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A Practical Guide to a Happy New Year's Eve

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As we approach the end of 2011, we're hopefully not completely drained from all the family gatherings and stress that the holiday hustle and bustle can bring. And while the end of one year can see the next one looming on the horizon, it's important to celebrate all we've learned, accomplished, and survived in the past year, and what better way to do this than with a New Year's Eve celebration! This night is considered by many to be THE party night of the year, and while expectations can be slightly unrealistic, some pre-planning can really help you make the most of this night which has the potential to be both memorable and fun. A Practical Guide to a Happy New Year's 1. Who would you like to spend it with? This is probably the most important point to consider when planning your New Year's Eve. If for instance, you're single and you choose to spend your evening with a bunch of couples, you could be setting yourself up for a disappointing time. Don't feel obligated to spend time with a certain group of friends if their idea of a fun New Year's is to sit by the fire and be at home in bed by 12:30am - do what makes you happy. 2. Get enough rest beforehand. Have an afternoon nap so you'll have the stamina to go the distance. 3. Hydrate, eat, and pace yourself. Let's face it, drinking is often a large part of New Year's Eve, and there's nothing worse than being overly intoxicated before midnight even rolls around! Pace yourself by not starting super early, keep your body hydrated by drinking extra water during the day, and try to have a glass of water at some point in between drinks during the evening - this will really save you in the morning. Don't assume there will be food where you'll be going - have a decent meal before you start and grab a snack later on as we all know the perils of drinking on an empty stomach. 4. Look fantastic. We don't get a lot of chances to dress up during the year, but this is one where you can really strut your stuff! Wearing a nice outfit can really help us feel good about ourselves and will help you start the night off with a positive attitude. 5. Ladies - bring flats. Hobbling around in pain on your 5 inch heels is not what this night is about. Bring some flats in case you do a lot of dancing or end up having to walk at some point at the end of the night. 6. Have a back-up plan for transportation. Remember that especially if you're intoxicated, it's best to have a plan in place for how you'll get home. If you have a designated driver - great - but be sure to carry some extra cash just in case that falls through and you need to take a cab home, and have the taxi number handy in your phone if you do need to call. 7. Be safe. Have a buddy system and watch out for each other. Although fun, this night can be chaotic and full of people you don't know - so err on the safe side. 8. Leave the resolutions for another day. Let yourself enjoy this night without worrying about what you're going to change about yourself or your life in the New Year. HAVE FUN!!