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Remembering Chinese New Year 2020

Chinese New Year was a joyous celebration on our 7Acres Campus, as the Rat appeared. The older teens, Trudy and Sunny, made a delectable feast of Chinese treats for the staff, volunteers, and others who stayed on campus during the holiday. Earlier in the day, Maggie (Tian Xin Xin) and two nannies made jiaozi (handmade dumplings stuffed with meat and veggies) from scratch, one of the most traditional New Year’s foods there is. If you’ve ever tried to make them yourself, you know just how challenging it is to fold them correctly, so we’re super proud of Maggie for her ability to learn this traditional skill! Typically, Chinese children learn how to do this from their older family members during the holiday.

The kids received their traditional Chinese Hongbao at the meal, a lucky red envelope with money inside. They all giggled with glee as they opened the little ruby-colored treasure packets. After the feast, we went outside to continue celebrating the Year of the Rat. Usually, we shoot off fireworks, but this year – because of a ban on fireworks in our Development Zone – we weren’t able to do so. However, our neighbors in the surrounding villages illuminated the skies for us with plenty of fireworks and sonic booms! The kids lit some sparklers and made beautiful displays by waving their arms in various circular motions while we all enjoyed the patterns they made. While the kids played, the adults gathered around the campfire and sipped our favorite beverages – talking, listening to music, and enjoying each other’s company. Despite all the scary news about the coronavirus, we thoroughly enjoyed the most important holiday on the Chinese calendar. The Chinese say “Gong Xi Fa Cai” or “Xin Nian Kuai Le” during the holiday – but no matter how you say it, we wish you all a very Happy Chinese New Year!

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