It’s February, which signifies the beginning of a new year in the lunar calendar! Sticking with the annual twelve animal cycle that is characteristic of Chinese New Year, 2021 is deemed the Year of the Ox. Although many celebratory events may appear to be a little different during these unprecedented times, the spirit of the new year remains the same regardless. The Lunar New Year symbolizes family unity and prosperity with most festivities lasting for fifteen days. It is meant to be celebrated with plenty of unique Asian dishes, with each dish embodying a different meaning. For example, one might eat Chinese dumplings which symbolize wealth, fish (prosperity), sweet rice balls (family harmony), or the iconic longevity noodles. Throughout the fifteen days, family and friends exchange money-filled red envelopes (红包 hóngbāo), which are believed to bring good luck to the recipient. The fifteenth day of festivities is called the Lantern Festival, which as the name suggests, is celebrated with colorful and brightly lit lanterns. In addition to hanging lanterns, many people also eat a special kind of rice ball called 汤圆(tāngyuán). The round shape of the tangyuan, as well as the bowls they are served in, emphasize cohesion amongst relatives and close friends. Evidently, the theme of Lunar New Year is all about unity with family. Here at Team Sprocket, we are all an extended family. No matter what obstacles come our way, we can withstand them together as a team. Let’s all obtain infinite recharge with the power of togetherness (and food)!
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