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Best Holiday Games

Welcome back! I hope everyone had a great weekend!

Andy and I spent a low key night in on Friday and enjoyed some cocktails, while putting up Christmas decorations and watching the new Hallmark Christmas movie. 🙂

Saturday was a typical day of chores, and we then enjoyed a nice date night out. We headed out to Toledo try a new dinner spot, Table Forty 4, which had AMAZING fries and then ended the night going to a Toledo Walleye hockey game that our company gave us tickets too! Today we started our Christmas shopping and are preparing for the short week!

We are pretty excited for a 3 day work week that also happens to be a Jeans Week in the office!

As we head into the Holiday’s one of my favorite parts is sitting down at the table and playing games with family and friends. We frequently host friends over during the non-holiday season to play games, but there is something about doing it at the Holidays that makes it that much more special!

For Thanksgiving, there aren’t any holiday game traditions, but we still play them! However, for Christmas, Andy’s family has a great tradition! Each person brings 3 smaller wrapped gifts and you play various games throughout the day and the winner of each game gets to pick out a gift. At the end of the night, we play Five Crowns, and the winner of this receives ‘The Ball’ gift, which is a ball filled with a certain dollar amount or greater of prizes! The winner is then in charge of filling the ball for the next Christmas year! Last year was my first year participating and I happened to win; therefore, I am in charge of filling the ball this year — pressure is on!

Here are the top games that we enjoy playing!

Ticket to Ride

Days of Wonder Ticket To Ride

Days of Wonder – Ticket to Ride is a board game of strategy that we frequently play in our house- we usually call it Trains though! 🙂  It can have up to 5 players and is geared towards those age 8 and older; however they do a Junior Version for 6 and up. Each players draws route cards and train cards. The board is a map of US and Canada. In order to earn points you use your train cards to complete your routes for points. In the process, you can attempt to block others routes and in turn they loose points at the end of the game for any incomplete routes. I truly believe this is a game you have to play to understand how much fun it can be, but once you play it, you will be hooked.

Outside of the Classic Addition they also have others that incorporate different countries and other various twists.

I have never played any of these versions, but if you have, I would love to hear what you thought of them!

Five Crowns

Five Crowns is a game loved by both my family and Andy’s family. It is a card game that is geared toward ages 8 and up and can have up to 7 players! If you have more than 7 players, get two decks and it will be 2x the fun.  They also offer a Junior Version for those ages 5 and up!

The game contains 5 suites and 11 rounds. The objective of the game is to have the lowest score.

In the first round you start with 3 cards and the Joker and 3s are wild. To cancel out your points you need to get 3 of a kind or a run! The round ends once someone goes out for having zero points. Then, each round you add one more card to your hand and for however many cards you have that means the extra wild correlates with that number.  For example,  in the second round you have 4 cards and the Joker and 4’s are wild! At the end the person with the lowest score wins!

Dutch Blitz

Dutch Blitz is a card game that is focused on speed. I will be the first to admit games that required quick reaction times are not my best. None the less, this a great game to play with the family. It is geared toward those ages 8 and up and can have 4 players. If you have more then 4 players, they do offer expansion packs!

The game is a combination of Solitaire and the classic card game Speed. In the regular pack, there are 4 different suites and each player has a hand and three cards set out in front of them to play like solitaire. In the middle you have your blitz piles. The goal is to play out piles in numeric order in the Blitz Pile and get rid of your cards as quick as possible. One person might put out a 1 card and its then a race to see who can get the number 2 card out there and so on. Once someone is out of cards, they yell blitz and those with the most cards out in the Blitz Pile wins the game.

It is a great game to play if you are hitting an afternoon lull and need a pick-me up game!

Yahtzee

I am sure you have heard of Yahtzee before, but it is one of my family’s favorites so I had to feature it!

Yahtzee is another game intended for ages 8 and older and has a minimum of 2 players but no maximum. It is a game of dice, where you try to get various combinations to earn points! The objective is to have the highest amount of points at the end. The best roll you can get is five of a kind, which is a Yahtzee. If you get a Yahtzee in my family, an obnoxious celebratory dance occurs.

Salad Bowl/Fish Bowl

We call this game Salad Bowl, but we have also heard it called Fish Bowl. This is a great game because all you need is paper and some bowls and there is no limit of people. The other weekend we played it with close to 20 people!

You divide into two or more teams. Each person gets three pieces of paper and on each one writes out a different word or phrase. Maybe something like ‘Building a Snowman’ or “Spilling my Coffee’.

There are then three rounds. One team starts with the bowl and a timer of one minute is set. That person pulls out a piece of paper and starts to do the Round Rule. Once it is guessed the bowl goes to the next person on that team until their one minute is up. The bowl is then passed to the other team for 1 minute and so on until all pieces of papers have been guessed to end the Round. You tally the papers up and put them back in the bowl and continue on to the next round with the same papers. Whichever team has the highest points at the end wins.

Here are the round rules:

Round 1: Similar to catch phrase. You describe the word or phrase with anything expect a word that is on the paper.

Round 2: You act out what is on the paper. No words allowed!

Round 3: You use only one word to describe what is on the paper and it can’t be any word on the paper. We play it that if you say ‘Umm’ it counts as your word!

This is one of my all time favorite games!


 

All of the above games are great to play with friends and family or purchase as a gift! I hope you try out one or all of these games. Let me know what you think!

What are some of your favorite games to play with family and friends?

Does your family have any fun game traditions at the holidays?

 

Evelyn

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