Friday, February 19, 2010

Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year (according to the lunar calendar) started on February 14th 2010 and is celebrated by the Chinese all over the world. It heralds new beginnings and a fresh start.
One important tradition is that families clean their houses from top to bottom to sweep away any bad fortune and to make way for good luck in the coming year. Red is lucky, and houses are decorated with splashes of the color, the most popular themes being “happiness, wealth, and longevity.” At a social level, it is very much a family affair, a time of reunion, forgiveness, sharing and thanksgiving.
a clean swept house

In readiness for the New Year, the house must be decorated with live blooming plants as these symbolize rebirth and new growth.Flowers such as pussy willow, azalea, peony, water lily or narcissus symbolize wealth and high position in one's career.

After the flowers have been placed, then comes the fruit. Oranges and tangerines are two very symbolic fruits in the celebration of Chinese New Year. They are symbols for abundant happiness. The color of oranges and tangerines represents gold.

This is also a time to renew protective talismans that are used to expel evil. To achieve this, people will decorate the home with auspicious couplets and emblems with the additional aim to summon good fortune. These appear on paper printed in red or with a red background. To the Chinese, red is a life giving color.
As important is the sharing of meals.

orange cookies

moon cakes

2010 is the Year of the Tiger.
People born in Tiger years -which would include 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998 and those who will be born in the coming year, 2010, are said to have certain traits.
As you might expect, considering what kind of animal the tiger is, tiger people are brave, sometimes a little too impulsive, ambitious and tend to dislike authority. On the positive side, they are loyal, generous and honest. If some of the tiger’s negative traits get the better of them, they can be quick to anger and too quick to act without thinking about the consequences.

May you find much happiness and prosperity in this coming year!

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