since there were only five people in the house to eat the handa. My sister suggested we create a grazing platter, which I obliged. Although, we did not have meat on the platter because it was a last-minute decision, but we made do. We called it the tipid grazing platter (haha!)

I sliced up some apples coated with lemon, so it would not turn brown, Biko that my mom’s friend gave and our Queso de bola to add some bright color. Then we placed different biscuits around the platter, and since we do not have a dip, I whipped up our own dip combining butter, powdered milk and powdered sugar that complimented well with our biscuits. On the side, we have the macaroni salad that I made, placed in a red container, to go with our holiday theme.

We may have celebrated it differently this year but no distance and no pandemic can hinder us from having the best time with our loved ones – online 🙂

I hope and pray that this new year brings us more blessings, joy, happiness and hope to face and achieve our goal for this year. Let us continue to spread happiness, peace and love.

How have you celebrated the New Year?

Always choose to be kind.

Happy New Year, everyone!

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