Thursday, February 9, 2012

Tradition of Birthday Party in China(for baby)

Here are lots of information about the Chinese birthday:
Information about Chinese birthday on About.com


And I want to tell you more detail about the celebrations for a newly born baby. :)




One-month old


(bàn) (mǎn)(yuè) (jiǔ)( One-month celebration) 


The first celebration for the newly born baby is called (bàn) (mǎn)(yuè) (jiǔ), which is on the day when the baby is one month old. The baby’s parents will invite their relatives and friends to celebrate together. Nowadays, more and more people prefer to have the celebration at a fancy restaurant. The parents send out the invitation cards three days before the celebration. Relatives and friends of this family will bring their gifts and red envelops ( (hóng)(bāo) )for the baby to the celebration. 


This picture shows how the invitation card may look :


Here is a picture of the presents a newly born baby got on her one-month celebration.


() (mǎn) (yuè) (tóu)  ( Having a haircut)


Many people believe that the babies will grow beautiful and thick hair after they have a hair cut when they are one-month old. Some parents ask the barber to come to their home, while some others take their baby to the barber shop. There are mainly two kinds of hairstyle for the baby. Sometimes the barbers shave the baby’s head bald, sometimes they leave the hair in the center of the front head and back of the head untouched, according to the parents’ request. The hair in the center of the front head is called (cōng) (míng) () (smart hair), and the hair at the center of the back is called(chēng) (gēn) () (roots supporting hair). So this kind of hairstyle is a way to wish the baby to become a smart and healthy person.




No matter which hairstyle the baby has, there will be much more things for the parents to do with the hair that has just been cut off. Guess what they will do with it?
Since the moment that the baby becomes one-month old is such a significant time for the family, the parents will find some company to turn the hair into some import souvenir to remember it.  Some of the hair is used to make a brush, some becomes part of a necklace pendant, a seal or even a picture. 








Sometimes the baby’s hand and foot print are also used to make a special decoration for the family. 


There are also many parents who are very cautious about the first haircut of their baby. They prefer that their baby has the first haircut when the baby is much older.
 
One-year old 


(zhuā)(zhōu) (drawing lots)


When the baby gets one-year old, there will be another big celebration in the family. Drawing lots is one of the important parts of it. The baby is placed in a circle of objects and the first thing he touches foretells his future.  Such as, if it's wallet he will be rich, a pen means a scholar, an abacus means a good businessman, a stethoscope means a doctor, etc. But most of the time, the baby’s parents won’t be serious about the baby’s choice. It’s just fun to watch how the baby fumbling to try to grab something. And that is a big amusement for the whole family in the party.






And in the party, the baby is also fed  寿(shòu)(miàn)birthday noodles to symbolize eating real food and a good healthy life in the future. 




(cháng) (mìng) (suǒ) ( longevity amulet)


The longevity amulet is also an important thing in the celebrations for a baby. The baby’s grandparents will give the longevity amulet to the baby as a gift when the baby is 100-day old or when the baby is one-year old. The longevity amulet is made of gold, silver, or jade. It looks like an ancient lock, with silk ribbon or chains attached to, so the baby can wear it on his/her neck. The longevity amulets are usually decorated with beautiful elaborate auspicious patterns, such as, lotus flower, golden fish, peach of immortality;  and auspicious words like 长(cháng)命(mìng)百(bǎi)岁(suì) (means long and healthy life)。 People believe that the lock can keep the baby’s life and protect him/her from the evil, sick… any bad thing in this world or unknown world.