Monday, January 26, 2009

Happy Chinese New Year!

happy new year!!!! today is chinese new year and tết. my family didn't really celebrate chinese new year to the full extent. we prepared a chicken and placed it outside, lit incense, and then gave the little red envelopes. that was my favorite part, the little red envelopes (at least it was while i was receiving them).

now i miss the chickens and how the neighbors would bring them by to our family. there was a time, i swear, we had, like, 8 chickens. i miss the traditions. i miss the neighborhood burning joss papr for ancestors, the smell of incense in the air, the fireworks, and just the festive atmosphere.

the only tradition i keep these days is the red envelope thing. one day i'll pick up the chicken and joss paper thing. like many other rituals to me, it's meant just to keep the spirit of the holiday, like carving a pumpkin and decorating a christmas tree. it's not like i believe a carved pumpkin will scare away evil spirits or that decorating a tree will appease good spirits.

each envelope contained $6, an even number which is good luck as well as implying that the children will have a smooth year because "six" can also mean "smooth." the next year will be $8 to represent wealth and it will alter back and forth between $6 and $8 from year to year.

randy and i are both part chinese, albeit, a very small part. his family doesn't celebrate chinese traditions as much as mine does, but that's because of where my family is from.

this year, i had randy hand out the little red envelopes. the kids knew what they were right away because thuy had given the them little red envelopes yesterday and explained to them what it meant.

although, the amount of money isn't that much, i'm sure the kids appreciate getting any money at all, just as i did when i was younger. i'm sure it means little more to them than just getting a bit of cash, but i hope they understand the meaning and tradition when they grow up, after all, they are about 3% chinese.

No comments:

Post a Comment