Last night was 100 days from L’s birth, and in China the 100th day is a big deal. It’s called 一百天 or 百岁。 The parents are supposed to invite everyone to a banquet; it’s a bit like being a debutante, since up until this time they’ve spent their whole lives indoors. I imagine back in the day with high infant mortality rates, this might also have been a celebration of the child’s likely survival.
I don’t know what all traditions are associated with the 100 day celebration, but one big one is to put things in front of the baby that symbolize options for their future: academic stuff (pens, etc.) artistic stuff (needle point), silver, toys, sports stuff… the idea is that whatever the child reaches for will indicate their future. Red eggs for good luck are involved somehow, too, I think.
By total coincidence L actually was at a big Chinese banquet for her 100th day because the fund raising dinner for the Canadian branch of the NGO we’re with in China just happened to be last night, and I was the speaker. We dressed L up in traditional Chinese baby clothes that a friend had sent from China, drove downtown and kept her out from 4:30pm to 11:30pm, and she was perfect! There were about 80 people there, almost all Chinese Canadians, and I’m pretty sure L got cooed over by at least half of them. Anyway, wanted to share a photo… I guess it’s a new dad thing not being able to help showing off his daughter!