To let the kids stay up, or not to let the kids stay up. That is the question. And I have no answer for you because you know your kids way better than I do.
Late nights can bring out the worst or the super worst in kids depending on his or her disposition. After a certain witching hour, our kids transform into grumpy and hypergrumpy. That kind of behavior totally messes with my New Year’s mellow, man.
If you want to put your kids to bed early, there are plenty of ways you can still have fun and celebrate the New Year with them. Just follow the World Clock. America is one of the last countries to celebrate New Year’s. If you are up for it, get up at 5:00 AM EST and ring in the Tonga New Year, which will be the first country to welcome 2017. From that point on, you can use a world map and this website http://www.timeanddate.com/counters/firstnewyear.html to celebrate New Year’s every hour(‘ish) as it travels around the world.
An alternative is to pick a few locations your kids are familiar with (maybe where you have family, ancestry, or just a country they know about) and celebrate the New Year as it hits just those countries.
To make it even more fun, look up the customs of those countries and replicate them in your celebrations.
- Practice Ousouji (clean your house!) and then eat Toshikoshi Soba noodles and ring a bell 108 times at 10:00 AM EST to celebrate the Japanese New Year.
- Make an Olivier salad and say S Novim Godom at 4:00 PM EST to celebrate the Russian New Year. Once you’ve rung in the New Year, bring out a left over gift as a token from Ded Moroz (Grandfather Frost), who visits children to pass out gifts on New Year’s Day. Fun fact! Instead of elves, he brings along his granddaughter,Snegurochka (The Snow Maiden), to help him.
- Change into white clothes with colorful undergarments and eat seven grapes for abundance or chew seven pomegranate seeds to ensure that your wallet will be full, then jump 3 times with your right foot while making wishes for the upcoming year in order to celebrate the Brazilian New Year at 9:00 PM EST.
In many countries, what you eat that night will bring you fortune, so find the right foreign foods to serve throughout the day. As you tick off each hour and each country, your kids will (hopefully) wind down too, leaving you to ring in the New Years with the good old American tradition of a kiss, minus a chorus of “EWWWWW GROOOSSSS!”
Editor’s Note: Whichever way you choose to celebrate, here’s a recipe for a New Year’s punch from SPIDER Magazine that is sure to add a little bit of sparkle to you New Year’s Eve. Enjoy!
Cricket Media Mama once tried to replicate a New York Time Square New Year’s Eve celebration. She is still vacuuming up the confetti.