Pearl Chinese New Year family

Memories of Chinese New Year Celebrations

Different in every year, Chinese New Year of 2016 is February 8. Even though I haven’t been celebrating the New Year with my friends and family back home for almost five years, the memories of laughter and happiness are still vivid in my mind‭. ‬

Pearl Chinese New Year family
Pearl and her family

For the past few years‭, ‬I talk to my mom on Skype on New Year’s Eve‭. ‬Fortunately‭, ‬the invention of Skype makes our distance closer because every time when I video chat with my mom‭, ‬I feel like I am there with her‭. ‬Recalling the memories from my childhood‭, ‬the sound of adults playing Mah-jong and‭ ‬kids playing raffles are in my head‭.‬


Pearl Chinese New YearPearl as a young girl

When I was little‭, ‬we gathered together for family dinner‭. ‬The menu is usually diversified‭, ‬however‭, ‬there are several foods that cannot be absent‭: ‬rice cakes‭, ‬fish‭, ‬dumplings‭, ‬seafood‭ ‬and all kinds‭ ‬of meat‭. ‬Some of the adults work out of town or in the city‭, ‬so New Year’s time is the best opportunity for us to meet each other once a year‭. ‬After dinner‭, ‬we played fireworks in the alley of my grandmother’s house to celebrate and wish each other happy new year‭. ‬Personally‭, ‬I think New Year’s Eve is one of the funniest‭ ‬nights‭ ‬throughout the year‭. ‬We were told a myth that the‭ ‬later we stay up‭, ‬the longer lives our parents will have‭. ‬This is the only time we can play all night long because my mom‭ ‬always asked me to go to bed at 11‭ ‬p.m‭. ‬For my family tradition‭, ‬we usually stayed at my grandmother’s house for the overnight celebration‭. ‬My cousins and I played poker together‭, ‬and we were allowed to bet for a small amount of money‭ (‬such as 0.3‭ ‬cents each time‭). ‬After a night‭, ‬the first day of the lunar year is coming‭. ‬Kids are supposed to‭ ‬“flatter”‭ (‬say something nice to‭) ‬the‭ ‬adults in order to get their red envelopes, which contain gifts of money‭. ‬The celebration continues for a week‭, ‬and each day has a different activity‭. ‬Some people travel during the‭ ‬break‭, ‬some people stay with family and treasure the time that we have together‭. ‬

Pearl at a FSHA birthday dinner
Pearl at FSHA during a birthday dinner in the boarding hall

Recalling those sweet and funny memories is such a enjoyable thing to do‭. ‬Even though I have been missing those for a long time ago‭, ‬I hope one day‭ ‬that I will go back and celebrate with them again really soon‭. ‬

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