Daisypath Happy Birthday tickers Daisypath Happy Birthday tickers

Orphanage Donations

Here is some research that I found regarding Orphanage Donations. I’ve read that some families like to give another donation if they get a chance to visit the orphanage. Please feel free to comment on my info below.
*I had heard that the orphanages wouldn't use medical supplies unless they included a Chinese translation of the directions.
*Things like character bandaids, cotton balls, q-tips, toothbrushes would probably work but you might want to avoid anything that requires dosing or could cause a problem if given incorrectly. I'd look for packaging that has pictures on the container (not just the box). You wouldn't want someone brushing their teeth with diaper rash cream.
*Cleft bottles are NOT AVAILABLE IN China anywhere. Mead Johnson Bottles-800-222-9123
Some families said that on one of their trips, they went to the market around the corner from their hotel and purchased infant and children's Tylenol as well as some Chinese medicine for diarrhea and colds. Since they were buying it in China, they were getting more for their money and the products were those that the Chinese could understand. Just have your guide check expiration dates on the boxes. The guides say that the orphanage workers feel more comfortable using medicine that is already in Chinese than medicine that is American and has a translation with it.
*Diaper creams, hairbrushes, combs, toothbrushes, toothpaste.

Hysterical Revenge Clip from Jimmy Kimmel

Starring Sarah Silverman, Matt Damon, Jimmy Kimmel and Ben Affleck!


MOM & LINDA...you might not appreciate this one.

Easy Breakfast

I just found this post from this blog and thought it was awesome!!

"A few weeks ago, I had planned a pancake dinner for our evening meal. We do that every once in a while, and while it’s always a hit, I wanted something other than greasy bacon or sausage to accompany our pancakes and fresh fruit. I decided on eggs, which are something I seldom make because in the past, my kids have not been fans of many egg dishes. I scrambled up a few eggs with some light cream and caramelized onions and made a quick frittata, certain that my children would ignore the eggs and inhale the pancakes.

It was not to be. While both children eyed the frittata warily, my daughter tentatively took a small bite, followed quickly by a huge mouthful. Before I could blink she’d finished that slice of frittata and asked for another. Emboldened by his big sister, my son tried his frittata and then informed me that he’s decided he like eggs sometimes, then he finished off his piece as well. Pancakes? Who wanted those when there was a delicious fritatta on the table?

I was stunned. Shocked into silence actually, as I processed the fact that my children were raving about something they’d previously dismissed as inedible. It didn’t take me long, though, to take full advantage of this newfound love and introduce a new wave of ready-to-eat hot breakfasts in the household. For the humble frittata can be made, cooled, and then refrigerated to be eaten throughout the week with little detriment to the quality of the eggs. A quick zap in the microwave and a dollop of fresh salsa, and you’ll swear the fritatta is fresh out of the oven. Add a small glass of juice or milk and some fresh fruit and you have a five-star breakfast ready for your family, and it took about as much time as pouring a bowl of cereal.

You can add any vegetable, cheese, or meat that you’d like to the frittata; we prefer ours made simply with some caramelized onions (or leeks) and cheese. Sometimes we serve the frittata with salsa, and sometimes it’s plain old ketchup. Either way, it scores huge with the entire family for breakfast. "

Quick Fritatta

6 eggs
1/4 cup half & half or milk
pinch of salt and pepper to taste
1 cup diced onions, caramelized slowly in 1 tsp olive oil
1/3 cup shredded Irish cheddar cheese (or cheese of your choice)

Preheat oven to 350º. Spray a 9-inch pie plate with cooking spray. Beat the eggs and half and half together with a whisk, beating well until creamy and full of bubbles. Beat in seasoning and stir in the onions. Place the shredded cheese in the bottom of the pie plate, and then pour the egg mixture on top of it.

Bake in a 350º oven for about 20 minutes, or until the eggs are set and the edges begin to brown. Serve immediately, or cool completely, slice, and store in the refrigerator, covered. Reheat individual slices in the microwave for one minute.

