When we’re young and romantic (or foolish), New Year’s Eve is for dreamers, dancers and lovers. We partied till dawn (or at least until after midnight), filled pages with lofty resolutions for next year’s improvements, kissed passionately at the stroke of midnight and fell into bed, exhausted from all the revelry.
These days, with kids of various ages filling the empty spaces in our lives, falling into bed exhausted from an average day’s efforts is more likely the case.
But if you do want a festive celebration marking the beginning of the New Year with your children, it’s still possible.
One of my ex-husband’s sisters used to host big New Year’s Eve parties where the kids as much as outnumbered the adults. Thinking back to those recall memories of Pictionary games, cake decorating contests and karaoke into the early morning hours of the new year. Little ones delighted at midnight as confetti filled the house and air horns and poppers went off.
Growing up, my memories of New Year’s Eves with my parents were quieter. My brothers and I were horrible children, so our parents never trusted us to let a babysitter survive an evening with us. So they stayed home. But I was several years older than my brothers, so I was allowed to stay up with Mom and Dad. We’d have a special late dinner, steak and baked potatoes after my brothers were in bed, and watch Dick Clark’s “Rockin’ New Year’s Eve.”
One New Year’s Eve a couple of years ago, our girls were here at our house, so we made our celebration a late night pajama party. We skipped dinner for an evening’s procession of appetizers and finger foods. And we passed the time leading up to midnight singing “Glee Karaoke” songs on the Wii.
There are all kinds of ways to celebrate. Doing it with kids in the picture just means modifying plans to make it fun for everyone. How do you mark New Year’s Eve? Is it something you share with the kids in your life?