Thursday, September 23, 2010

How Did You Celebrate?

We had a fun Autumn Moon Festival  celebration last night.  Because of after-school activities we couldn't start until after 7 p.m., so we kept it simple.  We met good friends at a Chinese restaurant for dinner.  It's always funny when we go to this particular restaurants.  Our friends have been going much longer than we have to this particular restaurant, so long that they've nicknamed it "Baby Chinese," since Sydney has been going there since she was a baby.  Our family has discovered the restaurant more recently. 

Now, the one thing our families have in common is that we have children from China.  And, yes, the other mom and I can be proud of our (ahem) zaftig figures.  But no one would confuse one for the other.  But we've managed to completely confuse the poor Chinese man who owns the restaurant.  Sometimes Zoe goes with the other family.  Sometimes she comes with our family.  Sometimes our two families go together.  I'm thinking Sydney might have gone with us one time.  So now this poor man can't figure out who is who and which kids belong with whom.  It's always a hoot!

Anyway, this so nice man brought us moon cakes to surprise the girls, and they were, indeed, delighted.  They threw themselves on the gift with all appropriate shrieks and squeals, very pre-teen girly behavior.  So our sweet restaurant owner surely had no doubts about how much his gift was appreciated.

And yes, the moon cake had an egg yolk in the center to represent the moon!

We also shared all the varied stories we knew about the Moon Festival -- Lady Chang Er sent to the moon for taking her husband's immortality pill, the rebels using moon cakes to pass notes about when to attack, the General's daughter using a moon cake to pass escape plans to her captured father. . . .

Afterwards, we did some moon gazing, and all three girls were sure they saw Lady Chang Er in the full moon -- Maya claimed to be able to see her eyelashes!

So how did you celebrate the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival?


Anonymous said...

We also went out for Chinese food and afterwards made "fake" homemade mooncakes (kind of like big thumbprint cookies):

They are actually pretty tasty but other than the shape, nothing like real Chinese mooncakes. The girls were so satisfied with the results that we made another batch tonight! My younger daughter insisted that we had to go outside and eat them while watching the moon.

So which restaurant do you go to? We like Szechuan, but have been going to a new place in Benbrook that is so-so, but it is very conveniently located.
Sue (aka anonymous)

Sherry said...

We read the new book Thanking the Moon and I made "fake" mooncakes, too. Basically, round cookies that were kind of like shortbread. We also went outside and looked at the gorgeous moon last night.

Joanne said...

We had a great Autumn Moon here in NY :) First, we went to our friends house and he girls made "pretty" moons and lanterns...and then we ate noodles. At home, I made my version of a Chinese meal...the fried rice was yummy :) We took our the telescope and "oooo'ed and ahhh'd" over the beautiful moon. We then went inside and ate mooncakes, this is a recipe a friend gave me, they are called "Americanized Mooncakes"~they have a taste similar to sugar cookies~ and they are great! I bought a mini-bundt pan; which made 6 cakes; and I filled them with chocolate and raspberry preserves...some plain. Mia's oldest brother, Anthony said,"I want to savor every bit, because I know we won't have these again until next year!"

Reena said...

We decorated our house with some red Chinese decorations-- DD#1 calls some of them China butterflys. So cute.

I made a big Chinese dinner of Egg Foo Yung with gravy and rice, homemade egg rolls, and broccoli.

The girls sang and danced to one of their chinese DVDs while I prepared dinner.

After dinner we went for a walk as it was getting dark and looked at the moon. Our walk is adjacent to a small river. I told the girls about the path of the water in the river-- that it flows to the Atlantic Ocean, which at a point joins the Pacific Ocean and on to the China Sea. They are only 2 1/2 and not quite 4 so I don't think they fully got it all (LOL) but it sets a baseline for us to work from in the coming years.

It was a fun time. We don't usually have time to all sit down and eat as a family-- but we did tonight and then the late walk. The moon was also shaded pink and DD#1 got a really big kick out of that.

Back at home we each had a round chocolate cake filled with strawberries.

Lisa said...

We started slow this steps. I shared a bit in my blog, but some of it we did on a more personal level too.

Our little guy was home last year, but we didn't really celebrate ~ I regretted that later, for allowing my indecision or fear of doing it wrong :) keep us from embracing it.

This year we kept it easy and sweet...just right for our 2 year old. AND our 8 year old had a blast helping to making the moon cakes...they didn't turn out too great... :) so we whipped up something sweet in the Easy Bake oven until we can try again this weekend!!

This year was about discovery and learning together...actually I hope each year is a little bit like that!!

Thanks for sharing your sounds lovely!

LisaLew said...

Great mooncakes, or so I thought! We got our mold in the mail today, I ordered it from Amazon. We'll try out a few recipes and may have something perfected by next year. Emphasis on "may," this looks a bit complicated for my culinary skills. We'll see.