12/30/2013 02:11 pm ET Updated Mar 01, 2014

5 Ideas for an Amazing New Year's Eve With Kids

Another New Year's Eve is almost here, and I'm hoping to celebrate with my kids in a way that works out better than last year's epic fail. (Spoiler alert: if you give sugary mocktails and noisemakers to eight toddlers, no amount of champagne will make your night turn out alright.)

This year instead of relying on my own, and apparently misguided, ideas for kid-fun, I've consulted the experts on Pinterest and thanks to all the clever moms out there I can share with you five truly inspired ways to celebrate New Year's Eve with kids.

1. Serve an amazing drink for the New Year's toast. There are so many festive ideas that the kids will adore from rainbow drinks (Sprite and colored ice cubes in a tall glass), to cotton candy Shirley Temples (served in mason jars), to milk in champagne flutes with a cookie garnish.

2. Take fabulous photos. Kids can model their favorite formal wear, or you can provide fun dress-up options like hats, boas and sunglasses. I'm also a big fan of these fantastic mustache props for a fun-filled photo-op.

3. Make the countdown count. Count down the hours with numbered balloons which can be popped to reveal a note with a fun activity, or make countdown bags filled with fun stuff like bubbles, mini mazes, and bouncy balls. Or, if you really want to wow the kids, create a gigantic balloon drop to mark the arrival of 2014.

4. Record a few memories. Write down a Top 10 list as a family, or let your kids create their own. Younger kids can use this printable to record their memories or older ones can write their 2014 goals. You could also decorate a jar which will be filled with jotted down memories made throughout the coming year, which can be read when the next New Year's Eve comes around. 

5. Let the kids stay up until midnight. Yeah, real midnight. Not some fake midnight at noon or some "8pm is the new midnight" bullshit. Just let the kids stay up till midnight and watch the ball drop in Times Square. Honestly, how many New Year's Eves will there be when the kids will be content to watch TV and hang out with their parents? Enjoy these few years when a late bedtime and a sweet drink is enough for it to be the Best.New.Year's.Eve.Ever.

For lots more ideas about how to have an amazing New Year's Eve with kids, visit New Year's Fun for Kids on Pinterest. And if you have ideas for entertaining the small set on New Year's Eve, please share them here!

Happy New Year!