Tag Archives: Reunion Dinner

Reunion Dinner 2018

15 Feb

Yesterday was our last day at work before we break for Chinese New Year and boy was it a busy day. I managed to clear most of my work – the boombox in the office has been inspirational, and looking forward to a stress-free break. I’m sure I am not the only one with this feeling.

Reunion Dinner 2018 is sans M1 again with the occasion at my sibling’s home. Every year it’s a debate whether to have this auspicious gathering at home or in a Chinese restaurant and many a time, the choice of having it at home outweighs the eating out choice. This is because the Chinese restaurants will hold two dinner sessions for families and this feels very rushed. Imagine having to eat an eight-course dinner within a hurried and noisy environment. Whereas at home, it’s at a leisurely and comfortable pace.

I hear these days some restaurants are now even doing three dinner sessions capitalising on the occasion! Well, however it is done, it is an all important gathering for the Chinese. We look forward to the Year of the Dog tomorrow to usher in a prosperous and healthy year ahead!


Getting the Priorities Right

13 Feb

My goodness, it suddenly hit me that Chinese New Year is three days away! And I am so not prepared. The customary red cloth is finally up, but no further festive decors in the house because I chose to carve instead!

I have not stocked up my fridge with real food because there’s chocolate and candies hogging the space. And hubby bought drinks to fill the fridge – beer and more beer plus some soft drinks, all of which I cannot consume. Wait a second, I shouldn’t be thinking of drinking any alcohol with my current situation. Furthermore, the drinks are for visiting guests during the festivity! Need to get my priorities right here…

To add to my unpreparedness, I have not even started packing for the trip up North to hubby’s hometown on the First Day of Chinese New Year although I made the effort to pack my golf set. My priorities seem to be skewed.

So this year, the Reunion Dinner will be with Mom and my sibling and his family. Only M1 remains absent as she is still in the US. Nonetheless, it will be a boisterous affair with lots to eat and drink with everyone around but poor me, I have to be careful on my intake in case there’s a reaction. At least I am getting my priority right on this.

Customary Routine

31 Jan

Over the years whenever we return to hubby’s hometown for the Reunion Dinner, we would also play a round of golf at the nearby golf club. This year, the customary routine had to be modified slightly because we came back a day earlier than our usual four days, three nights stay.

We are playing at our golf club today. Looking forward to some good golf to work off all that food consumed!

The Drive Home, Part 2

30 Jan

We came home by yesterday after the family Reunion Dinner on Friday night. The drive home wasn’t that bad as it took five and a half hours, an hour more than normal.

Every year during the Chinese New Year exodus, the drive both ways would be a long crawl with almost bumper-to-bumper traffic. On Friday, it took six hours and the return, a half hour less, far less than I had originally anticipated prior to the start of the trip.

There were a couple of years it took us ten hours just to get home, hence the fear. So I am thankful we arrived home with nothing close to those sort of hours yesterday.

There were several accidents along the drive up north but I wouldn’t call them accidents; just mere breakdowns of single vehicles. Not even any contact of two vehicles and the slow down was unavoidable, causing some stretches of the drive to be a crawl. I guess it’s better to be safe than sorry.

The time with the family was all about eating. And we had good home cooked meals by the Aunty. Now that we are back here, it will be more visiting to other relatives and more yummies to savor!

We officially go back to work on Thursday.

The Drive Home

27 Jan

Today is the Reunion Dinner and for the first time for as long as I can remember, we are just leaving home the day itself and not a day earlier to attend the occasion. We just could not leave yesterday because of reasons worthy of another story or two. This year, the dinner is with hubby’s family up north.

I anticipate a ten hour-journey for what is normally a four or five hour drive. Oh well, we are prepared with much music choices, sandwiches, chips and drinks for the car, I just hope traffic will be kind. Who knows? We may arrive on time.

Here’s wishing everyone a very Gong Xi Fa Cai and may the Year of the Rooster bring you much happiness, success and prosperity that you will want to crow about it all year long!

