Sunday, February 1, 2009

Year of the Ox: Let's party!

It's Chinese New Year!...and what better excuse to brighten up the month and have a party. You can count on us to celebrate the "lesser known holidays" or the "underdog" holidays as my neighbor put it. Just wait 'til Earth Day--that's gonna be good.
Chinese New Year actually is a pretty darn big deal--just not in the middle of UT. It lasts 15 days (why hasn't America adopted these long celebrations?) It's all about good luck and prosperity, family unity, and lots of food. To get ready for the New Year you are supposed to buy new clothes, get a haircut, and clean the entire house by sweeping out all the bad luck. That is what we did yesterday to get ready for our party (just the all-day cleaning part). Unfortunately, our mop head broke and our vacuum has now ....sucked it's last crumb...officially dead....Good for BD, he mopped the floors Cinderella style. Wouldn't his mama be proud?
We invited a few couples from the ward to join us for either dinner at the Chinese restaurant and or games at our house after. About 8 couples showed up and decided to do both. Our guests indulged me by taking my very educational Chinese New Year Quiz. Here's a sample so you can see how you do.
1. Part of celebrating New Years involves honoring your ancestors by visiting their graves and also visiting elderly relatives. If you do not visit them the Chinese believe you will:
a) drop dead b) get bird flu c) have family discord d) lose money

2. This animal is native only to China
a) llama b) koala c) panda d) dragon

3. During New Year's it is tradition for adults to give decorated red envelopes filled with money to children and unmarried adults. These are called:
a) Buddah's b) gimi gimi's c) moo goo gai pan's d) Ang Pow's

4. The following are Chinese inventions:
a) silk, paper, fireworks, dominoes, toothbrush
b) silk, paper, fireworks, badminton, chocolate
c) silk, paper, fireworks, soap, nachos
d) planes, trains, automobiles, football

We played a numbers game which involves dice, and wrestling pens away from people as they try to write to 100. (Sher knows what I'm talking about) We also played a new game from our family reunion called Hitchhiker. I won't explain in detail--just imagine BD doing a Mr. T impression-- Lots of laughter. I think everyone had fun--at least they didn't join the girls in the back bedroom for some Fairytopia.
Like t said, Gung hay fat choy! Answers to the quiz if you really want them ( c,c,d,a)
Here's to getting ready for Earth Day....and all the birthday parties in between.

Back to American fare, here is a peanut butter recipe we made tonight. It's right up there with gummy peachies in a totally different sort of way :
PB Truffle cookies
1 cup PB
1 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. baking soda

Mix altogether. Bake on ungreased cookie sheet 350 degrees for 8 minutes.
I think to make it extra heavenly you could add PB chips....mmmm.


stephanie said...

How fun! that was a great idea. I didn't do so well on the quiz 50%.

T said...

I missed one on the quiz... I thought gimmi, gimmi, gimmi's was too funny to not choose it (especially since I had no idea what the answer was!)

...and not to criticize, but it's not the year of the rat is it? I'm pretty sure that was last year...

I think we'd celebrate more minor holidays, but so many of them are also birthdays in our household that I can't imagine doing a party for earth day AND Q... luckily he beats out the earth for importance!

LC said...

Good job t--I think you are right--it is the year of the Ox. That was just part of the quiz and you scored big! hee hee. I'll be updated the title...

cold cocoa said...

So how many kids ended up at your house?
You guys know how to have a good time. I guess I celebrate Chinese New Year every day just by wearing clothes and using paper? Who would have guessed paper?

Megz said...

I've read a few books based in China lately so I feel like I'm an expert and scored accordingly. Not to mention we watched a lot of the Chinese Olympics so I'm like a native.
Way to be fun and social. I like thinking about throwing fun parties, but not really.

LC said...

And what books would those be Megz?
CC--we didn't have any kids except our own--that would have been way too crazy even for me.

Laura said...

Hey! You stole my idea...kinda. We didn't actually get around to celebrating, but we did open fortune cookies!I planned on making the red paper envelopes and putting money in them, but I didn't have any red paper or any money...oh, well.