Hostess with the Mostest

In Home and Entertaining, Jessica Comegys, Wallace Lee by Lola Magazine

Ring in the New Year!

Now that the holidays are in full swing, 2019 is just around the corner and it’s time to start thinking about where you’ll be come New Year’s Eve. But between searching for the perfect gift for your hard to please (insert in-law of choice) and making sure all the kids have matching outfits, there’s still plenty to do before 2018 comes to a close. Planning another soiree is probably last on your list, so it’s understandable if you literally can’t even. With that in mind, we have a few tips to perfect your celebration for the turning of another year.

If there’s one thing I know, it’s how to throw together a gathering amidst a million other things. So take my advice and keep it small. It’s way more fun to have a few fun people you know than to invite a hundred people only to have a disaster zone in your house the next day.

1. Serve a crowd-pleasing classic cocktail

Don’t overwhelm yourself with trying to stock your bar with everyone’s favorite. Serve a nice champagne and a classic vodka martini with several garnishes.

2. Make spirits bright

Get silly with festive items like push pop confetti and streamers. Set out lots of votive candles and turn lights low. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on decor because your house is already decorated for the holidays!

3. Make-ahead dishes

Mini crab cakes are a great dish that can be made in advance and frozen, then popped in the oven during cocktail hour. Smoked salmon is another favorite of mine that can be smoked a couple days in advance and stored in the fridge until party time. Take advantage of your husband using the smoker for another item prior to, it only takes the salmon about 20 minutes.

4. 86 the dessert

Let me explain… After a million holiday parties, sweet potato pie, and grandma’s coconut cake, you won’t be alone in thinking you may die if you see another piece of pie! Try serving something easy on you and easy to just have a bite of something sweet if anyone changes their mind. We placed store-bought chocolate truffles on a skewer and placed them on top of shots of port wine for a fun celebratory end to dinner without a lot of “weight.”

5. Auld Lang Syne – learn the words

We all know you need a great soundtrack to set the mood for a party, and you have to play the midnight traditional song… so learn the words. We’ve put them in this article just for you!

What is ‘Auld Lang Syne’ and why do we sing it on NYE?

We’ve all heard the melody and mumbled some version of what we think it says after the clock strikes midnight, but do we really know the words or what they mean? It’s the ultimate mondegreen — mishearing of a phrase in a way that gives it new meaning.

As the story goes, in the 1780s poet Robert Burns sent the poem “Auld Lang Syne” to the Scots Musical Museum indicating that it was an ancient song but that he’d been the first to record it on paper. The phrase “auld lang syne” roughly translates to “for old times’ sake,” and the song is all about preserving old friendships and looking back over the events of the year.

It became a tradition in mostly English-speaking countries to mark the end of something or for old times’ sake.

What we do know for sure is that Canadian bandleader Guy Lombardo helped make it a New Year’s Eve tradition in the United States. Before Dick Clark started his Rockin’ New Year’s Eve, there was a concert hosted by Lombardo.

Lombardo made “Auld Lang Syne” the theme song in 1929 and it quickly became an institution that would span generations for a send off of the old year and into the new.

So, what does it really say? Here are the English translated lyrics:

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And auld lang syne.

CHORUS
For auld lang syne, my jo,
For auld lang syne.
We’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet,
For auld lang syne.

And surely ye’ll be your pint-stowp!
And surely I’ll be mine!
And we’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet,
For auld lang syne.

REPEAT CHORUS

We twa hae run about the braes
And pu’d the gowans fine
But we’ve wander’d mony a weary foot
Sin auld lang syne.

REPEAT CHORUS

We twa hae paidl’d i’ the burn
Frae mornin’ sun till dine.
But seas between us braid hae roar’d
Sin auld lang syne.

REPEAT CHORUS

And there’s a hand, my trusty fiere!
And gie’s a hand o’ thine!
And we’ll tak a right guid willy waught,
For auld lang syne.

REPEAT CHORUS

Should old acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
And long, long ago.

REPEAT CHORUS

And for long, long ago, my dear
For long, long ago.
We’ll take a cup of kindness yet
For long, long ago.

REPEAT CHORUS

And surely you’ll buy your pint-jug!
And surely I’ll buy mine!
And we’ll take a cup of kindness yet
For long, long ago.

REPEAT CHORUS

We two have run about the hills
And pulled the daisies fine;
But we’ve wandered manys the weary foot
Since long, long ago.

REPEAT CHORUS

We two have paddled in the stream,
From morning sun till dine;
But seas between us broad have roared Since long, long ago.

REPEAT CHORUS

And there’s a hand, my trusty friend!
And give us a hand of yours!
And we’ll take a deep draught of good-will For long, long ago.

REPEAT CHORUS

Why do we have the traditions we have?

Kissing at Midnight:

Kissing at the stoke of midnight is a tradition with ancient roots. It’s thought to bring good luck to ward off evil winter spirits.

Popping Champagne:

The bubbly beverage has been used for religious rituals since the late 1700s. By the 1900s the producers of Champagne started marketing for celebrations when they increased purchasing power for ordinary people. Martin’s in New York could have spurred the tradition we know today when they served “Champagne only” after 9 p.m. at a New Year’s Eve party in 1937.

Fireworks:

This goes back to ancient times once again, when people would light firecrackers and even beat drums to spook evil spirits away.

New Year’s Resolution:

Messing up and promising to do better next time may be a uniquely human instinct that has no season, but making a New Year’s resolution dates back to ancient times. They were not merely resolutions for self-improvement, they were required to make an oath to the sitting King and considered essential to keep the kingdom in the gods’ favor.

Money, Money, Money:

Lots of traditions usher in riches for the new year. From the Filipinos wearing polka dots to symbolize prosperity to the southern United States eating black-eyed peas, collard greens, and cornbread because they resemble gold coins, dollar bills, and shiny gold. A huge number of New Year’s traditions are all about the money.