Making New Years Eve Fun for the Family

(Throw back photos from last New Years Eve)

I have to admit…I’m just not a New Years Eve person. The thought of going out to parties or a bar until midnight sounds…exhausting and kinda miserable. Last year we did force ourselves to venture out to a family friendly party, but we were home by about 9:30 pm. We’ve come to realize that we are just happiest at home ringing in the New Year in our pajamas with a mocktail in hand and sharing the evening with our kids. So if that sounds like your kind of New Years celebration – read on! Today I wanted to share a few ideas to celebrate the holiday and make it fun for the whole family!

Dress up! (Or down!)

Even if you are staying home, you can make the evening a little more fun by dressing up in your fanciest dresses and bow ties! Or you could also dress up in “fancy pajamas” like this grown up set for my little boys, and for me I’m loving the idea of wearing velvet or silk pajamas.

Fun snacks

One year for NYE I made a fondue dinner which was a lot of fun! This year I’m loving the idea of having a hot cocoa bar for the kids, and also thinking of buying this s’mores maker to make s’mores! Another fun option would be an ice cream bar!


We always get sparkling cider and toast one another in fancy (plastic) champagne flutes. It would also be fun to make up a family signature drink or browse Pinterest for some fun ideas. I think this looks super cute and you could customize it with any candies you like!

Make it a game night

My kids absolutely love board games, so our plan this year is to have a marathon game night! My oldest loves card games & Battleship, and my little one loves Don’t Step In It and Don’t Break The Ice. We’ve also been having a lot of fun playing games with our Alexa over the holiday break! Our favorite games are Would you Rather, Who Wants To Be a Millionaire, and Trivial Pursuit.

Have a photo booth

I’m planning on setting up a photo booth to take some silly photos this year which I think will be a lot of fun! I bought this backdrop, and I may jazz it up with some balloons or a garland/banner. I would also like to get some fun props & set up the camera on a tripod & use a photo booth app!

Slumber Party

To tie in with our fancy pajamas, it would be fun to set up a slumber party in the living room! We could get out the kids teepee, and build forts and basically make the living room a big cozy bed!

Add some ambiance

I love getting party hats, and also thinking it would be fun to get some glow sticks to wear too! Having a disco ball or some colored lights make the atmosphere fun, as well as a fun playlist of music – ask Alexa to play a New Years Station if you don’t want to make your own! My kids also go crazy for balloons – so just having a bunch of balloons for them to play with (or go a step further with a diy balloon drop!) would add that extra bit of fun. (Here’s my hack for blowing up a lot of balloons in a short time! I have this vacuum which I use, but I also just saw that Target has this handy dandy little machine!)


For the really little ones, there probably isn’t much chance of them making it til midnight, so for those like us on the west coast, you can watch the ball drop in NYC and celebrate that as midnight. A mom friend of mine has the genius idea of changing all the clocks in their house ahead a few hours that day, so the kids really do think it’s midnight when it’s actually only 10 pm! Netflix is also doing some countdown programming for kids this year as well. If your older ones can make it until the actual New Year, it’s fun to watch a live countdown that is local or in your time zone. Here in Boise, we drop a giant potato that we stay up to watch live on TV (only in Idaho!).

Make some noise

To celebrate the New Year, having some noise makers or confetti is a must! You could also just bang pots and pans, and I’ve heard of the idea of breaking open a piñata at midnight which would be a lot of fun! We’ve done sparklers before too for some at-home fireworks.

Wishing you and yours a happy and safe New Year! See you in 2019!!!


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