Is this the year of your Zodiac?

Happy Chinese New Year!


Here at Amberjack, we love cultural traditions. Chinese New Year is full of tradition, storytelling, and fun celebrations.



The entire holiday was built around the story of a mythical beast and a brave old man. The monster, Nian, would hide secluded in the sea until the end of the Lunar year when he would emerge onto the land to hunt villagers and livestock. The villagers had learned to hide in terror, until one year an old wanderer came to town and was unaffected by the fear in the town. He did not hide himself, but instead hung red papers all around, dressed in red robes, and set up firecrackers. When the beast appeared that evening, nobody was about, the beast saw the red hanging all around him and was threatened. He became angry just before the fireworks were set. As the cracking went on around him, the old man appeared in his red robes, unafraid and laughed at the creature. Nian ran away in fear and the villagers emerged the next day to find everything the way they had left it. The old man was considered a deity who had come to teach them how to protect themselves, and the tradition of hanging red papers and setting off fireworks have continued for thousands of years.


Chinese New Year is a great celebration of family and community. Here’s a list of some great children’s books for all the stories and traditions of Spring Festival to share with the kids in your life.


And be sure to learn your Chinese Zodiac! Happy year of the Rooster!


Rat: 2008, 1996, 1984, 1972, 1960

            Intelligent, adaptable, quick-witted, charming, artistic, sociable.


Ox: 2009, 1997, 1985, 1973, 1961

            Loyal, reliable, thorough, strong, reasonable, steady, determined


Tiger: 2010, 1998, 1986, 1974, 1962

            Enthusiastic, courageous, ambitious, leadership, confidence, charismatic.


Rabbit: 2011, 1999, 1987, 1975, 1963

            Trustworthy, empathic, modest, diplomatic, sincere, sociable, caretakers.


Dragon: 2012, 2000, 1988, 1976, 1964

            Lucky, flexible, eccentric, imaginative, artistic, spiritual, charismatic.


Snake: 2013, 2001, 1989, 1977, 1965

            Philosophical, organized, intelligent, intuitive, elegant, attentive, decisive.


Horse: 2014, 2002, 1990, 1978, 1966

            Adaptable, loyal, courageous, ambitious, intelligent, adventurous, strong


Sheep: 2015, 2003, 1991, 1979, 1967

            Tasteful, crafty, warm, elegant, charming, intuitive, sensitive, calm


Monkey: 2016, 2004, 1992, 1980, 1968

            Quick-witted, charming, lucky, adaptable, bright, versatile, lively, smart.


Rooster: 2017, 2005, 1993, 1981, 1969

            Honest, energetic, intelligent, flamboyant, flexible, diverse, confident.


Dog: 2018, 2006, 1994, 1982, 1970

            Loyal, sociable, courageous, diligent, steady, lively, adaptable, smart.


Pig: 2019, 2007, 1995, 1983, 1971

Honorable, philanthropic, determined, optimistic, sincere, sociable.