Family friendly New Year's Eve party tips

New Year's Eve post-kids might be a more muted celebration than in your previous child-free days but, as Mumsnetters tell Lidl, it can still be a LOT of fun. Here are some budget-friendly suggestions on how to make the most of celebrating 31 December at home

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1. Spread out the festivities

"Let the kids have a party on a day before the adults' party. Then arrange sleepovers for the night of your party, so you're not trying to arrange things suitable for all ages at the same time."

2. Or get creative with your timing

turning back time

"We change all the clocks so that the children think they are staying up with us to see the New Year in. We have been known to stand in the garden singing Auld Lang Syne (badly) at 6.45pm!"

3. In fact why stop at one celebration?

sydney fireworks

"We do a round-the-world celebration, starting with a BBQ for Sydney at 1pm our time, and then work our way around the world - curry at 5.30 with Delhi; olives and hummus with Athens, then a big American breakfast. We watch each country's fireworks on the hour and toast their new year. This way, the children don't worry so much about not being up 'til midnight."

4. Share the hosting duties

"This year we have really got to know our neighbours so we're planning a street meal - starters in one house, main in the next and so on. With several courses, including cheeseboard and cocktails, no-one needs to do all of the work and even the main course can be small portions to keep costs fair."

5. Get older kids involved

child waiter

"I find that the children like to have a bit of a job - so one serving canapes, one doing soft drinks, one being the wine waiter. They like to be allowed to be a part of things - but also retreat and do familiar ones, so we usually have films on in another room for the children who need some space."

6. Stick to family favourites


"We always play Bingo. I collect cheap prizes throughout the year, so there are plenty to choose from. My husband comes up with new calls for the numbers each year based on what the family members have been up to and it is something the whole family looks forward to."

7. A few fun decorations go a long way

fairy lights

"Smother the place in fairy lights, get a good music playlist together, and have a few fun bits like hats, party poppers and crackers. Invest a few pounds in a cheap and cheerful disco light - they're fantastic!"

8. If you fancy a theme, keep things simple

"I always host a winter get-together for family. We have baked potatoes and huge saucepans of curry or chilli; other family members bring salads and desserts. There's mulled wine for the adults and fruit punch for the children. We save sparklers from Bonfire Night and have them in the garden."

9. Keep the season for giving going

bad presents

"We have a £1 present game where the adults must get each other the most useless, ridiculous present for a pound. Last year I got a budgie beak sharpener... I have no birds/budgies. The kids love watching us all open our daft pressies."

10. Don't be afraid to indulge a little

christmas food from lidl

"It's a great chance to have food that we don't normally, like smoked salmon, lobster, lots of nice cheeses and meats, nuts, crackers and lovely bread. Lidl is great for this; always luxury, but on a budget!"

11. Expect the unexpected

uninvited guest

"I stock up on party food and drinks, when they're on offer, and fill the fridge/freezer. That way there's always something to throw together for a quick buffet if people drop in."

12. Avoid the big clean up

"As guests are leaving give them leftovers in a doggy bag - it's always gratefully received and means less tidying up for you to do later! Disposable tablewear is the way to go and anything else can be bunged in your (pre-cleared) dishwasher so you're not facing a mess the next morning."

13. Sometimes less is more

family film night

"We watch a film, then at ten to twelve we switch over to watch the fireworks on TV. We then wake up the kids and go out the front to watch all the local fireworks and wish the neighbours Happy New Year."

14. Make sure EVERYONE has a glass to toast the New Year

christmas drinks

"We love non-alcoholic punch or mulled wine for kids (or drivers) and alcoholic versions for grown-ups. The children use proper glasses which makes them feel grown up."

15. And... enjoy it!

"There's nothing better than being surrounded by loved ones with good food and music so while the party is in full swing just enjoy yourself."

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Last updated: almost 3 years ago