Happy Norouz!

Norouz, also known as the Persian New Year, has always had a special place in my heart. It marks the first day of spring, new beginnings, rebirth of nature, spring rains, cherry blossoms, and – above all that – family!

Persian by birth, I have always spent Norouz with my family, either in person or in spirit. I have always cherished the family gatherings and the tradition of visiting my grandparents on the first day of Norouz. The Norouz festivities always began with my grandparents wishing us a healthy and happy life and new year!

Those days are gone and so are my grandparents. Since moving to Canada, my family and I have continued to celebrate Norouz and preserve that part of our Persian heritage. Although our family gatherings during Norouz are now rare and far in between, they are still valued dearly by all of us. We always make the time to send each other a message, call, email, or do a one-day visit if we can, to mark the first day of spring and celebrate a new day!

Since being in a relationship with me, my partner has fully embraced this tradition. Every year, since we have been together, we have done our Norouz shopping, bought flowers, set our haft-seen spread, cooked a traditional Persian meal, and celebrated Norouz and the first day of spring. Moving forward, we plan to teach and pass on this historic celebration to our children and the future generation as well.

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Here are a few pieces of our haft-seen. When you have cats, you don’t get to leave all of the pieces of haft-seen unattended 😉

Overall, I consider myself very lucky to be able to celebrate two different new years- New Year and Norouz – every year. Each year, I have double the opportunity to make things right and start over – if I need to! Basically, if your first new year’s resolution was not off to a good start, don’t sweat it! In just three months, you’ll get to make a new one, and hopefully make it work 🙂

In addition, celebrating Norouz is a chance for us to not only stay close and connected to my (our) Persian heritage, but to also help others become more informed and add a new piece of information to their understanding of other cultural traditions and values.

We will all be better people if we just allow ourselves to understand and accept other cultures and traditions more. So, let’s open our eyes and minds to new possibilities and new beginnings. There is a lot of beauty out there in the world that is just waiting to be discovered.

So, regardless of your beliefs, cultural traditions, values, and heritage, I would like to wish you and and your loved ones a happy Norouz. After all, who doesn’t love spring? It’s finally time to say goodbye to the cold and snowy winter and get ready for a warm and sunny summer 🙂

May this year be filled with all the great things that you deserve, and may you be happy and healthy to enjoy all of it.

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