Here are 7 ways to ring in 2020 with the kids:
1. YOU pick the countdown time!
Kids want to be a part of the celebration. Of course they do! A party? Noisemakers? Food they can eat with their hands? Sign them up! The problem is the timing as the countdown happens long after they're supposed to be in bed. That problem is solved if you pick the time. Here are two options:
Noon Year's Eve
Celebrate at noon. You can still count down until the clock numbers turn to 12 and whatever you choose to happen can happen, whether it's blowing bubbles, dropping balloons or blowing on noisemakers.
It's midnight somewhere
Pick a city across the world to celebrate with and then figure out the equivalent time it rolls into 2020 in your time zone with the Countdown to New Year 2020 for all time zones around the world.
On Dec. 31, when it's 8 a.m. in New York City, it's midnight in Sydney. Midnight in Mumbai, India, is 1:30 p.m. in Indianapolis. And when it's 5 p.m. in Phoenix, it's midnight in London.
2. Give the kids party bags
Get the kids ready for the countdown with all the supplies they'll need. It doesn't need to be expensive. Hit the discount/dollar stores and stick the celebration treasures in a plain white bag. Decorate with glitter and glue if you want get to fancy.
Here are some ideas what to put in the bags:
New Year's Eve glasses
Horns and other noisemakers
Rock candy sticks
3. BUY A cheap hat
Buy them a Happy New Year's top hat. The kids will probably toss it off or smash flat soon after putting on. Why? Because although it might be a waste of a buck, it's tradition and is good for an Instagram photo or two.
4. Set up a pizza-making station
Whether it's just you and a little one or you've got a whole horde of kids coming over, a pizza-making station is an easy way to keep everyone entertained and fed. Either pick up the dough at your favorite pizza place, buy it at the grocery store or whip it up yourself. Mold the dough into an individual size portion and then let guests build their own pizzas from bowls of sauce and cheese. Offer fixings such as mushrooms, olives, pepperoni, peppers, ham and pineapple.
5. Make New Year's Eve slime
All you really have to do here is search the internet for "make New Year's Eve slime" or "glitter slime" and you'll come up with dozens of suitable recipes. Michael's has a listing of holiday slimes made with the basic ingredients here. A simple Confetti-Filled Slime:
Mix your slime
Pour glue into a bowl.
Add baking soda and mix.
Add contact solution and mix until slime forms.
Take the slime out and begin kneading with hands.
If needed, add ¼ tablespoon more contact solution to make the slime less sticky.
Once you have the consistency you want, add the sparkly confetti or glitter.
6. Craft a Blessing Jar or a Wishing Well
Grab a canning jar or something similar from the cupboard or get one from a dollar store. Cover it in construction paper and label it either Blessing Jar or Wishing Well.
If it's a Blessing Jar, you and your child write the blessings you notice in your life over the coming year on a piece of paper, fold it and drop in the jar. Next New Year's Eve, you dump it out, read it and get to feel that warm, fuzzy feeling.
The Wishing Well works essentially the same way. Except instead of putting blessings in your jar, you put your wishes. At the end of 2020, you get to see how many wishes came true, how many you get to carry into 2021 or how many you're willing to discard for new wishes.
7. Play the photo timeline game
Print out some photos – try for at least one from each month – from the last year. Create a challenge by hiding them around the house and asking children to find and arrange them in chronological order. It's a win-win: Kids love to look at themselves and you get to marvel at how much they've grown over the past year. You both will enjoy the walk down memory lane and wonder at the adventures the new year will bring.
Whatever you do this New Year's Eve, we wish you a happy, safe and healthy 2020!