Saturday, January 24, 2009

Chinese New Year Gift Giving: Lai See and Family Photos


I have always liked the Chinese New Year tradition of receiving money from my family.  Who wouldn’t?  I remember as a kid anxiously awaiting that extra bit of cash just after Christmas time and although traditionally it is supposed to be lucky money, I have never held onto it for very long.  When Neal and I got married we decided to start this same tradition with all our nieces and nephews and while it is a bit of a stretch for us today we are still glad we are continuing this tradition. 

The amount you give is not so much important but growing up we always got $1 for every year old we were.  I still get some from my parents today but it was a smart move on their part that they set a limit early on as I would surely strive to live to 1 million if I could….

I’ve saved all of Aedan’s up until this point and maybe I’ll continue to do so for a while or maybe we’ll just let him loose on a shopping spree in Toys R Us.  Some of the ones in the picture above are from Aedan’s collection, others are ones for this current year, some are in foreign currency, all are extremely beautiful and impossible for me to read!


This upcoming new year is the year of the Ox, and each year I make a different card to accompany our new year packages to family and friends with the animal and the Chinese character for that animal for the new year.  I think I get less and less creative as the years go by but I still do it and will eventually have “collected them all”.  We also sometimes include printouts with the year’s Chinese Zodiac animal traits, and little coloring pages, activities, party ideas, and games for the kids to give them a little taste of the culture and the holiday. 

We will usually put a new family photo or a new photo of Aedan with the cards as part of the gift in part because taking pictures in January is a whole lot less stress than taking them before Christmas.  So here are a few peeks at our photos:



Don’t forget, tomorrow is Chinese New Year’s Eve!


  1. I have a hard time believing that you get less creative about ANYTHING! Psssh! You're the most freaking creative person I know! I love this tradition of yours and I know that your kids and your nieces/nephews are going to look back in awe. Happy New Year!

  2. Those pics are great!! What a beautiful family!

  3. Great pics! Happy new year! Hopefully, the year of the ox is a lucky one!

  4. Wonderful family pics. and yes, you are amazing to even take on trying to be creative, and don't worry you are still about 1 million times more creative than me.


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