Showing posts with label games. Show all posts
Showing posts with label games. Show all posts

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Just Who is in Charge Here, Anyway?

It seems like there is always something to do on the 4th of July.  Salt Lake has their big parade on the 24th, but Provo (not incredibly far from Salt Lake City) offers a parade.  As mentioned in this post, one can find a parade somewhere during the summer.  I think there is one going on every week.  
Fireworks are also shot in the sky throughout the summer.  Neighbors have their personal fireworks and there are shows throughout the valley on different nights and different locations.  Probably the most impressive are in Sugarhouse (offered on the 4th) Rice Stadium (University of Utah also on the 4th) Fire, Water and Ice celebration in Kearns (1st week in August, I believe) and baseball stadiums as well as others. 
I have a problem breathing around the fireworks.  Over the years I’ve tapered off from watching outdoors to peering behind a window – should I happen to be up (usually I’m in bed)
Last year Jenna spent the holiday with two of her brothers and felt cheated on missing out this year.  I looked on the net for 4th of July activities in the Roseburg area.  I emailed our friend in McMinnville and facebooked my cousin in Salem to see if they knew of any events surrounding their towns.  I was referred to Eugene by one and so looked up and actually saw a promotion for Glendale on three different sites – two news stations from Eugene. 
The hype was written something like this:
2015 July 4th Celebration - Glendale Oregon
This is a daily event, running from July 2, 2015 through July 4, 2015. 11:00 AM Memorial Park - Glendale, Oregon (Right across the street from the Post Office on Pacific Ave) 541-832-2245

July 2nd the fun begins at 11:00 am! The Food Booth Opens and all Vendor Booths will be open. The Kids games will be starting also! (Tickets 25 cents each or 5 for $1.00). All children win a prize! THE WATER SLIDE IS OPEN AT 11:00 am!!! Let’s not forget the Car Bash!!! There will be Bingo at 1:00 pm and the dunk tank starts up at 1:00 pm also! At 5:00 pm the Silver scramble will be starting for three age groups! At 7:00 pm the drawing for the 4th of July Raffle (Which includes being able to start the fireworks) will be held! Then we will have the Shirley Davis Memorial Cake Walk!

July 3rd We start again at 11:00 am..... The water slide- Food Booth – Kids games – and Car Bash!!!! The Dunk tank and the bingo will start up again at 1:00 pm! At 4:30 – Pinata’s (three age groups) – this is free folks! At 6:00 pm a Patriotic concert in the park put on by the Churches in the area! After the concert try your hand at a Watermelon Eating Contest! All Ages! then 8:30 to 10:00 pm some music in the park!

July 4th – Breakfast in the park from 8:00 am to 10:00 am! The Car Bash will be still happening and then the Water slide will open at 11:00 am. The Annual Parade line up will start at 12:30. At 1:25 pm the National Anthem will be sung by our own Lyla Rose! The parade will start at 2:30 !!!!

Then the highlight!!!!! THE BEST FIREWORKS SHOW IN SOUTHERN OREGON WILL BE HAPPENING AT THE GLENDALE HIGH SCHOOL! The Concession stand opens at 8:00 pm and the Fireworks will start at dusk! If you have not seen it yet folks......You really do not know what you are missing!

Come on out and join in the fun! Hope to see you there!
We decided to take Jenna to Glendale on the 3rd as we believed the 4th would be more crowded.  But first she and Roland went to Roseburg to deposit two checks and to pick up a few items.  I chose to stay home and wait for a handyman to come fix the rental refrigerator.

I seriously was more impressed with taking the drive to the sleepy little town of Glendale and the return back to Myrtle Creek than I was with Glendale itself or lack of activity.  It was major disappointment for Roland and me – and appeared to be even more disappointing for Jenna – until we finally found someone who would man the games.  

