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Thursday, May 28, 2009

Nothing planned for Dragon Boat Festival?

Just bring out any Chinese dress your little girl has, and your own. Put these on and romp around the house in your Chinese dresses. If family members ask why are you two dressed up? You can always say "We just feel like it." But really, you two share a secret that today is a Chinese holiday.

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Parents used to put perfumed pouches on their kids during the Duan Wu, or dragon boat festival. Duan Wu is remembered on the fifth day of the fifth month in the lunar calendar, and is around midsummer. The heat brings on an influx of diseases, which people in Ancient China believed is caused by evil spirits.

The pouches are small pieces of cloth embroidered by the parents. Fragrant herbs are inserted into these pouches. It is believed that putting perfumed pouches on the children can ward off the evil.

There is modern medicine that takes care of diseases, but I think this is still a nice touch to do for our children. They can always treasure it as a keepsake, something that mom made for them long ago in an attempt to pass on tradition.

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