I don’t want to go overboard for New Year, since B is not yet old enough to understand the concept of a year, but I’d like to do a little something to mark the occasion.
So, we will be trying to light up the new year (all by 9pm or so) with lanterns, glowsticks, sparklers and maybe a bonfire (if it doesn’t rain). This will thrill B because he is currently enamoured of lights in the dark (and Christmas has done nothing to diminish his passion).
We are going to make some lanterns for our light display. I want to make these balloon lanterns from In These Hills (we’ll be starting today hopefully), but Chinese lanterns are also fun for children to make. And here is a tutorial for making those beautiful star lanterns – or for a simpler, one-time only version you could make the paper stars from Ordinary Life Magic. Be careful with all homemade lanterns (especially paper stars that weren’t designed to be a lantern and Chinese lanterns), because you don’t want them to catch fire. For us, this is where the glowsticks come in, because I want to experiment with lighting the lanterns with glowsticks.
I love glowsticks. They are one of those small, easy to get things that fascinate children. In case you are getting questions about how they work (as I am) – glowsticks use a chemical reaction which creates light. This is called chemiluminescence. The 2 substances in the reaction are housed inside the light stick in separate chambers. When you bend the plastic, one of the chambers breaks and the chemicals react. For a much more comprehensive explanation go to How Light Sticks Work at HowStuffWorks.
How do you plan to celebrate New Year? Do you include your children?