DO THE INCREDIBLE JOURNAL
New Year is the traditional time to start a diary. There are many benefits for kids in keeping a journal – they don’t have to be a straight ‘what I did today’ format - try a nature journal, a gratitude journal – get some more alternative ideas here. Making your own book in which to write encourages you to keep up the discipline - we like this super-easy notebook with a lock idea to keep your innermost thoughts secret. Diaries don’t have to be analogue - some children find it easier to write their thoughts online - there are some ideas for ways to approach digital diary keeping here. Find more ideas for New Year resolutions here
It’s been a tougher end to the year than many of us would have liked, so why not take a little time out to cheer yourself up and plan your cultural 2022? This week, we’re focussing on what’s coming up in London this year.
EVENTS 2022 HIGHLIGHTS
The British Museum is set to host blockbuster exhibitions exploring the world of Stonehenge and mythological feminine power.
The V&A London will spotlight African fashion and Korean pop culture and menswear in three major new exhibitions, as well as a fresh look at the life and work of Beatrix Potter. The Dundee outpost will open Plastic: Remaking Our World, which examines 150 years of the material. More here
Tate Modern is set to showcase the best surrealist art from around the world, while Walter Sickert and Cornelia Parker will be the subject of retrospectives at Tate Britain. Read on here
The Wellcome Collection will examine our relationship with plants, while recognising them as complex beings that enable life on earth. Expect art that explores the entanglements between human and planetary health as well as botanical exhibits fresh from Kew.
Lewisham is set to be London’s borough of culture, with huge musical events and spectaculars set to light up the whole borough. Find out more here
In October, science fiction takes centre stage at the Science Museum, with visitors placed at the heart of an exciting narrative, uncovering authentic objects from TV, film and books.
There will be plenty of chances to join street events. Notting Hill Carnival returns bigger and bolder after a two-year break. London Pride is celebrating fifty years of being out and loud, and the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee is set to be quite the street party.
Sport-wise, the UK is hosting the 2022 women’s Euro tournament, so get ready for a summer of shouting at the TV or even, if you’re very lucky, heading to Wembley or a stadium nearer you.
EVENT NOON NOT MIDNIGHT
Our smaller friends don’t often get to usher in New Year – staying up until midnight is a big ask. But now they don’t need to miss out on the fun. The South Bank Centre celebrates 12 hours early, at a daytime party. Ex-music hall singer turned hip-hop goddess Ida Barr (the creation of Olivier-award-winning performer Christopher Green) is holding a party with sing-songs, fashion shows, dancing and Auld Lang Syne. Attend in person (restrictions permitting), or join the fun online! Free
RECIPE YES WE VE-CAN!
Going vegan for January in Veganuary? The new year is a great time to try an animal product-free lifestyle, or, if you’re already following a plant-based diet, to try some new ideas.
Find out more about vegan trends for 2021 here (vegan fish and pork are set to soar). Or why not find follow some fresh Instagrammers for more inspiration?
Is your family part-vegan, part-omnivore or vegetarian? Find our tips to navigate meal times here. You’ll also find lots of vegan inspiration at The Green Parent website; our recipes for gooey chocolate pudding, simple, five-ingredient dinners, and salted miso brownies are among our most popular. Find more here
DO MIDNIGHT SPECIAL
New Year is a great chance to come together as a family and reflect on the year that has passed, as well as hopes and dreams for the year to come. We love the idea of an ‘interview’ or letter to help record achievements as well as wishes. We’re also fans of exploring other countries’ traditions – there’s a great list here. Try the grape-stuffing challenge from Spain, Russian wish-burning or perhaps deck the whole family out in red pants!
WHAT WE’RE READING Pioneering places: 10 hotspots of positive change in 2021: ”A new year is nearly upon us, but there’s still just enough time for a whistle-stop tour of the UK and Irish places that made headlines in 2021.” From the rewilding of Derby to Birmingham’s car-free plan and Scotland’s consideration of a universal minimum income, these stories will inspire you into 2022. Read more here
WHAT WE’RE WATCHING Lovely, lovely David Attenborough goes hunting for a creature even older than he is; the mammoth. Attenborough and the Mammoth Graveyard is a new one-hour documentary that follows the story of Britain’s biggest mammoth discovery for almost 20 years. Heartwarming, lovely, lovely stuff. 8pm, BBC One, Thursday December 30, then on iPlayer.
Happy New Year to you from all at The Green Parent! We wish you a peaceful, joy-filled, healthy 2022!