Overwhelmed With New Year’s Resolutions? Same—That’s Why We Swear by These Monthly Goals

We’ve made it through the post-Christmas lull ready for a fresh start. While much of what’s posted online and shared on social media still centers on weight loss resolutions, we’ve learned to set our sights on goals that align with our 2024 intentions. This collective shift toward size inclusivity and body acceptance not only paves the way for greater self-love but also frees up more headspace for all the ways we truly want to grow. Maybe that’s becoming a more engaging conversationalist, or perhaps you’d like to dedicate more time to your hobbies. Whatever you want from the year to come, these monthly goals will help you get from Point A to Point B.

Trust me: countless years before this saw me defaulting to the same “lose X pounds by X date” resolution. Now, with experience and perspective, I see the countless ways in which this didn’t serve me. Not only that, but the weight-loss resolution distracted me from the more impactful and aligned intentions I could have made. But, over the past few years, I’ve grown into a more observant, compassionate, and curious person thanks to the monthly goals I’m sharing below. My hope is that they’ll do the same for you.

12 Monthly Goals to Try in 2024

This time of year can be a lot. Not only do the holidays bring on deadlines, travel, family gatherings, and more potential stressors, but there’s also the immediate return to our fast-paced lifestyles come January 1. We’re overbooked and overwhelmed—and the pressure to change our habits, rituals, and routines doesn’t help.

And while all of this comes with a certain level of excitement (I too, love the energy of a new year), it can be difficult to know what intentions support you best when social media is saturated with others’ resolutions. For clarity, Camille’s vision workbook is all the guidance you need. And when it’s inspiration you’re lacking, these monthly goals help you stay focused on what’s truly important.

So if you’re ready to hit the ground running and dive full-speed into your 2024 goals and intentions, I have advice: slow down. I like to think of these monthly goals simply as invitations. They are ideas that can help you experience the year as a calmer, more content, more connected, and more creative version of yourself. Take what resonates and leave what doesn’t. And don’t be afraid to move slowly. After all, the more sustainable we make our goals, the more likely they are to become habits—and transform into a lifestyle you love.

January: Explore a New Form of Movement

If we’re on the same side of Instagram, then your feed has also been inundated with offers for exercise programs and studios touting the ‘New Year, New You’ promise. Thankfully, plenty of new fitness programs have cropped up in the past few years, and as a result, there’s truly something for everyone.

Our 2024 wellness trends forecast saw experts predicting a continued interest in low-impact workouts. While you might not sweat as much as an hour at the gym, your body and mind still benefit whether it’s Pilates, yoga, or even walking (a favorite among Camille Styles editors). Take this as an invitation to switch things up. If you find yourself dreading your workouts, connect with something fun and playful. That could be trying a dance-based workout or joining an adult sports league. Bonus points for training your social muscle.

Workouts programs we love include:

Remember: It’s always important to find and build a movement routine that supports your body, mind, and fitness goals best. Explore the options above or chat with your healthcare provider about what might be best for you.

February: Build a Self-Love Practice

While this month focuses largely on the role romantic love plays in our lives, trust that you don’t have to be in a relationship to experience the joy of human connection. What’s more, February can be an opportunity for you to shift your focus inward and make time for more self-love in your everyday life.

This all begins with how you speak to yourself. Are you overly critical when you make a mistake? Do you often compare yourself to others—based on appearance, intelligence, or success? In the past, have you spent more energy on other people in your life at the cost of your own wants and needs?

In February, make it your monthly goal to prioritize yourself. Despite what many people think, self-love isn’t selfish—and the cliché is true, that we need to pour into ourselves first before we can support others.

Ways to Practice Self-Love

  • Say positive affirmations. Say them in the morning, at night, in the mirror, on your drive to work—whenever and wherever. By speaking affirmations out loud, you’re giving power to what’s innately true about who you are. Get started with these 60 affirmations for women.
  • Reflect on your successes. Before bed, at the end of the work week, and at the end of the month, spend time with your journal reflecting on what went well for you. Write about your role in making these events and successes happen. Not only does it help you relive those affirming moments, but you’ll also have a concrete log detailing just how amazing you are.
  • Practice owning your wins. Some may call it bragging, but I call it speaking the truth. So often, we’re afraid to congratulate ourselves or talk about our accomplishments out of fear that it may be seen as bragging. In conversation, try speaking proudly about what’s going well at work and in your personal life. And the more you do it, the more it invites others to honor themselves as well.

March: Deep-Clean Your Home

Spring cleaning is one of my favorite annual milestones. The yearly ritual gives me a concrete timeframe dedicated to refreshing my home. When we set aside this intentional time to clear out what no longer serves us and scrub down those often-forgotten places, it becomes less of a stressor and more of a routine we can look forward to.

So, how do you make this monthly goal happen without getting overwhelmed? See these tried-and-true tips below.

  • Make a priorities list. What cleaning or organizing tasks would be the most impactful for your space? List out 2-3 priority rooms or areas and tackle those first.
  • Romanticize your cleaning routine. Pop in the AirPods and put on your favorite podcast or an audiobook. Use non-toxic cleaning products and light a candle as you go. When you accomplish one of your priority tasks, enjoy a little treat like a solo coffee date.
  • Take it step by step. No matter how small your space, it’s likely that you won’t be able to do it all in one day. Release the pressure to have a clean, sparkling home immediately, and remember: you have the entire month to accomplish this goal.

