It’s raining….again. While I am grateful for the rain, I can’t help but feel a little bit stir crazy being cooped up inside with 3 young, and very active boys. What are you to do when you’ve reached your limit on screen time (3 shows or 1 movie in our house), the kids have already ran circles around the house 20 times, forts have already been constructed, Legos built, and there is still an hour until bedtime? Family Game Night to the rescue!!
Growing up in a house with 2 younger siblings and parents that believed that we should “learn to play together” from a young age, we spent many an evening laughing and competing around a pile of cards, dominoes, board game or dice. Looking back, I realize how important those evenings were to building a sense of belonging, togetherness, and shared interests in our otherwise very busy family.
Nowadays with the easy access to technology and all of its brightly colored, never ending, options for entertainment, time spent together bonding over an old-fashioned (or new!) game is at a premium. I encourage you to schedule some screen-free time, pop some popcorn, and blow the dust off of your old pile of games. Invite some friends over if you don’t have kids, or allow the kids to have a friend or two over if you need more players, or really want to make a night of it!
Here are some of our families favorite games to get you inspired!
apples to apples
If we divided up the amount we originally paid for this game by the number of times we have played, we should be getting paid to play by now! Apples to Apples is by far one of our go-to-games for a few reasons. First of all, it’s fun! We have to be careful when playing this game that no kiddos are sleeping anywhere, because we are sure to wake them with our laughter.
Secondly, it’s ridiculously easy to teach to new players. Deal out some cards, do one sample round, and your newest players will be right in the thick of the fun in no time!
Finally, the game adapts well to a wide variety of ages and stages. We have played this with older kiddos (old enough to read and understand basic pop culture references), at every youth group lock-in we’ve ever hosted, with our 30-something friends, our 50-something parents, and everyone in between.
The only problem is after you’ve played about a million times (like we have) you start to recognize most of the cards, which is why I am so excited to see the New Card Edition listed above! That just made my must-buy list!
While there is nothing new and exciting about this recommendation, I would be doing my eldest son a dis-service if I did not include Monopoly in my Family Game Night list. Yes, that’s correct, my 7 year old LOVES Monopoly!
We do not have the JR. version, just the regular ol’ game, and he is able to hold his own and often come away the victor! While he loves having his own money, buying up all the properties, and sending mommy to jail, I love the math skills, business principles, and life lessons I can sneak into this classic favorite.
Skip-Bo will always remind me of lazy afternoons spent playing the day away at my great-grandma’s lake house in Ohio. Anytime we were cooped up in doors from a passing summer thunderstorm, out came the cards! My Great Grandma was a master card player and taught all of her grandkids and great-grandkids the essentials.
Skip Bo was one of her favorites along with Kings in the Corner, Hand and Foot, Rummy, and even Go-Fish. We played round after round of this entertaining card game and I have passed that tradition onto my own family. If you are looking for a fun and easy-to-learn family card game, then Skip-Bo is for you!
In a household full of boys I am always surprised at how many times Candy Land makes it out of the game closet. Maybe it’s the tantalizing scenes full of sugar, the chance of getting the coveted ice cream cone card, or the ease of play, but this game comes highly recommended from my little brood of boys.
I like how easy it is to set up and the fact that the boys can play (for the most part) by themselves. If only I could find a way to make this game last a little longer I may actually get the house clean…
While Battleship is technically not a game well suited for more than 2 players, if you have several games going at once, Battleship is a great game to add into the mix. While newer versions have digital screens and automated “hits” there is just something about the classic style that I love. Simple to set up, simple to play, and loads of competitive fun, Battleship is a classic for any well-stocked game cabinet.
I shared earlier about growing up with a strong background of Family Game Nights, and Guesstures is one game that seems to be at the center of almost every memory. At the core it is a dressed up version of Charades,