Showing posts with label New Years. Show all posts
Showing posts with label New Years. Show all posts

Monday, May 4, 2015

New Years Eve 2015

It's time to share some New Year's Eve countdown activities.  Unlike last year's countdown we had a small, family countdown.

I set the clock back 2 hours (I started this tradition in 2013) to trick the kids into thinking they are staying up until midnight when it's only 10:00.  They have no idea I do this and I'm going to milk it as long as I can.


Princess started us off by opening up the 6:00 bag.  Inside was a sticky note that read "decorate the tree."  I had taken all of the Christmas ornaments off a few days earlier, but was too lazy to take down the tree.  My kids all love to decorate, so I knew this would be a hit.

Putting up a gold bead garland.  (P.S. buying Christmas decorations before New Years is a steal!)

Can I do this one?

Bud loved these ornaments.  They were blue and shaped like a ball.  Ornament heaven for a little boy.

Here is the completed tree.  They could only reach the bottom 2/3 of the tree  It was quite a talking point when guests came to visit.


My kids love making lots of noise on New Year's Eve (I'm sure the neighbors love it too).  I decided to let them make their own noise makers.

We filled either paper cups or plates with a few corn kernels and taped them shut.  If you do paper plates you can also staple them closed.

Naturally, when they're done, you have to let the kids run wild around the house making as much noise as they can.  You won't see bigger smiles anywhere!


The next activity was to have a special dinner.  We have had Fire-y French Toast and Lucky Coin Pitas in the past years.  This time I decided to make crepes. I could have put a lucky coin in the crepes, but I forgot.

All ready to dig in.

I stuffed and topped them with whatever the kids wanted.  They were so excited to try their creations.

I love crepes!  Mine was filled with cherries and drizzled with caramel.  Mm!

If you have little ones, just mental prepare yourself for the sticky fingers that follow.


On New Years we always pull out a game of some sort.  For Christmas we were given the game Fibber and decided to try it.  Look at those ridiculous glasses!  We laughed and laughed!


Whose kids don't love taking pictures with mom/dad's phone?  I pulled out the 'ol cell phone and we snapped picture after picture.  I love those faces!  Too bad dad was busy working and couldn't join in the fun.  Maybe next year.


Making a New Year's toast is a tradition that I have done for many years now.  Sometimes I line the rim of the cup with chocolate and dip it in sprinkles.

This year I let the kids have Sparkling Cider.  They were very excited to try it.

My kids love shouting "DING!" as loud as they can.


Finally, the moment of truth arrived.  As is tradition in my family since I was a little girl, we went to the front of the house and banged on pots and pans as loudly as we could shouting, "HAPPY NEW YEAR!"

My two little munchkins wanted to use noisemakers rather than pots and pans.  Whatever works right?

We gathered at the table after the kids were done making noise for a New Year's "kiss."  Yum!  Hershey's kisses!

New Year's Eve has quickly become one of my kids' favorite holidays.

What do you do on New Year's Eve?

You Might Also Like:
Glow-in-the-Dark Ring Toss
Time Square Sparkle Ball
Balloon Countdown

Saturday, January 4, 2014

New Year's Countdown 2014

Welcome to a new year here on Pinning with Purpose!  2013 flew by!  I hope you had a wonderful New Year's Eve.

As a kid I remember watching the celebrations in Time Square on the TV, waiting for the countdown, and finally going outside to bang pans.  But what about all that time before the actual countdown?  Why let it go to waste?

Last year I did a Balloon New Year's Countdown.  The kids loved it and so did I.  We enjoyed having something to do each hour before ringing in the new year.  I decided to do another balloon countdown this year.  I added some new activities and kept some of the favorites from last year.  

"Let's make a party of it!" I thought to myself.  So, we invited some friends over this year and I'm so glad we did.  It made our night that much more fun!  

I did some easy, not to mention cheap, party decorating before they came.  Can't have a party without a few decorations after all (you must know by now that I don't party without decorations).

