Jade Emperor) above the fireplace in the kitchen. This tradition is still widely practiced, and Zao Jun is the most highly worshiped god of those who protect the household and family. Offerings of food and incense are made to Zao Jun which marks his return to Heaven to give his New Year's report to the Jade Emperor. On this day, the lips of Zao Jun's paper effigy are often smeared with honey to sweeten his words to Yu Huang (Jade Emperor), or to keep his lips stuck together. After this, the effigy will be burnt and replaced by a new one on New Year's Day. Firecrackers are often lit as well, to speed him on his way to heaven. If the household has a statue or a nameplate of Zao Jun it will be taken down and cleaned on this day for the new year.
In order to establish a fresh beginning in the New Year, families must be organized both within their family unit, in their home, and around their yard. This custom of a thorough house cleaning and yard cleaning is another popular custom during "Little New Year". It is believed that in order for ghosts and deities to depart to Heaven, both their homes and "persons" must be cleansed. Lastly, the old decorations are taken down, and there are new posters and decorations put up for the following Spring Festiva.
Independent Chinese families are classified accordingly to the stove they possess. Because circumstances of a divided household, kitchens are shared but never the stove. In the case of a fathers death, The sons divide their fathers household. The eldest son inherits the stove and the younger brothers transfer the coals from the old stove to their own new stoves. This invites the Stove God to join their newly formed households. This process is called "pun chu" or dividing the stove. This indicates the "soul" of the family and it signifies fate of the family.