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Welcoming the Year of the Dog

The Chinese New Year, also known as the ‘Spring Festival’, is China’s most important traditional festival, celebrated at the turn of the lunisolar Chinese calendar and lasting for 7 days. According to the Chinese 12-year animal zodiac calendar, February 16th, 2018, marks the beginning of the Year of the Dog.

The Dog is both sympathetic and intelligent with a binary approach to life and relationships with others. Honest and faithful, the Dog is also irascible in nature, the most conservative of all the signs of the Chinese zodiac. In the professional world, the Dog is often a lawyer, educator, judge, politician, doctor, philosopher or writer.

Of interest is the fact that the current American President was born in the Year of the Dog, as were fellow politicians, Winston Churchill, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. Other notables born under the Dog sign include Prince William, Kate Middleton, Mother Theresa and David Bowie.

There are many traditions associated with the Chinese New Year which is now celebrated almost globally. These include fireworks, bell ringing and colourful dragon puppet parades. Families gather together for a dinner on New Year’s Eve, essentially to clean their houses, “sweeping away bad fortune” before New Year’s Day. There is also the practice known as ‘hongbao’ where younger family members receive gifts of “lucky money” in red envelopes. The digital age has altered this custom slightly as most teens now have red envelope apps on their cell phones to accommodate etransfers!

Considering selling your home this year? According to Chinese astrology, the luckiest decorating colours of 2018 are earth tones, yellow, green and blue. Brown and beige are the colours of the earth, representing stability, safety and loyalty, ideal for dining or living rooms. Yellow is the colour of joy, happiness and creativity, considered a beneficial decorating colour, especially for the older generation!

Xin Nian Kuai Le!  Happy New Year!  San Nin Faai Lok!

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