Monday was Chinese New Year and we were excited to celebrate! There were celebrations in our area over the weekend, but we have found enjoying this holiday at home is right for us. After all, that's what their Chinese families are doing in China!
It just made sense to incorporate this special day into our school routine.
I pulled out all the things we have collected from our many trips to China. First thing was for everyone to choose a Chinese silk for photos~
The kids are always so kind and willing to let me get portraits of them in their silks (don't know how much longer it will last~
One of my favorite photo sessions of the year~
It was really fun to pull out each special item, remember who it was chosen for, and discuss its Chinese heritage~
Everyone had a turn playing the Chinese horn and playing paddle ball~
Probably the most interesting item was the abacus so we watched a video to show us how it works. We also studied the intricate silk stitches on our tapestries~
There were fan dances and puppet shows~
Lantern making, mandarin character writing, and decorating~
The day ended with Chinese take out and sweet friends waiting to travel to Korea for their little boy~
My Thoughts on Chinese New Year~
When EK was younger, we took her to everything we could Chinese related to be with other children adopted from China. It was considered good practice to immerse our adopted children in their Chinese culture and heritage. She didn't really get that much out of it... maybe over stimulation, but it was good for Scott and I to be other families like us. We LOVE all our fellow adoptive family friends!!! Plus living out in the country makes for a very long drive to most events.
When SJ came home, we continued to attend a few outside celebrations but with each passing year and new children home, it was just too much. Too many to cocoon from strangers, manage feeding them, and visit with all the families (which is what we wanted to do). It became very evident our celebrations needed to be near or at home.
SO over the last few years, we have either gone out or ordered Chinese take out with family/friends. It's fun to focus on our own children and where they lived in China. Reading lifebooks and watching their videos is fun for them too.
Making this holiday personal has been such a blessing. Yesterday as we discussed 'their' China, they were SO proud of their heritage and culture. The number one reason in celebrating Chinese New Year is building self worth through knowledge of their culture. Being proud to be Chinese will go far in life when they are adults.
In my heart as a mom, it allows me another opportunity to show respect and love toward the family and country that gave our children life. We also spend time praying for China, their seven birth families, and all the children still there waiting for their forever family.
And lastly, it gave us a way to celebrate sweet CallaAnne who is enjoying this great celebration with a precious foster family.
Our prayer for all that is Chinese~
"The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace."' ~ Numbers 6:24-26