I've always loved New Year's Eve, so much so we even got married on New Year's Eve...and not just so we didn't ever forget the anniversary date but because we love to party and celebrate with all of the people we love the most in one room. Plus, it was a pretty good feeling to hop on a plane 1st Jan when we'd usually be thinking about returning to work, cold weather and everything else that January brings.
But, New Year's Eve as a parent is VERY different right? Even more so if you have young kids and babies. If you can get a babysitter and still head out to celebrate as an 'adult', first of all, hats off to you for having the energy, but also, enjoy - you deserve it!
I have quite limited childcare and my husband often works on New Year's Eve so not only do I usually have my two indoors but sometimes other kids too so their parents can enjoy it, no point in all of us staying in right?
However, if you are in with kids or just hate going out on New Year's Eve then staying in can be a fun. Here are a few simple ideas that you can enjoy with babies, toddlers and kids on New Year's Eve:
Have a family movie night: Gather everyone together for a cosy movie night at home. Choose a family-friendly film and snuggle up with blankets and snacks knowing you don't have to go out in the cold again.
Have a dance party: Put on some upbeat music and have a dance party with your little ones. I did this last year by literally playing a music channel on the TV and my two and my two nieces loved it....plus it wore them out. You could even make it a themed party by dressing up in costumes or decorating with streamers and balloons.
Have a cosy dinner at home: Cook a special dinner together as a family and enjoy a meal at home. You can even set the table with festive decorations and make it a special occasion without even leaving the house. Bubbles are optional and if you don't make it to midnight, fake it! They say 8pm is the new midnight anyway... We've tried takeaways twice on NYE and both times it was a disaster so I think this year we will give in graciously and actually cook.
Go for a walk or drive to see the lights: If your baby or toddler is able to stay up late, go for a walk or drive to see the Christmas lights nearby before they all disappear, you might catch some fireworks too.
- Have a New Year's Eve countdown: If your little ones are able to stay up until midnight, have a special countdown and celebrate the arrival of the new year with party poppers and a toast (non-alcoholic for the kids, of course). Confession time - last year I was in with a 8 month old, 2 year old, 4 year old and 6 year old. I let the eldest 'stay up late' for the countdown and did it at...8.30pm. YouTube has a selection of Big Ben 'count down' videos that you can get up on your phone or TV for the ones who want to fake it. You're welcome!Whatever you do and whoever you're with, have a fab time and see you on the other side.