Found in China

I found this post at http://ourcontinuingchinaconnection.blogspot.com/ posted by Steve.

"Most of us who have adopted kids from China dream of one day taking them back to see and learn about the country of their birth. A new DVD from Tai-Kai Productions, called Found in China tells the story of a group of adoptive parents and their 9-13 year-old daughters that make just such a visit.

The first part of the story shows the young girls exploring the sights in a country they had not seen since they left as infants or toddlers. But this is much more than just a travelogue. Interviews with the young girls and their families help explain the feelings that they all experience as they tour.

The second part of the tale is even more moving as some of the families visit the orphanages (and in a few cases even the "finding places") where the girls' adoption stories actually began. The emotions of all of the people involved are evident. And once again, the interviews do an excellent job of letting the viewer into the thoughts of the girls and their parents.

All in all Found in China does an excellent job of presenting the range of feelings that families on a visit like this might experience. And that makes it a great resource for families who are considering heritage tours of their own and for adoptive parents who want to try and understand better what their kids have to come to grips with emotionally as they get a little older and start thinking about "where they came from"."


I Think this was the BEST, not a Fan, but a great dress and she looks fantastic!
The WORST!!! Are you kidding me. Especially their shoes and what was up with her non-matching circus straps! So Sad. The worst part, they both actually look better in the photo than on the red carpet!!!

Most awkward moment! See, ya should have brought Ben!!

Oh man, you used to be soooo hot!!! G.I. Jane and the Perfect Murder. What's up?

I get so bored anymore with the Oscars!!!

What to Expect When Adopting......

While over at Alyson's Blog, I read a very helpful article. I definately agree Alyson! This artical is from Amy Eldridge, from Love without Boundaries. I hope that you all will read this. Thanks.

Friends and Family- Please read this.
What to Expect When You're Expecting (from China)…….
A MUST Read for Adopting Parents
Below is a letter from Amy Eldridge, from Love Without Boundaries, addressing the recent adoption disruptions and parental preparedness. If you are reading this, think about posting it on your site - a waiting parent who reads your blog may benefit from it.
I have been so saddened by this situation. I most definitely wish there was a way to educate ALL adoptive parents about the truths of institutional care, however I have come to realize in my daily work that there are just as many parents who are not online reading everything they can find on adoption as are.

There are hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of parents out there who have no idea what life is like for a child in an orphanage, and who head overseas to pick up their perfect child only to be handed a baby who is unresponsive, thin, unable to eat….. and on and on and on.
While adopting my son last month, I walked several times over to the White Swan to talk to parents, and over and over I spoke with moms and dads who had no clue whatsoever about the issues their kids were having. I heard so many times things like, "she won't eat solid foods" (oral aversion), "she has no muscle tone" (muscle atrophy from lying in a crib all day), "she won't smile" (pure grieving from being taken from her foster mom). I guess since I live China 24/7, I assume everyone adopting does, too, which is not the case.

I talked to at least a dozen parents who didn't even know their child's orphanage name, and while I gently said "you might want to memorize that for your child's sake", at the same time I was trying to process how many parents get all the way to China without ever reading about post-institutional issues. It was sobering to me.

Babies in the NSN (non special needs) as well as the SN (special needs) path can have issues with attachment, motor skills, emotional issues and more. I think all of us on the WCC (Waiting Children China) list acknowledge that, while also acknowledging that all children (whether bio or not) can have these same issues. Living in an orphanage of course increases the odds.

I think the easy out is to say that agencies have to do more, as well as social workers, but I do think that most of them do try to give information to the parents but often parents don't want to hear it or else think it won't happen to them. Again, I am often surprised to talk to parents leaving soon and to realize they are not prepared. One family was adopting from our foster care program, and when I told them that the child was DEEPLY attached to the mom, the father said, "guess she might cry for an hour or so then?" An hour or so? She had been in foster care for over a year! I tried to explain that this little girl was about ready to lose everything she had ever known, and that they should not expect her to be sunny, happy, and full of personality after an hour. I told them to please remember the 72-hour rule.......that after 72 hours they would probably see her spark, but that she would probably grieve for a long time after that as well.