April: Carve Out a Daily Creative Block

It’s true: there’s never enough time. That’s why we have to make time for what’s important. If you have hobbies or creative projects that have fallen by the wayside thanks to the busy shuffle of everyday life, try getting critical about how you’re actually spending your time. Is your phone your default source of entertainment at any lull in the day? Do your evenings look like a movie and takeout—night after night? While there’s no shame in zoning out every once in a while (trust me, it can be so good for the soul), it’s easier to manifest our dream lives when we incorporate them into our daily routines in small, but game-changing ways.

While all of our schedules are different, the majority of us can find 30-60 minutes in the morning or evening to dedicate to something we love doing. Maybe you’re writing a novel you haven’t touched in months, or you’re haunted by the half-completed knitting projects piling up in your closet. Whatever the passion or hobby, this month, experiment with finding the sweet spot in your day when you can do exactly that. No, they may not catapult your career or provide monetary value, but hobbies have a way of infusing our lives with meaning, promise, and joy.

May: Try Silent Walking

Silent walking blew up into a trend late this summer. While the idea of walking without your phone and nothing in your ears sounds far from groundbreaking, we all know how hard it can be to disconnect. Our lives are filled with constant distractions, and finding a little peace in our day where we’re left with nothing but our thoughts can be uncomfortable at first. But when we commit to intentional time moving our bodies outside, it can transform our energy, our emotions, and how we approach the day.

Start with 10 minutes and experiment from there. If your experience is anything like mine, you’ll be craving 30 minutes or more of silent walking—daily.

June: Get Intentional About Your Social Life

Maybe it’s all the holiday parties we’ve been attending, but I’ve had countless conversations throughout the past month with friends and family saying that they want to be more intentional about their social lives in 2024. Our time and energy are finite resources, and understanding that saying yes means saying no to something else has helped me pause before taking on responsibilities and accepting invitations.

The next time you’re invited to a dinner, happy hour, or on a trip, remember to pause. It’s perfectly okay to respond with: “I’m not sure of my plans yet, let me get back to you.” Then, take the next day to look at your schedule, reflect on your bandwidth, and get quiet with your needs. Would saying yes to this event contribute to your well-being or detract from it? Respond accordingly.

July: Get Closer to Your Food

I get it—this probably sounds like a pretty abstract monthly goal. But rather than setting hard-to-commit-to intentions about consuming certain amounts of protein or the nebulous “healthy” meals, I like to weave more intention into my eating habits. This looks like eating more mindfully, making cooking more fun, and getting curious about certain ingredients and how local produce was grown. It’s a reminder that wellness is more than what you eat—how you eat counts, too.

Some ways to do this:

  • Join a CSA.
  • Visit weekly farmer’s markets.
  • Romanticize your grocery shopping. Get coffee, go with a friend, wear a cute outfit, etc.
  • Treat yourself to a new cookbook and challenge yourself to make a recipe each week.
  • Grow indoor herbs, join a community garden, or plant in raised garden beds.
  • Sit down to dinner without any distractions and practice mindful eating.
  • Focus on cooking with seasonal ingredients.

August: Revamp Your Morning Routine

We’re all about setting a strong foundation for the day with a morning routine. By giving yourself time to gradually reorient yourself to the day and get aligned before jumping into work, it’s possible to feel more grounded and calm as you move from task to task. Trust me, I’ve been the person who wakes up five minutes before her 8:30 Zoom call—and after months of feeling both sluggish and stressed, I knew it was time to switch it up.

And despite what social media might make you believe, your morning routine doesn’t need to be a complex process. Rather, as with all of these monthly goals, it’s important to make them work for you.

Morning Routine Template

Follow this template to help you design a morning ritual that supports you best.

  1. Something for your mind. Allow your mind to wake up and mentally stretch before diving into your work day. This can look like journaling, praying, meditating, reading an inspiring book, or listening to a podcast that’ll help you set the tone for the day to come.
  2. Something for your body. No, it doesn’t have to be a full-blown, hour-long workout. Instead, try a (silent!) walk outside, moving through a stretch routine, or doing a quick 10-minute yoga flow. Whatever makes you feel present in your body, do exactly that.
  3. Something just for you. This is entirely up to you. It can be a few minutes scrolling Instagram if that’s what you need. Or, perhaps the morning is the only opportunity you have to read. Maybe you love relishing your morning coffee. Be selfish and protect this time at all costs. Whatever you decide to do, ensure that it supports the version of yourself that you want to show up as each day.

For more inspiration on practicing grounding morning rituals, get inspired with Camille’s time-stamped routine.

September: Do a Life Edit

I can’t take credit for this idea—an episode of the Almost 30 podcast introduced me to the concept. And while a life edit might seem like an ideal practice for the top of the year, it’s become my favorite September tradition. (The back-to-school season inspires a natural, fresh-start feeling.)

A life edit asks you to do an audit of every part of your life, helping you clear away any unnecessary clutter and carve out space for what you want to attract. Start by reflecting on the primary areas of your life: digital, home, financial, wellness, mental health, and social life. From there, ask yourself the following:

  • What feels overwhelming?
  • In what ways am I not feeling fulfilled?
  • What can I let go of?
  • What do I want to let in?

Outline the steps that will help you create more clarity for each area of your life. Once you’ve finished the process, you’ll feel more confident and content with how you’re spending your energy, attention, and time. (For a more robust outline of how to do a life edit, visit Almost 30.)

October: Replace Phone Time With Reading

I’ve read 60 books this year, and I get asked all the time: how do you have so much time for reading? (Hint: I don’t.) The majority of my reading is done in those in-between moments—when I’m sitting in the doctor’s office, waiting for a friend to meet up for dinner, on the train, etc. Yes, I have an evening reading habit, but I’ve discovered that reaching for my book instead of my phone has been the biggest game changer.

