“I said to myself, “Come now, I will test you with pleasure to find out what is good.” But that also proved to be meaningless. “Laughter,” I said, “is madness. And what does pleasure accomplish?” Ecclesiastes 2:1-2
We’re near the end of the lockdown (hopefully). Here are some ways we’ve been passing the time:
Making Up Games
Kickbowl: Thanks to Bjorn’s insatiable thirst and our near daily trips to 7-Eleven before this lockdown, we have a good number of plastic bottles around. So we set them up like pins and use Journie’s plastic “Peppa Pig” ball to knock them down. Because the ball is so light, players can kick the ball instead of rolling it with their hands. Bjorn is insanely good at this game, so of course he loves it. Journie and I are invested in finding pin formations he can’t knock down so easily.
Waterball: A game played much like basketball, except it’s not.
No hoop—no problem! Just fill up a 10-liter plastic jug with water and set it at one end of the room. Points are scored if you can hit it with a ball. There are no teams; it’s every wo/man for themselves, and it’s better when 3 people play. Wait, how is this like basketball again? Oh yeah, you have to dribble the ball down the room—unless your name is Journie. Then you can bounce the ball twice, hold it, and run toward the goal screaming with laughter.
Making Games. Literally
Journie was playing with coins one day and said she wanted to play the game that did this: and she mimed the motion of the coins jumping over each other.
We had coins, cardboard, crayons—this shouldn’t be too hard to make, I thought.
I googled images of checkerboards and then calculated the number of squares (yes, I was that dedicated). I decided to make the game board out of a pizza box. But cutting it was more problematic than I thought, as it was also thicker than I thought. I actually measured the width of the box and divided it by 8 so that I could make respectable squares. Then I cut a strip of cardboard to that width so I could use it as a straight edge. Of course, Journie and I colored ALL the squares. We also had to spend time finding enough stickers to differentiate the coins/checkers, and then play other games with said checkers because they looked so cute.
Total time spent making the game: About 1 ½ hours.
Finally, we were ready to play. Journie was doing pretty well and we were about halfway into it when I realized I had set up the game wrong (she had her checkers on the white squares and I had mine on the black. Yes, it’s been a while since I’ve played.)
We started over, correctly this time. Journie even got one of her pieces made a King, or “Princess,” as she called it. However, as soon as she realized her Princess was in danger of getting eaten/jumped, she said, “I don’t want to play anymore.”
Total time spent playing the game: 20 minutes.
Other favorite games include:
H-O-R-S-E: We have discovered anything can be used as a “hoop.” Really, all you need is something that designates a specific place that the ball must reach. We have used Bjorn’s slippers (ball has to be rolled in between them), a chair (ball must be rolled between chair legs), etc.
Dodgeball: The object of the game is to avoid being hit by the ball, yet somehow I seem to gravitate directly towards it. Hmmm.
Get your game(s) on, everybody!