A large family, homeschooling, adoption, special needs, whatever strikes my fancy, sort of blog.

A large family, homeschooling, adoption, special needs, whatever strikes my fancy, sort of blog.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Getting Ready for Chinese New Year

If you're reading this, chances are you either have an adopted Chinese child, or you pride yourself on embracing multiculturalism, or you're just curious about our crazy family and how we do things.

Our Chinese New Year celebration will never be as exciting as the real thing in China.  But it's our nod to the culture of our littlest ones, and it's a lot of fun, too!  Our big kids look forward to CNY because it's a fun tradition, and because of the whole "round foods" thing we do.

Round foods?  Yes!  It's traditional in China to eat oranges and other round foods as part of the CNY holiday.  We give it our own little spin by strolling the aisles of the grocery store, looking for round foods to serve that night.  My kids always remind me, "Pizza is round!"  We've also had peas, wagon wheel pasta, mandarin oranges, meatballs, and various round candies in years past.

This year will be The Year of the Horse.  We added this new book to our collection.  The two main times we focus on reading Chinese festival books are Lunar New Year and Autumn Moon Festival.  Perhaps this book, Celebrating Chinese Festivals will help us find some more occasions to acknowledge.

Part of my annual scramble is making sure that Hannah, and now Katie & Luke, have silks that fit.  It is traditional to get a new set of clothing for Chinese New Year, although in our family, you have to actually be Chinese to qualify for this one.  I can't imagine the cost of an entire new outfit for everybody in the family all at once, whether they need clothes or not.  So it's just silks for my Asian sweeties around here.

If silks aren't your thing, there are some really cute clothing options for Chinese New Year on Zulily right now!  Silks are a little high maintenance, laundry wise.  We lost our first set to fraying in the wash--on gentle.  Sigh.

It's a blessing that my Hannah is a tiny little thing.  I'm guessing last year's qipao above will still fit her.  I think I ended up making her photo Valentines for kindergarten from one of the pictures taken this day.

As I was shopping for fun little treats to make our celebration special, I considered fortune cookies.  But I ultimately decided to go with chocolate coins in red envelopes instead.  Oriental Trading Co even has Asian Chocolate Coins.  For those who don't know, fortune cookies actually originated in San Francisco.  Yes, they were created by the Chinese, but they're not a from-China or even an in-China thing.  In China, it is customary to give money in red envelopes on Chinese New Year.  Chocolate money will have to do!  And although Hello Kitty red envelopes and Disney red envelopes are super cute, I found a printable red envelope that we will be using instead.  CNY on a budget.  Sort of.

I did pin a few ideas, if you want to take a look at my Chinese New Year Pinterest board.  I'd love to have you follow me, if you're so inclined!  We'll be doing a couple of crafts to use as decorations at our round foods dinner.  I can't wait to share them with you!

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  1. I love this post. I always say that this world would be better if Americans celebrated Chinese New Year, Jews went to Christian Churches (and vise versa) Mormons studied catholicism Athiest went to church, and nobody hated the other for their religion, the way they look or what size or color they are.

    Good for you Mama!

    I just love visiting this blog. There is such a positive and loving spirit here. It makes me happy.

    1. Thank you, Lisa! That totally made me smile! :) I'm glad our paths crossed.

  2. We celebrate Chinese New Year as well and I really would like to see you all wearing qibao. I really love how you respect and experience our culture a lot. I also love to see all of your children. They are lovely. Thanks for sharing with us in Pintastic Pinteresting Party.

    1. Thanks for hosting the party! I'll be posting a final lunar new year post that will include pictures of us dressed up to go out for dinner. :)