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A Special Spring Festival

Popularity 6Viewed 2665 times 2016-2-15 22:23 |Personal category:Experience|System category:Life| customs, special, Spring Festival

This Spring Festival is very special for me, because it’s the first time for me to spend it with my husband’s family. We are from different cities and own some different customs when celebrating the Spring Festival. Some of their customs are new to me and they seem very interesting.

 

Similarly, there was a hearty lunch in the last day of the Year of Ram (7-Feb). Of course, there was fish which symbolizes prosperity in the year ahead. Meat was essential such as fried shrimps, four-joy meatballs, meat jelly, braised meat ect. My grandfather was so happy that he could not help grabbing the chopsticks and ate a piece of meat. As you can see in the photo how happy he was.

 

After lunch, we started to paste spring couplets, which is a common tradition in Chinese Lunar New Year. The wording expresses greeting and good expectations. For example, some couplets reflect wishes of booming business, achieving academic excellence. Some express good expectations for a better and richer life and good luck. The background of couplets is usually red, which symbolizes booming and moving forwarder and upward in life. Although it was very cold outside when pasting the couplets, we were all very happy. Also, we put up red lanterns on the front door. On the lanterns, there wrote “恭喜发财 Gong Xi Fa Cai”, which means “May you be happy and prosperous!”. They were very beautiful.

 

Then my mother-in-law and me started to make dumplings, which is traditional and classical in China. We made two kinds of stuffing, one was leeks and the other was cabbage. The leek dumplings were for New Year Eve and the cabbage dumplings were for the first meal of the new year (Year of Monkey). Some dumplings were put into a container called “bo ji”, which is an ancient tool mostly used to winnow grains. It’s implication is wishes of enough food and necessities in the year ahead. Yet, there was no such a custom in my hometown. So it was very interesting to me. We arrayed the dumplings in it carefully. At night, the whole family watched the Spring Festival Gala together. It was so harmonious and pleasing.

 

We got up very early on 8-Feb, the first day of the lunar new year and gave new year greetings to parents and grandfather. It’s so exciting that they gave us hongbao, red envelope with money in it. Traditionally, it is called “ya sui qian” (money given to children as a lunar New Year gift) and it expresses wishes and expectations from elders that the children can gain good luck and grow safely and happily. Then we went out and extended greetings to other family members. Everyone was very happy and celebrating the coming of the new year.

 

After that we watched variety shows and played mahjong with our parents. Every moment was worthy treasuring. It was a special Spring Festival for me and I will never forget it. Hope every one of you had a wonderful Spring Festival, too.

 

Happy New Year to you all! 

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)


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Comment Comment (9 comments)

Reply Report Igo 2016-2-16 12:16
Very nice, very nice.
Reply Report sharoncuizz 2016-2-16 12:42
Igo: Very nice, very nice.
Happy New Year!  
Reply Report stander3068 2016-2-16 14:23
The tradition of your husband's hometowen is similar to mine.
It can be figured that you love each other, and love each other's family member.
Reply Report sharoncuizz 2016-2-16 20:39
stander3068: The tradition of your husband's hometowen is similar to mine.
It can be figured that you love each other, and love each other's family member.
Glad to hear that. That's true and hope you enjoyed your holiday, too.
Reply Report claudeckenni 2016-2-19 14:08
I always want to experience a CNY celebrations with Chinese families, I hope one day I will be able to.
Reply Report sharoncuizz 2016-2-22 12:54
claudeckenni: I always want to experience a CNY celebrations with Chinese families, I hope one day I will be able to.
It will be true. I'm sure you will love it.  
Reply Report luckyann 2016-3-13 20:16
I'm wondering where  your husband's hometown is? There is a little different from my hometown to celebrate the Spring Festival.
Reply Report sharoncuizz 2016-3-14 12:44
luckyann: I'm wondering where  your husband's hometown is? There is a little different from my hometown to celebrate the Spring Festival.
Yantai, Shandong Province. What about you?
Reply Report luckyann 2016-3-15 09:55
sharoncuizz: Yantai, Shandong Province. What about you?
I'm living in Changzhou now and we have a apartment in NanJing,Jiangsu province.

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