Glendale was definitely cooler than in Myrtle Creek (which everybody here says is very unusual.  They say it NEVER gets this hot – which is good to know. Because even though I’m from Salt Lake and people think that I’m probably used to the heat – I will NEVER get used to it) and it was really pretty.  I also enjoyed the temporary Christian music that I haven’t heard much of since living in Oregon. But I think I’ve had my fill of Glendale and don’t plan on ever returning. 
When we arrived, the main street was closed off for a block – as if the town had planned something exciting for the entire community and was expecting loads of fun.  And maybe it was in the average Glendalians mind – but I didn’t think it was very well organized.  Some of the booths appeared to be closed even though they had signs of events taking place.  And some seemed to have events set up but no one to man the stations.  Obviously a trusting town with no crime whatsoever.
We had passed one booth of throwing darts into balloons for used stuffed animals. The lady at the booth told her husband tickets were five for a dollar or fifteen for five dollars.  What kind of deal is that?  
Jenna rode the waterslide three times but didn’t seem happy.  She wanted to play the games that had been left neglected – but looked fun to play in her mind.  Roland purchased some melted ice cream for her.  It was actually a very generous scoop.  It must have been seven times the size of the cone.
I was hungry for real food and decided on some nachos.  While the chips themselves were delicious, I wasn’t all too impressed with the gloppy cheese.  Jenna had intended on sharing with me, but was even less impressed.  We ended up throwing away not quite half – but enough to call waste.
Roland finally found someone to take charge of the games, and Jenna knocked over bottles and cans to win more stuffed animals and ended up taking home an armload of cherished pets.  I’m glad she warmed up and actually enjoyed having fun.  Guess I’ll take her to the swimming pool tonight.  I don’t foresee fireworks happening this year.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Learning Geography part 2: South America and Flags

Jenna and I have played “Crazy Countries” a game much like Crazy 8  Of course the Africa continent deck has a lot more cards than say Oceania or South America deck and so we of course don’t play with all of the cards.  We’re not learning countries so much as continents – for I have told Jenna that whenever we use a wild card to change suit, we have to say by continent rather than color.

I took Spanish in 9th and 10th grade.  In my first year, part of our lessons included studying  the countries in South America.  We were also assigned pen pals to correspond with in hopes that it would help us learn our Spanish and assist our pen pal with his or her English.

The map of South America looks the same way I remember it looking in 1975.  It looks the same way today.  And I am impressed by the stableness of the boundaries.  It makes geography so much easier to learn (and share).


After playing “Crazy Countries” (the only game we have played thus far) I thought I would impress Jenna with my knowledge of what countries fit where.  I got half right, and although I remembered all the names (except for Suriname) , I wasn’t able to match them to their appropriate shape until she showed me the flags.  Not that I remember learning the flags.  It was through a different source that I thought I might have enough  material for another post although I would like to just tack it onto what I started yesterday.

My ability to recognize flags did not come from geography.  It actually came from the Mahjong tiles found on the Internet.  I wanted to know what flags belonged to what countries, which led me to the cards, which led me to an imaging index (as I could not find four of the flags among the cards; and I also learned that some of the flags were out of date) 

Even though Czechoslovakia had changed its name to Czech and Slovak Federal Republic  the flag on the card still remained the same as when the card was first printed. Somehow I allowed myself to obsess over knowing all of the flags I could find.  I don’t even know how long ago.  I have since moved on to other things and probably couldn’t even make a proper guess with just a forth of them. (I don’t know how many countries I came across that I had never heard of before this obsession)



You know what fascinates me the most?  Places like Egypt and Rome that have been around since the old testament seem solid somehow and then there are surrounding countries that can’t seem to settle I love the consistency that I have explored with South America – though I have questioned this map:





Is that an upcoming proposal?   or is the map purely bogus?

Friday, February 14, 2014

Before Clue, There was Mr. Ree

         I dont know how old I was when Grandma showed us the game Mr. Ree.  I vaguely remember seeing the game.  I dont know if my cousins and I attempted to play it I think we did, but soon became bored with it.  We didnt really understand what we were supposed to do.

