With coronavirus cases on the rise again and the omicron variant a concern this holiday season, going out isn’t on my radar – especially now that I have a baby!
Here are some ideas for family or couples holidays for New Years Eve. Most of them can be adapted to suit any age group, whether the group includes children, adolescents, adults, or a combination.
Have a special dinner
Prepare a special meal of appetizers, dessert, and wine or sparkling cider. Frozen appetizers are an easy option, but here are some quick homemade ideas:
Charcuterie platter: It’s not just for adults. Have fun filling a plate with two or three different kinds of cheese, meats (try pepperoni, deli ham, or turkey), and fresh or dried fruit. Opt for a few sweet dried fruits, like pineapple or mango, but limit the sugar by offering fresh fruits like strawberries. I also like the look of seedless grapes on a platter. You can also incorporate vegetables and dips, like sliced cucumber with ranch dressing or celery sticks with peanut butter.
Do-it-yourself pizza: Mini bagels, mini tortillas or even zucchini slices make an ideal base for personal bite-size pizzas. Load them on a baking sheet, have everyone add their own sauce and toppings, and bake at 400 degrees until the cheese melts.
Apple nachos dessert: This recipe from Jamei McGee, a WRAL contributor and mother of three daughters, is just as fun as an ice cream sundae bar, but features tasty and tangy apples instead.
You don’t have to go outside to dress. Let the kids loot the closet or jewelry box and set up a selfie station with hats, glasses, scarves, and other “disguised” items, then take turns taking photos. Remember to use a selfie stick or phone timer so everyone takes at least one photo. The dumber the better.
Host a slumber party
If comfort is more your style, organize a slumber party instead. If the kids want to try and stay awake until midnight, set up sleeping bags in the living room.
Take out the board games
While waiting for midnight, stay awake with family board games or card games.
Everyone loves sparkling cider or grape juice as an alternative to champagne. For a special New Year’s alcohol-free cocktail, add pomegranate juice and arils to cider or, for less sugar, to sparkling water.
Watch the ball fall
Watch the country’s biggest celebration from your sofa. An ad-free live broadcast of Times Square will be available from 6 p.m. ET on YouTube and TimesSquareNYC.org.
Starting at 10 p.m. ET on NBC, Miley Cyrus will host a New Years countdown with performances by Brandi Carlile, Billie Joe Armstrong, Saweetie and more.