Monday, January 23, 2012

Chinese New Year

Gung hay fat choy!

Happy Chinese New Year.  The above greeting means "May you prosper." and is a traditional Chinese New Year greeting.  When our children were young, we started celebrating the Chinese New Year.  Learning about  different cultures around the world has always been important to me, and what better way to do that than to enjoy some of the different holidays celebrated by those cultures.

So today we are recognizing the Chinese New Year- this year is the Year of the Dragon.  I have been wanting to make a felt dragon since I saw this pattern at Rhythm of the Home. Since the kids and hubby were busy with various activities yesterday, I decided that it would be fun to make this dragon for Chinese New Year.  Here's how the dragon turned out.

This dragon took quite some time to make, but he turned out really cute, the kids think he looks pretty great, and we will have to name him.

Every year on the Chinese New Year we have Chinese Food for dinner, some years we have take away, and other years we make something.  This year we are having Orange Chicken and Rice with veggies.  We also have a silly tradition that started the very first year we celebrated Chinese New Year.  I had purchased some really fun Dragon Picks for our celebration, and wanted a dessert to put the dragon on.  I couldn't really find a recipe that I could make up quickly, and since it was a busy day that year, I made a pan of brownies, and stuck the dragon pick in the brownies.  We have celebrated with a pan of brownies, with a Dragon Pick, every year since.  I bought the Dragon Picks in bulk from Oriental Trading Company and still have enough for a few more years.  So even though they are in no way traditional, we still look forward to our Chinese New Year Brownies every year. :)   Here's our dessert for tonight.

I found this book years ago, that I have used to teach our family Chinese New Year customs.  This is a great book, packed full of interesting information and great pictures that would be perfect for teaching young ones about this holiday.

Along the side of the book are red envelopes that are traditionally filled with a money gift for children on the Chinese New Year.  Here is the Wikipedia Chinese New Year link with lots of info about this fun and interesting holiday.

Below is my Amazon Affiliate Link for the children's book Celebrating Chinese New Year.

Hopefully everyone has a nice day, and a Happy Chinese New Year!


  1. April, your dragon turned out wonderfully. I need to finish Hazel's. I made one for Michaelmas, but we gave it to her teacher and I promised to make Hazel another one. Now, I just need to finish it.

  2. The perfect excuse to order Chinese food long as I infuse a little cultural discussion to go with! Are you making the orange chicken?

  3. Your dragon is so cute, April! When the boys were young we used to celebrate this day also. It was a fun way to learn about the Chinese culture. Anything to add a little fun and excitement to the long winter!

  4. What a good way to teach your children about other cultures. The dragon is adorable!

  5. Carrie~ Thanks, I really enjoyed making this dragon, now I want to make more in different colors as gifts. I always love working with wool felt.

    Andrea~ I do love Chinese take away, but it is slim pickin's in our small town, we picked up the Orange Chicken from Safeway, and made the rice, but I would love to find a really good orange chicken recipe, because we all love the flavor. :)

    Jane~ Thanks Jane, I do enjoy this holiday as well as Groundhog Day, it is around this time of year that a little celebration is needed amongst the seemingly endless rain. Starting to look forward to spring!

    Amy~ Thank you, I really enjoyed making this dragon, and hope to make more. I do love learning and teaching about the different cultures around the world, so interesting to learn about how other people live. :)

  6. What a great post! :) Not only did you write about my background (I'm Chinese), you included my blog hop: Stumbling Silly Blog Hop!

  7. We have not celebrated this holiday ever. I am going to check out that book first. Thanks for the info. and Thanks for linking it to Monday Madness.


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