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Host a New Year's Eve party

Chris Nease is a home entertaining expert & creative party stylist with 15 years of experience designing small celebrations. As the Editor & Creative Director of Celebrations At Home blog, Chris shares ideas & tips for celebrating all o...

Ring in the New Year right

Are you ready for the new year? A new beginning? A new party to host? With New Year's Eve right around the corner, it's time to start thinking about what you're going to do leading up to midnight.

Ring in the New Year right

Salmon potato bites

A special night like New Year's Eve calls for a special hors d'oeuvre. These salmon potato bites are elegant but hearty at the same time.


  • 8 ounces cream cheese with chives, softened
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • Russet potatoes
  • Smoked salmon (lox)


  1. Heat 2 tablespoons of cooking oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Slice the potatoes about 1/4-inch thick and fry them for about 5 minutes on each side or until they're cooked through and golden.
  3. Remove the potatoes from the heat and drain them on a paper towel. Dab the excess oil with another paper towel and lightly sprinkle the potatoes with salt.
  4. Combine the cream cheese, lemon juice and Tabasco sauce in a small bowl. Fold in the capers.
  5. Using a small scoop or spoon, add the cream cheese mixture on top of the potato slices and top it with a slice of salmon.
  6. Add another tiny dollop of cream cheese to the top and garnish with capers.

Holiday spice cake

To satisfy the sweet tooth, prepare this delicious cake that's flavored with seasonal spices. Garnish with chocolate sprinkles and gold decorator sugar for a "confetti" look that matches the rest of the party.


  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • 1 (16 ounce) container light sour cream
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • Cream cheese frosting


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and prepare a Bundt pan by spraying it with nonstick spray and shaking 1 to 2 tablespoons of flour or cake mix around the pan.
  2. Beat together all the ingredients (except the frosting) at low speed until they are moistened.
  3. Increase beating speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes or until the batter is smooth.
  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and cook for 20 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  5. Use canned frosting for the glazed topping and place it in the microwave for about 30 seconds or until the frosting is smooth and melted but not overly hot.
  6. Drizzle melted frosting over the cake and let the frosting set up before serving.

Champagne citrus fizz

Popping open bottles of Champagne at midnight is a fabulous tradition, but you can also serve the bubbly all night long in this citrus punch. Display it in a drink dispenser, in a pitcher or in an apothecary jar with a ladle to scoop it out.


  • 1 (10 to 12 ounce) container frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
  • 1 (10 to 12 ounce) container frozen lemonade, thawed
  • 1 (750 milliliter) bottle white wine (Pinot Grigio works well, while Moscato adds a sweeter flavor)
  • 1 (750 milliliter) bottle sparkling wine


  1. Combine the juices and the white wine and add 1 juice container full of water.
  2. Keep chilled until ready to serve.
  3. Add sparkling wine just before guests arrive, and enjoy.

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