Pre-baby, New Year’s Eve was all about going to bed at 3am after a night of bubbly, dancing and squeezing into that sequin dress you won’t wear again until next year. Let's face it, NYE with a baby might not be as wild as previous years. But that doesn't mean you can't make a night of it and have fun together welcoming in 2022! In fact, chances are celebrating with your child will beat most of your past festivities hands down (and result in less of a hangover).
It’s just about thinking ahead, so let the countdown begin...
1. Make a plan
If you’re going to a friend’s house for the night, make a list of everything your child will need – think a Moses basket if she’s little, plus toys and snacks in case she’s not feeling those 'yucky' blinis. Find out whether there’s somewhere your baby can nod off in the house, that won’t be disturbed throughout the evening – because, in all honesty, she’s not going to make it to midnight.
2. Embrace a night in
Duvet. Sofa. Films. Food. Champers. Let’s hear it for the New Year night in. Your baby’s settled and you can enjoy a chilled evening with no panicking about getting to that party on time or being super organised. Absolute bliss, especially when you’re shattered. Heck, who can blame you both for falling asleep by 10pm?
3. Dress up
Another option for staying in is dressing up! Why not dress your tot up to the nines in a beautiful little dress or a sparkly suit and bow-tie, whilst you and your partner do the same! It will make you feel extra special to be dolled up, even if you are sat on your tod at home! Dressing up sets the mood for a special night, no matter what's on the agenda.
6. Throw Confetti
Even the littlest of babies will be utterly dazzled by colourful, shiny confetti being tossed in the air. It will help toddlers understand that it's a special evening, like a birthday. Bubbles are a great idea too. Don't worry about the mess until next year...
7. Create a time capsule
Making a time capsule is an age old tradition that is so satisfying to do and rewarding to open years later! Gather up some of his favourite things from this year, baby grows, a photo or two, other small items and put them in a box. Write a special note featuring memories from that year and add some hopes and dreams that you have for the future.Then just bury it (or just put it somewhere safe) to be opened on NYE in ten years!
8. Have a pre-celebration
If you know your kids will be out for the count before the clock strikes, make the most of the daytime. Play games, cook up a roast and even recreate an early countdown to get them in the spirit.
9. Make some special NY decorations for the house
Have an arts and crafts session in the afternoon to make some special NY decorations for the house. Fold paper to cut a chain of stars, then paint or cover with glitter and write a letter of your child’s name on each star. You can dig out what she’s made every year to start a new family tradition.
10. Make plans for New Year's Day
Rather than staying up late as usual, allow yourself to nod off early and have a fabulous New Year's Day instead! You may be the only one in the country not hungover, so make the most of it. Go for a crisp morning walk, arrange a special family brunch or have friends over for appetizers and cocktails in the afternoon. You'll have something fun to look forward to, so going to bed at an earlier hour won't seem so boring. You'll be so refreshed!
11. Host an NYE play date party
If you do insist on staying up til' midnight, why not invite the party to you? If you have enough room at home, consider hosting a NYE play date party for you, your mummy friends and all their tots! Whilst you slog out with pizza and plenty of bubbles, your little ones will all be fast asleep in the next room (fingers crossed!). Call it a mummy slumber party if you prefer, but the beauty of it is that no one has to worry about transportation late at night when the festivities come to a close.
12. Stay firework friendly
Going out to watch a display? Wrap up warm, and have an early exit plan and route in mind in case your child wants to leave.
Try some earmuffs, so she’s not scared by the noise or even watch from your car so the sound’s muffled but she can still enjoy the colours and lights.