What is it that we say about New Year’s Eve, every single year? It is the line that slips out in a form of momentary cautiousness after the excitement has been building for weeks. The line that finally and carefully admits, New Year’s Eve is never what it’s cracked up to be. At least we can admit it.

So this year we tried to go into it with a bit of a different mind frame, and while I’m sure we still held the evening on a pedestal, I think it lived up to what it was meant to be. We wanted an evening with friends – a night spent in a house party drinking champagne and whatever else, popping bottles at midnight, maybe sneaking in a quick NYE kiss, and just hanging out. We got that, to say the least.

Several of my closest friends and I spent that afternoon drinking mimosas after learning to open a difficult bottle of champagne, and redoing our hair after curling irons broke – or after learning that it might be easier to curl your own hair than to try and curl your friends. More importantly, we spent it together, and as cheesy as that might sound, I think it was much needed. Because when you head into the New Year, what more can you ask for than walking into it with a few people you absolutely love?

So a best friend of mine’s boyfriend, and one of the best guy’s you’ll ever meet – nicknamed dad – held the party at his house, with an array of his hometown friends, us girls, and probably some other people I couldn’t tell you much about. We spent the night with several rounds of beer pong going at the same time, eating oven-cooked brie cheese, and lighting sparklers inside the house that set the smoke detectors off and initiated some sort of chant among the guys that was most likely an inside joke.

Dad, apparently proved himself to be an impeccable wingman, alongside the wide variety of other people that spent a good portion of the evening trying to set up one another’s New Years kisses. Because friends help friends kiss friends, right?

I can tell you that spraying Happy New Year on the shower wall with shaving gel, won’t stain – that throwing snowballs against a screen door when a house party is going on, won’t gather any attention – that accidentally leaving your phone at a different house and having to go get it, might get you a new years kiss – and most importantly, that staying up until 5am for whatever reason, will definitely hurt your head the next morning.

Needless to say, you drink a little more than a little, and you spend an entire night laughing and watching people’s eyes light up behind the flicker of a sparkler, and you’ve got a moment you’re going to want to hang on to for a while. And even when the night slows down, when you find yourself discussing relationships and what it means to love somebody with your arms wrapped around one another – or lying across the legs of friends and strangers and reminiscing about God knows what – or casually asking if there’s meaning behind the cross dangling from his neck – the calm feels just as good as the chaos did. 

So we woke up January 1st, and our head’s hurt a bit as most other’s probably did too. But we didn’t slip the line in about a night that had been talked up far too much – we didn’t wish we had said a little less. Perhaps we wished we could have lived in the moment a little bit longer, but for the most part, it seemed that we were all pretty satisfied with the way our entry into the New Year had turned out. For what it’s worth, I’m thankful for the people I had by my side when we left 2016 – and even more thankful that they’re still sticking around in 2017.

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