New House Superstitions

When we began packing for the move to the new house, Mary reminded me that we needed a new broom. A new broom … really? The old one seemed in good shape. Mary assured me you left your old broom at the old house and promptly went out and bought a new broom for the new house. Of all the houses we've moved into over the years, I'd never heard of this tradition/superstition. Being a sailor and having always kept with all our nautical traditions, however, I figured I'd better look into it. I certainly didn't want to piss off any house gods. Sure enough … bringing an old broom into a new house was bad juju … you brought any bad luck you'd experienced (and old house dirt) with it. We rode the new broom to the new house. It worked perfectly.

new broom

Interestingly enough, the previous owners had left their old broom behind. I've obviously been living in the dark regarding brooms all these years.

old broom

Delving a bit further into new house traditions, I found a few more with which we needed to comply. For instance, don't move on a Friday. Yikes! That would be like leaving on a passage on a Friday. We even moved up the closing date by one day, so we didn't sign the final purchase papers or receive our keys on a Friday. Geez … everyone knows that one!

If we were Wiccas, like my sister for instance, we would have also had a house cleansing and blessing ritual, but we opted for something a bit more simple. Instead, I sprinkled salt on the doorstep when we entered the house for the first time after it was ours. Salt is evidently solid protection against bad luck and keeps the evil spirits out.

sprinkling salt

A couple other superstitions we didn't feel as strongly about …

  • It’s bad luck to carry a hoe into the house. If you do it by mistake, carry it out by walking backwards through the same door — it’ll reverse the bad luck. Hmmm ... we put the hoe in the garage with no thought to bringing it into the house.

  • Stuff fennel or an herb with yellow flowers and feathery leaves, into your keyhole or hang it over the door to protect your home from witches. Interestingly enough, Wiccans also suggest this and many of them are self-proclaimed witches. Go figure! Doesn't matter … fennel and yellow-flowered, feathery herbs were in short supply on move-in day.

  • Paint your front porch blue to ward off ghosts. They'll think it's water and thus, you'll confuse them. Nah, no blue porches for us. We'll have to chance it.

  • Never put shoes on a dresser or table. Now this is reputedly a Jewish tradition which makes sense. It's just not cool to put your shoes on the table … any time.

  • According to a Norse superstition, placing an acorn on a windowsill will protect a house from being struck by lightning. This is the desert … no acorns, but we do have lightning. I've got to think about this one.

  • Never pound a nail after sunset, or you’ll wake the tree gods. No trees in our yard … only cacti and we reckon the cacti gods might be okay with nail banging. We'll keep the noise to a minimum.

All in all, I think we did okay. I'm feeling like the house has some good energy and the new broom works well.