Chinese New Year is widely celebrated in East Asia by all people of the Chinese ethnicity. It is a time where the whole family comes together to celebrate the beginning of a new year in the lunar calendar, which begins of the second new moon after the winter solstice.
The different ways of celebrating Chinese New Year has changed over the centuries that people can no longer say what is wrong or right to do at Chinese New Year. Here a list of 6 things that are traditional and exist to this day that every Chinese family does at CNY (Chinese New Year).
1. House Visiting
Almost every Chinese New Year the thing that you can’t get away with is house visits. Married couples and family’s will visit the fathers or husbands side of the family. Unmarried women or men will celebrate Chinese New year with their family, usually house visits occur on the 2nd day of CNY.
2. No black or white clothes
Don’t even bother asking your parents this one. They will be overly superstitious and not give you a straight answer; the reason being is that you should never ever wear black or basically any other colour other than red because black and white is associated with death and mourning. I will confirm with you that no relative will want to give you ang pows when you show up to their house looking like you’re attending a funeral.
3. Beggars Day
On the 3rd day of CNY you’re not suppose to go out. This day traditionally believed to be ominous day so nobody goes out. On the contrary this is a good day to go visiting as nobody does so do feel free to go visiting on this day to collect extra Ang Pows!
4. Reunion Dinner
On the first night of CNY the whole family gets together to have a big reunion Dinner, typically steamboat. Married couples or familys go to their fathers or husbands side for CNY reunion dinner.
One of the best bits about CNY is that everyone makes an extra effort with the food. The most common foods made especially for CNY are things like ‘Huat Kuay’ for those English people out there, Huat Kuay is a special kind of pink cake that taste almost like a gluten based bun. My favourite is ‘Tnee Kuay’ a special kind of sticky pudding mostly made up of brown sugar. Another common dish is called Yee sang made up of shredded vegetables, peanuts, bits of crunchy biscuits and sweet plum sauce.
6. Jade Emperor Gods birthday
On the 9th day of CNY the Hokien clan celebrate the Emperor Jade Gods Birthday. As you might have already known the Chinese’s solution to everything during Chinese New Year is to set of Fire Crackers. At midnight of the 8th day after you pray,you set of a string of extremely loud Fire Crackers what’s more you’re supposed to do it with your door open!