Thursday, January 30, 2014

Happy Chinese New Year 2014

Hello everyone, Rino, Frog Prince, and I wanted to wish you all a very happy Chinese New Year!

Here's Rino, "whining like a horse" for his red envelope.  Get it?  Because it's the year of the Horse! 

"Where's my red envelope???"

For those of you who may not be familiar with the holiday, it is essentially a celebration of the new year according to the lunar calendar (which is based on cycles of the moon).  For the chinese, we also have 12 animal signs that represent each lunar year which is why I made that horse joke...

Anyways, there are various versions of the legend on how the zodiacs came about but the essence of the story is that a higher being decided to call all animals to a race.  The order in which they finished the race would become the order of the chinese zodiac.  It has been rumored that there would be 13 animal signs if the rat hadn't purposely let the cat sleep in and miss the race.  [See Rino?  That's what you get for sleeping so much!]

So the order of the zodiac is Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Boar.  And since last year was the year of the Snake, this year, it is the year of the Horse.

Each of these zodiacs also determine a person's characteristics based on the animal and how they finished the race.  If you want to learn more about these characteristics, feel free to buy yourself a chinese zodiac calendar or search the internets. =]

Now, the reason Rino is whining about his red envelope is that it's always been a cultural tradition that elders (or those who are married) pass out long red envelopes filled with money to the younger generation.  It is their way of wishing good luck and happiness to the future.  Rino is getting his first one ever today so he's super excited.

How do you and your pets celebrate Chinese New Year or your special holiday?  Let me know in the comments!

Thanks for reading!  Happy Chinese New Year!
- Awkward Penguin

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