32 CommentsAgeing/Aging, Life, Memoir, New Year's

Holiday Rerun Series at The Doglady's Den

Originally published on Dec. 29, 2012

animated_gif champagne

Another New Year’s Eve is fast approaching and this old “party animal” can’t help but get sentimental about all the good times we had, over the course of four decades.

Back in the 70s and early 80s, it was our annual tradition to invite friends over for a night of carousing that always lasted into the next morning. Thankfully, we lived in a two-storey walk up, with only stores below and neighbours who either didn’t care or weren’t home. In any case, no noise complaints, ever.

We always put on a good spread and the booze was flowing like water, but, nobody got out of hand. Must have been sweating it out on the dance floor. Yes, we managed to move all of our furniture out of the way to create an area for just that purpose. Imagine fitting 30 or so people into the living/dining area of a two bedroom apartment and having enough seats for everyone as well as a buffet table and a dance floor Does anybody need to plan a party? Give me a call. One of my few real talents.

We even hosted a party “in absentia” once, the year we spent Christmas and New Year’s with my parents in California. Didn’t want to disappoint our friends, so we had supplies ready for them in the fridge and on the bar. Gave one of them the keys and headed off to the airport. From all accounts, everyone had a good time and they did a great job cleaning up. Even left us a full bottle of champagne.

Surprisingly, (given the era), nobody in our group was into drugs at all. On the other hand, most of the guys were soccer players, (hubby and I were proud administrators of the team, along with a few others), and in great physical shape, so, maybe not? I do remember a couple of people smoking grass on the balcony, but, this was an infrequent occurrence.

One of the most memorable New Year’s Eve parties ended up with several of us going to another friend’s apartment, (right across the street), at 7 a.m. to enjoy a meal of Spaghetti Aglio e Olio. That hit the spot at the right moment. Delizioso!

Spaghetti Aglio e oglio

Our last big gathering was in the early 80s. The guest list had dwindled somewhat and people were going home sooner, plus we were growing weary of the amount of work required to pull it off. One of our team’s sponsors also owned a banquet hall and he had recently started hosting formal dinner dances for special occasions, including New Year’s Eve.

Thus, we changed gears and started “puttin’ on the Ritz”. Hubby still had his tux from serving as “best man” to a friend and my closet was stuffed full of fancy clothes, thanks to all the previous weddings, club dinners, christenings etc. we had attended.

black tie couple

The 80s were a different time and I buried my hippie self in this new, corporate persona who became a workaholic and got dressed “to the nines” all the time. Looking back on it now, I wonder where that energy came from, considering how much I bitch and moan about having to wear anything other than jeans in the present day. Well, the answer is clear, of course. That was over 30 years ago! We were young and brimming with enthusiasm, whereas now, we are just old and tired…..

No ta morning person

Still, we have never, ever spent New Year’s Eve alone and don’t intend to start. For us, that’s a sure sign of being “past it”. The last few years have been quiet dinners with a couple of friends either at a restaurant or home, followed by champagne toasts at midnight.

HA! There’s life in the old party animal yet!

couple partying cartoon



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Debbie D.
Canine Innkeeper in suburban Toronto, Canada, known as "The Doglady". Writer/website owner, photographer, animal lover, music fanatic, inveterate traveller. History, literature and cinema buff. Eternal "hippie/rockchick". Binational, German/Canadian and multilingual. Looking for the next adventure!

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  1. What a terrific post! Your fond memories sound much like mine. I often wonder how I survived 😉 Last summer I finally let go of my ‘office’ heels since they just didn’t go well with Levi’s.
    Having a party in absentia sounds like something I should have done more than once 😉
    I hope your holiday season was/is wonderful!

  2. Omgosh. I LOVE this post. I could truly imagine those parties. They would’ve been a blast! And, if I’d have been there and been invited, I wouldn’t have missed a one of ’em! – I liked the 80’s. The clothes, the hair, the shoes. What I didn’t like was how housing changed so much. They started building weird looking houses and everything inside was peach and teal or gold n’ black! Just an FYI, I never did jump on the Miami Vice train wagon. Don Johnson just did not do it for me. 🙂

  3. Debbie,

    When we were younger, we did celebrate NYE with our Sunday School group but that’s about it. We were never partyers and after our first child arrived on the scene we stayed home. Of course, we created our own celebrations and as the kiddies grew they enjoyed the fun festivities. Now, it’s just the two of us and that’s fine by me. I like quiet, cozy NYE celebrations. Here’s to another new year of sharing great mewsic and friendship with you. May God’s blessings of good health, happiness, and prosperity be with you throughout 2018. Happy New Year!!

  4. The older we get, the more we revert to our memories. It was nice talking to you guys just now, and I do wish that quantic physics gets going so that we can phase ourselves wherever we want!

    Luv ya! Happy new year!

  5. Hi Debbie,

    It’s great to read your post. I was busy with my projects, that’s the reason I was inactive a bit, specially reading & commenting was completely off.

    But Anyways, Thanks for the interesting & informative read. Keep up the good work and enjoy the holidays.

    A Very Happy New Year Debbie! Cheers

    ~ Donna

  6. You knew how to throw a party and so did I and I know I could still do this if I wanted to. My parents had a few fun New Year’s parties that had a great spread, lots of drinking and talking and laughing and we had a dance floor. There are many fun stories from this time.

