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December 26 of the Lunar Calendar


Custom: Preparation of Meat and Shopping for the Spring Festival

When there was insufficient food in the past, the majority of ordinary people could enjoy a comparatively lavish feast only during the Spring Festival can be started on the day. Besides meat and fish, people also purchase cigarettes, wines, fruits, gifts and festive ornaments.






December 27 of the Lunar Calendar


Custom: Bating and Going to the Market

According to the traditional folk customs of the Han ethnic group, people should take a bath and do their washings to get rid of bad luck from the past year and welcome the new year. Besides the purpose of purchasing goods, people also go shopping to enjoy the exciting atmosphere of the Spring Festival in advance.






December 28 of the Lunar Calendar


Custom: Leaving Dough and Pasting Spring Couplets

Besides meat and side dishes, people also prepare cooked wheaten food for the Spring Festival. People in north China mainly eat noodles. They leaven dough, steam buns or cook noodles during the Spring Festival. Today, people also paste spring couplets and pictures. With concise texts and festive patterns, people show their welcome for the Spring Festival. In addition, these activities indicate that the Spring Festival begins.






December 29 of the Lunar Calendar


Custom: Paying Tribute to Ancestors

Preparation for the Spring Festival should be completed today, the day before New Year’s Eve. Worshipping ancestors is also a major event on this day, by which people express their gratitude and yearning for their ancestors during the important festival.







December 30 of the Lunar Calendar


December 30 of lunar calendar, also called “Chuxi” (New Year’s Eve), is the last day of the year according to lunar calendar. It means saying goodbye to the last year and welcoming the new year. Chuxi is to Chinese people what Christmas Eve is to Westerners. And it’s also the climax of the whole Spring Festival. There are many customs in every period of time on this special day and those customs have been wellobserved for thousands of years.





Preparing for the Reunion Dinner



In the morning, every family begins killing chicken and fishes as well as cutting meat and vegetables to prepare for the Reunion Dinner.




Praying to Ancestors



Although different regions have different custom, many will pray to their ancestors before the dinner on this day. All the family members hosed by their patriarch offer incense and kowtow to the memorial tablets or the pictures of their ancestors, then they burn paper money and pray one by one. They also present the main dishes of the Reunion Dinner including pork as offerings to their respect to the ancestors.




Enjoying the Reunion Dinner & Giving Lucky Money



The two wonderful meals at this day are called “Reunion Dinners”, among which the New Year’s Eve Dinner is much more important.

There are abundant dishes for the New Year’s Eve Dinner. The dishes are of a wide variety and they all imply the meaning of good luck. Fore example, “fish” shares a similar pronunciation with “Yu” which stands for “abundance”; beetroot sounds like “Cai Tou” that means one can have good luck in the new year. Besides, there are chicken, duck, fish, pork and beef in the dinner, which symbolize a rich new year. While is Sichuan, every family has home-made sausage and cured meat as well as Chinese liquor.

During dinner time, Chinese people do not just eat and drink although the food and drinks are very delicious. They also say some “best wishes” such as “I wish you good health and a long life”, “may all go well with you”, etc. to the elders, and then hope to get lucky money from those happy elders. It is said that the lucky money can drive out evil spirits because it shares the same pronunciation with “Sui” in Chinese (meaning evil spirits), thus children who get lucky money will be safe in the new year. Surely, receiving lucky money is the favorite “event” of every child during the Spring Festival.






Watching Spring Festival Gala



Shown during the Chinese New Year’s Eve, the Spring Festival Gala is a large variety show produced by China Central Television. Although it has been criticized for many times because of its outdated contents and forms, the Gala is still an important program for Chinese families to sit together, enjoy family love and share happiness in the Spring Festival.





Offering Incense and Praying



Near the midnight, the sound of the Gala has been already covered by the thunder of fireworks outside. At the moment, all the family members go to toll New Year bells and offer incense at 24:00 in a nearby temple. Every year, large temples in different regions hold grand Spring Ritual for Blessings on New Year’s Eve. People put their palms together devoutly and pray for a wonderful new year at the crowded temple. Such activity will last to the end of the first day of the year.




January 1 of the Lunar Calendar


Custom: New-Year Visits and Collecting Fortune

Visiting relatives is still considered a major event on the first day of the first Lunar month. Also, it is the birthday of “broom”, so it is taboo to use broom or take out trash, otherwise, you might sweep away good fortunes and suffer financial losses.