I think for many adoptive parents, they just don't want to read the "bad stuff", and so I do think that ultimately it is the parents who are at fault for not doing more to educate themselves. There certainly are books galore out there about post-institutional issues. I equate this to when I was pregnant with my kids and I would read "What to Expect When Expecting", and I would get to the C-section part and always skip it. Each and every time I would jump to the next chapter as "that wasn't going to happen to me". Well, on my fifth baby, when they were rushing me in for an emergency C-section, I sure was wishing I had read that section earlier! But at that point in the OR, while they were strapping my hands down to the table, it was too late, and so I felt complete panic when I could have been prepared. I think adoption from China is very similar to giving birth...it is much more rosy to only read the happy stories on APC, but I now encourage every family I meet to read the harder ones as well, because if you are the family who is handed a child that is limp and listless and who looks autistic, what you have learned in the past will help you make the right decision for your family during those very emotional first few days.

I have been called many times in the last few years by parents in China worried about their children. I agree that having a support network to help you through the initial time is essential. Everyone should go to China with at least one phone number of someone they can call if they are panicked upon meeting their new child. I remember feeling so alone when I was handed my daughter and she was so tiny and limp. Because our foundation often helps with the kids who have been disrupted, I am aware that sometimes there are children who have much more serious issues than originally reported…. and that is such a hard thing for a parent to get to China and then discover their child is truly autistic or has serious mental delays. I think everyone on both the China and international side would agree that it is absolutely wrong of an orphanage to not be honest in their reports, and no one would excuse that, but I also know without a doubt that the majority of kids who are disrupted are just suffering from institutional issues and would catch up quickly in a loving home. It is always a very sad day for the orphanage and everyone involved when a child that they know is absolutely fine, but perhaps thin and grieving, is returned by their new parents for being "delayed".

I think far too many people believe their child's life is going to begin the moment they meet them. The truth is, and everyone must realize it….. a child's life is going on RIGHT NOW in China, and all of their experiences are shaping who they are. The vast majority of aunties that I have met in China are such kind and caring people, but it absolutely is not the same as having a mom and dad at your beck and call. I have had new parents call and say "we didn't think living in an orphanage would affect her at all", and those statements truly puzzle me. How could they not contemplate life in an orphanage?

Walk through Babies R Us and you will see every gadget known to man to make our children's lives here as ideal as possible. Now Americans have two way video monitors, so that when baby awakens not only can mommy see when to immediately rush in and comfort him, but she can talk to baby so that he doesn't even have one single second where he feels alone. How many new parents would have a newborn and then put that baby in a crib 22 hours a day on their own? How many would only feed their baby, even if they were really crying hard, every 8 hours? Or prop the bottle in her crib and then not watch to see if she ever really ate?
Of course no one would do that…... we feed newborns on demand, comfort on demand, love continuously…. and whether people want to recognize it or not, that is NOT the life of an orphan in an institution. .….. even when the aunties are as good as gold. I remember one night when I took some volunteers in for the night shift in an orphanage, when normally just a few aunties are working. One mom looked at me with tears in her eyes as she slowly realized that it was absolutely impossible with just two hands to feed every child, to comfort every child, to soothe every baby who was crying. She said her heart was aching to realize that her own daughter most likely had many, many times where she cried without someone to comfort her..... and she told me that for the first time she finally understood why her daughter had such a deep seated fear of being out of her mom's sight.

