- Children should jump up and down on Christmas Eve. This way, they'll be taller once the New Year rolls around.
- Spare the rod. On Christmas Day, it's okay to give kids whatever they ask for. After all, children are some of God's favorite creatures, and if a parent fails to observe this, God may not be so kind towards that parent.
Superstitions Specific to Provinces
- Spare the insects. Swatting a cockroach might be tempting (and understandable!) when it crawls near your noche buena feast. But perhaps you should set aside your entomophobia until after Christmas. At least, that's what the people in Bontol, Antique believe.
- Animals to be used in the noche buena must be killed a day ahead. This is another Christmas belief in Bontol, Antique. It's not clear why this belief exists, though the spilling of blood on Christ's birth may have something to do with it.
- Babies born on December 25 are lucky, and will grow up lucky. How can they not be, when they share the same birthday as Jesus Christ himself? In Cbigtian, Bohol, folks shower these babies with presents, so that any luck accruing to the baby will accrue to the town too.
Also, in Aborlon, Palawan, people sing Christmas carols for the newborn. Each of the townsfolk presents two gifts to the child: one for the birthday, and another for Christmas. You can't "combine" these gifts as one to save money, because that would bring bad luck.
- Don't be a Debbie Downer on Christmas. According to the folks of Lanog in Iloilo, whatever you feel on Christmas will be reflected in next year's luck. If you're happy on Christmas, then next year will be great. If not, don't expect the new year to go so well.
- Stay quiet from 12:00 M.N. to 2:00 A.M. on Christmas Day. Otherwise, the baby Jesus will awaken, says the people from the northern barrios of Samar. If you want to talk during that time, better keep it to a whisper.
- Don't take a bath on Christmas Day. Unless you want to wash away your good luck as well, according to the people of Decabo in Mindoro.
- Stretch in bed on Christmas Day. In Capiz, stretching in bed on Christmas Day and Easter Sunday is believed to make you grow taller. This is especially potent when you've just woken up.
- Rains on Christmas Day have healing powers. If you visit Macala, Sorsogon on Christmas Day, you might notice pails outside the houses. That's because the local elders believe that the Christmas rain has healing powers.
- Wake up as early as you can on Christmas Day. In some parts of Capiz and Iloilo, being an "early bird" on Christmas Day is believed to bring in wealth. Also, if rootcrops are planted as early on Christmas morning as possible, harvests will be plentiful in the future, according to the farmers of Matangule, Palawan and Nabasagan, Burias Island.
- Wear new shoes on Christmas. Doing this on Christmas Mass is a sign of respect for the child Jesus, say the people of Pagsanjan, Laguna. Plus, a new pair of shoes can "take you places" — or, at least, show that you have the means to purchase good-looking shoes.
- Wear capes to ward off the chill. This may be more "pragmatic practice" than "silly superstition," but the elders of Capiz, Iloilo, and Negros tend to overcompensate when protecting their children from the frosty weather.
- Sharing is caring. In some parts of Pampanga, women ask for manghimaja every Christmas Eve. Here, they carry an empty basket, go from house to house, and get a portion of each house's noche buena meal (tumatapat) from the elder men. Once they're done with manghimaja, they go back home and celebrate their own household's noche buena with the different dishes they gathered.
- Eat Misalubong. Misalubong is a sticky treat served in the coastal barrios of Pampanga. Having a similar consistency as the more well-known biko and bibingka, misalubong is also believed to bring good luck to whoever eats it. Naturally, the more of it you eat, the better your luck will be.
Aside from these, there are the more traditional ways to celebrate Christmas in the Philippines. There's the misa de gallo, which you must complete for its nine-mass run to maximize good fortune. There's the fireworks display every Christmas Eve to ward off evil spirits (who aren't fond of loud noises, apparently). And then there's the all-around feeling of happiness and peace whenever Christ's birthday is celebrated.
What do you think of these superstitions? No matter your answer, feel free to share in the comments!