My dad is from Malacca, and my family is Hokkien. We celebrate the Hokkien New Year on the 9th Day of Chinese New Year.
A little history about this day : this day is particularly significant to Hokkien Chinese: on the ninth day of the New Year (it is said), the enemies of the Hokkien tribe banded together to wipe the Hokkiens from the face of the earth. As a horrible massacre ensued, a few survivors hid in a field of sugarcane. The heavens intervened, and the marauders left. Since then, Hokkiens have thanked the Jade Emperor for his intervention on the 9th day, making offerings of sugarcane stalks tied together with red ribbons. -http://goseasia.about.com/od/culturepeople/a/seasiacny.htm-
The reunion dinner among family members is a must for Chinese New Year.
My mom & maid had started folding our paper offerings a few days before hand.
If you are a busy person & not able to make time to sit & fold, all you have to do is part with your $$$ and buy readymade offerings from the shop.
I've been told that the day before this celebration, ppl flocks market purchasing flowers & sugarcanes (read history for explaination). After the head of the family has done his prayers of lighting of joystick (prayer stick), then followed by others. We make our wish for the new year to the gods for good health and prosperity etc. When I was young, I would wish to pass all my exam, now I wish for me & my family's health & me earning more money. Hey, just being realistic.
I remember when I was in Brisbane, tradition was in my blood till I actually did this process on my own (at a much smaller scale. I setup the table at my balcony, at the stroke of midnite, did my prayers & burnt papers in a metal container (hoping my neighbors wouldn't call the fire brigade).
My youngest cousin, Khai Vern & my poser, youngest bro
At a larger scale celebration, there are households who offer roast pig as well. We did once, but it seems like a waste unless you wanna have pig for a month. Also the looong loud fireworks. A little difficult at my house since we're located on the main road. The police would love to circle around our neighbourhood & fine us for it (fireworks is illegal in Malaysia unless you have a permit for it).