Want to welcome in 2013 in a special way with your children? Here are ten magical, meaningful ways to make a fresh, fun start with your kids.
- Make nature confetti. Let kids duplicate the fun of tossing confetti without the mess to clean up– and help birds and squirrels at the same time. In a large bowl, mix up bird seed, dried corn, crumpled leaves, small dried fruits, flower petals and/or any other natural materials you have on hand. Take the bowl outside and encourage the kids to toss handfuls up in the air. They can shout happy new year, offer up wishes for loved ones and so on as they toss.
- Make edible new year goals. On New Year’s morning, make up some crepes (we love this easy recipe that happens to be gluten free, too) or warm some small flour tortillas. Fill a plastic baggie with blueberry syrup (or anything similar) and snip just the tip of the bag. Help the kids pipe symbolic one word wishes on their crepes (friends, $, A+, love…) and then roll them up. Serve with extra syrup for dipping or sprinkle with powdered sugar, and eat your words!
- Print out these free printable goals for 2013. Have everybody in the family fill one out and then post them somewhere to inspire you.
- Make some fancy toasts. Get out the wine glasses (plastic if you like) for New Year’s supper and serve sparkling juice. Go around the table making wishes for the new year for each other.
- Make a symbolic fresh start. For each family member, clean a small area somewhere on New Year’s Eve. Each person should help clear & organize her/his own space. Whether it’s cleaning off mom’s desk, organizing a toddler’s book shelf or making a teen’s vanity table beautiful again, start the new year with a peaceful, tidy spot to focus on.
- Take out the calendar for next year and randomly fill in dates with fun things to do. They don’t have to be big things. Make an appointment to eat supper in the back yard in June, to go to a matinee with your toddler in October, to all wear blue on February 9th…
- Make a goal collage for next year. Grab some old magazines and have everybody cut out words, pictures and images that represent good stuff for the new year. Either fill a scrapbook page for each person or start a family altered book from an old textbook and have each person make her/his own page.
- Make a prayer or wish tree. Gather a few branches in a pot or heavy vase. Give the kids strips of ribbon, small pieces of paper with a hole punched for hanging, and a pen. Ask them to write wishes, prayers or blessings for themselves and loved ones for the coming year. Tie the wishes to the branches. The papers can be saved in a small container or scrapbook to look at when the year is over.
- Make sentimental streamers. Take the piles of art you’ve saved from this year and all of those old math papers, activity sheets and history quizzes. Ask the children to put aside the special stuff and cull a nice pile of them to make streamers by running them through the paper shredder. At midnight (or an earlier hour for little ones), do the countdown and toss it all in the air. The whole mess can be cleaned up and used as compost or mulch on the garden, meaning that the art and history will help flowers grow in the new year.
- For each family member, take a sheet of paper and record the highlights of the past year. Make a list of accomplishments, challenges, milestones, bad & good events, best friends, favorite activities, etc. Take the time to make it beautiful and either slip it into a scrapbook or photo album. Invite the kids to help decorate the pages. Don’t forget to do one for you, too!
This is a great time to cuddle on the couch, reminisce, dream, plan and regroup for a fantastic new year together.
Happy New Year!