Looking forward to 2018

By Diana Ooi

When “Dongzhi” 冬至 or Winter Soltice arrived in late Dec 2017, the excitement of making and eating “tungyuan” 汤圆 or glutinous rice balls comes with it. We have also made it a tradition in the Home to celebrate this occasion with making and eating “tungyuan”. The children were happy to dip their fingers and palms into the dough and even come up with creative shapes and sizes. Tradition is still tradition their creativity was brought back to tradition and they have to make their “tungyuan” the way it meant to be – round! “Tungyuan”are made round to symbolise a complete family and also a smooth and round journey in whatever we do. Without having to break traditions the children still maintain some creativity by making colourful “tungyuan” and I guess we can symbolise it with a colourful and rounded journey! I wish and hope these children will have a colourful and rounded future!

 

As a child I remember hearing the adults saying “Dongzhi da guo nian” 冬至大过年meaning the winter solstice festival is more important than the Chinese New Year. I have never understood why this is said but I guess it signifies the wrapping up of the old year and to prepare for the new year to come as it is the last Chinese festival of the year.

Just 3 days after winter solstice comes Christmas – the last festival of the year! If you are born in the 50s you may recall that Christmas was referred to as the “Ang Mo Dongzhi” 红毛冬至(the western winter solstice).

 

Before we knew it we have already replaced the 2017 calendar with the 2018 ones! The new year has begun!

 

Looking back the journey wasn’t smooth. We have stepped on potholes and met with barriers. It was not an easy journey! When we embarked into this project we knew it is not easy. Dealing with human beings is never easy. We have to face the challenges and take a positive stand and I am thankful to have all our friends, partners, volunteers, donors and many more, who have stretched their hands of love and helped and lifted us up when we are falling. We may not be able to mention each and every one of you here but from the bottom of our hearts, the board, management, staff and especially the children thank you for your love and support!

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