The aunties are trying their absolute best, but that doesn't equal mother/child care. I remember being in an orphanage in the north this past winter and the aunties were so proud of how they had 6-8 layers of clothes and blankets on every baby to keep them warm. They were swaddled so tight that they couldn't move, but it was freezing in the orphanage and so the aunties wanted the babies to stay as warm as possible. What alternative did they have? It really was freezing there…... I was cold in my wool coat, so the babies couldn't be up and about with just 1-2 layers on, with the ability to move their arms and legs. To stay warm they had to be immobile, and so of course all of those kids have weak muscle tone. But the aunties were truly trying their best, and when a parent is given one of those beautiful children on adoption day, I am sure they will go back to their room with concern and say "she can't sit up by herself…. she can't put weight on her legs". That is absolutely the truth, but she also survived 10 degree weather in a very cold province and she will catch up soon enough with parents to encourage her.

To not acknowledge that living in orphanage circumstances can cause lower body weights, low muscle tone, inability to make good eye contact is very sad to me. Can it be overcome? Most definitely! The one thing I have learned over and over again about the kids in China is that they are fighters and survivors. But for some reason, people seem to want to ignore these issues in public forums.

Recently, one of our medical babies that we had met several times in person was adopted, and we all knew that this child was a "spitfire". When the family arrived and spent a few days with her, they decided she was too much of a handful for them and they wanted to disrupt. She absolutely was not what they expected. When they called their agency, they were told they had two choices: adopt the child, bring her to the US, and change their expectations of what they were hoping for, or adopt the child, bring her to the US and the agency would have a family waiting at the airport to adopt her locally. Option three of leaving the child in China was never once given. I admire that agency so much, as they were thinking of the child and the child alone. The family followed through with the adoption and handed the little girl to a new family upon her arrival in the US. As horrible and tragic and emotional as it was for everyone involved...I still feel this was the right decision for the agency to make. It was done in the absolute best interest of the child, who had waited a long, long time for a family. I wish more agencies would advocate for the rights of the child, instead of always seeming to give in to the parents, especially in those cases when they know with absolute certainty that nothing is permanently wrong with the child. Recently with another disruption, the agency I spoke with told me that it was "easier" to just get the family a new baby.

Sometimes easier does not equal right. The first baby who was rejected has now been labeled "mentally challenged" even though the agency knew the child was really going to be okay.
I think all of us, who do realize that delays occur and that babies can usually overcome them, should be these children's advocates by continually trying to educate new parents on what to expect in China. By helping them be better prepared, we just might help stop a disruption in the future. I love Chinese adoption with my whole heart, and it is my life's work…. but I also want every family who goes to get their baby to go with their eyes open and to be as emotionally prepared as possible, for the child's sake.
Amy Eldridge, Love Without Boundaries

Diaper Review

What is the best & cheapest diaper that you use? Do you get what you pay for in regards to Diapers? Are we just sucked into Brand names just because? I found this review of Walmart Diapers from slackermama.com and I found it really interesting. I think maybe I will give them a try. Here is her article, go check out her blog too!

"Hey, look at me! I’m all famous n’ stuff! My review of Walmart’s Parent’s Choice diapers just went up over at Baby Cheapskate (GREAT site, btw). I’d been meaning to do this review for ages, but I need to actually go to Walmart and find out how much a jumbo pack of diapers cost since we always buy the ginormous box (fyi: it’s $5.74… booyah bargain!). Anyhow, I have a deep love for these diapers. And I’m probably what you would consider a diaper snob. For Liam’s first six to nine months of life nothing but Pampers or Huggies touched his dear little bum. And all my friends would laugh at me because I was spending easily twice as much as they were on diapers. But I’m so dang picky. A lot of store brands don’t have an elasticized waistband and sometimes there’s no way of knowing if they do or not until you get home. Ugh! That waistband is a must for me since I want to avoid poopy blowouts as much as possible, thankyouverymuch. Anyhow. I’m going on way too much when you should just be heading over to my fabulous review to see the whole thing live and in person.