And while the concept is simple (swap your phone for a book), in practice, it can be a challenge to carry out. I keep my phone on airplane mode throughout the day so that I’m not tempted by a screen cluttered with notifications. What’s more, I always have a book on me. I store small paperbacks in my purse, larger hardcovers in my work bag, and I always have an audiobook downloaded on Libby.

To be successful with this, I’ve found that crowding out the temptation to reach for my phone by making reading more appealing lowers the barriers to entry that exist with any new habit. And the good news is that the more you do it, the easier it becomes to forget all about your phone.

November: Go Deep With Gratitude

With Thanksgiving near the end of the month, it makes sense that November’s theme would be centered on gratitude. But I like to do this so we can more intentionally and deeply consider the ways gratitude positively contributes to our lives. For many people, the concept of gratitude feels like a superficial, nice-to-have practice in their routine. And while it’s easy to simply list off the things we’re grateful for, I’ve discovered that it’s all the more gratifying to consider the why. Oftentimes, when we do so, we reveal the underlying gratitudes that exist within.

An example: One day I was journaling about how grateful I was for my morning cup of coffee. I had the luxury of enjoying it in bed with my cats circling me. A candle was flickering and I made it through 20 pages of my book before getting ready for the day. And while it might seem that the coffee was the central point of this ideal morning, in reflecting upon it further, I realized that it was my partner prepping the coffee the evening before that allowed this moment to happen. In truth, I was grateful for my partner and his small, thoughtful act that led to a beautiful morning.

To summarize: That process was more impactful than simply writing, “I am grateful for my coffee.” This month, challenge yourself to think critically about your gratitude and understand the why. I’ve found that by doing so, it’s easier to live in a state of thankfulness and awe at the everyday magic all around me.

December: Commit to Journaling

If you’ve already built a consistent journaling practice—bravo! I’ve found that it’s one of the most difficult monthly habits to commit to, but once you do so, it’s also the most transformative. As a previous journaling skeptic, it took forcing myself to sit in silence with my thoughts and being open to whatever came up. A word of warning: it can be a difficult and uncomfortable process at times, but it’s one that will help you foster a more compassionate and curious relationship with your thoughts.

When I was a beginner, guided journals and prompts helped me find a place to start when I was lacking inspiration. For a deep dive into starting your practice, look no further than Camille’s ultimate guide to journaling. Even just five minutes a day can change so much.

Looking for more ways to level up in 2024? Camille shares her step-by-step process of creating a vision board—and manifesting your dream life.

Staying In for New Year’s Eve? Here Are 20 Ideas for At-Home Fun

There are countless ways to ring in the New Year. You can get dressed up and go out. You can book an enviable spot at one of your city’s best restaurants. Or, if you’re like me and don’t want to change out of your sweats (your stylish sweats, mind you), you’re staying home this NYE. To help all of us homebodies celebrate the countdown to midnight, I’ve rounded up the best New Year’s Eve party ideas for an unforgettable night at home.

While the night-in option may have once brought on feelings of FOMO, I haven’t worried about missing out since before March 2020. Sure, a few minutes scrolling through social media might make me wish I had a big trip or night out planned. But I’ve been working hard to cultivate a sense of confidence in my decisions to do what’s best for me. That means releasing the pressure for my New Year’s Eve to be *amazing.* Instead, I’m celebrating exactly how I want to: at home and inspired by one of these ideas below. 

20 New Year’s Eve Party Ideas That Are Just as Good as Going Out

Because staying in for the night doesn’t have to feel like a consolation prize. If anything, spending what’s arguably the most celebrated night of the year chez toi, is a testament to how we’ve learned to get creative and have fun in the comfort of our homes.

Whether you want to get in the kitchen, spend all night marathoning must-watch movies, or getting cozy with friends, let the following ideas remind you that there’s no such thing as being bored at home. Especially on New Year’s Eve.

casa zuma vision board

Make a Vision Board

With a new year incoming, one of my favorite New Year’s Eve traditions is reflecting on my past year to decide what energy I’m bringing into the next. The best way to do this? Create a vision board. This can serve as a reminder of all the goals you wish to achieve but done so in an aesthetic way. Making vision boards as a group is also a great idea to inspire one another and get the ideas flowing.

Have an Outdoor BBQ or Grilling Party

If the weather is as lovely as it is right now in Austin, I highly recommend getting some fresh air and hosting a gathering outside. If you have a grill master in the group, whip up a flavorful and fresh meal that will help foster the good vibes you want going into the new year.

camille styles cozy in bed

Throw a Pajama Party

Being comfy and cozy is an essential part of my New Year’s Eve plans almost every year. Even if the night begins with festivities, it’s always nice to wind down in your PJs, and maybe enjoy a cozy drink or sweet dessert as the ball drops. Plus, a pajama party is a great way to gather without the pressure of dressing to impress.

wine glasses cheers_new years eve party ideas

Engage in NYE Traditions

Watching the ball drop and counting down to midnight aren’t the only New Year’s Eve traditions you should try this year. Eating lentils is an Italian tradition for the holiday with the goal of achieving prosperity and wealth in the year to come. Eating 12 grapes at midnight is another tradition from Spain, where each grape symbolizes one month. After eating all 12, you can hope to have a lucky year ahead of you.

