As many families do, we have layers of holidays to celebrate through the year. There's a layer of church-based holidays, national holidays, personal holidays like birthdays and anniversaries, "Hallmark Holidays" as my dad likes to call Mother's Day and Father's Day, and on and on.
When we adopted our daughters from China, we added Chinese holidays. Now in the fall, we mark the Moon Festival and the Lunar New Year, and added two personal holidays, our daughters' adoption days (aka Gotcha Day).
Now that we're in Belgium, we have yet another holiday festivity to add: Carnival, the crazy few days before Ash Wednesday begins the more sober, contemplative Lent season.
I wonder how JieJie and MeiMei are taking all of this in, because it's all happening simultaneously! Wednesday was Valentines Day. Last night at midnight the Chinese community here rang in the Year of the Pig with fireworks down in Chinatown. Our apartment is decorated with hearts (thanks Mom - your beautiful handmade mobile got here all in one piece) and red and gold Lunar New Year decorations, and now there's Carnival confetti spilled all over the carpet from when we got back from a Carnival parade and took our coats off (I have a feeling there will be more confetti on the floor when we change into our pj's - lots of confetti in the air!).
And after this all dies down, it will be JieJie's 5th birthday!