  7. Hi there old gal! a kaleidoscope of emotions reading your blog. finally found time to go through your things…came home a bit early, and am, as usual, alone!
    Yes, I remember the parties at your place [and some at my place!] so fondly! And do I remember the year I was flat on my stomach due to a minor operation in an embarassing place LOL! and you brought me everything you guys had to eat! duck à l’orange is what I remember most! Deeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeelicious!
    And the NYE I was back in Canada from the old continent!
    As I said, mixed emotions….sadness for times gone by, happiness for the good time we did have. And being thankful that we were able to enjoy ourselves and each other without the aid of anything except a good drink!
    Am looking forward to having you here! Luv ya both!

    1. What a nice surprise to see you here, Bianca! 😀 Yes, I remember the Duck a L’Orange very well and your incapacity at the time. We sure did have some good times. Looking forward to visiting you!

  8. Stopping through from the blog hop! I’m so happy I found you….so sad I wish I could attend your parties! Sounds amazing…maybe I should start a tradition of my own….sadly we’ve moved too much and we don’t have very many close friends.

    Would love for you to join my Tribe on Triberr (Chewylicious)! I think you’ll be a great fit! Find me on there and I’ll send you an invite! Looking forward to getting to know you better! xoxo

    1. Thanks for the visit, Chewylicious (Chewyleecious). Yes, we had so much fun in the old days and the “spark” is still there. LOL I’ll check out that Triberr link. While I did join some time ago, I haven’t really been very active there yet. See you soon! 🙂

  9. I can relate to what you’re saying Debbie, ah the 80’s were fabulous times. We use to have parties at friends homes and that’s how we would spend our New Year’s Eve. They moved the furniture out of the way too and had room for dancing which we did all night long. Even had a balloon drop, what fun.

    I haven’t been out for NYE in ages now. I sit home alone most years but I love it myself. Watch movies, eat dip and chips and drink. Yep, those are definitely the good days now. So much more mellow.

    I hope you have a wonderful New Year and here is wishing you the best ever.


    1. Watching movies, eating chips and drinking sounds like fun, too. Our Christmas is like that, so now, we like to kick up our heels a little. 🙂 Thanks for visiting, Adrienne and I wish you all the best for 2013. So glad I met you this year. Cheers!

  10. Enjoyed reading about your New Years eve parties ~ I think that was me up on the balcony. My old boss used to shoot big fireworks on New Years and that was fun but he’s passed on. Otherwise we are stay at home and unless I can get a good nap, I will never make midnight. The three of us will enjoy shrimp dinner and after walking the shelter dogs, hope to squeeze in the new Bond flick. Looks like you were right about the 5200 year old Mayan prediction however our “Fiscal Cliff” could snowball the world economy into more depressing austerity… Hope Your New Year ~ European travel!!! goes as planned and you follow up with a book or two ~ take pictures and take care ~ Geohuntr

    1. Thanks for visiting, Geo. Fireworks are a big New Year’s tradition in Germany too, but, not here. Just as well – the dogs get SO scared. The new Bond flick is fantastic – we loved it! 🙂 Enjoy! I’m hoping the U.S. DOESN’T throw the rest of the world back into a recession and I also hope your politicians will see the light and pull together to fix your economy. Yes, we are looking forward to the BIG TRIP and will take many pictures. Books are planned as well, on various topics. Wishing you and your family all the best for 2013. Cheers!

  11. Long ago, we had friends who could throw a party! Oh wow! the times we had! Then they moved, we moved, they moved again…Oh well! Thanks for bringing back some wonderful memories.

    1. Happy New Year to you, too! The parties have dwindled to more quiet evenings, but, it is still nice to get out and mark the occasion. Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

  12. I love this post, Debbie. Must be my age, but boy oh boy, did it resonate with me. It was like reading the evolution of a human’s life. 🙂

    I’m a tad worried though. We are the people who stay home on New Year’s eve 😉 I like to think it’s because we really are just plum worn out from the whole holiday season with a string of gingerbread parties. Yeah. That’s it. We’re really not old fuddy-duddies. 😉

    Great post! Happy New Year, my friend!! All the best in 2013!

    1. Hi Teresa; Thanks for stopping by and I’m glad you enjoyed my post. 🙂 Well, everyone is different and I do know many people who just want to stay home and chill over New Year’s. Doesn’t make you an “old fuddy-duddy” 😉 We do it the other way around and “coccoon” at Christmas, (no relatives in this country). Happy New Year to you, as well. CHEERS! 😀

  13. I’m getting old. My idea of New Year’s Eve is going to bed way before the ball drops. Unfortunately, that is not the tradition of my in-laws so I will use toothpicks to keep my eye lids open..

    1. This is the lament of many people, I’m sure. One of my friends is a total morning person and can barely stay awake after 9 p.m. Her solution? Coffee! Gets her through many occasions. 🙂 Thanks so much for dropping by and I wish you all the best for 2013. Cheers!

  14. So true how life “happens”, Debbie. Memories are so much a part of our happiness in the present. Here’s to a New Year of happiness, health, and new memories!

  15. You made me laugh…It’s kind of like going through all the stages of adulthood from wild & crazy to falling asleep a half hour before midnight…I’ll be working this New Year’s Eve but will be having that glass of champagne to toast 2013 Happy & Healthy New Year to you and yours

    1. Hi Gizmo; Glad you enjoyed my post and thanks for dropping by. Shame you have to work on New Year’s, but, Cheers to You! Wishing you all the best for 2013.