|New Year's Eve (Photo credit: volantwish)|
|English: Publicity photo of Dick Clark from his ABC radio show. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Once we had an impromptu adult and child Garage Band competition. Another time we laid out board games and some of us played Scrabble© or checkers while others just hung out and chatted.
|Cover of Stray Cats|
On a related note, children love to win things, almost anything. Some children can go crazy for nail polish or gum, if you tell them it’s a prize for cleaning their room or helping their sibling.
Together, that brainstorm combination produced our annual White Elephant Bingo game as part of our New Year’s Eve party.
I used bingo cards from DLTK about five years ago and I am still using the Blues Clues set. Meh. It still works. I chose bingo because when we started with early elementary school aged kids, I needed something that was quick and easily understood without too much reading.
One winner per game and he or she chooses from the wrapped or non-wrapped gifts. The best gifts usually go first. Spa sets and noxious perfumes are adored by preteen girls and boys love those “quirky” office gifts from co-workers, like the rubbery stress ball or the “spy pen”. The remaining gifts are donated to a local charity. We can usually go three or four times before the kids get tired or bored. One year, we went almost a dozen times. I think it was because that year I had winners draw random numbers, which were associated with particular gifts. The crystal weather reader and the floating pen held up until almost the very end of the evening. As soon as the pen was won, my son and his twelve year old friends audibly sighed and left the game.
Festive Mood Rooms
I encourage people to bring their holiday leftovers. It’s a great opportunity to be open-minded and to help others empty out their refrigerators, too. Perhaps some of us can eat ham for five days; other people cannot. One man’s leftovers is another man’s lunch. We’ve received cookies, baked bread, pasta, green bean casserole and hummus dip. I usually provide a soup or some kind of doctored leftover. I never worry about dessert. I request that guests bring a beverage to share. We always provide iced tea and water and juice.