New Year's Ideas -- Book Reviews & More

Disclosure: I was sent these books to review free of charge in exchange for an honest review. All opinions in this post are my own. I did not receive any other compensation for this review.  Some of the links are affiliate links where I will receive a small percentage of any purchases made through them at no cost to you. Thank you for supporting Crafty Moms Share!

New Year's always gets me thinking. I have found memories of sleepovers with a friend and each of my sisters' had a friend. I think this was the only time I had a friend sleepover when my sisters did, so there were some fun games we all played together as well as a ginger ale toasts at midnight.  I think about my "resolutions" from the past year and what I want to do for the next year. So today I am sharing with you four books that are bring these thoughts to my mind. Let's start with Girls' Night In by Gemma Barder and illustrated by Katy Jackson.

This book has the secrets to planning a great girls' night in. With themes like Movie Marathon, Pamper Party, Book Clubbers, Music Madness, Time to Play, Fashion Fun, Get Crafty, and Top Talent there are ideas for everyone. The chapters have ideas for invitations, food, activities and more. There are quizzes, crafts, games and so many different ideas for each chapter/topic. This book take the idea of a sleepover/girls' night in to a whole new level.  This book is listed for ages 3-11 (on various sites). I would say it is for the older kids like 9-12. I do not consider Hazel old enough for a sleepover yet. Overall though this is a great book with many wonderful ideas for great at home parties!!

 Now as we tend to wish people a happy new year, I think a book about happiness is appropriate for talking about new year's. Bowls of Happiness: Treasures from China and the Forbidden City written by Brian Tse, illustrated by Alice Mak and translation by Ben Wang. This book starts with a sweet story about a family whose child has the nickname, Piggy. Piggy's mother makes him a bowl with a pig on it as well as other symbols of happiness. 

Then the book goes into the Chinese culture and history of bowls and symbols on it. Did you know that bats symbolize happiness in China? The Chinese words for butterfly and double are very similar and it is often common to see two flying butterflies on bowls. This book also shares some of the bowls that were owned by the emperors during various dynasties. This is a fun book that also has some lessons about culture and history in China.

Although we just had Thanksgiving about a month ago, I still like to think about what I am thankful for at the end of the year and the start of the new year and I also want to teach Hazel to be thankful. It is also the time to be thankful for all the Christmas gifts!! Giving Thanks: More than 100 Ways to Say Thank You illustrated by Ellen Surrey shares many ways to show your thankfulness. This book starts with who to thank and why. Then it goes through ideas like what would you like to do for the person (if you could do anything), what would you like to do with the person if you are spending the afternoon together and more questions to really get the child to think about the person and why they are so thankful for them. Then there are actual ideas like making cards and a gratitude jar. This book has each double page as a question or idea and the answers in illustrations with a few words. It is definitely a good book for younger kids to get them being grateful and learning to give thanks.
Now one "resolution" or goal I always have in January is to be healthier with exercise and diet. One idea is to eat more vegetables. A good way to do this is to try new vegetarian recipes. Vegetarian Sushi Secrets: 101 Healthy and Delicious Recipes by Marisa Baggett has some great new ideas. Now I am not a huge sushi fan. I use to have it occasionally because it would be served at parties at my job during graduate school. As a person who dislikes seafood, I only ate vegetarian sushi. Now I showed my mother this book. She has made her own sushi before and tends to try to eat vegetarian most of the time. She was very interested in the book and the recipes. She also told me that making sushi can be a bit fussy, so I will admit to not trying the recipes. I also do not have the various supplies to make it either.
This book has other recipes for things to eat with the sushi. It is not just sushi recipes.

Yes there are even dessert recipes in there. It is a great book to check out if you like sushi and want to try to make your own!!

Now what do you do with your kids to celebrate the new year? In the past we have shared some traditions from around the world and a few things we did at our local public library (counting down to noon). I also looked for some other great ideas to celebrate with your kids. Here are some ideas from my fellow Kid Blogger Network moms!

1) From Danya Banya: New Year's Day Tradition: Annual Interview with Kids

2) From Mama Smiles: Celebrating New Year's with Kids Full of some ideas to keep you sane and still celebrate!

3) From All Done Monkey: New Year's Eve Family Game a free game to print and play!

4) From Playground Parkbench: New Year's Craft for Toddlers

5) From Crafts on Sea: New Year's Glitter Cloud Dough perfect for younger children and who doesn't like a little glitter at new year's?

6) From The Gingerbread House: Paper Bell Garland for New Year

7) From Red Ted Art: New Year's Eve Kaleidoscopes 

8) From Red Ted Art: New Year's Eve Traditions: Marzipan Pigs (Germany) 

9) From Red Ted Art: New Year Time Capsule (with an updated idea added) 

10) From Real Life at Home: New Year's Games and Puzzles for Kids Printable Free Packet

11) From Twichetts: Free New Year's Eve Coloring Page

12) From Danya Banya: Easy Fireworks Painting

13) From Go Science Kids: Fireworks in Oil and Water


14) From What We Do All Day?: New Year's Resolutions to Practice Family Kindness
15) Danya Banya: Positive New Year's Resolutions (perfect for anyone!)

 How do you celebrate New Year's with kids? What are your resolutions this year?