Friday, December 26, 2014

A Family New Year Celebration


By: Angie @ Kids Matter

Once you have kids, your life is full of big decisions. Just one of those decisions is what are we going to do on New Year's Eve now? For many, the nights of going out to clubs and drinking lots of champagne are over. They choose a quieter evening at home with the kids. Just because you aren't getting all dressed up and going out to party, doesn't mean the night has to be a drag. You can still have fun, it's just a fun that the kids can participate in too!

Eat traditional New Year's foods with the kids. Some traditional foods and the beliefs associated with them:
  • Greens - eat your greens as they represent spendable greens of another type
  • Black eyed peas - This is a Southern thing, representing humility and invites good fortune. I believe in other regions, they choose a different type or bean.
  • Noodles - signify long life and you get bonus points if you eat the noodles without breaking them.
  • Rice - signifies abundance
  • Grapes - eat 12 grapes, one for each month of the new year. If a grape tastes bitter, watch out for that month next year.
  • Pomegranates -  with its many seeds representing prosperity.
  • Pork - pigs are considered lucky animals as they root forward and they are rotund/abundant
  • Fish - the scales represent money and when a fish swims in a school it represents abundance.
  •  Circular foods - like a cake or cookie represents coming full circle

Kid friendly activities:
  • Count down bags - get 12 paper lunch type bags and draw a clock face on the front of each bag. Each time that is reached, the child opens the bag to find small trinkets, noise makers, hats, candy and/or games to play. You can do this for each hour up to midnight if your child can stay up. Mine never makes it past 10:00pm, so we start at 10:00am opening bags.
  • Fill out the same printable form each year, covering the basics of the past year. It would be so much fun to look back on these each year and see the changes in your life, your likes and your handwriting.There is a great free printable at Wonderful Joy Ahead. 
  • Toast one another with special drinks. Each year, I melt chocolate and dip the rims of glasses in the chocolate and then into sprinkles. Once the chocolate hardens, I serve the glasses with milk inside alongside homemade cookies.
  • There is nothing more fun than a balloon drop! Besides having to actually blow up the balloons, there is little prep and it is completely mesmerizing for kids. You can order a balloon drop kit on Amazon.
 Whatever you do for New Year's Eve, be sure to include the kids and make it memorable for them. During the time frames of waiting for the next count down bag, we usually play some of our lesser used board games and see if we can find a new favorite family game! If we still don't like it, then it goes in my donate pile and I get an early start on my resolution to get organized. Have a wonderful 2015! 

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