January 2 of the Lunar Calendar


Custom: Married Daughters Return to Parents’ Home

Married daughters visit their parents with their husbands on this day, so this day is also called “welcome son-in-law day”. The couple must bring some gifts and red envelopes along with them, and give them to children from the wife’s side of the family. They have to return husband’s family before dinner.






January 3 of the Lunar Calendar


Custom: Staying at Home

According to custom, people should not pay visits to others on the third day of the first lunar month as it is very likely to quarrel with others on this day. However, this has already become obsolete. It is a rare opportunity for people to get reunited during the Spring Festival, so less and less people follow this tradition.






January 4 of the Lunar Calendar


Custom: Worshiping the God of Wealth

It is the day for worshipping the God of Wealth. In the past, if an employee was not invited to worship the God of Wealth with the boss, he/she had to resign according to the unwritten rule.






January 5 of the Lunar Calendar


Custom: Breaking Five

It is the day to “drive away five ghosts of poverty” (Poverty in intelligence, knowledge, literacy, fate, and friendship). People light firecrackers in the morning form inside to outside of their houses to scare away all the “ghosts”.






January 6 of the Lunar Calendar


Custom: Opening for Business

After lighting firecrackers, shops reopen for business on this day. It is said that boys of the age of 12 are the most welcomed as the number of “12” us double “6”, which means “everything will go well smoothly”.






January 15 of the Lunar Calendar


Custom: Dumplings and Lighting Sky Lanterns

As the first full moon night in the new year, the fifteenth day is also called Lantern Festival, named after the long-time tradition of appreciating lanterns. One should not miss Yuanxiao, glutinous rice dumplings, often stuffed with white sugar, rose petals, sesames and so on. The stuffing and round shape symbolize sweet life and reunion. Lantern Festival draws the curtain of the entire Chinese New Year celebration.








春节 The Spring Festival

农历 lunar calendar

正月 lunar January; the first month by lunar calendar

除夕 New Year's Eve; eve of lunar New Year

初一 the beginning of New Year

元宵节 The Lantern Festival

过年 Guo-nian; have the Spring Festival

对联 poetic couplet: two successive rhyming lines in poetry

春联 Spring Festival couplets

剪纸 paper-cuts

年画 New Year paintings

买年货 special purchases for the Spring Festival ; do Spring Festival shopping


敬酒 propose a toast

灯笼 lantern: a portable light

烟花 fireworks

爆竹 firecrackers (People scare off evil spirits and ghosts with the loud pop.)

红包 red packets (cash wrapped up in red paper, symbolize fortune and wealth in the coming year.)

舞狮 lion dance (The lion is believed to be able to dispel evil and bring good luck.)

舞龙 dragon dance (to expect good weather and good harvests)

戏曲 traditional opera

杂耍 variety show; vaudeville

灯谜 riddles written on lanterns

灯会 exhibit of lanterns

守岁 staying-up

拜年 pay New Year's call; give New Year's greetings; New Year's visit




1. With best wishes for a happy New Year!


2. I hope you have a most happy and prosperous New Year.


3. To wish you joy at this holy season. Wishing every happiness will always be with you.


4. Season's greetings and sincere wishes for a bright and happy New Year!


5. Much joy to you in the up coming year. May the warmest wishes, happy thoughts and friendly greetings come at New Year and stay with you all the year through.




1. May joy and health be with you always.


2. May happiness follow you wherever you go!


3. A special card from your grandson.


4. Wishing you and yours a happy happy new year.


5. A beautiful wish to you and your family --- live a happy life and everything goes well.




1. Rich blessings for health and longevity is my special wish for you in the coming year.


2. Good luck, good health, hood cheer. I wish you a happy New Year.


3. With best wishes for a happy New Year!


4. I hope there will be a promotion for you this year.


5. Wishing you success in your career and a happy family!




1. Much joy to you in the upcoming year.


2. Thank you for all you have done for us.


3. We'll be here after the New Year.


4. We won't forget you this holiday season.


5. Thank you for your hard work and patience on this holiday season.




1.Enjoy a year filled with joy and love.


2. Happy new year, my best friend.


3. A New Year greeting to cheer you, my good friend.


4. We will be having New Year Party at Wang Pings this year. You are welcome to join us!


5. Take your passion and make it come true.