Have a Family Game Night

Whether you play a classic board game or make up your own, family game nights are always a great way to bring everyone together to ring in the new year. These can be anything from your classics like Monopoly, homemade holiday-themed Jeopardy, or Pictionary.

dinner party food_new years eve party ideas

Throw an Elegant Dinner Party

Never a bad idea for New Year’s Eve. This is a great option if you still want to get dressed up but don’t want to deal with the hassle of going out (too cold, too expensive, too… not my house). And just because it’s elegant doesn’t mean that the preparation has to be hard. DIY a few arrangements (Trader Joe’s is my go-to for florals on the fly), scatter some tea lights throughout your space and set your dream tablescape. And while you’re welcome to make a three-course meal on your own, it’s also totally fine if you want to order from your favorite fancy restaurant. (For the homemade route, see Camille’s favorite hosting menus.)

Settle in for a Spa Night

A different sort of indulgence. In 2024, I’m focused on consistent self-care, and there’s no better way to set that intention in motion than with a dedicated spa night. Ask everyone to bring their favorite nail polish colors and gather all your supplies for manicures, pedicures, and more. An easy way to step (literally) into the New Year feeling your best.

camille styles cooking braised short ribs

Make All Your Favorite Comfort Foods

New Year’s Eve is about indulgence, and it’s not a party without your favorite foods. Hosting friends for the evening? Settle on a few recipes in advance (the cheesier, the better, in my opinion) and get in the kitchen together. If it’s a larger fête you’re after, make it a potluck! Ask guests to bring their ride-or-die comfort food (mine’s mashed potatoes) and add to the feast. You might want to include a pre-midnight nap in your party plans.

Camp Indoors

Make the most of the great indoors! Gather your camping equipment (tent, sleeping bags, etc.) and settle in for the coziest evening ever. Short a tent or two? Make like The Holiday and set your imagination to work with pillows, blankets, and cushions from around the house. And remember: an indoor camping experience isn’t complete without the movies, games, and snacks.

caza zuma goblets with cocktails

Make It All About the Bubbly

Cheering to the New Year with something fun and fizzy in your glass? My kind of party. Make it a midnight toast to remember by setting up a DIY champagne bar or try one of these champagne-forward cocktails. All that’s really left is to make your celebration’s décor as glitzy and glam as your drinks.

Host a Desserts-Only Feast

This is a great party option if you want to start the celebrations a little later on in the evening. Set out a buffet of all the best treats and ask guests to contribute their favorites to the spread. Nothing like a strategic sugar rush to keep you up until midnight. Here’s how to create a cookie charcuterie board for a crowd.

camilla marcus_new years eve party ideas

Indulge in a Midnight Brunch

While we’re all for a New Year’s Day brunch, there’s nothing stopping you from enjoying your favorite breakfast foods the night before as well. Celebrate with carbs galore—I’m talking waffles, pancakes, a bagel bar, sweet baked treats—and your favorite fruity cocktails. Your party will still feel elevated while being wonderfully cozy, laidback, and casual. No fuss necessary.

Throw a Fondue Party

Retro in all the right ways. Fondue is easy to prepare and a great way to wrap dinner and dessert all into one. Cheese and chocolate is the best combo my taste buds know, and by setting out a variety of bites for dipping, you’ll ensure everyone’s satisfied.

cozy holiday bedroom

Marathon All the Best Movies of the Year

Because I’m normally in bed by 9 p.m. (hey, all the cool kids are doing it), I usually only make it through one post-dinner movie before I’m out cold. But because our bedtimes get extended on New Year’s Eve, you have plenty of time to make it through a million (okay, maybe three or four) movies before the clock strikes midnight. Round up a list of all the year’s best movies and start your binge-watching.

Try a Wine Tasting With Friends

Sipping on new wines is enough of a reason to have a party, but it’s also a fun way to whet your palate (haha!) for the year to come. Put together a cheese board, supply a few bottles, and ask your guests to bring one or two wines that they’ve been dying to try. Compare notes or just sip and party away. New year, meet your new go-to glass.

carne asada tacos_new years eve party ideas

Celebrate Cuisines From Around the World

This is one of my favorite takes on the traditional potluck party. Have all your guests sign up for a cuisine they want to showcase and celebrate on the evening’s menu. You’ll learn more about other cultures and get to sample an array of foods and dishes you might not otherwise have. Check “expanding your horizons” off your resolutions list.

Karaoke Your Heart Out

Not a singer? Doesn’t matter. Belting out your favorite songs from the past twelve months will make anyone sentimental about 2023 and is bound to be a good time. You can even host a mini awards ceremony at the end for Best Voice, Most Heart, Greatest Impersonation, and so on.

woman journaling

Set and Share Your Intentions with Friends

While intention-setting can be a solitary activity, it can also feel supportive and motivating to share your goals with friends. In a journal, reflect on what you want to bring into your life in 2024. If people feel comfortable, share and speak to what you each wrote down. After all, sharing our dreams is a key part of making them happen.

Let Everyone Play Bartender for the Night

Looking for a new signature drink in 2024? Sign up for an online mixology class with your pals and gather everything you’ll need to create your own professionally-made cocktails. I wouldn’t mind toasting the new year with an expertly-crafted drink.

drinking coffee by fireplace

Hang Out By the Fire

Tempted to take things outside? Even if it’s chilly where you live, gathering around the fire is a great way to keep warm and cozy up with your closest friends. Be sure to have plenty of blankets on hand and brew up a pot of mulled cider or wine. Don’t

Get a Jump Start on Your Resolutions With These 18 Healthy New Year’s Eve Recipes

What type of New Year’s Eve persona are you? Some of us are the partygoers, intent on making the most of the final few hours of the year. Others, like myself, look forward to curling up in my coziest pajamas with a friend, good book, cuddly pet—or preferably, all three!—for company. There are others still who find themselves somewhere in between, either booking a table for two at a favorite restaurant or hosting a small group of friends at home. Whichever describes your NYE plans best, there’s a common ground we can all agree on. While indulging is par for the course when it comes to celebrating the year to come, I doubt any of us want to wake up to either a sugar or alcohol-induced headache. To help us fend off bad 2024 vibes, I rounded up my favorite healthy New Year’s Eve recipes. 

