What to Celebrate this Week: Chinese New Year!

by Stefanie on February 10, 2010

February 14th, 2010chinese red envelope
Based on the cycles of the moon, the Chinese Lunar New Year is the longest chronological record in history! During this time traditions and rituals are very carefully observed in everything from food to clothing.

According to the Chinese Zodiac, the Year of 2010 is the Year of the Tiger, which commences on February 14, 2010 and ends on February 2, 2011. The Tiger is the third sign in the Chinese Zodiac cycle, and it is a sign of bravery. This courageous and fiery fighter is admired by the ancient Chinese as the sign that keeps away the three main tragedies of a household. These are fire, thieves and ghosts.

How to Celebrate:

  • Clean: Days before the CNY sweep away any traces of bad luck by cleaning your home from top to bottom! Open windows and doors to bring in good luck for the new year.red paper lanterns
  • Decorate: Red is the traditional color because it represents happiness and luck! Decorate your home with flowers, oranges and candy. Live plants symbolize rebirth and new growth and flowers are a symbol of wealth. Bring luck to your Lunar New Year with red paper lanterns, dragons and crepe paper from PartyLand!
  • Food: Dinner is a giant feast of seafood and dumplings! The tremendous amount of food prepared symbolizes wealth for the household. Now is the time to eat sweets to ensure yourself a “sweet” year! Don’g forget to grab some fortune cookies from PartyLand for dessert!Chinese Fortune Cookies
  • Clothing: Wear red to ward off evil spirits. But never black or white, which are associated with mourning. Since 2010 is the year of the tiger, anything tiger themed will also do the trick!
  • Activities: After dinner play cards, board games or watch a New Year show. At midnight fireworks should light up the sky.
  • Gifts: Bring a bag of oranges when visiting family or friends anytime during the celebration. Oranges are symbols for abundant happiness.

The Big Day: In the ancient custom Hong Bao (Red Packet), married couples give children and unmarried adults money in red envelopes. Then the Festival of Lanterns, a celebration of singing and dancing, marks the end of the New Year. Traditions of CNY may vary but he underlying message is peace and happiness for family and friends.

Chinese New Year Party

Chinese New Year tiger tattoo party favor!Gung hay fat choy!

(which means “Best wishes and Congratulations. Have a prosperous and good year.”)

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