Years ago when I was 8 years old, my three cousins (around the same age as I was at the time) came over for a New Years Eve sleepover. We packed our sleeping bags next to each other like sardines in the middle of the living room, and partied in our PJs until the ball dropped on TV. We ate a big spaghetti dinner, made ice cream sundaes for dessert, and played with party noisemakers until our sugar high ended.
And let’s face it- that was one of the most fun times I’ve ever had on New Years Eve.
If your kids are old enough to understand the excitement surrounding the new year, but too young to spend the night out with their friends, hosting a sleepover is a great way to allow the kids to have fun- without leaving the house. Hosting the sleepover is easy–just remember it won’t be a quiet evening!–and cheap. Kids will love the idea of being able to stay up late to watch the ball drop, and camping out in the living room instead of having to sleep in their bed.
To prepare for a kids NYE sleepover, make sure to have a kid-friendly dinner planned. Dishes like spaghetti and meatballs or mac-n-cheese are easy to make, and will satisfy any picky kid. The food doesn’t stop at dinner–a great dessert after a hearty dinner is a must-have! You can get the kids involved by baking and decorating cookies or making milkshakes (see recipe below from Disney Family Fun).
Setting up a few board games will keep the kids having fun- and there’s no age limit to games, so you can join right in! Looking to spice up the party past board games? Then you may be interested in a Midnight Balloon Shower, from Disney Family Fun. All you need is a paper tablecloth, balloons, streamers, and metallic confetti to create a shower of balloons at the stroke of midnight.
Whether you choose to go all out with the Midnight Balloon Shower, or keep it low key with board games, your children will have a blast this New Years Eve!
This marshmallow creme and chocolate syrup shake serves 2. To make, blend:
1 cup vanilla ice cream
3/4 cup milk
3 tbsp. room-temperature marshmallow creme
4 tbsp. chocolate syrup
You’ll need frozen and fresh fruit, flavored syrups, yogurt, toppings like whipped cream, maraschino cherries, nuts and chocolate chips for kids to add into their shake. Final touches: a cool straw, long spoon or swizzle stick.