30 Dec 2016

New Year’s Eve at home

If there’s no place like home for the holidays, shouldn’t that include New Year’s Eve? Staying in is in, and we have a few ideas to make it an evening to remember.

Dance the night away

People who may be shy about dancing in public most likely will be willing to cut a rug at home. Make a dance mix tape with music to please all generations present, or dance along with the special New Year’s Eve shows on television. Even if your signature move is more swing your partner than doing the Dab, who cares? You’re at home!

Mix up some mocktails and cocktails

After everyone has worked up a thirst dancing, they’re going to want drinks. Kids will love festive sparkling grape and apple juice, or other mocktails like strawberry-kiwi spritzers or cranberry sparklers. Just add fruit juice and seltzer water with a fruit garnish to a plastic champagne flute.

Set up a pour-it-yourself bar for the adults or make a big a pitcher of champagne sangria with:

  • 32-ounces apple juice
  • 12-ounces frozen cranberry juice concentrate
  • One cup orange juice
  • One-and-a-half liters champagne (or ginger ale for a non-alcoholic version). Add at last minute to ensure bubblies.

If the grown-ups start their grown up “it’s after 10:00” yawning, make some pick-me-up coffee drinks with and without alcohol.

They’ll want to eat

Even if it’s just you and the fam, make the food festive and fun. Plan a make your own pizza, taco or baked potato bar.  Freeze a lasagna ahead of time for a quick and delicious meal. A huge assortment of appetizers can also create a meal on a special occasion. Make sure everyone’s favorite finger food is represented.

Fondue is another fun dinner idea for New Year’s Eve. Bits of bread and meats dipped into warm, gooey cheese will require everyone take turns dipping. Add a twist by requiring a story from the past year or a prediction for the new as each person is dipping.

If you’re having guests

If you’re inviting guests, when sending out the invites, ask them to bring an unusual noisemaker. Have a prize of earmuffs or earplugs for the best. At midnight, you’ll be sure to be the nosiest house on the street.

Find a wall or background in your house that can be used as a photo booth backdrop, decorate it with holiday decorations or written resolutions, and provide props for a one-of-a-kind photo, or the last selfie of 2016.

If you’re in the mood for something quieter and more reflective, ask guests to write predictions, hopes, dreams, goals or aspirations for the New Year and place them into a bowl or a box. Then, during supper, take turns reading the predictions while everyone guesses who wrote them. (This is also a great way bring the celebrations down a notch and wrap up the night!)

When the clock strikes twelve

Use things around the house to ring in the New Year. Bang on bongo drums, light sparklers and get everyone outside to shout “Happy New Year.” (But be a dear and warn your neighbors.) Sing a song together, such as Auld Lang Syne while holding hands or candles if you are looking for something more low key (even if it’s out of key).

If the little (and big) ones just can’t hang, plan to celebrate the New Year in a different time zone. For example, try ringing in the New Year with Tokyo, Paris or Greenland. You could even make whatever country’s New Year you’re celebrating the theme for the night, with cultural food, decorations and costumes.

Stronger together

Finally, consider taking a moment to make your resolutions together, which will help make them stick. Agree on some resolutions to make as a family (keeping in budget, no electronics at dinner, etc.) and be each other’s accountability partners.

There are so many ways to do New Year’s Eve at home. Why not give it a try this year?


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