Happy Monkey Year!

8 Feb

Today is the beginning of the Fire Monkey year and it is our first Chinese New Year without M1. Feels funny. Last night, we had the Reunion Dinner with my Mom and my sibling and his family at his home. And as always, the home-cooked food spread is the highlight (save for the purchased roast duck and Siew Yoke) and the family bonding time precious. Tossing the Yee Sang was fun.

Later today, we will head on up North to hubby’s hometown. I hope traffic will be kind because I have read about people taking nine hours on the road for a typical three and a half hour journey!

Then again, the exodus began last Friday and Saturday for the Reunion Dinner on Sunday night; it is Monday today and we shouldn’t be facing heavy traffic. Technically shouldn’t… We shall see.

Nonetheless, being on the road, we will drive safe and be there when we get there. Here’s wishing everyone a safe, peaceful and more positive year ahead. Gong Xi Fa Cai!


Eat ’em and Weep

20 Feb

Two days ago, we left our home early for the Reunion Dinner at hubby’s hometown up north. In the early hours of the morning to avoid the anticipated massive jam, we thought this was best to avoid arriving late. All these years we have never left at 6.30am on the day itself, as it is usually a day or two earlier. Typical times when we leave home at this hour are only to catch a flight at the airport or going for a 7.30am tee off golf game.

Anyway, being so early, breakfast had to be on the go. I was chewing on a doughy piece of bread with nuts when suddenly, I felt a sensitiveness at the back of my mouth. Oh dear.

I probed the bottom left side with my tongue and to my horror, discovered a gaping hole in my lower molar! Did I just swallow a portion of my tooth? Or was it the filling? What bread was that that caused the tooth to crack?

Dear, oh dear. Being away for several days without immediate rectification work on it by my dentist, it will be a challenge to savor all the delicacies this reunion has to offer.

And because it’s Chinese New Year and we cannot be rude or not obliging to the family, it’s been an eat ’em and weep experience so far.

The Reunion Dinner

17 Feb

The reunion dinner is very important for Chinese families during Chinese New Year. All, if not most, family members will make the effort to be present for this occasion if possible. Every year, hubby and I alternates this duty with our parents, even years with my mom here and odd years with his parents at their hometown. This year, it will be with his parents.

And every year when we have to hit the road, the typical four and a half hours journey doubles in its duration because half the country will also be traveling either for this occasion or simply take this opportunity to go away for a road trip holiday. It gets worse upon return because that half of the country that travelled earlier decides to return all at the same time, clogging up the highway all the way; there was a year we took 10 hours to reach home.

With such ghastly hours, I dread the journey sometimes but it has to be done. So we brace ourselves with all comforts thrown in: iPods, iPads and phones fully charged for entertainment and connectivity, several powerbanks for backup power for the devices, lots of snacks and water for survival. It can be fun sometimes but only if we make it so. The girls would bring along pillows and blankets to make their travel more comfortable.

Well, we can’t really tell the traffic volume until we hit the road tomorrow and regardless of the duration—be it five, seven or ten hours—we will be there for the reunion dinner with hubby’s side of the family.

The Reunion Dinner

30 Jan

This is what the Lunar New Year is all about, the Reunion Dinner. The mass exodus by the working people to their hometowns for this all important occasion with the family. This year our Reunion Dinner will be with my mother and my only sibling and his family. The Dinner is all the more significant with the inclusion of my niece who came back after graduating from college.

We opted for the occasion to be at home instead of going to a restaurant. Over the years, dining out became an option to entice people with the idea of just dining with no hassle of cooking or cleaning up. We tried this before but the matriach of the family feels this is very rushed and not personal. In other words, too commercialized to savor the true meaning of a reunion in comfort.

So we will enjoy dinner with mostly home-cooked meaningful dishes and some pre-ordered delicacies. Bottomline, it is not just the food that matters but the family being together. Tomorrow we travel to hubby’s hometown to be with his family.