To behold the celebration of the Chinese New Year i a wondrous spectacle. But the Chinese New Year is also much more personal then the National celebration. In observing the New Year the Chinese take days for preparation. Plus there are things you must not do after the actual New Year's Day has past. This is one reason why the Spring Festival which begins with The New Year last so long. This coming year 2010, the Chinese New Year will begin on February 14th, St. Valentine's Day!
The Chinese observe the New Year by celebrating with family and close friends. This coming New Year's Day will be celebrated on Feb. 14, 2010. The fact that 'The Year of the Tiger" begins on St. Valentine's Day put a special twist on St. Valentine's Day observance. Lovers should observe the St. Valentine's Day on the line the Chinese observe New Year's Day. For everything do prior to and during the New Year celebration is hopes of bring about good luck and good fortune.
In preparing for the coming New Year, it is customary to clean and sweep the four corners of your house. This is probably the origin of 'spring cleaning' that we try to keep each year. By doing this you sweep away all the old, presumably bad luck, and make way for the new, presumably good luck.
Decorating your home in red and gold is common amongst the Chinese. A good way to decorate in these colors would be to hang red balloons and gold streamers.
Note: The Chinese see red as the color of Happiness and is the color of Wealth.
As said before, Chinese observe the New Year's Day with family and close friends which means they enjoy the evening meal together. In setting the table it would be nice to include chopsticks. Some may say to use the inexpensive one. I like to use a descent pair so that the guest can take them with them as a memorabilia of the event. Also using tableware that celebrate the New Year and especially the 'Tear of the Tiger' is a good thing.
Note: A traditional food to have during this celebration is jiaozi, Chinese Dumplings.