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Alternatives for ringing in the New Year

By Holly Westbrook

The Orange Leader

Not everyone enjoys ringing in the New Year at Crockett Street with crowds of people spilling out of bars. Some may not even want to join in at parties put together by friends with lavish themes and money spent on flowing bubbly and more.

For these low-key individuals or families, there are alternative ways to spend your New Year’s Eve celebrations without the anxiety.

Hosting a pampering party is one example. To help get your healthy intentions off to a great start, try hosting this party with a difference. Watch the sunrise, make some healthy cocktails, go dancing, bowling or just stay in with your family for a bad “B” movie marathon ‘till dawn.

“I plan to spend time with family, do a little drinking and spend time with the nieces,” Thomas Nobles of Orange said. “We’ve had bake-off’s, my friend’s and I, with brownies, cookies, and cakes, just to give them all away the next day because we can’t eat them all.”

“The main reason so many people go to clubs and parties with drinking is sheer loneliness I believe,” Nobles said. “They have no family to be with or they just are not happy with their lives, so they would rather go out drinking.”

If you don’t want to be around others perhaps making a time capsule by sitting down and writing a letter to your future self might work for you. Talk about what you hope the future will bring, and you don’t have to bury the thing either.

As Nobles said, have a bake-off and judge each other, eat it all or give the finished treats to friends the next day. Have a sleepover with pajamas, films, snacks and all your best friends in one room. It means you get to bring in the new year with your wonderful bed too.

“New Year’s Eve is reserved for family. We will go see Christmas lights in Little Rock, Arkansas where my brother-in-lives,” Captain Frankie Zuniga of the Orange Salvation Army said. “We alternate years with my wife’s family.”

If your New Year’s resolution is to do more DIY projects, why wait until Jan.1? Plan a party for you and your most (or least) crafty friends. Pick a few projects ahead of time that everyone will work on—you can scour through one another’s Pinterest boards when planning the details.

Take plenty of pictures throughout the evening, and go in ready to laugh at yourself. There’s a decent chance at least a few of your projects will turn out to be #pinterestfails. If you go in knowing the odds are good your snow globe might come out hilariously wrong, you’ll have a lot more fun whether it turns out looking great or terrible.

“This year I’m going to be in Colorado with my sister, niece and great nephew. I’m sure we’ll be cooking, eating and doing something kid friendly because my nephew is just five-years-old,” Meri Elen Jacobs of Bridge City said. “We do play board games. It is hard to play with the little ones there. Guys outside might be playing washers. I’ve never done a crafting party for the day, but it sounds fun.”