Speaking of reviews (you knew I wasn’t done, didn’t you? So smart, you are), I’m currently wrangling up my very own review blog. Yep, the rumors are true! I know it seems like everyone and their brother has a review blog these days. But this is something I’ve been hemming and hawing about for months now and it’s just plain past time or me to get one. There have been several great products I’ve been dying to review but have been hesitant to because of fear of angering the BlogHerAds gods. I need to get some reviews up there and do some final tweaking to the site, but look for me to unveil it here (hopefully) in the next couple of days. Wee! We’re in for some fun, ya’ll. In the meantime, if you have any great ideas for things I should review, let me know here in the comments! I’ll TOTALLY give you credit. "

It will be interesting to test this out!

Bento Box Winner

Okay, isn't this just tooo cute! (someone has way too much time on their hands. lol)

But I love it! It's so cute. Hello kitty easter bunny, I think. Anyway, I found it on this cool Bento site. Click here.

Asian Dumplings with Soy-Ginger Sauce

1 pound ground pork
1 cup scallions
3 Tablespoons soy sauce
1 Tablespoon grated ginger
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cups finely chopped napa cabbage (green cabbage is acceptable)
Won ton wrappers
water for sealing wrappers

Soy-Ginger Sauce:
1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1/8 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup water
1 Tablespoon grated ginger
2 Tablespoons finely chopped scallions
2 or 3 drops sesame oil


Mix meat, scallions, soy sauce, ginger, and black pepper together. Add cabbage and mix well. Lay out 2 or 3 won ton wrappers. Add a scant tablespoon to the center of each won ton. Brush water around the edges, and carefully fold over the won ton wrappers, keeping the meat mixture in the center, and sealing all the edges. Pleat and fold to desired shape. Set aside on a baking sheet that has been dusted with flour while making remaining dumplings.

Combine sauce ingredients and set aside for the flavors to meld.

Heat about 2 tablespoons of oil in a large nonstick saute pan. Gently set dumplings in the pan. Fry for 3 or 4 minutes, or until the bottoms are a nice golden brown. Working quickly, add 1/2 cup water to the pan and quickly put on the lid. This will steam the dumplings and complete the cooking. Cook another 3 to 4 minutes, shaking the pan a few times to keep the dumplings from sticking. Remove from the pan and allow to sit for 2 minutes before serving.

Serve with dipping sauce.

*Alternately, the dumplings can be completely steamed in a steamer pot to avoid the frying process.

Found this recipe here!

CNY Stamps

Here's to being hopeful. I purchased a whole bunch of the CNY stamps for Announcements. Fingers crossed that the price of stamps doesn't go up before then. Aren't they pretty???

Extreme Doll Makeover

The Packing Challenge Group that I created is now working on the "Care Package" this month. Here was the cute little super soft doll that I gave a makeover. She now has cute little black hair, brown almond eyes and a purple bow. I just used some black yarn to make her new hair and sewed it on and took some embroiderly thread and redid her eyes. Isn't she cuter now???

Chinese New Year Quiz

click here.

Chinese New Year (15-Day Celebration)

FIRST DAY of the Lunar New Year is "the welcoming of the gods of the heavens and earth."Many people abstain from meat on the first day of the new year because it is believed that this will ensure long and happy lives for them.

SECOND DAY, the Chinese pray to their ancestors as well as to all the gods. They are extra kind to dogs and feed them well as it is believed that the second day is the birthday of all dogs.

THIRD & FOURTH DAYS are for the sons-in-laws to pay respect to their parents-in-law.

FIFTH DAY is called Po Woo. On that day people stay home to welcome the God of Wealth. No one visits families and friends on the fifth day because it will bring both parties bad luck.

SIXTH TO TENTH DAY, the Chinese visit their relatives and friends freely. They also visit the temples to pray for good fortune and health.

SEVENTH DAY of the New Year is the day for farmers to display their produce. These farmers make a drink from seven types of vegetables to celebrate the occasion. The seventh day is also considered the birthday of human beings. Noodles are eaten to promote longevity and raw fish for success.

