Norooz is the Iranian New Year celebrated by Iranian peoples and other related ethno-linguistic groups to commemorate the first day of Farvardin in the Iranian calendar, the beginning of the New Year and a reminder that winter is coming to an end.
Also known as the Persian New Year, Norooz is deeply rooted in the rituals and traditions of the Zoroastrians (the religion of ancient Persia before the advent of Islam), and has been celebrated for over 3,000 years in Asia and the Pacific and has become a worldwide cultural festivity. As it approaches on March 21st, there’s a flourish of activities you need to do to prepare your home for it.
Here are 7 fun ideas to make your Haft-seen table stand out as you count down the New Year with your family and cheer Eide Shoma Mobarak, or Happy New Year!
1. A Twist on the Sabzeh
For the symbol of rebirth and renewal, lentil, barley or wheat sprouts are commonly grown in a dish. To make your Sabzeh stand out, try growing it inside an egg shell! It’s a cute and fun way to display the sprouts… What if you painted the shells before planting the seeds?
Here’s how to do it:
- Rinse and empty out your eggshells. You don’t have to be too careful with their tops!
- Fill the eggshells with potting soil.
- Sprinkle a dense single layer of wheat seed (or whatever grain seeds you have!).
- Put on a sunny windowsill, wait and water. They’ll sprout in no time.
2. Use Chocolate Coins
Coins are often added to the Haft-seen to represent prosperity. But what if you got chocolate coins instead of real coins? The kids are sure to be surprised when you bite into one of them!
3. Try a New Fishy
Many people often display a goldfish to symbolize new beginnings and life. This Norooz, think about getting a more hardy fish! Sunburst Platy, which you can find at a local pet shop for around $2, have the same gold sheen as a goldfish!
4. Make Your Own Candles
Candles often are used at the Haft-seen table to represent each member of the family. Try making your own to add some individuality to the ornamentation. (We made chocolate candles here).
5. New Blooms
While hyacinths are the most commonly used flowers to decorate your table, think about adding some variety! Freesia, Calla and Iris are all flowers that are in season during the month of March and certainly are symbolic of spring.
6. Style Your Garlic
Who says you can’t get creative with your garlic? Go all out decorating this symbol for medicine and bedazzle that bulbous plant. Even better—garlic holds up very well so let the kids go wild with jewels, paint and other ornamentation.
7. Use Real Eggs!
This will add a fun twist to your egg-decorating plans. Definitely a family activity, painting real eggs will bring a lot of entertainment to your household. This can get messy, though, so make sure to do it over a sink and be sure not to hold them too hard!