14 things you need to do for a lucky Chinese New Year
Get ready for a lucky year ahead, regardless of your animal sign's horoscope!
MANILA, Philippines – Whether you're predicted to have a great Year of the Earth Dog this February 16 or not, it's always best to prepare for your best year yet.
We spoke to feng shui expert Princess Lim Fernandez to know more about what we can do before, during, and after the Chinese New Year to boost your luck this 2018.
Clean your home
As early as February 1, you should start cleaning and clearing out your home of clutter in anticipation of the new year. If you need to clean out your gutters or give your house a fresh coat of paint, now is the time to do it. Don’t forget your garden too! Trim the bushes, pull out the weeds and tidy up your lawn to start the year fresh.
Throw out broken gadgets and give away old clothes
Part of cleaning up is getting rid of the things that no longer serve you.
If you have appliances or gadgets that don’t work anymore, it’s time to throw them out so they don’t take up space anymore and stop gathering dust. If you haven’t used an item of clothing in the past two to 3 years, give it away – someone might make better use of it.
Before you ask for blessings for the Year of the Earth Dog, give thanks. February 9 is the day of thanksgiving this 2018. Whatever your religion, take some time on this day to visit your house of worship and say thank you for the blessings you received during the Year of the Fire Rooster, whether those are blessings of peace or the blessing of lessons you learned in the past year.
Get a haircut
Fresh starts call for haircuts. Whether it’s just a trim or a full-on chop. February 3, 7, and 10 are good days for a haircut before Chinese New year.
Bathe in pomelo water
On February 15, the day of Chinese New Year’s Eve, it’s best to cleanse yourself right before the evening’s celebrations.
Princess recommends taking a bath in pomelo water, which is water that has been boiled with pomelo leaves. This symbolizes removing bad luck and the residual bad energy from the past year and welcoming in the good vibes of the Year of the Earth Dog.
Decorate your house with flowers and fruits
Bring out the blooming flowers and fresh fruits on February 15! Prepare pomelo, pineapples, oranges, apples, and grapes for your home, as they are all symbols of prosperity.
Have some sweets
Of course, have some tikoy, one of the most well-known traditional foods consumed during the Chinese New Year. On New Year’s Eve, you can eat your fill.
While you're at it, have some sweet cakes and candy too.
Give out ang pao
Did you know that giving out ang pao (red envelopes with money) brings good luck to the receiver as well as the giver? Parents and grandparents should prepare some to give away to their kids and grandkids.
Wear bright clothes
Regardless of what your personal lucky color is, you should wear bright colors – and even new clothes – on Chinese New Year’s Eve and even to other fun, happy celebrations.
Red is the preferred color, but you can also wear orange, pink, or yellow.
As the clock strikes midnight on February 15, make some noise!
Take those noise makers out and have the fire crackers ready. Welcome in the new year with lots of loud merrymaking.
Eat your first lucky meal
Right after midnight, it’s time for your first lucky meal of the year. There will be a New Year’s Eve celebration that starts at 10 pm at the Grand Hyatt Manila in BGC, wherein guests can enjoy a special, symbolic meal after the clock strikes midnight.
They’ll also have a “wishing ceremony” wherein guests can write their goals and wishes for the coming year and offer them during the ceremony.
Spend time with your loved ones
On Chinese New Year’s Day on February 16, make sure to spend time with your family and loved ones. Stay calm, happy, and positive – avoid negative words and greet everyone a happy Chinese New Year. Don’t clean and don’t sweep – you might be sweeping away all your good luck!
Rearrange your furniture
If you know your animal sign won’t have very good luck this year (Dragons, Dogs, Roosters, Tigers, and Monkeys won’t be so lucky during the Year of the Earth Dog), take some time to asses the feng shui of your home and office. You can’t change the day you were born, but you can alter your environment, which also affects your luck. Give your luck a boost by rearranging your furniture according to a feng shui master’s advice.
Attend joyful events
Another tip for those of us who won’t have such a great year ahead – attend fun, joyful events! Birthday celebrations, weddings, baptisms, or just happy gatherings with friends will boost your luck too. Try to avoid the hospital or wakes if you can.