A fun and diverse custom occurs right around New Years,
with many countries celebrating the advent of another
year with traditions that speak to kids. Here are some ways
children ring in the new year around the world.
Chinese New Year is the most timely because it is right
around the corner. The year of the Rat actually begins on
January 25th this year. Red is the main celebratory color, and
décor includes hanging red lanterns in streets and doorways,
intricate red paper cutouts of animals and plants reminiscent
of snowflakes, and blooming flowers. The reunion dinner,
which occurs on the eve of Chinese New Year, is considered
the most important meal of the year and is meant to be a
special time with family. One of the most anticipated customs
for kids is the exchanging of gifts that occurs during the New
Year. The most common New Year gifts are red envelopes
that contain money, which are given to children and retirees.
Mothers make a special bread for their family, kneading
luck and good wishes into the dough before it is baked.
Families hang little homemade straw or wooden dolls
outside their homes for good luck.
Colombians carry empty suitcases around the block in
hopes of a travel-filled year.