Our family’s tradition for New Years Eve is simple and frugal. We rarely stay up to ring in the New Year since we have four kids and are exhausted parents. Keeping the kids and ourselves up makes for a rough New Year’s Day.
We try to make New Year’s Eve special for the kids.
We like to stay in together as a family and discuss the years past – with all of the blessings, and the new year to come – all the exciting things God has planned for us.
It’s a fun day to do crafts together and reminisce and plan.
We have fun making “snackies” – as the kids call tapas or appetizers that we lay out on TV trays for all to share.
Some of our go-to NYE party foods:
- pigs in blankets
- BBQ mini meatballs
- cheese and salami platter (charcuterie)
- various nuts
- mini pizzas or tortilla pizzas
- spinach artichoke dip (hot or cold)
- veggie and fruit trays
- sweet and spicy or mochiko chicken nuggets
- chicken wings
- sushi or smoked salmon
- a variety of crackers and chips
Having a variety means everyone is happy with picking and choosing and sometimes finding a new favorite!
We make a yummy frothy punch out of pineapple juice, ginger ale, and sherbet. The kids sometimes like to have fizzy grape juice.
We also make our own sweet and sour mix and add that to lemon lime soda or ginger ale with fruit for a fun sangria.
Pretty glasses are a must-have to make this special.
We discuss our favorite memories from the last year. I have these fun memories cards that help prompt the kids as we remember.
We discuss our goals for the next year as a family and homeschool. The kids love this and it offers me insight into what’s important to them.
I love seeing my kids grow up and update their values each year.
We always watch a Muppet movie. I never realized it had become a tradition until my eldest daughter reminded me we had to make sure we had the new Muppets Most Wanted movie for NYE.
We don’t venture outside at night because the fireworks are scary, loud, and dangerous. They’re illegal in Germany except for a few days a year and everyone thinks they’re a pro and it can get a little rowdy. It’s safer indoors.
How do you ring in the New Year?
New Year’s Day food is important too!
Peas or lentils represent coin money.
Pork is rich in fat and represents prosperity and also progress.
Leafy greens also represent money.
I grew up eating pork roast and black eyed peas. I make pork, peas, cornbread, and greens for my family for prosperity, coins, gold, and dollars.
In Germany and German-American homes, the tradition is pork and sauerkraut. Cabbage strands represent money.
Noodles represent longevity, prosperity, and luck.
Rice represents abundance.
Whole scaly fish represent abundance. Some people used to and maybe still do stow away a few scales in their purse or wallet to ensure good fortune.
Pomegranate seeds are associated with life and fertility.
Eating 12 grapes at midnight is a fun and sometimes hilarious superstition from Spain and Latin America. It should bring luck for all 12 months of the new year.
Oranges and honey represent a sweet golden new year in Asia.
Round cakes like Bundt represent the circle of life. In Greece, orange cake Vasilopita is popular. Kransekage or wreath cake is popular in Scandinavia.
Glücksschwein or marzipan pigs are popular in Germany and Austria.
Happy New Year!
Check out my New Year Pinterest board:
Follow Jennifer Lambert’s board New Year on Pinterest.