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--From the Editor--

    A recent survey found over 80 percent of Guangdong people hope the government to include lunar new year's eve to the week-long new year holiday, as it is a tradition for families to have get-together parties on that evening. The adjustment will help to save the tradition.

    Tradition had been greatly changed or neglected because of the society's urbanization and industrialization process. Young Cantonese people do not know much about tradition, and more and more people just spend the week-long festival holiday relaxing or traveling.

    Many traditions gradually fade, but paying attribute to the gods on specific days are still a must-do for many families, the couplets, flower and lucky money are still must-haves for lunar new year.

    Here I want to tell you some Cantonese抯 traditional way to celebrate lunar new year. Before I forget, 揔ung Hei Fat Choi? (Wish you a prosperous life!)

--Calendar of Lunar New Year in 2007-- 

23rd of 12th month of year Dog
Bid farewell to God of the Kitchen, who is going back to the heaven during the lunar new year. Make sure you have good wine, candy, fruit for him so that he will only report your good deeds to the God!


28th of 12th month of year Dog
House cleaning day


30th of 12th month of year Dog, New Year's Eve
Family Reunion and a feast!


New year's day (Year of Pig)
First day of New Year. Guangdong people will start visits to their relatives' and friends' homes. The married give lucky money to the unmarried.


2nd of 1st month of year Pig
Big lunch called "Kai Nian Fan", represent start of a year. A married woman shall visit her parents with her husband and children today.


3rd of 1st month of year Pig
In the past, people named the day "Chi Kou", meaning people would probably quarrel on the day so everybody just stayed at home and did not pay visit to other people's home.


7th of 1st month of year Pig
It is everybody's birthday! Excited? Fairy tale has it that Goddess Nv Wa, created rooster, dog, pig, goat, cow and horse in the first six days of the world, and on the seventh day, she created human beings.


15th of 1st month of year Pig
End of Spring Festival Celebration. Sweet dumping is must-eat of the day. The day is also known as lantern festival, with many lantern shows held in different parks and streets. Another name of the day is "Valentine's day in China". Day for romance!

--Shopping at Flower Fair-- 

Lucky Bamboo

Potted tangerine

Potted daffodils
 

Peach tree

Orchids

Spring Festival Couplets/Scrolls and Papercut
 

    The origin of flower fairs can be traced back 500 years. From then on, flower fairs were held in many cities of Guangdong during the Spring Festival every year. Here you can buy various kinds of flowers, toys and all the small things needed for celebrating a lunar new year.

   Every traditional Chinese household should have live blooming plants to symbolize rebirth and new growth. Flowers are believed to be symbolic of wealth and high positions in one’s career. Homes with a plant that blooms on New Year’s Day, are considered lucky for that foretells a year of prosperity.

   The Chinese firmly believe that without flowers, there would be no formation of any fruits. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance to have flowers and floral decorations.

   They are the emblems of the reawakening of nature, they are also intimately connected with superstition and with the hope for happiness during the coming year.

--Traditions-- 

Lion Dance

Candy Tray

Lucky Money
 
--Prepare these foods before the new year-- 
Full jar of rice
Spring Onions
Garlic leaves
 
Sugar cane with leaves and roots
Two fishes
Cabbage
 
Arrowhead
Celery
Carrots with green leaves
 
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