January 27, 2009

Are you game?

First, some housekeeping - I have updated my sidebar and have finally updated my long-neglected Blogroll.

So. I have written previously about my endless love for boardgames - I even have an entire closet devoted to my collection. So, while Candyland is perhaps, the most boring game ever created in the history of games, I still cannot help but get a little misty-eyed at the fact that I am playing boardgames with my kid. Some of my happiest family memories from when my parents were married are those of us playing games together.


I do not let Arun win. Ever. Fortunately, the kid is one little lucky twerp because he nearly always wins Candyland on his own. His luck is equally sickening with Memory. And furthermore, we play by the rules*. X thought I was being too strict by making Arun only go the allotted spaces per the card he drew on Candyland and only letting his turn over two cards at a time on Memory, but what is the fun in playing if you cheat or bend the rules?

I not only want my kids to learn that winning is, indeed, fun but also in the end, simply playing is the very best part of it all. This is precisely why I can lose game after game after game of Wii Tennis to X and still keep coming back for more virtual punishment.

* Or some fascimile of rules. Ahem. For example, when playing Monopoly**, I will most certainly teach my kids that you do get the pile of money in the center of the board when you land on Free Parking. I merely choose to believe that Parker Bros meant for it to be an actual rule and merely forgot to put it in the instructions. Ahem.

** Speaking of Monopoly, have you seen the "electronic banking" version that includes some sort of ATM/computer thingie instead of paper money? What fun would that be? Bah. Playing with paper money while obsessively stacking and counting it was half the fun of Monopoly. Right?


LL said...

I feel that we must meet one day, our parenting seems very similar. I should be that new neighbor you were talking about in the last post!

But seriously, I totally agree about the games- the loving of them and the teaching your kids that winning is great but playing is the best part. And the free parking money is absolutely a real rule, Parker Bros was just too embarrassed over forgetting it in the first place to ever add it in later versions.

Anonymous said...

I completely agree about the board game thing. I never, ever let the kids win. That's just a slippery slope, and it's important that they understand that sometimes you win, and sometimes you don't. And you have to not throw a screaming fit either way.

I love playing games with my kids. I don't mind Candyland too much... but Chutes and Ladders is just about ready to be the end of me.

QIR said...


Given your love for trains plus your love of board games, I highly recommend "ticket to ride" the train route board game. Pantalones on fire can back me up on this one.

MLE said...

I loves me some games, too. As QIR mentioned, Ticket to Ride is great, as is Carcassonne, Settlers of Catan, San Juan, Apples to Apples... We've got a bunch of games and not enough people to play games with.

We never played the free parking/money pile version, but then Monopoly never interested me very much. I think I only ever made it all the way through a game, like, twice? Mostly I get bored with it.

flybunny said...

We are also gamers and recently introduced Scrabble to the big girls who have dubbed it the most boring game on the face of the earth but I continue to bribe them to play because they are both such good spellers and they are expanding their horizons.

We also have never let them win and from that they have become gracious winners unlike their cousin whom no one will play games with because he throws a mega fit if it even looks like he is going to lose - would like to say he is learning but alas, he is 8 and has been that way his entire life.

We have both versions of Monoply and have recently only been playing the electronic version to alleviate the "stealing" going on.

Anonymous said...

I grew up in a board game and card-playing family, so it was just natural to introduce my kids to the same. And with hurricanes wreaking havoc on the power lines for days at a time, I can tell you board games have saved us from the crazy many times.

We always play by the rules as well. And those rules include getting the $$$ out of the middle of the board when you land on free parking. So there.

Jen said...

Sequence for Kids. There's my gift to you. It says it's for 3-6 year olds and they can certainly play it. But honestly, the actual strategy of the game really doesn't come into play until they are about 6 or more. My husband and I play nicely when playing with the 6 year old, but if he's out, we're merciless.

All of those games like Candyland --the ones that are pure luck -- I'm convinced that the universe lets kids win because mine almost always win any game based solely on luck.

Heather said...

I am soooo with ya, sistah! right down to the "free parking". It's driving me crazy that my son is still just a little too little to play. He turns 3 in April though, so I'm looking forward to it. He starting playing Memory this week. He loves playing it on my phone, but luckily, he can only turn 2 over at a time. When I got out the real deal, I realized I would have to find matches first so he wasn't overwhelmed by 100 cards and he's loving the freedom of holding one card and then turning each of the others over and then back one at a time. oh, well, we're getting closer! Why can't they make something decent for a 2 year old?

Marathon Mom said...

My fondest memories are of playing games too! As far as your twitter, I remember getting money when we landed on free parking. I read the rules recently, however and you aren't supposed to receive anything. I think it's something we made up. We paid our dues from chance and community chest into the middle for free parking.

Orah said...

i CANNOT believe that electronic monopoly! both my husband and i have already stated it will NEVER be allowed in our home :-)