The Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival, will begin on February 19th of this year. The celebration lasts for fifteen days with various customs and traditions to usher in wealth, good fortune, and happiness. 2015 is the year of the Sheep, Goat or Ram. People born in sheep years (1907, 1919, 1931, 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991, 2003, and 2015) are gentle, elegant, smart, assertive, artistic, creative, curious, shy, determined, artistic, and compassionate. The sheep year is one of both healing, creativity and family, intimacy, and close friendships are each highlighted. The Sheep is the eighth sign in the Chinese calendar, the number 8 being regarded by many as a lucky and prosperous number. In numerology 2015 also happens to be an eight (2+0+1+5=8) making this a double lucky year for all.
There are many customs for the Chinese New Year: lighting firecrackers, making loud noises, passing out red envelopes with money inside for prosperity, displaying oranges and giving an orange to visitors for wealth. Wearing a bright new red outfit should be worn on this day for added luck. Do greet everyone you meet on this day with kind words and well wishes. Weather permitting, open all windows and doors to allow the New Year luck to pour into your home. An alternate option: you can turn on all the lights and keep them lit all day long.
Do fill your pantry and refrigerator with healthy foods to affirm good health and longevity. Treat yourself to a new wallet or purse (red, gold, or purple) and fill it with lots of cash (uncirculated is the best of all and you can ask at the bank). 3 Feng Shui Coins tied together with a red ribbon hidden inside the wallet also bring good luck.
Things to avoid doing on the Chinese New Year include: not buying any new shoes or clothing. Do not shower, bathe, or get a haircut. Avoid using knives and scissors. Do not speak about death, dying, or tell ghost stories. Do not sweep the floor. Avoid eating red meat; instead eat fish or chicken and save some for the next day.
A custom I personally enjoy is the trance balloons or lanterns. You can easily find them online or in party supply stores. The intention is to light the fuel patch inside the balloon and while it is lifting to the sky to place your intention of what you want the year to bring you, be sure to continue watching the balloon lift up to the sky as if to wish upon a star. If you are having a celebration for the Chinese New Year, invite all your guests outside and have everyone light their own lantern it is a beautiful touch to the celebration.