Monday, January 23, 2012

The Dragon In Me

Happy Chinese New Year!

We are saying farewell to the year of the rabbit and welcoming the year of the dragon. Malls are filled with lanterns, cherry blossoms, lion dances, and dragons. I am loving the festive atmosphere.

This dragon is 6 stories tall. It's very impressive.

This is probably the best video.  It is of a lion dance outside of a hotel we happened upon.

Here it is throwing mandarin oranges out of its mouth.

This is a video of a LED dragon dance in the Pavilion Mall.

Here is a lion dance in the grocery store.

This one is a dragon dance in the KLCC mall.

January 23 is the first day of the Chinese new year. We celebrated by giving the children each a ang pow packet (red envelopes filled with money), chopsticks with their zodiac, and a mandarin orange. The festivities are supposed to last 15 days.

Maya came home from school and asked me what her Chinese zodiac animal was. So together we figured it out.

I am a dragon. A red fire dragon to be exact. The mightiest of all. Others are attracted to dragons, especially their colorful personalities, but deep down, dragons prefer to be alone.  Perhaps that is because they’re most successful when working alone.  Their preference to be alone can come across as arrogance or conceitedness, but these qualities aren’t applicable.  Dragons have tempers that can flare fast! (Really? Me?)

Dave is a wood rabbit. Rabbit symbolizes such character traits as creativity, compassion, and sensitivity. Rabbits are friendly, outgoing and prefer the company of others. They also prefer to avoid conflict. In confrontational situations, rabbits approach calmly and with consideration for the other party. Classy, sophisticated, expressive, well-mannered and stylish, those born under the sign of the rabbit enjoy learning about cultural issues and learning about people from other countries.

Maya is a fire dog. Dog symbolizes character traits such as loyalty, compatibility and kindness. Dogs frequently offer kind words and useful advice, always listening and lending a shoulder when necessary. Dogs are determined individuals; always wanting to master a new subject before moving on and always finishing what they start. Dogs value friendships; they’re loyal, honest, trustworthy and reliable and have strong morals and ethics. Dogs at times can also be temperamental, narrow-minded and stubborn. Hmmmm.

Ethen is an earth oxen. Though he is young, and I am still starting to see some of his personality shine through, I can see some similarities. Oxen possess such character traits as dependability, strength and determination. Oxen are tolerant individuals who believe that the road to success involves hard work and scrupulous behavior; they don’t believe in taking shortcuts. Oxen aren’t very sociable and rarely participate in group activities. Just the other day during playgroup, Ethen took some toys and went to play by himself in the kitchen.

I had to laugh at this little boy.  That's exactly the kind of photo I would have gotten if I would have forced Maya to stand by the God of Prosperity.  Prosperity is looking pretty grim.

金玉滿堂 Jīnyùmǎntáng - "May your wealth [gold and jade] come to fill a hall."


Robert said...

Shirlee, absolutely wonderful post! I wish we were there to enjoy this with you. Find out what Ronda and I have for signs with the Chinese zodiac. What a neat experience you all are having. I think Dave looks very fashionable in the special garb and you look lovely. Love the kids also.

Sharla said...

BJK and I watched all the videos and some of them twice! :) Can you email us a few pics - he is now making a Chinese New Year Book AND Powerpoint! Gotta love this kid -- where do I find his Chinese zodiac? :)