EIGHTH DAY the Fujian people have another family reunion dinner, and at midnight they pray to Tian Gong, the God of Heaven.

NINETH DAY is to make offerings to the Jade Emperor.

TENTH TO TWELFTH DAY that friends and relatives should be invited for dinner. After so much rich food, on the 13th day you should have simple rice congee and mustard greens (choi sum) to cleanse the system.

FOURTHEENTH DAY should be for preparations to celebrate the Lantern Festival which is to be held on the 15th night

Traditional New Year Foods

Probably more food is consumed during the New Year celebrations than any other time of the year. Vast amounts of traditional food is prepared for family and friends, as well as those close to us who have died.

On New Year's Day, the Chinese family will eat a vegetarian dish called jai. Although the various ingredients in jai are root vegetables or fibrous vegetables, many people attribute various superstitious aspects to them:

* Lotus seed - signify having many male offspring
* Ginkgo nut - represents silver ingots
* Black moss seaweed - is a homonym for exceeding in wealth
* Dried bean curd is another homonym for fulfillment of wealth and happiness
* Bamboo shoots - is a term which sounds like "wishing that everything would be well"
* Fresh bean curd or tofu is not included as it is white and unlucky for New Year as the color signifies death and misfortune.

Other foods include a whole fish, to represent togetherness and abundance, and a chicken for prosperity. The chicken must be presented with a head, tail and feet to symbolize completeness. Noodles should be uncut, as they represent long life.

IN SOUTH CHINA, the favorite and most typical dishes were nian gao, sweet steamed glutinous rice pudding and zong zi (glutinous rice wrapped up in reed leaves), another popular delicacy.

IN NORTH CHINA, steamed-wheat bread (man tou) and small meat dumplings were the preferred food. The tremendous amount of food prepared at this time was meant to symbolize abundance and wealth for the household.

Chinese New Year Decorations
Prior to New Year's Day, Chinese families decorate their living rooms with vases of pretty blossoms, platters of oranges and tangerines and a candy tray with eight varieties of dried sweet fruit. On walls and doors are poetic couplets, happy wishes written on red paper. These messages sound better than the typical fortune cookie messages. For instance, "May you enjoy continuous good health" and "May the Star of Happiness, the Star of Wealth and the Star of Longevity shine on you" are especially positive couplets.

Every traditional Chinese household should also have live blooming plants to symbolize rebirth and new growth. Flowers are believed to be symbolic of wealth and high positions in one's career. Lucky is the home with a plant that blooms on New Year's Day, for that foretells a year of prosperity. In more elaborate settings, plum blossoms just starting to bloom are arranged with bamboo and pine sprigs, the grouping symbolizing friends &endash; the plum blossom also signifies reliability and perseverance; the bamboo is known for its compatibility, its utility and its flexible stems for furniture and other articles;the evergreen pine evokes longevity and steadiness. Other highly prized flowers are the pussy willow,azalea, peony and water lily or narcissus.

The Chinese firmly believe that without flowers, there would be no formation of any fruits. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance to have flowers and floral decorations.

They are the emblems of reawakening of nature, they are also intimately connected with superstition and with the wish for happiness during the ensuing year.

Oranges and Tangerines
Etiquette dictates that you must bring a bag of oranges and tangerines and enclose a lai see when visiting family or friends anytime during the two-week long Chinese New Year celebration. Tangerines with leaves intact assure that one's relationship with the other remains secure. For newlyweds, this represents the branching of the couple into a family with many children. Oranges and tangerines are symbols for abundant happiness.

Candy Tray
The candy tray arranged in either a circle or octagon is called "The Tray of Togetherness" and has a dazzling array of candy to start the New Year sweetly. After taking several pieces of candy from the tray, adults places a red envelope (lai see) on the center compartment of the tray. Each item represents some kind of good fortune.

