Wednesday is Chinese New Year's Eve. We'll be moving from the Year of the Sheep to the Year of the Monkey. What could be better for this transition than a monkey made of wool? There are two free knitting patterns online that I can find:
I also found a very sweet looking commercial monkey puppet here -- if you listen closely, you can hear it saying, "Put my face on one of Kerrie's finger puppers!"
I think the Sheep-Monkey transition is also the perfect moment to make a sock monkey -- from wool socks, of course. Here are some instructions:
For something completely different, make some monkey origami:
If you were born in 1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, or 1980, you're a Monkey. Apparently you're particularly compatible with Rats, like me and Maggi! Here are a few links to pages where you can learn a bit about the Chinese zodiac, Chinese New Year, and specifically the Year of the Monkey:
We're not going away for the holiday (last year at this time, we were off to India!). I'll have Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday off, and I can't bloody wait. I think it's supposed to be chilly and miserable out, too. I plan to hang out with Billy and Bea and knit, watch movies, drink hot chocolate, read knitting blogs, and catch up on some sleep. Ahh. And I have a request: I'd love it if you leave a comment about your favourite Chinese film, author, artist, food, saying, city -- any anecdote having to do with Chinese culture. (Or ask me a question about Chinese/Taiwanese culture and I'll do my best.) Anything! Here, I'll start:
I think the qipao (chee-pow) is the most elegant and flattering piece of clothing ever; I've been to Chinatowns in Vancouver, Montreal (it's just little), and San Francisco; stinky tofu is seriously one of the worst things I've ever smelled; I love the films of Zhang Yimou (e.g., Raise the Red Lantern); I recommend Jan Wong's books about China; and my favourite Chinese restaurant ever is On Lok on Hastings Street in Vancouver. But if I were to start eating meat again, the first thing I'd want to have is those shopping-mall food-fair sweet-and-sour pork balls! The first complete sentence I learned to say in Mandarin was "Mien li mien yo ro ma?" ("Is there any meat in these noodles?") And did you know that the Chinese equivalent of "wall-to-wall people" is "people mountain, people sea"? OK, now you go.