New Years can be some gosh darn fun. And it doesn't have to take a ton of prep time or be a massive production.
Sure, you could totally still have a great time just watching the tv countdown shows and eating snacks, but if you're up for it, these activities here will create some hilarious memories for your family. I remember back to each of the years we've done a party like this with increasing nostalgia. If you can swing it, this really is fun, either just for your immediate family or to invite friends over to join you.
Last post I gave you 6 ideas to Rock your New Year's Party, filled with some easy ways to put together a New Year's celebration for your family and/or friends. You should definitely check that action out if you missed it.
But now, prepare yourself, because I'm about to gift you 10 spectacular ideas for activities during your party that will blow your freaking mind.
Ok, so they're not spectacular. Or mind blowing.
They're pretty simple, really, which is why we did them last year. But they're a pretty great way for your family to giggle themselves into the new year, all with minimal effort on your part.
I pulled these all together in well under an hour. Probably under a half hour. And it would have been faster but my printer's black ink ran out and I had to find an alternate printout that was in color.
Last post I talked about having Mystery Bags for your party games/activities. I've seen people do balloons that the kids get to pop with the name of the activities inside. That's cute too. But I like this because you can put all the supplies you need in one place: inside the bag.
Note that I don't have times on my bags as I want the freedom to both move on to the next activity when we're ready and to NOT do them all if that's how the timing works best. Plus, it's pretty exciting for the kids to be able to choose the next Mystery Bag.
So here they are, in no particular order:
1) Spin the Bottle
No, we're not creepy. This is the G version. When it's your turn you think of something someone has to do, like "smell my stinky socks" or "do 10 pushups" or "do a crazy dance." Just be careful because it might just land back on you.
2) Make New Year Breadsticks
Make a batch of your favorite dough (or thaw some Rhodes) and roll it with a rolling pin into a large rectangle, making sure to lightly grease the counter first. Use your pizza cutter to cut it in half the long way then cut it the short way in little inch strips. Give everyone 4 strips and let them have at it.
Most of us last year made 2018 breadsticks but the 5 year old went with the traditional New Year's candycane and the 2 year old decided on lumps. Perfect.
We then painted them with butter and parmesan and baked them according to the recipe.
If you're up for it, this recipe is awfully forgiving. We didn't let it rise at all- the kids helped me put the ingredients in the mixer, it kneaded while we did the next activity, then we came back and created. You could have the dough mixed and rising though right before the party starts if you wanted to streamline a bit.
I love that Matt made the 0 a heart. I'm guessing many of you thought that was me. Nope. It was all Matt.
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The next couple ideas have you in teams. I'm pretty careful with competition in young families because it can lead to fights and hurt feelings, so the opposite of what I'm going for here. I let the kid who picked the Mystery Bag choose his team and then we just kind of went at the same time and cheered each other on. But you wouldn't even need to split up if you have fewer people.
3) Snowball Shake
You need a bunch of cotton balls- 2/person, vaseline, and 4 bowls. Break into 2 teams and get a blob of vaseline on the end of everyone's nose. Put the bowls with the cotton balls on one end of the room and the empty bowls on the other.
Without using your hands you have to get the cotton ball on your nose, walk it to the other bowl, and then shake it off into the bowl.
4) New Year's Charades/Pictionary/or even Pudding Pictionary
Split into teams and take turns trying to get your team to guess your word. Charades is a super easy game to prep- just write your words on word strips and you're set. Pictionary works great if you've got a big whiteboard, chalkboard, or easel to draw the pictures on.
Have you ever done Pudding Pictionary? Just cover the table with syran wrap or a disposable tablecloth and fingerpaint your word in pudding that's a contrasting color to your table. I'd highly recommend this game if you've got enough room for everyone invited to be able to see as it's equal parts hilarious and delicious. Then when you're done you can just toss the tablecloth.
Here's a word list to put on word strips: Fireworks, Cheers, Clock, Year, Games, Count Down, Balloons, Calendar, Baby, Party Hat, Music, Noise Makers, Midnight.
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5) Yank It Down
For this one you need 3 cups/team and 2 squares of cardstock/team. The object to stack an alternating cup and cardstock tower and take it all back down the fastest. You have to stack the cup, the cardstock, the cup, cardstock, cup. Then slide the cardstock out from between the top cups so they stack and do it again with the other piece of cardstock so you end up with 3 cups stacked inside each other.
This was pretty fun, with the cups flying off the table. We might have helped a few kids by holding the cups still.
6) Cookie Drop
We all did this one at once. Put the cookie on your forehead and then without touching it, inch it down your face into your mouth. This one is always a favorite. And it's pretty funny to watch.
7) New Year's Bingo
There are a few pretty cute New Year's Bingo boards out there. This is the one we used last year. We used mini marshmallows as markers. I wish I had laminated them before playing as the boards are now a little sticky. Oh well.
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8) Pop the Balloons
Before blowing up the balloons I take a piece or two of leftover candy and shove it in. The great thing about that is they totally stay where ever I set them down as they have a weight. Nice. I do this before the party starts and use the balloons as decorations on shelves up high.
Popping balloons is always a Good Time, but especially so when the balloons have a treat inside. Just make sure they pick up every last piece before moving on. We put the baby in her high chair until it was safe for her on the floor again.
Sorry, not sorry, but this is a cute baby. She's so dang big now!
9) Do a Puzzle
This one is a great filler activity if you have puzzles with various difficulty levels. If it's looking like you'll need to hustle along then pick a puzzle that's quick. But if you're looking for a longer activity then choose a more complicated puzzle.
10) Year in Review
This is another one you could google. There are some pretty cute Year in Review worksheets out there but I think we're going with this one this year. Put some markers and the printables in the Mystery Bag but make sure to print enough for the adults too. When you're all done, show off the highlights of your hard work.
Hopefully at least a few of these activities make their way to your New Year's celebration because we had some serious fun with them. Happy New Years!