Remember: restriction is not the goal. My hope is to help you fill your plate with all the delicious and nutritious foods that’ll let you celebrate the holiday in whatever way you please while waking up ready to make your 2024 vision board a reality. I found everything from mocktails to satisfying mains to small bites bursting with flavor. Get ready for gluten-free goodness, vegan deliciousness, and veggie-packed apps. 

18 Healthy New Year’s Eve Recipes

Something I love about setting the intention to incorporate healthier foods into my diet is the creativity it inspires. When you’re focusing on bringing color and feel-good ingredients to every meal, the foods you create and consume are inevitably more satisfying. You might be surprised to discover how much closer and more connected you are to what you eat. And honestly, that feeling alone is far more gratifying than stressing over calorie counts.

So with abundance on our minds and excitement to try all the healthy food and flavor combos, let’s dive in. Get ready to wrap up 2023 on a high note and ring in the new year to come.

Healthy Mocktails

Minty pomegranate punch.

Minty Pomegranate Punch

Why We Love It: Pomegranates are the ever-elusive ingredient that I’m desperate to make the most of when they’re in season. Muddling the pomegranate arils with blueberry and mint balances the sweet and tart flavors beautifully. Trust me when I say this will be the best take on a non-boozy mojito you’ve ever had.

Hero Ingredient: I love the cool and sweet flavor that mint can bring to just about anything.

Salty dog mocktail.

Salty Dog Mocktail

Why We Love It: Okay, so technically this recipe was developed as a cocktail. But thankfully, Camille was thinking ahead and figured many of us would want to ring in the new year with this drink—minus the vodka. It’s one of our most popular recipes of 2023, and for good reason. It’s refreshing and hydrating, and you can sip on it knowing you won’t wake up with a hangover in the morning.

Hero Ingredient: Grapefruit juice is my all-time favorite mixer for mocktails and cocktails alike.

Healthy Snacks and Appetizers

Crudite Platter

Crudite Platter

Why We Love It: With an abundant crudite platter on your table, you can make your eat-more-veggies-in-2024 goal a reality even before the clock strikes midnight. One of the many beautiful things about this healthy New Year’s Eve recipe is that it’s a choose-your-own-adventure-type situation. Follow the template we’ve provided and then let your cravings guide the way.

Hero Ingredient: If you need me, I’ll be right next to the creamy caramelized onion dip.

Carrot hummus toasts.

Sautéed Garlic, Carrot, and Hummus Toasts

Why We Love It: One peek at these toasts’ bright pop-of-orange topping and I immediately think healthy. Thankfully, after just one bite, you’ll realize that the flavor follows suit. Crunchy, toasted sourdough serves as the base with a thick smear of creamy hummus and sweet and spicy carrots to finish things off. Proof that virtuous eating doesn’t ever have to be boring.

Hero Ingredient: This snack will transform all your previous opinions about carrots. Lacking flavor? Never.

Smoky eggplant dip recipe.

Smoky Eggplant Dip

Why We Love It: Baba ganoush, but with the volume turned up (and that’s saying something). If you think eggplant-based dips are for warm-weather gatherings only, think again. Once your eggplant has been roasted, all that’s left to do is mix its creamy goodness with the ultimate blend of spices and flavorings (think: smoked paprika, thyme, garlic, tahini, and cumin). The resulting flavor is over the top.

Hero Ingredient: Choose from any of the spices I listed above. They all bring so much depth and dimension to this dip, it’s hard to name the best.

Holiday charcuterie board.

Holiday Charcuterie Board

Why We Love It: I know what you’re thinking—charcuterie… healthy? Here’s the beautiful thing about constructing and snacking on a charcuterie board: the components are totally up to you. Olives and nuts deliver a healthy dose of fats while fresh and dried fruits (grapes, figs, and pomegranate arils) lend a little antioxidant love to the mix. From there, sprinkle in some cheese and dried meats and top your crackers as you please. The tasty, colorful combos are limited only by your imagination.

Hero Ingredient: Again, there are no hard-and-fast rules about what your charcuterie board should and shouldn’t include. But if I had to pick just one standout snack, it’d be Marcona almonds. Even the Barefoot Contessa agrees.

Maman's Kale Pea & Ricotta Spread

Maman’s Kale Pea & Ricotta Spread

Why We Love It: Of all the healthy New Year’s Eve recipes I can think of, this might be my all-time fave. Why? First off, let’s talk about the color. Kale and peas yield a bright, vibrant green that’s welcome in the middle of winter. And the texture is beyond creamy, thanks to a healthy dose of the ricotta. Lastly, this spread boasts beautiful flavor with the nutmeg, black pepper, lemon, and red pepper flakes all mixed in.

Hero Ingredient: It has to be the lemon juice. It’s essential for brightening up any healthy New Year’s Eve recipe.

Ricotta with Pears and Honeyed Pistachios

Ricotta with Pears and Honeyed Pistachios

Why We Love It: Approved for Instagram and all of your social media pursuits, this ricotta board is beyond beautiful. And thankfully, so simple to put together. With only the most minimal amount of effort required, you’ll have this five-ingredient appetizer on the table within minutes.

Hero Ingredient: It’s the pistachios. The blend bright color with crunchy texture to perfection.

Healthy Sides and Main Dishes

Squash farro salad recipe.

