“Good luck” – something we all want, especially for our babies. There are many ancient traditions and superstitions from around the world that are thought to bring luck, create harmony and protect us and our babies during pregnancy and after birth. So, here are a few customs you may want to try to bless your baby for a good fortune:
- The Irish have many lucky charms and traditions, but planting a tree of life is an excellent way to bring your baby luck and is good for the environment.  IrishCentral.com has a Celtic Tree Calendar to see which tree is best for the month you are expecting. In Ireland, babies born on May Day are also said to always have good luck.
- In Israel, some people wear a red string or ribbon as a bracelet to ward off an evil eye originated from old Jewish folklore. Some choose to tie a red string on their baby’s crib or shoelaces for the same reason. Puerto Ricans give their new babies a mano negra de azabache, similar to the tradition in Israel looks like a red-knotted bracelet to wear and ward off evil spirits. Knit red baby slippers are good luck in Brazil to newborns from evil as well.
- Protection from evil is important in some areas of the Dominican Republic, where babies are sprinkled with a mixture of mashed garlic cloves and 3 grains of salt added to the Holy Water before baptism to ward off evil. In Greek tradition, baby clothes are not to be washed or air-dried at night because it is thought to attract evil spirits.
- According to India.com,  in Hindu tradition a male child’s first haircut is an important ceremony because it is believed that the child born carries unattractive characteristics from previous lives. Shaving the hair frees the baby from the past and allows him to progress in the future. This ceremony, called the Mundan, is performed in the first or third year of life. Indian girls are adorned with silver anklets called payals for well wishes in the future.
- A tojjabi event is celebrated on the first birthday of South Korean Symbolic items including a rope for life, money for wealth, a ball for athletics and a pencil for academia are placed on the table. Tradition says that whichever item the child picks up first will predict their future.
- Folkartchina.com  says in China, a baby’s name is supposed to harmonize with the date and time in which it is born, so it follows under the forces of water, fire, gold, wood and earth. A good name combines these elements with each character represented.
- Cash in Japan and the United States is always a welcome gift to bless a baby that represents prosperity and happiness and often used to start a college fund.
- Fathers in the Andean plateau in South America, covering Peru and parts of Argentina, Bolivia, Chile and Ecuador, knit their son’s alpaca wool hat with earflaps, or chullo, to protect them from harsh conditions and is designed with animals significant to their culture, bringing certain admirable traits. In Guyana, South America baby showers are held off until the baby turns 9 days old. Guests bring gifts including gold bangle bracelets for boys and girls to ensure a prosperous future.
- In Bangladesh, the tradition is for family members to encourage mothers not to leave the house with their newborns for 40 days after giving birth, as protection from negative forces. Similarly, in the United States, the common postpartum recovery period is the first 6 weeks (a little over 40 days).
Whether you are prone to following superstitions or just want to incorporate some new traditions in your home or honor your heritage, ask your elders if they have any traditions you would like to try or do some research. Take it easy at home with your little one, partner and loved ones and have fun trying some of these good luck rituals. Best of luck to you!