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Monday, January 29, 2018

The Year of the Dog--Chinese New Year

Disclosure: I was sent these products in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. 

It is hard to believe the lunar new year is approaching. This year it is February 16, 2018. This coming year will be the year of the dog in the Chinese horoscope. I always love when it is the year of the dog since that is the sign I was born under. Now this year we had a New Year's Eve themed birthday party for Hazel and one of the things I tried to do was have some different cultures represented so we had a table set up for the Chinese New Year with items from Oriental Trading


We used many of the items at the party and had some in the favor bags. At her party we had a noisemaker hunt and included in our hunt were Mini Oriental Noisemakers

Hazel has always had a fascination with folded fans and picked out these Oriental Folding Hand Fans which we used in our display as well as in the favor bags. 
We had put the fans in the favor bags for the girls, but a few of the boys asked to have one as well. They all seemed to love it. Now in China often there are red doors or red decorations on doors for the new year. We used a red fringe curtain to make one of the doorways red for the party. The kids however managed to pull it down and were using ti as a cape at points in the party. They had so much fun!!

On New Year's Chinese children are often given red envelopes with money in it. I wanted to do something with this tradition, so we got the Chinese New Year Red Envelope Craft Kit

The craft is very easy. It has self-adhesives so it goes together without any other supplies. It even comes with a foam coin. We also got Good Fortune Coins to use in them as well. 

The coins come in a take-out like container with an animal pictured on each side. The container does not very sturdy, but it works fine. The coins come in red and gold and have pictures of the twelve animals of the Chinese Zodiac.

We also got these Color Your Own Chinese Calendars. Hazel colored this one for me. I found a few uses for them. One was to use under the plates at a place setting.

The other idea was a matching game with the coins. People could pull a coin out and match it to the animal on their calendar. The person to get all 12 different animals wins.

For our place setting we got Year of the Dog Dessert Plates and Gold Paper Chargers.(We used the gold chargers with her birthday party plates as well.) I added a plain red paper plate in between them.
I love how the layered plates and charger look as well as having the fun favors around it. We also got the gold plastic forks and gold plastic spoons which we also used for our celebration as well as her birthday party. Her party was pink and gold themed. To display the silverware we used a simple mason jar with a red tulle ribbon on it.




This of course works for any party with a change of the ribbon. The final thing I got for our Chinese New Year celebration is a set of Chinese New Year Photo Props. The kids had a lot of fun with these at Hazel's party and Hazel and I had some fun taking a few selfies. In fact Hazel has been using the glasses when she plays school with her dolls. 



Now I mentioned it is the year of the dog. Of course I always enjoy sharing a book to go with the new animal. This time I am sharing The Bronze Dog by Li Jian. 
This is a bilingual book. It tells the tale of two poor brothers who are working in their field when one discovers a large bronze dog in the dirt. They are excited that they can sell it for a good amount of money. However the dog grows and then swallows the eldest brother. The dog offers the younger brother all the things the brothers dreamed of buying with the money but the younger brother keeps telling the dog he just wants his brother back. 

 The illustrations are meant to look like the ancient stone relief that was popular during the Han Dynasty. They are not all that colorful or detailed, but they introduce a bit more of the culture to the reader. I love that the story is in both English and Chinese. The last page of the book shares a bit about the year of the dog and the characteristics that go with those born under the dog. It also explains about the stone relief artwork. 

The tale itself is simple and short, but the story is a good one with a lesson about love and family. It shows the qualities of the dog: loyalty, dependable and stubborn. Each of these characteristics are in the story as well. I hope you will check it out!! For more about Chinese culture and Chinese New Year check out these posts. How are you celebrating the Chinese New Year?


Chinese New Year | Multicultural Kid Blogs
Welcome to our fourth annual Chinese New Year blog hop! Lunar New Year, more commonly known as Chinese New Year, starts on February 16. It is the beginning of the Year of the Dog, and we have lots of great ideas for celebrating it with kids! Don't miss our series from last year, 2016 and 2015, and you can find even more on our Chinese New Year Pinterest board:

Participating Blogs