Posts Tagged ‘games’
Taking a cue from the parties my parents threw for me, I put together a bunch of games for the kids knowing that we might get to all of them, or maybe only a few of them. I found that the kids were really happy to play on their own.
Activity Table: Just for starters, I printed out a bunch of coloring pages from the Lego website. As the kids finished a page, I hung them up with clothespins. I also placed a box of Legos in the middle of the table for random building.
Fill the Jar (relay): Typically there are two teams, each with a spoon, and a bucket of Legos. At the other end of the room, there is an empty jar or box, one for each team. The object of the game is to fill the box as quickly as possible with only as many bricks as you can hold in the spoon, and not spilling any of them while traveling to the box. Since there were a handful of younger kids, we just made everyone part of the same team, and they filled a jar together. Team effort with kids between the ages of two to five – much better!
Where’s Lego Man? This was easy. I taped the cut-out Lego men all over our basement. Double purpose: decoration and game! (And, as the kids collected them all, they were actually helping clean up! Sssshhhh!)
Pin the Brick on the Roof (a.k.a. Pin the Tail on the Donkey): Clearly, a very low budget, last minute drawing on a big sheet of paper. This game is self-explanatory, right? Blindfold, tape, and paper bricks made from construction paper. I wrote all our guests’ names on the “bricks”.
Bingo (Zingo): It’s a game by Think Fun; bingo with pictures and words instead of numbers. The kids were on their own on this one. The older kids called out the pictures. While they were playing this, my husband and I were getting dinner ready.
We also had estimating while the kids were eating pizza. I filled a jar with bricks and the kids tried to guess how many were in the jar – closest guess won a little prize. Lastly, we had an impromptu building challenge between the girls and the boys. Interestingly, the girls built houses, and the boys built spaceships.
All the work my parents put into birthday parties while my brother and I were growing up – I appreciate it so much more. Ice cream cake from Baskin-Robbins, and the party games my mom (and my friends’ moms) planned… It seems so old-fashioned now. Birthday parties. They are so much easier to host elsewhere. And it’s so nice to come home to a clean house. I know. We’ve had a few birthday parties outside of our home, too. But, the memories my kids have of their home birthday parties – priceless.
I’ll admit it. I’m addicted to this game on Facebook. It only makes sense. I like food, building and design, enjoy the multi-tasking and managing. All the fun and none of the risk. You pick the menu, get food as awards, decorate your restaurant and if you manage it well, it grows. At first, my kids were really into it, so naturally, I named our little cafe “Ollie’s”, then “Abby’s” and “Julie’s Cafe”.
It looked like this many, many months ago. And now, the place is “SereniTEA” and has grown by leaps and bounds. I gave it an Asian feel for obvious reasons. The graphics are just so darn cute, from the furnishings to the food. These designers are doing such a nice job with it.
This might make you wonder if all I do is sit around and play video games all day. I can assure you the answer is NO. After a long hiatus from Sim City (another virtual world game that I played years ago.), I found this to be just a fun way to decompress from everything else I do. Anyone else out there play this game?
Unrelated and random thoughts
- The Chicago Craft Social last Friday was another hit! Lots of first-timers, lots of familiar faces, too. Check out my review on Craft Critique soon!
- The T-shirt quilt top is so close to being done! I probably have a few more hours on it. Now if I could just stop blogging, playing, doing chores, etc. and finish the darn thing. *grin*
- I can’t believe Christmas is less than three months away, which means, our cookie exchange is about 2-1/2 months away! Planning will begin soon!
- There’s a new writing opportunity at my door… more on this soon! *** UPDATE! The online newspaper has launched. My articles (like you need more of me?), mostly on food and cooking, will run every two weeks. Thanks for all the support! ***
Another one of those weeks where I’m catching up on chores, writing, reading, crafting, mothering… I wanted to take a break and thought to share this personality quiz. I used to take a bunch of these in high school and college. Now that I think about it, why did I keep taking these quizzes? Is that was girls do? My daughter has two quiz books from American Girl… we start so young, don’t we? I’m not sure what I was looking for then. Maybe it was some insight into the person I was versus the person I wanted to be. Maybe, back then, it was to confirm that I was the right girl for my crush-of-the-month.
(My 50th post… should I celebrate?)
The kids really enjoy when we’re all together and the mahjong tiles come out. The little one is getting into it. I’m sure generations of my husband’s family have played and handed down the rules, etc. I never quite understood the game as played by Filipinos, but when I watched and learned from my husband, it became much simpler. The Chinese (family) rules are much more complex than the Filipino version. Don’t ask about Hong Kong style. I hear it’s a whole other level.
Personally, I haven’t played in a while, and I still can’t score my own points. I’m usually the one at the table saying, “Just tell me how many points I have… I trust you.” Basically, I’m intimidated to play with my in-laws and I was never really up on strategy games either. I get stressed out especially when someone’s standing behind you saying, “Oh, why did you pick that tile?” or “Oh, don’t give up that tile…” Worse than backseat drivers.
They play on a homemade, custom table top that goes over a regular card table: Plywood, 1x material, felt and window screening. Tiles move around like butter. My family borrowed it and really liked it. So, Husband got material from a friend, who in turn pre-cut and routed all the material for us. Husband took friend out for breakfast.
Here’s the new table top for my aunt and uncle. I think the red felt behind the screen material is great!
The backside of the table top is much neater than ours, of course, this is the 3rd one my husband has made with our soon-to-be brother-in-law. Lightweight staple gun with staples less than 1/2″ does the trick.
Close up of fine “Chinese craftsmanship”… tiles don’t fall off the table because of the frame.
Could this be a “cottage industry” sort of product? How much would mahjong players be willing to pay for this?
Pinball anyone? This past Saturday morning, the Tiu family pinball machine was picked up for long time needed service. Eastman did all the legwork and found someone local who repairs and services these machines. Rich Huff, Midwest Pinball, was really nice and incredibly knowledgeable!
Apparently, it isn’t too difficult to find replacement parts for this generation of Bally pinball machines, a number of games use the same board set. Hopefully there wasn’t too much leaking of any old batteries inside the game, either. I believe Rich told me that there were less than 1000 of these machines made (I want to say 800-900, but I can’t remember). Because of its trucking theme, you’d find these primarily at rest stops, truck stops, bars… and a few of them made their way off route. Like to my husband’s Algonquin home in the 1980′s.
Look, actual rolling numbers… not digital display! I’m diggin’ the short shorts on the waitress, too. A little reminiscent of Daisy Duke? This is the pinball machine head, and I didn’t take a picture of the back, but it’s all taped together. I love how Rich reacted. He said something to the affect of, “Oh, that’ll need some work…” It probably would fall apart if we took the tape off. No locks. That will all get repaired, too.
The whole repair will probably take at least 2-3 weeks. Come on over when it’s back!
If I think about too much, it’s almost a heartache how fast Abby has grown. I’m so proud of her.
She’s putting last touches on her Webkinz themed cake for her Webkinz themed birthday party. It was a blast crafting ponchos for all the pets, decorating bags for game prizes, our own homemade Wheel of Wow, Gem Mining and W Shop.
The pets… I mean, kids, had an awesome time.
Friends gave her a special tea blend named for her: Tea for Tiu. Strawberry tea goodness.
Happy seven candles, my first little one. How big you are now.