On Your Marks, Get Set, Its Game Night!

28 Sep

Our games included a Monopoly game, a Cluedo (the English version of Clue), CandyLand (the old version without Queen Frostine), Snakes and Ladders (the English version of Chutes and Ladders), and maybe a deck of cards. My childhood game closet is a far cry from the games my children have to choose from.

We have accumulated a massive collection of games after 14 plus years of birthdays, Christmases, and just because. We’ve had some hits. Some misses. And some games that wore out. Even after a few clandestine purges we still have a huge collection of games.

Our family loves a good game night. As the children get older, game nights become harder to schedule. Here’s why…

  • My teen is an independent sort. She’s happiest reading a book, checking Facebook, or lately chatting up a storm with her friends. I can’t blame her. She’s about to start high school. Life is a busy social whirl of volleyball, books, school gossip, movie nights with friends, and getting the best out of what is left of the summer. I hate to tell you this, but teens would rather spend time with their friends than with their parents.
  • My kids are involved in sports. The older two play volleyball. The youngest splits his time between karate and football. All three are on the summer swim team. Family time needs to be dovetailed between practice, summer workbooks/homework, and rushed family dinners.
  • My husband has a long commute. When he is home he likes to be able to catch a kid’s game or play a video game with the kids.
  • And then there is me. I love buying games, but not necessarily always playing them. Take chess, for instance. I never played as a kid. We were a checkers family growing up. I bought my kids a learn-to-play-chess set. We have had a number of games of chess, but I feel like I slow the game down by my slow chess play.

We are not quite to the point where we have to pencil in “Family Game Night” on the wall calendar or cozi.com online calendar…but we are not far off! For now we grab family game night when we can.

I do the following to ensure that family game night works:

  • We play after dinner but before dessert.
  • I lure reluctant kids to family game night with a promise of dessert or popcorn.
  • I set the family game night on a day when I have the kids picking up the toys from the family room and clearing off the coffee table. We need a large playing area for comfortable game play.
  • I choose a game that will work for 5 players. If the game is complicated, we play with 4 players with my husband and youngest child teaming up.
  • I choose a game that will work for different ages. Two recent successes…Apples to Apples Jr., Pictionary, Bubble Talk, and Pictureka.
  • I let the game night end when I can tell that the oldest or the youngest’s attention is waning.

What games do you and your family like to play on family game night?

Leave a comment.

About The Guest Blogger:

Musings from Me on Kids, Preteens, and Teens Jill Berry is a writer and Mom of 3.  You can find her blogging on her site  Musings from Me about her kids and everything else under the sun.

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One Response to “On Your Marks, Get Set, Its Game Night!”

  1. ShopGirl September 28, 2010 at 5:23 am #

    I love games more than I love kids play. They have been a staple of my childhood. From a deck of cards (long back packing excursions and Sunday dinners) to board games (Little Shop Boy loves them) and of course for iPhone games (yes I must challenge shop dad with Scrabble i.e. words with friends) they are part of who I am. Call me old school but this @Toybookshopgirl will take family game any day of the week!

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