Happy New Year!

This week China is celebrating by far their largest holiday, which is the Lunar New Year called the Spring Festival. It is based on the moon, so it doesn’t happen on the same day each year. It occurs at the end of January or the first of February. Some of the main customs surrounding the holiday are cleaning your home, eating jaozi (dumplings,) and parents giving their children a red envelope full of money. A couple of the lesser known traditions would involve getting a haircut and taking a shower to wash away anything bad. As you can imagine, in China there will be lots of fireworks all day and night surrounding their holiday.

Many people receive an extended vacation to celebrate this huge holiday. In fact, it is known as the largest annual migration of people when all of the city workers travel back to their rural hometowns to visit their families.

This year is called the year of the monkey, and “hou” is how you say monkey in Chinese. “Chunjie” is what the Chinese call the New Year celebration.

Happy Spring Festival to all of my Chinese friends!