Here was our dinner set-up.  I put black and yellow streamers around the house, some 2014 signs in the windows, and some gold coins and necklaces on the table.  That's it.  Nothing fancy.  

Here is the balloon countdown I made this year.  The kids couldn't wait to get started!  All day they kept asking, "Is it 6:00 yet?"  

Princess was excited to be the first person to pop a balloon.  It said to eat dinner and see if you get the lucky coin.

Here's how the lucky coin game works.  When you serve dinner you stick a coin in someone's meal.  You can either bake one into a muffin or just place it in whatever you are serving for the night.  Whoever gets the coin in their food is going to have good luck for the year.  

I put fake coins in the other meals so no one felt left out.

Princess got the REAL quarter, so she is going to be the luckiest this year.  

Goofy popped the next balloon.  It said it was time to dress up for the party and get faces painted.

My girls will take any opportunity they can to get dressed up.  Face painting was an extra bonus.  

Belle (a.k.a. Princess) wanted to her 2014 to be the same color as her dress.

Bud thought face painting was pretty fun.

This year I wanted to have a box full of little trinkets that represent the things we have done during the year - things like ticket stubs, pamphlets, pictures, etc.  I designated a box and let the kids decorate it with stickers.

The girls were very excited about this project.

They nearly spent the entire hour decorating.  They were very thorough.

They even decorated the inside of the box!

The next balloon told us to have a toast to the New Year and play a game.

Our guests arrived at 8:00, so this was the perfect time to have our toast and appetizers.  I am so glad Bestie, her husband and her daughter, Brownie, could come celebrate with us!

I made my mom's bacon wrapped water chestnuts.  They are delicious!  (The recipe is at the bottom of this post.)

My kids love the chocolate and sprinkle-covered rims of their glasses of milk.


This was Brownie's first New Year's toast.  Do you think she was having fun?

The kids chose to play Perfection while the adults talked and ate.  

Bestie popped the next balloon on the countdown.

It told us to make Time Square sparkle balls.  

I gave each child a foam ball and a dowel.  We poked a hole in the bottom to hold the ball on the skewer (kind of like a wand).  I hot glued the tip of the skewer and inserted it into the hole.  Then I hot glued around the bottom of the ball where the skewer and ball meet for safe measure.  

The kids then each picked some gems.  They pointed at where they would like the gems to go.  I put a dot of hot glue in the spot they chose and they would stick the gem on.  Each Time Square sparkle ball was very different.  Brownie has a thing for green gems.

Princess was all about the pink gems.

The kids were pretty excited about their sparkle balls.

Being silly.  

Next we played glow-in-the-dark ring toss.  I simply used glow sticks to make the rings and a baby stacking ring center for the target.  

What's that?

It's Goofy using her ring as a crown.  She wasn't terribly interested in tossing her ring.  Why should she throw it when she can wear it?

Princess had a blast trying to get her ring on the target.

The adults played too.  Hubby was the official winner.

Brownie and Princess having a blast.

Of course, our last balloon told us to make noise.  To keep my my family tradition, we banged on some pots and pans.

Brownie had lots of fun.

Princess really went to town making noise.  She didn't stop until we made her about 5 minutes later (that's all our nerves could handle).  

I sure had fun ringing in the new year with my little family and best friend.  Happy New Year to you all!  

Mom's Bacon-Wrapped Water Chestnuts
1 pkg. bacon
1 can whole water chestnuts
1 c ketchup
1 c sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Cut each piece of bacon in half.  Wrap the water chestnut with the bacon and hold together with a toothpick.  Spray a jelly roll pan (cookie sheet) to keep them from sticking.  Bake in the oven for 20-30 minutes.  

Mix the ketchup and sugar together in a bowl.  When the bacon-wrapped water chestnuts are done cooking, dip them in the ketchup and sugar mixture.  Bake again for another 20 minutes.  Allow to cool slightly - they are best when warm.   

I dare you to eat just one!  

You Might Also Like:
2013 New Year's Countdown
13 Busy Bag Ideas
Harry Potter Party