Children wearing traditional costumes pose during preparations for Chinese lunar new year celebrations in Hong Kong on February 17, 2015. The Chinese lunar new "year of the sheep" begins on February 19. AFP PHOTO / Philippe Lopez

Children wearing traditional costumes pose during preparations for Chinese lunar new year celebrations in Hong Kong on February 17, 2015. The Chinese lunar new “year of the sheep” begins on February 19. AFP PHOTO / Philippe Lopez

Happy Chinese New Year! How have you begun your year? I have been cleaning furiously because the good Chinese ­ not sure I’m one of these ­ do that to bring in good fortune for the year. We are also sweeping away any misfortunes from the previous year.

I made sure I did not wash my hair on New Year’s Day as it brings bad fortune. By doing so, you are washing away all your fortunes. My fiancé washed his hair that day and received a speeding fine right outside my parents house, and lost several points on his license!

I did buy a new dress and attend dinner with my family on the eve of the festival. We do this every year.

Chinese New Year began on February 8th and each year is characterised by the Chinese animal zodiacs. This year is the year of the Red Monkey, the ninth year in the cycle. My ex was a monkey and I am a tiger. It is not a good mix, so it looks like my Chinese horoscope was right again!

The monkey is intelligent, clever, wise, flexible, cheeky, strong­witted, curious and mischievous. They are fast learners, crafty opportunists and are great at working in group environments, while retaining their individuality. Some celebrities born in the year of the monkey include Leonardo da Vinci, Celine Dion and Miley Cyrus.

For the Chinese, the New Year is about being with family. Preparation for the New Year usually takes a few weeks, including cleaning, settling any debts and making amends, and decorating.

As I mentioned earlier, it is bad luck to clean for the few days of Chinese New Year, as it is seen as a sign of sweeping away the good luck. Cleaning your home represents purging, purifying, detoxing and decluttering your life and home from bad habits and omens. Settling debts and making amends ensures you start the New Year with a clean slate and without negativity.

Many Chinese families decorate their homes with bowls of oranges and tangerines as they are believed to bring good luck and wealth. In some parts of Asia, families also decorate their homes with red cutouts as red is seen as a lucky colour. That is why many Chinese people also exchange red moneybags during Chinese New Year.

2016 is already proving to be a busy year, but it will be well worth it. We look forward to any challenges coming our way, as we can only grow coming out of them. And reward only comes with hard work.

Chinese New Year is a time to let go of anything and everything that isn’t serving your best interests or nourishing your soul. It’s also a good time to end any bad thoughts, habits, beliefs or relationships that aren’t moving you forward.

The year of the monkey is the ninth year in the cycle, and 9 is seen to be a good number in Chinese culture because it sounds like “long lasting” in Chinese. The number 9 also represents completion and humanitarianism, so we can’t wait to continue our humanitarian efforts in the year ahead.

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We hope you will join us at our upcoming Namaste Party so we can wish each other a belated Happy Chinese New Year. It’ll be our first year celebration where we will reflect on our journey so far, and share stories from our recent trip to India. It will be a great opportunity to connect with like ­minded people ­ and to put your best sari forward. You can find out more about the event or how to purchase your ticket here, or contact me through

Here at Moeloco, we wish you a very Happy Chinese New Year and many good returns this year.

Love and good vibes,


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