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Gung Hay Fat Choy! Happy New Year!


Happy Chinese New Year!
Today is the first day of the lunar New Year celebrated by the Chinese culture. This year, 2012, is year 4710 - the year of the Dragon.....

....Oh! Now, that brings back memories! Once, as a kid, I went to a Chinese New Year's Festival with some family friends and I remember the beautiful dragon costume/float - several people were underneath it, with their upper bodies inside it, but what struck me was its beauty and grace as it floated through the air. I was captivated, mesmerized by the dragon as he flew throughout the room. I think that is when I feel in love with the culture! And with Dragons ;-)....

... ummm, right, back to 2012 now....

OK, so, the dragon I saw may not have been due to a "year of".... Dragons are important in Chinese culture as they represent wisdom, strength, benevolence, and good fortune, so they are often present in New Year's celebrations. Over the next several days, Chinese families will celebrate the new year by enjoying festive meals, exchanging gifts and decorating their homes with red and gold (to represent luck and prosperity respectively).

Now, if you know me, then you know I am not one to turn down an opportunity to have a little partay with the kids (bonus when it teaches them about different cultures and beliefs, too, eh?). If you recall from this post, we like to decorate a bit, read The Great Race and have a Chinese inspired supper. Funny how kids get used to such things: mine were excited this morning - they figure they will have a little red envelope next to their plate at supper.... And they will! Inside, along with the traditional coin & candy, I'll have their horoscope for 2012: we always get a kick out of the traits of our symbols and how we will fare in the coming year. We think this year is pretty special - my husband's symbol is the Dragon, so we aim to make it extra special tonight :-)

Unfortunately, I'm behind on all my big plans to decorate and create in honour of the New Year! I'll pop back in as ...if things progress well enough to have something to show you! In the meantime, check out these previous posts:  this one for symbolism and ideas and this one for our fave fried rice and other recipe links.

Have a Happy, Fruitful and Prosperous New Year! 
Gung Hay Fat Choy! 


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