By Anthony James, Staff Writer

If you were tuning in this past weekend you might have caught a very popular television program. No, I'm not referring to the NFC/AFC Championship games, or the Golden Globes, the Oscars, or any other American Award show. This yearly program tops any American Idol finale or final World Series pitch as it is watched all across the globe to celebrate the beginning of the Chinese Lunar Year. Hosted on the national news channel, CCTV, the spring gala this year hailed the beginning of the year of the Dragon and welcomed performances from many national superstars as well as western celebrities such as Warren Buffet. The program has become a yearly tradition in Chinese homes as television access has skyrocketed in the past 2 decades; in 2007, research found that over 800 million people watch the program worldwide.

By Zhu Hong, China Today

Thanks to the recent travel boom, formally sleepy little ancient towns like Pingyao, Zhouzhuang, Fenghuang and Lijiang have awakened their status as must-see destinations. Millions of tourists from home and abroad have brought these towns fame and fortune, but some feel they may have also taken their traditional tranquility away.

By Zhang Xueying, China Today

tea 1In most Chinese tea villages, March is the time of year in which locals start to pick and process tea. The usually tranquil villages suddenly become bustling centers of activity, as people take out special tools and prepare for tea processing. In some villages, local residents hold traditional ceremonies, thanking heaven for its blessing. The price of tea picked in March is extremely high because it is fresh, tender and contains multiple trace elements.

By Greg Hugh, Staff Writer

Unlike most western civilizations, the Chinese New Year is determined by the traditional lunar calendar that is based on the cycles of the moon. In fact, in other countries that celebrate Chinese New Year, it is usually translated as the "Lunar" New Year. In any case, the Chinese New Year celebrates what the traditional calendar labels as the beginning of spring. Chinese New Year usually falls during the first week or two of February, although it can occur as early as late January as it does this year on Monday, January 23, 2012. This is the first day of 15 days of celebration and the start of the Year of the Dragon.

Newswise — When making New Year's resolutions this year, committing to a specific plan for when and where you are going to accomplish each goal will make you more likely to succeed, says a Wake Forest University psychology professor.

In a recent study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Assistant Professor E.J. Masicampo found that committing to a specific plan to accomplish a goal not only makes it more likely to be done, but also gets it off your mind so you can think about other things.

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