New Year's Eve has always been a favorite holiday. Although, I must confess my party style has changed drastically since our duo became a family. If you're at a similar stage of life, but running out of kid-friendly ways to ring in the New Year, you're in luck. Put your own spin on one of these.
Supplies: cozy pajamas, robes, slippers, theater candies and snacks, vintage popcorn machine (rentable). Personalize their popcorn tubs. Schedule a family friendly movie series with at least two sequels. Give each person a monogrammed blanket (eliminates fighting) and grab a few extra pillows. Once everyone grabs their snack and finds a snuggle spot, just hit play.
Supplies: flannel sheets, fleece throws, pillows, a stack of their favorite children's books, pajamas for starters, a few dress-up clothes, and a starlight projector nightlight. Turn the sheets into an epic fort, then snuggle in for the first story. When you are done reading, assign a character from the story to each child. They'll love acting out what you've just read and putting their own spin on it. Keep the rotation going until the ball drops (or until the kids do).
Supplies: large boxes, art supplies, confetti bombs, king sized flat sheets. With a little help from you and a fair amount of imagination the kids can transform the boxes into rocket ships. While everyone else is counting down the New Year, your household will be activating the launch sequence. Shooting confetti bombs at blastoff creates a little something extra for your little rocket scientists. Placing a king sized flat sheet under each rocket-building station beforehand makes clean up a snap for you.
Supplies: bonfire, stump seating, warm coats, snow pants, acoustic instruments, several pairs of mittens, headlamps, snowshoes, lanterns, mugs, and hot apple cider. The weather has to be right for this one to work, but when Mother Nature cooperates there is no better way to spend New Year's Eve. A warm throw is great for wrapping little ones who are ready to snuggle up before the older kids have finished their hike. Pull the little ones in a sled, snuggled in their snowsuits. Make sure guests know to show up dressed for the outdoors in hats, scarves, mittens, parkas, snow pants, boots, and long underwear. It's always colder in the dark. It is always nice to stock a few extras of everything for guests to borrow. The lanterns create a well-lit path. The headlamps help everyone know where they are. Gather around the fire at midnight, turn off the lamps, and let the glow help welcome the new year.