On December 19th the hubs and I celebrated the 10th birthday of our first born child and 10 years of being parents. It was also at that moment that I realized that we hadn’t celebrated a kid free New Year Year’s Eve since December 31, 2001. This New Year’s Eve will mark our eleventh celebration with kids in tow and eleven years of finding ways to make the evening memorable without all of the alcohol and hoopla that one associates with the evening. So what are some of the things we do to get our party on as a party of five?
Finger Food Fun
Just because you’re not slipping on a little black dress and counting down to midnight in style, doesn’t mean you can’t lay out a spread of tasty and fun finger foods. Our New Year’s Eve usually consist of kids favorites like cheese sticks and chicken tenders but we like to toss in some good cheese, tasty dips, shrimp cocktail and more. If you are feeling especially creative (I’m really not) you could also snag your kids up in the kitchen with you and try your hand at making some of these fun Pinterest creations.
Family Game Night
New Year’s Eve make for a great family game night and hopefully you received some fun new games for the holidays, if not, break out your old family favorites. If your like us, chances are you and your little ones won’t make until the balls drops, but you would be amazed at how fast the time flies when you have a stack of games (a.k.a. a stack of laughs and smiles) ready to go. This year, I plan to lay out our new Suspend game from Mellissa & Doug toys, Star Wars Operation and a stack of classic Nintendo games, including Dr. Mario and California games.
If your gearing up for midnight a great way to try and stay awake is to pop some popcorn, set out some sweet treats and hunker down for a movie marathon. Some great choices (depending on the age of your kids) are The Harry Potter series, Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Stars Wars, Toy Story series or even a Disney Princess Marathon. If you’re not up for a marathon, make sure you have so new favorites your family has been wanting to set to arrive on time from Netflix. If the kids don’t make it through the night with you, consider one of these great titles to snuggle up to with your spouse before the New Year rings in.
1. Ring in the New Year with Forrest Gump and Private Dan.
2. Soak in a memorable New Year’s Eve Speech in When Harry Met Sally
3. Change up with a little comedy from the train scene in Trading Places
4. Finally, release your inner gangster with The Godfather Part II
Other fun ways to ring in the New Year as a family, hang out by a bonfire and listen to classic family friendly party songs, Prince comes to mind. If you are buried under a pile of snow, lay out some blankets are star gaze and hope you get to see some neighboring fireworks displays in the distance. Finally, a new one I’m going to do with my kids this year, break out the papers, crayons and markers and make bucket list books with your kids. Pages could include titles like, “This year I want to try,” “This year I want to go to” or “I want run x amount of distance this year.” Make it fun, you can even make themed books that could coincide with something like my Disney Bucket List.