Squash Farro Salad With Apple, Goat Cheese, & Pecans

Why We Love It: The salty-sweet combination of this salad’s impressive ingredients is unmatched. Farro is a nutty, toothsome grain that you need to start incorporating into your 2024 cooking, stat. This salad is a perfect entry point, with delicata squash that crisps up in the oven, tangy goat cheese, crisp apples, and a dressing you’ll be putting on everything.

Hero Ingredient: Dijon mustard is my favorite base for any vinaigrette. It adds a punch of flavor that’ll have you licking this dressing off the spoon.

Zucchini pasta recipe.

Zucchini Pasta

Why We Love It: If your New Year’s Eve gathering is more of a sit-down celebration than a finger food fête, this is the main to make. Pasta is always my go-to when I’m wanting to impress without worrying whether or not my dish will actually turn out. Intentionally rustic, this veggie-packed pasta is inherently and beautifully imperfect. It’s a healthy recipe that feels special enough to welcome in the new year.

Hero Ingredient: Keep the parmesan coming.

Creamy Vegan Butternut Squash Pasta

Creamy Vegan Butternut Squash Pasta

Why We Love It: While it might not seem special enough to bring to your New Year’s Eve gathering, this isn’t just any old pasta. This dish is creamy, comforting, and cheesy, but more than that, it’s full of nuanced flavor thanks to the miso and sage. You heard it here first—chickpea pasta is taking over.

Hero Ingredient: The butternut squash makes this the ultimate sweet and savory pasta.

Roasted carrot hummus flatbread.

Vegan Flatbread with Roasted Carrot and Red Pepper Hummus

Why We Love It: It’s basically a rule: When hummus is on the table, the party has started. But if you’re looking for a main dish that’ll take everyone’s favorite party snack to the next level, this flatbread is your answer. Toasty, charred pita meets creamy and sweet hummus and gets topped with fresh and flavorful veggies. The celebrations really can’t begin until you serve this.

Hero Ingredient: Give it up for the two teaspoons of paprika that weave in a little smoky heat for a hummus that’s truly addictive.

Honey Sriracha Tempeh Spring Rolls healthy new year's eve recipes

Honey Sriracha Tempeh Spring Rolls

Why We Love It: There’s something about these spring rolls that feels perfect for New Year’s Eve. Perhaps it’s because I’ve always associated finger food with the holiday or the fact that the presentation is a surefire stunner. Regardless, these plant-based, protein-packed rolls will satisfy every appetite and pair perfectly with a glass of bubbly.

Hero Ingredient: The sauce is a stunner, and I have to give the award to sriracha for boosting its flavor with a pungent, garlicky heat.

Healthy Desserts

Easy Cinnamon Baked Apples

Easy Cinnamon Baked Apples

Why We Love It: I was at a dinner party the other night where someone served spicy, sweet, and cozy baked apples. While the presentation was humble, the flavor and all-around impact were beyond words. A total of nine ingredients (two being water and salt) makes this just about the simplest after-dinner sweet. And because when you’re working with something as wonderfully delicious as apples, there’s not much that can be improved upon.

Hero Ingredient: Except… butter makes everything better.

Gluten-Free Citrus Cake with Strawberries and Cardamom Coconut Cream

Gluten-Free Citrus Cake with Strawberries and Cardamom Coconut Cream

Why We Love It: When it comes to healthy New Year’s Eve recipes, this dessert takes the literal cake. The recipe is a chic yogurt cake that combines almond flour and gluten-free AP to yield a fluffy, cloud-like confection. It’s a GF twist that’s still dreamy and decadent.

Hero Ingredient: Coconut cream is my favorite way to whip up a quick dairy-free garnish.

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Brownies

Why We Love It: Because of their rustic, humble presentation, you might not associate brownies with this sparkly and glitzy holiday. But… that’s where you’d be wrong. When the clock strikes midnight and your guests are a couple of champagne coupes deep, nothing will satisfy the craving for something sweet quite like a chocolatey brownie. And because these are both gluten- and dairy-free, everyone can enjoy.

Hero Ingredient: I love swapping in maple syrup instead of granulated sugar. It makes for a complex sweetness and nice, moist crumb.

Healthy Oatmeal Cookies with Coconut, Raisins, and Dark Chocolate

Healthy Oatmeal Cookies with Coconut, Raisins, and Dark Chocolate

Why We Love It: These healthy oatmeal cookies are one of my favorite 3 p.m. snacks, but their beauty lies in their versatility. Truly, you can enjoy these almost any time of day and for any occasion—New Year’s Eve, included. Enjoy the crispy-chewy texture these cookies offer thanks to the blend of raisins, dark chocolate, walnuts, coconut flakes, and oats. That’s right, these deliver it all.

Hero Ingredient: No cookie is complete without flaky salt sprinkled on top.

Healthy & Easy Apple Crumble

Healthy & Easy Apple Crumble

Why We Love It: Think you can’t enjoy apples past November? Think again, my friends. While the pumpkin spice gives off distinct autumnal vibes, you have my permission to bake this crumble all winter long. It’s spicy, crispy, and just sweet enough.

Hero Ingredient: It’s not a crumble without oats. They get deliciously crisp in the oven and create the perfect bite against the soft, melt-in-your-mouth apples.

Cancel Your Plans: These Are the Best New Holiday Movies to Binge-Watch Before New Year’s

This year, I’m considering myself most content when all my to-do list involves is watching every last one of the best new holiday movies in 2023. (And I’m feeling ambitious—let’s make it before New Year’s Eve.) While everyone else is attending holiday parties, decking the halls, and getting after their Christmas shopping, I’m happily hibernating indoors. You can catch me curled up on the couch of my childhood home covered in blankets and pressing play again and again to the movies that are sure to give me all the warm and fuzzy feels. 

