Family Game Night: Let The Kids Win or Clobber Them?

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Hubby and I decided to execute the greatest form of torture on our kids that we could think of...

Family Game Night.

Well, we didn't think it would be the greatest form of torture ever. We thought we had a few more years to go before Family Game Night was seen as torture. Apparently 10- and 7-years-old is when it begins. Fortunately for Hubby and I, we decided that 10 and 7 are the perfect ages to have some serious competition going and no longer let the kids win at games... meaning a cutthroat, hardcore, losers go home crying Family Game Night.

In an effort to unplug our kids and strengthen the family unit we so desperately craved that we pulled our family together despite 2000 miles and three years of separation, we decided that Mondays would be Kids Cook Night, Wednesdays would be Family Game Night and Fridays would be Family Movie Night. As Wednesday approached, Hubby and I got excited; the kids, not so much. They really thought that playing board games with Mom and Dad was going to be horrible. They changed their mind by the end of the evening.

We decided to draw names from a hat to see who would pick the game. The Girl won, and chose Hedbanz. Let me tell y'all, if you have never played this game... don't. The basic premises of the game is you stick a card to your forehead that you haven't looked at, and ask questions to try and figure out what your card is. It's fun at first, until the 7-year-old does this for every single card...

"Am I an animal?" Yes. "Am I big?" Yes. "Am I a food?" No. "Am I alive?" You're an animal, aren't you? Do you think they'd put dead animals on here? "Am I a frog?" You asked earlier if you were big and we said yes. Are frogs big? "Okay then, am I a sandwich?" Seriously?

Game time

By the 30 second mark of The Ginger trying to figure out his card, I'm ready for a shot of vodka. Tempers flare, finally either Hubby or I win and I announce that I refuse to play that game anymore. (For the record, this past Family Game Night, I won, and yes, refused to play Hedbanz ever again.) We decided to give a new game a try -- The Sci or Fi Files.

Yes, this is a nerd game. Yes, the kids (and adults) will learn tons of things while playing this game. Yes, it was slightly over the head of the 7-year-old (recommended ages are 10 and up), but we all still had an amazing time playing this game. The basic premises of this game is there are science statements on a card and you have to figure out which are true or false. You get a chip for each category you answer correctly, and whoever gets all four category chips first wins. Hubby and I loved this game, and while the kids were skeptical at first because it was an educational game, they quickly grew to love it. Hubby and I found out that everything we were taught as kids was wrong. Did you know that if you cut an earthworm in half, both halves don't live and make two new earthworms? We both went around chopping earthworms in half as kids because we were taught that somewhere. And dogs don't pant because that's how they sweat. Dogs sweat through the pads on their feet. Another thing I was taught, incorrectly, when I was growing up. My entire scientific world was thrown in upheaval by this game, and I still haven't fully recovered from Pluto not being a planet anymore, thank you.

Anyway, The Sci or Fi Files -- amazing game. We picked it up at our local science museum in the gift shop, but Amazon does carry it. We ended up playing two rounds of that game, with Hubby and I dominating the first round, and The Girl joining us in domination for the second round.

If you haven't seen a theme yet, Hubby and I are quite competitive and no longer let our kids win at games. In fact, I think we quit doing that years ago. I used to be the mom that would go a little slower on a board game or "accidentally" drop the dice on the floor and say that I rolled a 1 instead of a 6 so that I didn't pass the then-fragile toddler on the game board.

Not anymore.

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