Photo Essay: Chinese New Year at the Family Home | Speaking of China

19 Responses

  1. chinaelevatorstories
    chinaelevatorstories January 31, 2014 at 6:28 pm | | Reply

    You look great on the first pic and the dishes look delicious too! I have yet to celebrate Chinese New Year in China, but I think it would be a little less traditional than yours. Happy year of the horse!

  2. Anna
    Anna January 31, 2014 at 6:53 pm | | Reply

    Wonderful pictiures! They capture the atmosphere really well! Makes me feel like being there 🙂 Your parents-in-law really has prepared an amazing New Years dinner. Did you also get to eat jiaozi? We traditionally eat them at midnight?
    Are you going to visit more relatives the coming days? Or is that no custom where you live (as so many of your family have already been there for the CNYs dinner)?
    Anyhow, enjoy your time.
    Wish you and your familiy a happy horese year

  3. Eileen黃愛玲
    Eileen黃愛玲 January 31, 2014 at 9:16 pm | | Reply

    Happy Lunar New Year! 🙂
    Your pictures reminds me of my first Lunar New Year in Taiwan. 😀

  4. Susan Blumberg-Kason
    Susan Blumberg-Kason January 31, 2014 at 9:32 pm | | Reply

    Love these photos!!! A huge happy year of the horse to you, Jun, and the whole family! It’s so great to see how you’re celebrating the Spring Festival. Sadly, when I was in China, it was still taboo to respect the ancestors. People were afraid of getting in trouble for going back to the “old” ways. So we only had some simple red decorations, but no shrines or big red banners. Also, my former in-laws had to burn paper money in secret. It’s so nice to see that these traditions are back in full force. I guess that’s why I was so drawn to Hong Kong; they never stopped with these traditions.

  5. Ryan
    Ryan January 31, 2014 at 9:57 pm | | Reply

    Awesome photo essay, Joss. Here in Pittsburgh, it is just a typical bi-weekly Buddhist spread and incense. Tomorrow night is a big party with friends. Wife made 汤圆 (glutinous rice flour balls filled with a sweet roasted peanut filling), while I will be making 九层糕 (9-layer chewy jellies) shortly.

    Glad to see that you and Jun are doing to well, and love to see photos of your home and life there! 恭喜发财!

  6. Marta
    Marta January 31, 2014 at 10:22 pm | | Reply

    Happy new year!
    Was it very noisy with all the firecrackers? 🙂

  7. Constance - Foreign Sanctuary
    Constance - Foreign Sanctuary January 31, 2014 at 10:36 pm | | Reply

    What a great collection of pictures!! You captured the day’s activities to perfection!! What a delicious spread of food!!!

    I am always interested in the variations of customs so I do have a few questions. 🙂 Do most people decorate their bedroom doors? In Taiwan, it is only entrance door into the house. Also, I see that your in-laws burned the money on the floor. Do most people do that or do they use a metal ‘money burner’?

    I hope you are having an amazing Chinese New Year!! Gongxi Fa Cai – Happy Year of the Horse!!

  8. Rdm
    Rdm February 1, 2014 at 12:59 am | | Reply


    Happy New Year. I love your new house entrance and decoration. May your family succeed more in Horse Year.

    My sister was born in Horse year too. I’m from Dog year.

  9. Fred
    Fred February 1, 2014 at 1:27 am | | Reply

    Hi J.E. Thanks for sharing those photos. You and Jun both look super great! I am already salivating at the sight of those dishes. I cannot deny that you are simply the best!


  10. Katoli
    Katoli February 1, 2014 at 4:51 am | | Reply

    The picture of the table of dishes make me miss China so much! Wan Shi Ru Yi!

  11. Ashleigh Son
    Ashleigh Son February 1, 2014 at 6:37 am | | Reply

    Jocelyn. My goodness, that looks like a beautiful celebration. I am jealous, and officially starving after seeing that picture of all the food. ^___^ Traditions are the best.

  12. Nicki Chen
    Nicki Chen February 1, 2014 at 7:16 am | | Reply

    This is the best description of Chinese New Year I’ve seen. You walk us through it so we feel like we’re there. I loved all the little details: the steam coming out of the pots, the flames and smoke, the Christmas tree behind the table, the little girl in the high chair, the slippers on the porch, the snow peas and the quail eggs. Yum. You and Jun look great.

  13. AG
    AG February 1, 2014 at 11:24 am | | Reply



  14. Sveta
    Sveta February 1, 2014 at 2:27 pm | | Reply

    Happy Lunar New Years. This year I got sick 🙁 and ate a little bit of rice and Korean fried beef (bulgogi) Last year I went out to a restaurant, had a “good luck” dish of dumpling soup and ended up with a very bad year. I recall one time Lunar New Years fell on Valentines Day (2010 or 2009,) and my Korean ex drove over to give me a box of Ferrerro Rocher collection of candies 🙂 Since 2011 I tried to attend a Lunar Festival at a local university, but not really good years is all I can say. Guess this year I won’t be going there. Also, something random, been twelve years since I visited Russia. (We flew out on December 25th, 2011) and stayed there for a few weeks or so.

    Beautiful pictures Jocelyn and let’s hope this year will be a blessing for all of us in many ways 😀

  15. ordinary malaysian
    ordinary malaysian February 1, 2014 at 6:05 pm | | Reply

    We are also busy welcoming the year of the horse and the noise and din of firecrackers and lion dance troupes coming to the homes to perform can be a bit overwhelming sometimes but we don’t mind. It is once a year and without them, what is CNY? We use metal containers to burn the “money” offerings, but some simply use the floor like your in-laws. Malaysian Chinese families nowadays hardly use couplets to decorate the door, except among the more “traditional” households. What a loss! Love to see the red lanterns! Many Malaysian Chinese homes do still have them lighted during CNY. The was a big spread you had! 新年快乐。 万事如意!恭喜发财! to you, John and your in-laws.

  16. Claire
    Claire February 2, 2014 at 11:31 am | | Reply

    Your pictures are brilliant – there is nothing better than having all of the family together. And the food looks delicious 😀 Happy New Year!

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