         As I have researched the Internet to learn if there were really any similarities between Mr. Ree and Clue,  Mr. Ree sounds like it may have been more challenging or fun to play but I could be wrong.  I just remember thinking the layout of the Mr. Ree board was similar to the mansion set for clue.

Of course there are different versions of each game changing design and pieces every decade or so for whatever reason. 

This is what I remember from my childhood:

Recently my son, Tony, and his wife gave me a new addition of clue which comes with two crime scenes.

Monday, April 29, 2013

“Corner on the Market!”

Patrick has always been a game collector.  I think with every passing year, there were always at least two games to be added to the collections. We played lots of games as a family when I was growing up.  Even after Patrick and Sunny were married, we would continue to play.  Some games more than others.

Pit is a card game that I don’t actually remember playing since Patrick and Sunny were newly married.  I hadn’t introduced it to my own family until last night when Randy and Carrie had us over for dinner.  For the most part brother pitted against brother.  The bear and the bull both got passed around and ended up in Randy’s hand as I called, “Corner on the Market” and Biff was laughing so hard I thought that he would split.  I don’t think I’ve ever laughed so hard while playing Pit. 

It really is a fun game...

Friday, January 4, 2013

Welcoming the New Year

A year ago today, mom lost her driver’s license.  It’s hard to believe how much of her memory has been wiped out in such a short time.  Yesterday she seemed almost comatose to me.  Her birthday is not until June.  Jenna asked if we could go to her house to celebrate.  There were tears in my eye because I honestly don’t know where she’ll be six months from now.

On the Saturday before the New Year, we took my mom to the movies with us. We were late getting to the movie and so had to sit in front.  “Life of Pi” is NOT a comedy – unless maybe one is watching it with another who has dementia.

          I sat between my mom and Jenna.  Jenna rattled on about the movie and animals and explained things in detail (as though I wasn’t sitting there watching it myself) and my mom would make these off-the-wall comments that made me laugh.

          Mom’s memory right now doesn’t allow her to retain what she has watched from scene to scene. I don’t know if she remembered why the pair was in the water.  But she did ask,   “Why doesn’t he just throw the tiger out of the boat?”

          “The tiger is too big.  He can’t just throw it out.”

          “Well, if it was me, I would just shoot him with a gun.”

          I start to laugh.  How does one obtain a gun if marooned in the ocean?  He hadn’t chosen to be stranded out there. And then the very idea of my mom with a gun is laughable.  We had found one in her mother’s apartment several years ago (before I had met Roland) and treated it as though it was a dead mouse.

          I took Jenna to the library on Monday afternoon.  The auditorium had been set up with plastic water bottles, streamers, paper plates, beads, and icicles.  Children were encouraged to make noise maker (shakers) and party hats to welcome in the “new year” – which wouldn’t officially start until twelve hours after the celebration. 

They played a few games – including “hot potato” and “Simon says” before the “New Year’s” countdown. It was cute watching the children countdown to noon with all the enthusiasm of it being midnight.

Jenna enjoyed herself.  What she seemed to enjoy the most was being in the company of a friend from Church.  His mom invited Jenna to do a family home evening with them later on.  And so Jenna went over to her friend’s house for pizza and a lesson on setting goals.  I think there was another celebration to welcome in the New Year.  She was home before 9:00.

Roland and I started in on the pizza while she was gone.  No new year’s snacks this year.  But it was typical of my new year’s holiday – boring. 

Bill had talked to Roland about meeting at my mom’s house.  He called when Jenna was gone.  But Roland wanted just a quiet evening at home. Unlike last year, Jenna made it until after midnight.  She could have probably kept on going if I hadn’t wanted to go to bed myself.  I was tired.

So on New Year’s Day itself we met Kayla and Bill at my mom’s house.  We played a few games.  Not much.  The kids were getting restless.  We all left to return to our homes about the same time.