The Best New Holiday Movies to Stream in 2023

I’ll paint you an even clearer picture of my ideal Christmas weekend: fuzzy socks, endless cups of hot chocolate, and yes, spending all day in my pajamas. The only thing that can make it even more perfect? This list of the best new holiday movies in 2023 ahead.

I’ve rounded up everything Netflix, Hulu, and all our favorite streaming platforms have to offer. There are new takes on old classics and (of course) Christmas-themed rom coms that’ll make even the Scrooges among us believe in love. So scroll on for a healthy dose of stay-cozy-indoors inspiration—and let me know if there are any must-sees I need to add to my watch list.

Best. Christmas. Ever!

Brandy—yes, that Brandy—stars alongside Heather Graham and Jason Biggs in this holiday movie based on a totally relatable concept. We all know those people whose lives appear too good to be true. In Best. Christmas. Ever! Charlotte and her husband Rob end up on Charlotte’s friend Jackie’s doorstep. While spending several days with her family, Charlotte makes it her mission to prove Jackie’s life isn’t as perfect as it seems.

Available on: Netflix

A Christmas Frequency

To save her boss Brooke’s radio show, Kenzie, a producer, sets her up on-air blind dates. But when Kenzie ends up connecting with one of the contenders, she has to choose between what she wants for herself and what’s best for her career.

Available on: Hulu

The Claus Family 3

Is grandpa Santa? The answer to that question sits at the center of The Claus Family 3, and with the patriarch in trouble, it’s up to his grandchildren, Jules and Noor, to save Christmas. It’s a funny and heartfelt instant Christmas classic. And if you don’t have the time to invest in the first two movies, don’t worry, this one can stand on its own.

Available on: Netflix

EXmas

Each year delivers a standout holiday romantic comedy—and prediction: this year, EXmas is it. Now tell me if this also sounds like your nightmare: Your parents invite your ex-fiancée to Christmas. They thought you weren’t coming, but then you decide to come anyway. Turns out, you’re the one in for a surprise. Will both of you make it to the big day? Watch EXmas to find out.

Available on: Freevee

Family Switch

Christmas is the perfect time of year for families to reconnect, but when a little celestial magic swaps the Walker parents with the kids for a day, it’s an opportunity for each of them to truly walk in the others’ shoes. The film is heartwarming, funny, and features Jennifer Garner and Ed Helms as the parents (a 13 Going on 30 reference gets dropped, too… ). It’s a holiday delight.

Available on: Netflix

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k5uzsanBY9U

Genie

Melissa McCarthy was made for Christmas movie stardom. In the days before Christmas, everything is going terribly for Bernard. He’s lost his job, his wife left him, and he won’t get to spend the holiday with his daughter. But when he opens an old jewelry box, a magical genie (McCarthy) pops out, ready to grant him his every wish. But will it be enough to save his holidays? Watch and find out…

Available on: Peacock

The Holdovers

I’m calling it now: this is 2023’s best holiday movie. Whereas other Christmas movies are meant purely to draw upon our holiday fervor, The Holdovers connects us to the many complicated emotions that are present this time of year. Paul Giamatti stars as a cranky professor at a New England prep school and is tasked with watching the students who have nowhere to go for the holiday break. And while he takes on the task begrudgingly, he soon forms an unlikely bond with a troublemaking student and the school’s head cook. Prepare to cry, laugh, and feel all the feels.

Available: In theaters

Candy Cane Lane

Eddie Murphy is back! (But more important: Tracee! Ellis! Ross!) Chris Carver (Murphy) wants to win the best decorated house on the block, and in his desperation, signs a deal with a mischievous elf. But while he thought the magic would help make his house the most festive, instead, it brings the 12 days of Christmas to life. To stop the evil elf, Chris must bring his family together before he loses everything.

Release date: Prime Video

The Velveteen Rabbit

I grew up with my parents reading me this book every night—and still to this day, I treasure the story of a stuffed rabbit who wants nothing more than to become “real.” The movie retains all of the book’s magic, and communicates the central theme of unconditional love with beautiful, touching artistry. It’s the perfect movie to watch with the whole family on Christmas day, post-presents.

Available on: Apple TV+

This post was originally published on November 19, 2021, and has since been updated.

Staying In for New Year’s Eve? Here Are 15 Ideas for At-Home Fun

There are countless ways to ring in the New Year. You can get dressed up and go out for a night with the gang. You can book an enviable spot at one of your city’s best restaurants. Or, if you’re like me and don’t want to change out of your sweats (your stylish sweats, mind you), you’re staying home this NYE. To help all of us homebodies celebrate the countdown to midnight, I’ve rounded up the best New Year’s Eve party ideas for an unforgettable night at home.

While the night-in option may have once brought on feelings of FOMO, I haven’t worried about missing out since before March 2020. Sure, a few minutes scrolling through social media might make me wish I had a big trip or night out planned. But I’ve been working hard to cultivate a sense of confidence in my decisions to do what’s best for me. That means releasing the pressure for my New Year’s Eve to be *amazing.* Instead, I’m celebrating exactly how I want to: at home and inspired by one of these ideas below. 

Featured image by Michelle Nash.

15 New Year’s Eve Party Ideas at Home That Are Just as Good as Going Out

Because staying in for the night doesn’t have to feel like a consolation prize. If anything, spending what’s arguably the most celebrated night of the year chez toi, is a testament to how we’ve learned to get creative and have fun in the comfort of our homes. Whether you’re wanting to get in the kitchen, spend all night marathoning must-watch movies, or getting cozy with friends, let the following ideas remind you that there’s no such thing as being bored at home. Especially on New Year’s Eve.

