The annual Chinese Lunar New Year is around the corner- Adults busy cleaning houses; kids counting down for the holiday; young adults thinking of strategies to face their nosy uncles and aunties; old folks getting ready to meet their children and grandchildren. These are the common thoughts we face all the time in this festive season, but STOP…things have changed this year!
In times of pandemic, especially with the extension of MCO in Malaysia, the usual Chinese New Year celebrations have to be put on halt. Despite the circumstances, that doesn’t mean we can’t creatively enjoy the year of Ox to the fullest. Thus, we are sharing 4 ways to help you clear the decks.
Schedule Reunions with Relatives and Friends
As usual, scheduling your time for family and friends reunions is vital, and it’s still going to be the same practice this year. The only difference is that we’re all having a virtual reunion instead.
One strategic way to do this is to set an appointment on Google Calendar and send the invitation to your fellow invitees. With that, you would still be able to conduct reunion meals with the people you love without any worries.
There are a few popular platforms where you can conduct virtual or video chat reunions from home. For instance, ZOOM meeting, Skype, Microsoft Teams, ezTalks, and StarLeaf among all telecommunication applications with good video conferencing features. Just download their software into your device and you are ready to go!
Decorate Your House
Just because curtailing Chinese New Year visitations and having lively celebrations are being restricted this year, that doesn’t mean we should stop ourselves from decorating our own home.
As we are all encouraged to stay at home, each family can utilize this opportunity to foster healthy bonds by allowing the participation of all family members in CNY decoration. Usually, most houses are filled with glitzy lanterns, red cloth strips on doors, spring couplets, and more attractive ornaments during this period. This shouldn’t be the exception for this time too.
There are a few recommended online portals to get all your decoration materials to refresh the ambiance of your house, such as IKEA online (On top of the accessories, they offer seasonal food since 14th January 2021), Shopee (new users can claim the free delivery service with its CNY sale), or AliExpress where ornaments along with some stunning LED lighting are available in good rates. Feel free to check them out before the stocks are all sold out.
Buy Things Online
What would be more exciting than buying new clothes, decoration accessories, and other essential items to store in your house before the arrival of the Chinese New Year?
It’s a reasonable concern that people may expose themselves to the risk of the pandemic when everyone’s flocking towards shopping malls for these goods in one go. Therefore, online shopping becomes handy in this scenario. There are several platforms or manufacturers on the internet that people could browse through to get them.
The only thing to take note of is the shipping time. As people might go online instead, it’d contribute to the higher demand for post and parcel delivery services, which as a result, taking a long time for the things you buy to reach your doorstep. Thus, it’s always good to buy things as early as possible to avoid late shipping.
Apart from the online shopping options such as Shopee and AliExpress, Lazada is another platform to consider as they are brand mega offers where vouchers worth RM188 are given away within a certain validity period. Another place to get all the things you need is taobao as they offer a variety of choices for CNY purposes too.
While buying new clothes is a culture during this period as well, online clothing stores such as Shein, Corgi Fashion, H&M Online Malaysia, and MR PORTER are a few options for Malaysians to sweep for their fashionista kicks.
Likewise people of all planets, Chinese are fond of food, and it’s more popular during Chinese New Year. It’s always the season where people gain weight after binge-eating.
To prepare some food to serve house guests and family members, it’s the time where every household starts getting some food of their choice. Ranging from CNY cookies (kuih bangkit, nian gao, pineapple rolls, kuih kapit, shrimp rolls, bakkwa, arrowhead chips, and more), reunion meals, to drinks that pamper the all-time empty stomach, some people enjoy the satisfaction of making those foods themselves while others prefer to buy from the stores.
It’s common that the online shopping spaces above deliver food choices, but there are also some online stores with good CNY food for you to browse through- Astrology.com for the fortune cookies, Kee Heong for the honeycomb cookies, Eat Cake Today for their various cookies bundles, SK Homemade Cakes for kuih kapit and other eggless rubies, and Junandus for their nostalgic cookies.
Spice Things Up, No Negative Energy!
It’s a difficult time we’re talking about- people losing jobs, many domestic abuse cases happened, high-riskers having to quarantine themselves, many rules breakers are still disregarding the SOP of the movement control order, and more disturbing news all because of COVID-19.
While those are the facts that we’re facing right now, they are just going to manifest the negative energy to the people around us. This is something that should be prevented as Chinese New Year is all about nurturing good relationships and luck for the entire year. Considering spicing things up by playing games or having high-spirited topics for conversation would be wise in times like this.
We can’t change the reality that our Chinese New Year this time is going to be different than usual, but being fun and creative is never tabooed as long as they don’t involve the health and safety risks in this unprecedented time. Meanwhile, we are bringing you exciting information in the upcoming posts with details of Animal Zodiacs and reunion dinners to escalate your Chinese vibes.
Tourplus would still like to wish everyone a Happy Chinese New Year. Gong Xi Fa Cai and stay safe!