The day began with the kids waking up to hongbao (red packets) under their pillows. The idea is to suppress the evil spirits. (My mother-in-law is quite anal about this) My kids don't care about that because they're just happy to get the money. They get $50 each. Big money.
It is the tradition on the first day of Chinese New Year to visit your close relatives. For me, it's always about the bag.
We visited 3 homes in all. The first home, my husband's aunt's place is a Hainanese (Chinese dialect) home. It means I don't understand anything that is spoken. Everything pretty much sounds like how Chinese language is to a non-Chinese. Like " haaa ching chang pling plang eee caw". Okay, I'm exaggerating. Since I'm Chinese and I know some Chinese dialects, it really sounds like this to me: " haaa ching chang pling plang" .
I enjoyed the 2nd home the most because it's where my family gathers.
My kid brother had bought 5 bags from me last year to give away to "friends". As it turned out, he was giving them to my 4 sisters and my mom TODAY! How sweet. I was so taken aback but very pleased! My eldest sis who was a professional sewer was also present. She made all my Chinese New Year clothes for me when I was young and I loved them all. She doesn't know it but she inspired me to become a sewer. When I was younger, she saw me painstakingly drafting a pattern for a PJ bottom and she asked me what in the world I was doing. I told her I wanted to make a PJ bottom for one of my nieces and she proceeded to show me how it was done. She took the fabric I had, used her ARM as a measuring tape, used a pair of scissors to snip here, here and there and suddenly the fabric was cut and ready to be sewn. I couldn't believe my eyes. I sewed following her snips and I managed to sew a decent PJ bottom. I was in awe and wanted to be able to do what she did. No, I still can't sew clothes for humans to save my life but I think I'm halfway there with bags.
The 3rd home we rarely visited. It is where my husband's cousins gather. Ever the "business woman", I handed out my cards. Hehe.
Then my husband had to go to work. All in all, not a bad CNY altogether. My kids had the best time, eating all the forbidden food and collecting hongbao money. Big money.
Discarded hongbao packets sans money.
Tonight my One World One Heart Giveaway ends. So don't submit any more comments for the giveaway past tonight midnight Singapore time. The winner will be announced in tomorrow's (15 Feb) post. Good luck everyone.
Finally, have a grrrrrr Year of the Tiger. Be fierce.