Image by Michelle Nash

Throw an Elegant Dinner Party

Never a bad idea for New Year’s Eve. This is a great option if you still want to get dressed up but don’t want to deal with the hassle of going out (too cold, too expensive, too… not my house). And just because it’s elegant doesn’t mean that the preparation has to be hard. DIY a few arrangements (Trader Joe’s is my go-to for florals on the fly), scatter some tea lights throughout your space and set your dream tablescape. And while you’re welcome to make a three-course meal on your own, it’s also totally fine if you want to order in from your favorite fancy restaurant.

Settle in for a Spa Night With Your Girls

A different sort of indulgence. In 2023, I’m focused on consistent self-care, and there’s no better way to set that intention in motion than with a dedicated spa night. Ask everyone to bring their favorite nail polish colors and gather all your supplies for manicures, pedicures, and more. An easy way to step (literally) into the New Year feeling your best.

Image by Michelle Nash

Make All Your Favorite Comfort Foods

New Year’s Eve is about indulgence, and it’s not a party without your favorite foods. Hosting a couple of friends for the evening? Settle on a few recipes in advance (the cheesier, the better, in my opinion) and get in the kitchen together. If it’s a larger fête you’re after, make it a potluck! Ask guests to bring their ride-or-die comfort food (mine’s mashed potatoes) and add to the feast. You might want to include a pre-midnight nap in your party plans

Set Up a Campsite Indoors

Make the most of the great indoors! Gather your camping equipment (tent, sleeping bags, etc.) and settle in for the coziest evening ever. Short a tent or two? Make like The Holiday and set your imagination to work with pillows, blankets, and cushions from around the house. And remember: An indoor camping experience isn’t complete without the movies, games, and snacks.

Image by Michelle Nash

Make It All About the Bubbly

Cheering to the New Year with something fun and fizzy in your glass? My kind of party. Make it a midnight toast to remember by setting up a DIY champagne bar or try one of these champagne-forward cocktails. All that’s really left is to make your celebration’s décor as glitzy and glam as your drinks.

Host a Desserts-Only Feast

This is a great party option if you’re wanting to start the celebrations a little later on in the evening. Set out a buffet of all the best treats and ask guests to contribute their favorites to the spread. Nothing like a strategic sugar rush to keep you up until midnight. Here’s how to create a dessert charcuterie board for a crowd.

Image by Michelle Nash

Indulge in a Midnight Brunch

While we’re all for a New Year’s Day brunch, there’s nothing stopping you from enjoying your favorite breakfast foods the night before as well. Celebrate with carbs galore—I’m talking about waffles, pancakes, a bagel bar, sweet baked treats—and your favorite fruity cocktails. Your party will still feel elevated while being wonderfully cozy, laidback, and casual. No fuss necessary.

Throw a Fondue Party

Retro in all the right ways. Fondue is easy to prepare and a great way to wrap dinner and dessert all into one. Cheese and chocolate is the best combo my taste buds know, and by setting out a variety of bites for dipping, you’ll ensure everyone’s satisfied.

Image by Michelle Nash

Marathon All the Best Movies of the Year

Because I’m normally in bed by 9 p.m. (hey, all the cool kids are doing it), I usually only make it through one post-dinner movie before I’m out cold. But because our bedtimes get extended on New Year’s Eve, you have plenty of time to make it through a million (okay, maybe three or four) movies before the clock strikes midnight. Round up a list of all the year’s best movies and start your binge-watching.

Try a Wine Tasting With Friends

Sipping on new wines is enough of a reason to have a party, but it’s also a fun way to whet your palate (haha!) for the year to come. Put together a cheese board, supply a few bottles, and ask your guests to bring one or two wines that they’ve been dying to try. Compare notes or just sip and party away. New year, meet your new go-to glass.

Image by Michelle Nash

Celebrate Cuisines From Around the World

This is one of my favorite takes on the traditional potluck party. Have all your guests sign up for a cuisine they want to showcase and celebrate on the evening’s menu. You’ll learn more about other cultures and get to sample an array of foods and dishes you might not otherwise have. Check “expanding your horizons off your resolutions list.

Karaoke Your Heart Out

Not a singer? Doesn’t matter. Belting out your favorite songs from the past twelve months will make anyone sentimental about 2022 and is bound to be a good time. You can even host a mini awards ceremony at the end for Best Voice, Most Heart, Greatest Impersonation, and so on.

Set and Share Your Intentions with Friends

While intention-setting can be a solitary activity, it can also feel supportive and motivating to share your goals with your friends. Practically, this can look like creating vision boards together. Gather up magazines and ask your guests to bring inspiring images or words they might want to include in their vision board. As you craft and create together, you can reflect on what you want to bring into your life in 2023. If people feel comfortable, try sharing and speaking to what you each included in your vision board. After all, sharing our dreams is a key part of making them happen.

Let Everyone Play Bartender for the Night

Looking for a new signature drink in 2023? Sign up for an online mixology class with your pals and gather up everything you’ll need to create your own professionally-made cocktails. I wouldn’t mind toasting the new year with an expertly-crafted drink.

Image by Michelle Nash

Hang Out By the Fire

Tempted to take things outside? Even if it’s chilly where you live, gathering around the fire is a great way to keep warm and cozy up with your closest friends. Be sure to have plenty of blankets on hand and brew up a pot of mulled cider or wine. Don’t forget the marshmallows—it’s not a party without the gooeist s’mores you can make.

This post was originally published on December 26, 2021, and has since been updated.