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Celebrating New Year's Eve with a family night in

Welcome 2010!
Welcome 2010!

Going out on the town to celebrate New Year's Eve can be difficult, if not impossible, when you are the parent to small children.. Some parents feel left out as their childless friends party the night away. However, there are plenty of great ideas to help you have a fun New Year's Eve at home.

Include the kids.  Why not celebrate the New Year with the kids? Staying up to midnight may be impossible, based on your children's ages. Instead, try doing a countdown to the new year at 9:00 pm instead of midnight, or whatever time best fits your children's bedtime schedules. They don't have to know it's not really midnight!  Blow horns, throw confetti, and have a toast with your kids! Sparkling grape juice or homemade punch in fancy glasses makes everyone feel special. 

Put the kids to bed early, and then enjoy the rest of the evening with your special someone. After celebrating with the children, turn on some music or a favorite movie. Snuggle up with your sweetheart (or yourself!) and enjoy the peace and quiet. Perhaps you'd rather drag out a board game or play cards. Whatever you choose to do, choose something fun and out of your usual routine.

Enjoy a late dinner at home. If you have really young children and can get them in bed early, plan to have a nice dinner at a later time in the evening.  Many restaurants don't offer seating until 8 pm or later on New Year's Eve, so do the same thing at home!  After the children are in bed, you can cook together and enjoy a nice meal to ring in the new year!

Too often we equate having fun with going places and doing something special outside of our home.  The more we can look to our homes as a special haven, the more we will be able to enjoy being at home, on normal days and holidays. Here's to a happy, healthy, and frugal new year!

Lindsey's New Year's Frugal Punch Recipe:

-1 two liter bottle of cherry flavored soda; -1 large can pineapple juice

Mix together and chill.  Float cherries and lemon and lime slices in the punch if desired. Recipe can be doubled.