Creating Family Friendly New Year’s Eve Traditions


When I think of my New Year’s Eves growing up, all I can remember is hanging out in the basement with my parents and my two younger brothers. Eating snacks for dinner – Bagel Bites, Pizza Rolls, chicken wings, mozzarella sticks – anything you could find down the frozen snack aisle. Sidenote: I tried to eat a Bagel Bite a few weeks ago and was shocked to find out they actually taste just like the way styrofoam smells. Our New Year’s Eve was always spent playing games like Trivial Pursuit and then starting a movie marathon that never quite made it to midnight. We’d usually take a break to sip on some sparkling grape juice – it’s not champagne, but it still made us feel fancy.

Even though I’ve never had a When Harry Met Sally kind of New Year’s Eve, I still prefer spending the night at home with family instead of out at a party. This year, since my son is now older than zero, it’s been fun introducing the holidays to him and creating special traditions that we can carry on as he grows up. Here are some fun ideas I’ve gathered if you’re looking for a quiet, family-friendly, New Year’s Eve at home.

Ideas for families with older kids:

Game Night
Trivial Pursuit, Monopoly, Yahtzee? You could even buy and wrap up a new game every year as a bonus present for New Year’s Eve. Then, you’ll slowly build up that board game collection to last you until midnight!

Movie Night
Get some snacks and popcorn ready for a night in full of movies! Step up your movie night game with a theme or series…Star Wars marathon? And, what a perfect time to practice your fort making skills!

Hotel Slumber Party
This one would be such a special treat for the whole family. Book a room at a hotel and snuggle up in your pajamas with room service and a movie or game.

More like abstract art than a handprint...

More like abstract art than a handprint…

Family Time Capsule
A fun activity that you could combine with any of the other ideas. Have everyone gather a small item that represents something meaningful to them from the year to place in the capsule. Take a family photo and hide it away (somewhere you can find it) to open next year.

Ideas for families with younger kids:

Hand Print Art
Break out the art supplies and document your kiddo’s handprint each year. Add their name and the year and they’ll get to look back on their changing handprint year after year!

Play Dress Up
Everyone get dressed up in their fanciest of fancy party clothes and party the night away with sparkling mock-tails and tiny hors d’oeuvres. It will feel like one of those fancy New Year’s Eve parties in the movies, right?

I’m so excited to start some of these traditions with my family this year and hopefully some of the other introverts out there will enjoy these at-home family friendly New Year’s Eve traditions! 

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