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Bye 2020, Hi 2021: 10 Ways to Celebrate The New Year at Home

Worst-kept secret of 2020: no one really liked it. So, I think it's safe to say that everyone around the world is ready to welcome this new year with wide-open arms. Here are some ideas to ensure you do so safely, and still have a little fun - because frankly, you deserve it!

Make a gratitude list.

In a year of bad news, it can be tough to find the good. This new year's eve, we all have the opportunity to end on a high note. One way to do that? List 10 things you were grateful for this year amidst the madness. Whether you adopted a furry friend during quarantine, found more time to spend connecting with those you love, read a new favorite book, learned a game-changing kitchen hack, made time for rest, hopped on that Peloton, cleaned out an old closet, or faced a hard lesson head-on, you might be pleasantly surprised by the little things you find worth celebrating. And if 10 seems too good to be true, start with 5. It's a great practice for reflection, positively controlling the state of your mind when so much else is out of our control, and starting the new year with intention.

Then, make a burn list.

For better or worse, perhaps this one will come a little easier. What are the top 10 things from this year that you just need to let go? Remember some circumstances may not be in your control, but your response to them is. The way a problem exists in the universe vs. in your mind are very different things - even I forget that far too often. Write them down, take a deep sigh of relief, and toss those problems into the fire while the chestnuts roast away - because some burdens are just not worth carrying into another year.

Host a virtual cocktail or mocktail celebration.

Invite your celebratory crew to a one-of-kind mixology event via Zoom to close out the year in style. Pick a few drink recipes that everyone will make in their respective kitchens, taste-test them together, and toast to your favorites. These 10 tips from the bartender should be a good starting point.

Bring a favorite past decade back to life.

Since the 2020's didn't start out so hot, why not kick it old school and host a virtual new year's party honoring your favorite decade? The roaring 20s theme was so 2019, but who says we can't celebrate the shagadelic 70s, tubular 80s, or my personal favorite: grungy/boybandy/hiphoppy 90s. The nostalgic movies, shows, and songs of our youth have gotten us through this year so far - why not see it to fruition?

Whip up a finale feast with all your favorite snacks, take-out items, or newfound recipes.

If you didn't become a food blogger this year, it's likely you at least found a new go-to carry-out special that redefined your dinners. Whether you're supporting a local restaurant or whipping out your chef's hat, make a fun night out of it and pay homage to the foods that fueled you in 2020.

Make it a game night.

One is never too old or too cool for gaming. Besides, who wouldn't want the chance to end the year a winner? Bust out and dust off those old family favorites to play with your "bubble", or take it virtual with some of these classics. Did you know that escape rooms have even moved to virtual settings? That might be the best way to escape 2020 yet!

Sing and dance the last hours away.

Make a Spotify playlist of all the uplifting jams that got you through this year, and have a little dance party. (Does "folklore" count?) P.S. If you have Just Dance on the Nintendo Switch, it doubles as a workout AND a good laugh!

Create a crafty countdown.

DIY streamers, party hats, disco balls, noisemakers, and every glittery item your heart desires to ring in the new year in all its fancy, festive glory. Here's a nice list to get you started, scissors not included.

Pajama party it up.

Let's face it - this year was exhausting. If you're like me, you'd much rather spend the evening in your comfy-cozies than all dolled up with nowhere to go. So, let's just make it a theme and *pretend* we're trying, at least. Find your favorite flannel set, fire up the Netflix, and dare yourself to stay awake until midnight - you wild thing, you! Congrats, you made it.

Happy new year, friends! Since January 1, 2021 also falls on a #FRIYAY, I wish you nothing but good fortune no matter what your festivities may be. ✨

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