Monday, January 26, 2009
Happy Year of the Ox!!!
Today is officially the first day of Chinese New Year. Happy Year of the Ox! Over the next 15 days, we, and the Chinese people, will be celebrating. For us it means reading and watching more about China, Chinese crafts and decorations, and, of course, eating more Chinese! I LOVE holidays, so this is right up my alley. It is at times like this, however, that I feel especially inadequate to assume that because of me my child will understand anything about his birth country at all. It's kind of like telling someone what's in a recipe, without giving the exact measurements so they can't recreate it and it may end up tasting totally different all together.
Yesterday was our first official Chinese New Year celebration. We went to see a play at the Main Street branch of the library. Except for being a hair long for the children, the show was awesome! There were lots of dancers, singers, and our favorite--Kung Fu! Those of you who have never really seen Kung Fu, you've got to check it out. It was amazing! John use to have a roommate who was a Kung Fu World Champion. It's funny how God prepares you for the future.
We were also delighted to see our first live lion dance. Will was so taken with the drums that it took him quite a while to turn his head to realize there were even dragons.
2 lions fighting
At the end there was Chinese fashion show showcasing original costumes of some of the northeastern people groups of China. Will is from Inner Mongolia, which is pretty much up north in the middle, so some of the costumes were very similar to one we bought him. (We bought it a little big, so maybe you'll see it next year.) Chinese fashion shows are much more choreographed and dance-like than our fashion shows. The highlight of the fashion show was a girl who's headdress looked like it had a reindeer antler.
After dinner we headed to a Chinese restaurant and ate with our friends who have a beautiful little girl from China.
There were about 80 of us there with the local Families with Children from China group. We were excited to run into another family we had traveled through China with. It was great to see how much their little girl and grown.
It's tradition to give gifts on Chinese New Year, especially red envelopes filled with money, so I got some red envelopes from a local party store for the kids. I filled them with fake Chinese money, a Chinese New Year pencil, Chinese clothing notepads, and panda stickers.
More Chinese New Year installments to come. Until then, Happy Year of the Ox!