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Chinese New Year of the Water Snake starts on February 10, 2013, at the new moon. As usual, the celebrations last for fifteen days, until the next full moon. Such long celebration period provides many awesome opportunities to welcome the auspicious energy of the year ahead. Chinese New Year Celebration is as different from the Western one as it gets, yet the idea is the same: saying goodbye to the old year and ushering in the new year in style and with good cheer.
A Recipe for a Successful & Auspicious Chinese New Year Celebration:
1. Colors to wear. Traditionally for the Chinese New Year, you should dress in red. Red symbolizes the ultimate color of energy, beauty – and fire. It is the color that energizes everything it touches. Red is especially great for women. Gold jewelry is very good as generally, the New Year colors are red and gold. Men can dress in red, or blue, as blue is the color of water, money and career success.
Princess Lily ready to celebrate the Chinese New Year of the Snake – pretty on red
Chinese lanterns during a New Year Celebration
As this is the Year of the Water Snake, and water colors are blue and black, you can also wear one of these colors to usher in the new energy. If wearing black (I personally adore black), try to accessorize with reds, blues and jewelry, to add more yang energy.
2. Celebrate with a wonderful spread and lots of prosperous foods on the table, even if you have a small family or are alone. Such auspicious table is a symbol and a signal to the Universe that you are ready to start the New Year of success and prosperity.
3. Share the joy of the Holiday with family and friends. Friends at the dinner table bring in the yang energy and happiness.
4. Invite symbols of prosperity into your home. These include money trees, auspicious bamboo, persimmons, mandarins and oranges, and of course, Gods of Wealth and Prosperity. I have lots of various symbols of prosperity in my home.
From my personal collection: Laughing Buddha, one of the beloved gods of prosperity. I adore his happy continence
My auspicious bamboo
5. Creating a wealth vase is always a great idea. If you already have one, be sure to refresh it for the New Year! Interestingly enough, wealth vases are extremely popular not only in China but also in Tibet, where the Buddhist monks conduct very elaborate ceremonies to consecrate them. Pretty fascinating stuff!
6. Fill the red prosperity envelopes (also called red Chinese packets) with auspicious money and Chinese coins, and keep them in your wallet so you never run out of money.
7. Clean up the house and do all of your laundry in advance to get rid of the old energy and free up the space for the new.
8. The above are all the do’s. Ah, and here is the dreaded don’t! Don’t work on the first day of the Chinese New Year, don’t do any cleaning, repairs, or god forbid, vacuuming or sweeping with the broom on that day, as it’s considered extremely inauspicious – akin to sucking out or sweeping away all your wealth and prosperity. (Note, this rule applies only to the first day of the celebrations.)
But what if I have to work on the first day of the Chinese New Year, you ask? Well, if you have to, you have to. Just do your best, perhaps designating a different day for celebration instead. The NYC Chinatown merchants routinely do just that because all of their customers want to celebrate. Restaurants and shops are full and they have to make money while they can. I know some of the Chinatown merchants, and they are telling me that they have to work despite the traditional taboo. But luckily for most of us, this Chinese New Year starts on a Sunday! Yay!
Once, a roof repairman showed up at my house just on the first day of the Chinese New Year despite the fact that I specifically warned him not to come on that date. Alas, as it usually happens in such cases, he mixed up the dates. I had to tell him to leave asap and come back some other day. You can imagine the look on his face!
I am currently at my Catskills residence and my family is in NYC. We will be celebrating together in a week or so, when I join them in the City. But I’m still preparing a cozy little celebration of the New Year’s Eve. I baked a VERY HEALTHY cake and prepared auspicious salmon. I also made some of my Dragon Pearl jasmine tea in my Snake Tetsubin teapot (very appropriate for this year!). Yum! I invited a local friend to help me celebrate, while I finish up my business here before heading to NYC. By the way, I’ve taken some iPhone pics of my little Chinese New Year’s spread and I’ll post them on my blog just as soon as I figure out how to upload them. Or, most likely, I’ll wait for my wiz of a husband to do it for me.
Stay tuned, much more coming your way!
Wishing everyone a very Happy Chinese New Year of the Water Snake!
Also read: All About the Year of the Water Snake
Lada Ray is the Internationally Certified Feng Shui Master Practitioner and author, including best-selling mystery/thriller GOLD TRAIN (Accidental Spy Russia Adventure) & the new 5* rated metaphysical fantasy/thriller, THE EARTH SHIFTER.