Monday, February 11, 2013

Chinese New Year Holiday: Gifts

Some of you may be wondering "Just what do the Chinese do on Chinese New Year holiday?"  Well, the answer is many things.  It can be compared, in some ways, to the Western Christmas celebration in that it is the BIGGEST holiday of the year here!  It's about celebrating the new year, the giving of gifts to the children, special foods, fireworks--LOTS of this!--and spending time with family and friends.  It is also referred to as Spring Festival. Down south China, Spring has sprung!  But here in our area, well....lets just say it has a long ways to go yet!  It is also traditional for every family to thoroughly cleanse their house, in order to sweep away any ill-fortune and make way for good incoming luck.  Windows and doors will be decorated with red color paper-cuts and couplets with popular themes of good fortune, health, happiness , wealth, and longevity.

Other activities include giving money in red paper envelopes called "hong bao." Camilla was quite excited to receive her red envelope.

Holly too!

Zoe was quite excited to receive her red envelope too and quickly opened it to see what was inside only to be disappointed to find "paper" inside :))  As you can see, she clearly doesn't know the value of money yet!  However, she'll soon figure it out when she finds out you can "exchange" things for this special paper :)

Lizzie clearly knows the value of money!

Camilla surely was excited about getting a pretty new dress and had to clap and shout "Yay!"

Holly got a new sparkly sweater!  Sparkly things are her favorite!

I LOVE this picture of Zoe!  It clearly shows her enthusiasm of receiving her new dress :)  This is a common reaction Zoe has about many things--though we don't often capture it on camera! Later, in another post, we'll have some pictures in their pretty new clothes :)

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