Lunar New Year is on February 1st. According to the Chinese zodiac, 2022 will be the year of the Tiger.
Growing up (in Vietnam), Lunar New Year (or Tet for us) was always the biggest festivities of the year. It’s a celebration of the end of a long (and hopefully successul) harvest. (My parents were farmers.) To prepare, my parents would decorate the house with cherry blossom branches, blooming orchids and lots of lanterns. They made glutinous cakes and caramelized ginger, white beans and coconut candies. During New year is when we each got a new set of clothes as well. Then on the 1st day of the year, we’d visit our grandparents and relatives to wish them a prosporous New Year. In return, they’d give us red envelopes filled with money for good luck.
While the Lunar New Year celebration is not as big here in the U.S., I still try to keep up some traditions with my daughters. For every Tet, London and Alex would get a new set of ao dai (our traditional Vietnamese dresses). We try to decorate the house a little too. While they are too young to understand why, I hope that keeping up this tradition will make them curious to know where our family came from and therefore one day appreciate our culture.
Since becoming a Mom, I look forward to buying London & Alex new ao dai each year. That’s our traditional Vietnamese outfits. This year, I went for a more muted tone, getting green and yellow ao dai. However, the girls said no! lol.. They went through the previous year’s ao dai and chose the brightest ones that they could find. So I caved in and agreed because having them wear something is better than fighting and not taking photos at all.
Here is the set up for this year’s Lunar New Year photoshoot. This year is really special to me because the lanterns came all the way from Hoi An, Vietnam. They are made of silk with lots of intricate art.
I originally planned it to be indoor but with the spike in COVID cases lately, I’m nervous to have so many people inside. While it seems like most cases are mild, I’m scared of infecting our kids and elderly relatives. So for the weekend sessions, I am going to move it outdoor in front of the studio. (In the parking lot).
And yes!!! I told London that I will give her $5 to let us take photos of her. hahaha
Don’t let Alex fool you. She was so cranky and needing during all of the shoot since it was close to her nap time. She only laughed when I started blowing raspberry in her face. Then she started doing it to London and laughed her head off. She then went inside to grab candy canes. Oh the struggle of photographing children! But I love it because these are the stories that we’ll get to tell for years to come.
I hope you enjoyed the story and images. I am booking Lunar New Year shoot now for Jan 22nd and 29th weekend. You can click here for all of the details and to book.
Until the next time, take care and be healthy! Wishing you and your family a new year filled with warmth, happiness and good health!!!!