Christmas will be here in less than two weeks, which means New Year’s is soon to follow. As a pregnant mother of a toddler I would rather not spend the night partying hard because I want to enjoy the next day. That said, I don’t want to spend the night at home planted on the couch…only to fall asleep before the ball drops. I want to go out and make the night special.
If you’re like me, and you want to share big events with your entire family, then it’s sometimes a struggle to find safe and fun activities for everyone to enjoy. Here’s a list of ways to ring in the new year with friends and family of all ages!
- First Night – Celebrate NYE with a family friendly First Night. There are many cities across the country that now hold all-day festivals for entire families to enjoy. Many are alcohol free and celebrate the communities’ local culture. My family will be attending one that features martial arts demonstrations, face painters, acrobats, and fireworks. Check out the First Night USA website to find one in your state.
- New Year’s Eve Sleepover – Instead of the traditionally champagne-fueled party, why not hold one specifically for your kids and their friends? Get together with your parent friends and host a good old-fashioned slumber party. Eat tons of junk food, let the kids run wild, and stay up to watch the ball drop!
- New Year’s Resolutions – Decide on family resolutions for next year. What would make your family stronger? Do you need to spend more time together? Can you make a commitment to whole-family health? Some ideas are to watch less TV, eat dinner together four nights a week, and spend weekends doing something physical. Group resolutions are more fun and easier to accomplish because you can hold each other accountable. One way to keep yourself and your family on track is to remember that it’s a process and that one slip-up doesn’t negate all the progress, so KEEP TRYING.
- Day of Firsts – Spend the first day of the new year doing ONLY new things. Eat all new foods, wear new clothes, only go to new places, and take a new route there while you’re at it! Is there a road you’ve never been down? Is there a town nearby you’ve never visited? Use this new day and new year to experience anything and everything you can think of. I know I want to try some new foods because that’s one of my weird hangups. I’m picky and hard to please, so why not start off 2012 fixing that.
- New Year’s Crafts – Make confetti balloons to pop just as the clock strikes TWELVE! Write a time capsule letter to document this year’s favorites and next year’s expectations. Read the letter next year on December 31st to see how close you were and to see how things have changed. You can also use this fun free printable wish-list to map out the coming year.
I’m looking forward to wrapping up this year and welcoming the new one with my family. I want to try out many of the things on this list, and save a few for when my kids are old enough to play along. What are you planning for your family?