* Candied melon - growth and good health
* Red melon seed - dyed red to symbolize joy,happiness, truth and sincerity
* Lychee nut - strong family relationships
* Cumquat - prosperity (gold)
* Coconut - togetherness
* Peanuts - long life
* Longnan - many good sons
* Lotus seed - many children

Taboos and Superstitions of Chinese New Year

House Cleaning
The entire house should be cleaned before New Year's Day. On New Year's Eve, all brooms, brushes, dusters, dust pans and other cleaning equipment are put away. Sweeping or dusting should not be done on New Year's Day for fear that good fortune will be swept away. After New Year's Day, the floors may be swept. Beginning at the door, the dust and rubbish are swept to the middle of the parlor, then placed in the corners and not taken or thrown out until the fifth day. At no time should the rubbish in the corners be trampled upon. In sweeping, there is a superstition that if you sweep the dirt out over the threshold, you will sweep one of the family away. Also, to sweep the dust and dirt out of your house by the front entrance is to sweep away the good fortune of the family; it must always be swept inwards and then carried out, then no harm will follow. All dirt and rubbish must be taken out the back door.

Bringing In the New Year and Expelling the Old
Shooting off firecrackers on New Year's Eve is the Chinese way of sending out the old year and welcoming in the New Year. On the stroke of midnight on New Year's Eve, every door in the house, and even windows, have to be open to allow the old year to go out.

New Year Activities Set Precendent
All debts had to paid by this time. Nothing should be lent on this day, as anyone who does so will be lending all the year. Back when tinder and flint were used, no one would lend them on this day or give a light to others.

Everyone should refrain from using foul language and bad or unlucky words. Negative terms and the word "four" (Ssu), which sounds like the word for death, are not to be uttered. Death and dying are never mentioned and ghost stories are totally taboo. References to the past year are also avoided as everything should be turned toward the New Year and a new beginning.

If you cry on New Year's day, you will cry all through the year. Therefore, children are tolerated and are not spanked, even though they are mischievous.

Personal Appearance and Cleanliness
On New Year's Day, we are not suppose to wash our hair because it would mean we would have washed away good luck for the New Year. Red clothing is preferred during this festive occasion. Red is considered a bright, happy color, sure to bring the wearer a sunny and bright future. It is believed that appearance and attitude during New Year's sets the tone for the rest of the year. Children and unmarried friends, as well as close relatives are given lai see, little red envelopes with crisp one dollar bills inserted, for good fortune.

More New Year Superstitions
For those most superstitious, before leaving the house to call on others, the Almanac should be consulted to find the best time to leave the home and the direction which is most auspicious to head out.

The first person one meets and the first words heard are significant as to what the fortunes would be for the entire year. It is a lucky sign to see or hear songbirds or red-colored birds or swallows.

It is considered unlucky to greet anyone in their bedroom so that is why everyone, even the sick, should get dressed and sit in the living room.

Do not use knives or scissors on New Year's Day as this may cut off fortune.

While many Chinese people today may not believe in these do's and don'ts, these traditions and customs are still practiced. These traditions and customs are kept because most families realize that it is these very traditions, whether believed or not, that provide continuity with the past and provide the family with an identity.

All of the information above was from this site.

The Oceanic 6 and the body in the Coffin

Lost (possible spoiler if you didn't watch the show yet)
My theory is
The show was just okay...I really, really want to know who is in the casket. I think it was one of the Oceanic 6. 1. Jack2. Kate3. Hurly4. Sun (cause she will die if not)5. Jin6. Sawyer, only because Jack refers that Kate needs to get back to him. But maybe "him" is her baby boy???? and Sawyer is still on the island and Kate is pissed that he refused to come with her. The have Jack say "him" so we think it's Sawyer. In that case, I guess is Desmond.
On Wednesday's recap of last seasons finale, they say to note the funeral home name...
it's Hoffs/Drawlar Funeral Parlor. What does this mean? Anyone?
Now I found some other guys guess....

