There are many legends about Spring Festival in Chinese culture. In folk culture, it is also called “guonian” (meaning “passing a year”). It is said that the “nian” (year) was a strong monster which was fierce and cruel and ate one kind of animal including human being a day. Human beings were scared about it and had to hide on the evening when the “nian” came out. Later, people found that “nian” was very scared about the red color and fireworks. So after that, people use red color and fireworks or firecrackers to drive away “nian”. As a result, the custom of using red color and setting off fireworks remains.
Paste up/stick spring couplets/scrolls
Chinese characters that are auspicious for the coming year are generally written on two pieces of red paper with ink and a brush, and glued by the sides of the doors.
Paste up/stick the character of Fu
The character fu, or “happiness” is usually written on red diamond-shaped posters. They are usually stuck upside down on the doors. This is because the Chinese character dao (upside down) has the same sound as another dao, which means “arrive”. Placing fu upside down symbolizes the arrival of happiness.
The Spring Festival’s family reunion dinner
It is the most sumptuous and ceremonious dinner of the year for a family. No matter how far they are away from home, people manage to return for a dinner with other family members on Chinese New Year’s Eve. And more than enough food is prepared, showing abundance and wealth. Most dishes have their own cultural meanings, all showing people’s good wishes for the new year. For example, fish is always served, because fish is pronounced in Chinese as “yu”, which means having more than just enough.
Watching the CCTV annual Spring Festival Eve Gala
过去二十多年来，每年除夕看春晚都成了中国人的一种传统了~ 当然咯，虽然这两年来越来越多的人觉得春晚变无聊了，评价也大不如前，但是全家一起坐在电视前聊着天，调侃嬉笑，也是非常难得的事儿~ 所以，重点已经不是春晚的节目啦~ 阖家欢乐才最重要~
During the past 23 years, watching the CCTV annual Spring Festival Eve Gala has been popular. At eight o'clock on lunar New Year's eve, families gather in front of the TV, watching, chatting and waiting for the lunar New Year's arrival. Although in recent years, more and more people have found the show boring, most of them still watch it and give their opinions afterwards. Much more than a TV programme, the show brings the whole family together and offers them a good topic for conversation.
Set off fireworks/ firecrackers
Chinese people traditionally set off fireworks during Spring Festival, in the belief that this helps scare off the Nian and brings good fortune at the beginning of the year and good luck throughout the year.
Pay lunar New Year’s calls/visits; give Spring Festival greetings
It’s important that you pay relatives and friends a new year’s call during the holiday. This is done at people’s homes from New Year’s Day to the 15th day, or the Lantern Festival. People give each other best wishes and gifts. This is also a time for the younger generation to bow or kowtow to the elders for health, good fortune, work, and so on and to get a red package in return.
Lucky money/ red envelop
For many young people, Chinese New Year is just as much about yasuiqian — money in red envelopes traditionally given to children. On the Chinese mainland, kids get red envelopes at home from their parents and relatives. In Hong Kong, it is also customary to give Lai See (利是), a gift of money, to anyone in your personal service, such as nannies and cleaners.
The Spring Festival is very important to Chinese people. In the past，people could not often have meat，rice or other delicious food. They could only eat these during the Spring festival. So every year they hoped that the Spring Festival would come soon. Now， although people‘s life is much better，and we can eat the delicious foods everyday. People still like the festival. Because most people can have a long holiday，and we are free to go on a trip or visit our friends or have parties with our family. In the evenings，we can have a big meal in the restaurant or stay at home with family and watch the TV programs.
I like the Spring Festival very much. How wonderful the Spring Festival is！