Monday, February 7, 2011

Gung Hay Fat Choy!!

Gung Hay Fat Choy means "Best wishes and Congratulations. Have a prosperous and good year."

Until this year I never really paid much attention to the Chinese New Year Celebration.  With our impending trip to China, I have heard more and more about this celebration.  Our concern is not so much the celebration, but what it has meant to our trip. 

The celebration begins February 3rd and continues for 2 weeks.  During that time basically everything shuts down.  Government, manufacturing, retail, etc.  Families travel back to their homes to celebrate with their families.

Before the new year, families settle debts and buy new clothes. The house is cleaned and food is prepared.  Homes are filled with flowers and fruit. Oranges, tangerines, and pomeloes are picked and displayed. The colors symbolize good luck and joy. 

Children behave impeccably because they are warned that what happens the first day of the year may decide events for the coming year.  Everyone takes care to say and do the right things and think good thoughts.

On the seventh day of the New Year everyone adds a year to their age no matter when they were born.  In traditional China individual birthdays were not considered as important as this New Year’s date.

So does that mean that Lilly has never celebrated a birthday?  I had hoped that with her living with a foster family maybe they had acknowledged her birthday.  Guess I have a lot more to learn.  I assure you that she will know her birthday in October this year.

We now have our Chinese Visas.  All that is left is our travel approval….the coveted TA.  With that in hand an appointment with the Embassy can be scheduled.  Pray that gets done in the next few weeks amid all the government shut down

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