We rang in both 2015 and 2016 at raucous house parties teeming with small children, yummy apps, and champagne. 2016 even featured a genius upstairs/downstairs dinner party, and the adults sat down and ate fancy food at a fancy table. It was awesome.
This year, though, we knew we would be out of town for my dad's birthday weekend, so we had to find new NYE plans. When you are celebrating what is usually an adults-only kind of night with kids, you need to make sure EVERYONE is set up to have fun. To do this, you need
1. To NOT be driving. Contained parties work best because there are a lot of drunks on the road on NYE.
2. To be somewhere your kids can express their feelings about being up so late.
3. To have a plan with plenty of room for spontaneity.
4. To have a breakfast plan because you might be feeling not your best, most sparkly self in the morning, but you know who WON'T be hungover? The kids.
5. To buy an extra bottle or two of champagne because mimosas are perfect for New Year's Day. I really love Costco's Kirkland brand prosecco.
6. To buy all of the silly, sparkly, messy, noisy NYE party accessories you can find. We heaped a ton of them in a big bowl on the kitchen table in our hotel room, and the kids LOVED it.
7. To buy a bunch of candy for the children so they can be up late and TOTALLY wired. We also got juice boxes, goldfish crackers, and fruit snacks. And our candy came in plastic champagne bottles so that was another touch of festive.
We started the day with lunch at our favorite sports bar in Pekin-- favorite because they make their own chips, and I can never resist that.
Then we decided to do something we never did in college: GO TO A BRADLEY BASKETBALL GAME. It was SUPER FREAKING FUN, even though we sat in the nosebleed section ($10 for a ticket, a hot dog, and a soda-- the kids loved it).
After that, I heeded my own advice above, and we went to the dollar store and to Costco for party supplies, which we immediately set up in our hotel.
And enjoyed before dinner
Also before dinner, we met up with our fabulous college friends and their adorable kids and went swimming. Not pictured because I am almost 40.
Dinner was at another sports bar (but I got a truly delicious salmon salad), and the kids were magically well behaved, and we had the whole upstairs to ourselves. And they suddenly developed an interest in shuffle board.
And the adults? Just enjoyed the heck out of talking to each other.
After dinner, we went back to the hotel for more swimming, and the adults actually got in the water-- the hot tub AND the actual pool, where we played a game of keep away with a football we wisely snagged at the dollar store. It was fun, which is something I rarely say about swimming in a hotel pool.
And then! The best part! Everyone put on their jammies, and we rang in the New Year together! (Heads Up was a super fun addition to the night, BTW-- kids and adults loved it. We wanted to play What Do You Meme, but the kids would not stay in the bedroom long enough. Major bummer.)
And because we were at a hotel, the next morning was easy peasy
I hope 2018 is a s fun as our night leads me to believe it will be!