Okay, someone just said search google for an anagram device and plug in hoffs drawlar ...it pops up... FLASH FORWARD~Stephe
"In the season 4 premiere Hurley claims to be one of the "Oceanic 6" which leads me to believe that only 6 people left the island. This does not mean, however, that only 6 people survive, but only those six choose to leave the island. And the mysterious man who comes to visit Hurley in the mental hospital claiming to be from Oceanic enters a line of questioning to try and discover if others are still alive. From this we can infer that other people survived the island but chose not to return, and in order to protect their secret the Oceanic 6 enter into a pact amongst themselves to never reveal that others had survived the crash. The First of the Six is obviously Jack who has been in both flash forwards so far. The Second and Third are obviously Hurley and Kate who have both been in one of each of the flash forwards. While not revealed yet, necessity dictates that the Fourth Person must be Sun since staying on the island while pregnant means she will die. And if Sun is the Fourth, then the Fifth Person must be Jin. This then leaves the mystery of who the Sixth Person was/is/will be. Whoever it is, I believe, is the person who was in the coffin in the flash forward of 'Through the Looking Glass'. Because only that person would meet the criteria laid out in that episode. Someone who was 'neither friend nor family' of Jack Sheppard and who both Jack and Kate would know, yet feel strongly enough about to either go out of their way to attend the viewing as in Jack's case or avoid it entirely as in Kate's case. The most likely candidate right now is Sawyer since he is the only person willing to leave the island who would engender those intense reactions from Jack and Kate. The other possibility is Locke, but I can't think of any reason (yet) that Locke would ever leave the island. There's also the possibility that the Person in the Coffin was Hurley but the coffin was too small to hold him. Plus, there's no reason why Kate would deliberately avoid the funeral service for Hurley. "

Some guy mark posted in regards to the coffin...
"ITS BEN !! Jack was sad, because he felt guilty for taking them off the island. No body showed up because they all hated Ben" Boy, he does HAVE A POINT. ~Stephe
someone posted this...
"I dont know if someone has mentioned this but remember when jack told the other Dr to check his dad alcohol level....we all know jacks dad is dead.... someone help me understand this" Yeah, I was wondering about that!!!~Stephe
I'm more interested in what he said to Kate. "I hate lying, I can't stand lying anymore" I think they are lying about who they are so that they will not be found by whoever is after them. Otherwise Kate would be in custody. Thoughts?~Stephe
Another freaky thing to think about...
"The top picture with Jack touching the coffin is yet another flipped/inverted sceneThis show was called "Through the Looking Glass", things seen in a looking glass are usually opposite." Lots of people think the the guy in the coffin is Jack.~Stephe
Andrew just had a theory...

"I think I found something BIG!!!

I think Locke is Alice in Through the Looking glass.

Per wikipedia ::"Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There (1871) is a work of children's literature by Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson), generally categorized as literary nonsense. It is the sequel to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, although it makes no reference to its events. In it, there are many mirror themes, including opposites, time running backwards, and so on.::"

Also the book is based on a chess match. Locke plays the computer in chess and beats it HOWEVER!!! per a Lost Trivia site ::"When Locke beats the chess game on the computer in the Flame station, the message on the screen says "checkmate". But on closer inspection, the game should have continued, due to it being only "check". :::"

In the BOOK Through the looking glass: :::"Most main characters met in the story are represented by a chess piece, with Alice herself being a pawn. However, the chess game described cannot be carried out legally due to a move where white doesn't move out of check (a list of moves is included - note that a young child might make this error due to inexperience).::::"

That can't be coincidance. Also, the book is about Alice (Locke) starting as a Pawn (he is a pawn in life) and moving all the way up in power to defeat the Red Queen. (The Red King is stationary throughout the book. JACOB??)

I'm almost positive that this story is in close relation to Through the Looking Glass.

Oh and the Looking GLass Dharma signal is a rabbit.

Read about through the looking glass and you will be blown away.

I totally just won at the internet. " Interesting ~Stephe

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