Corey called shortly thereafter.  First he talked to mom and asked what she’d been doing.  She remembered that all of us were there, but she also informed Corey that we had gone for a hike.  Really?

Corey then called me to get the truth of the story.  It’s been less than 40 degrees outside.  Like I’d really take my mom and the babies out in 40 degree weather.  Like Roland and I are even in shape to go hiking. 

It’s been a tiring year.  I hope our families may be less stressed in 2013.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Thirteen Years Ago Today

          It was 13 years ago today when I first met Roland.  Oh, I had seen him before.  He was in my mom’s ward (church boundary) for a brief period of time.

          He always sat with his arms stretched out on the pew and around each of his boys that were seated next to him on either side.  He also had a big ol’ smile plastered on his face.  There was something about him that appealed to me.  His smile perhaps.  The genuine love that he had for his boys.

          On December 31, 2000, I saw him in the foyer of the church.  He was wearing a tie with a large picture of the Tasmanian devil printed on it.

          “Nice tie,” I said.  I don’t know if I actually used the word “nice” – I’m really not that big of a Looney-Tune fan, but I did want to get his attention.  “A gift from your boys?”

          There was a loud smile on Roland’s face – because something told him that I would be his next wife.  Fortunately he did not share that with me at the time.  I don’t think I would have gone out with him otherwise. 

          He didn’t actually answer my question about the tie.  Mr. Smooth wanted to know where I sat and kept his arm around me the entire time. (I suppose that should have been a clue)

          He asked me to “First Night” an event that takes place downtown – to welcome in the New Year.  He said it would just be him and me and that he’d leave the boys at home.

          I told him NOT to leave the boys at home.  My family has played games on New Years for as long as I remember.  I told him to leave the boys at my mom’s house and play games with my family.  None of us knew that the boys would be a part of the family before the end of 2001 – except for maybe Roland.

          So the boys sat with their “cousins” apparently in order of birth – they certainly hadn’t planned it that way, but mom looked over and said they were seated Biff (13) Tony (12) Ellen (11) Randy (10) and Kimball (9)

          Our engagement happened fast – too fast in my opinion.  I had come home sick and instructed Corey that I was not to be disturbed, but he made an exception for Roland whom I really didn’t know but was comfortable with – although I didn’t know why.  I had dismissed guys less forward than Roland for being TOO forward.  And yet here was Roland who surprisingly didn’t ask me to marry him at First Night.

          He wanted my opinion about two things.  He held out some job applications and told me the pros and cons for each one and asked what job I thought he should take.  Really?  What advice could I possibly give him? 

          The reason he valued my opinion is because there was a second matter.  Would I marry him?  That is why he wanted my input about the job.  “No, no, no, no,” is what I thought in my head.  “I don’t even know this guy”

          I had had a dream the night before.  “The Lord is testing me,” I thought.  He had tested so many others in the Bible – Abraham, Sarah, Ester, Ruth, the widow that Elijah meets up with in 1 Kings 17:10. 

          I did NOT KNOW Roland.  How could I possibly marry someone I did not know – not really?  It was an act of faith.  I had convinced myself that just because I had said “Yes” to his proposal did not mean I couldn’t change my mind later on.

          I didn’t change my mind.  We were married two days before the planes crashed into the world trade center.  I thought the world had come to an end.  I suppose for many it did.  Economically we have not climbed out of it.  We have struggled most of our married lives.  There have been a large number of us who have struggled.  The mountain has become rougher.  We really need to assist one another to the top.

          It’s been a hard climb.  But I have learned to love Roland tremendously.  He always tells me how blessed he is to have me in his life.  But you know what?  I am the one who has been blessed.

          I’m grateful to Roland.  Perhaps one day I will be grateful for the struggles.  I’d be lying if I were to post that right now.  I know struggles are for my own good, they help me to grow . . . blah, blah, blah.  Honestly, at this point in time, I think struggles suck big time – even more than a powerful vacuum cleaner.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Chatter Matters . . . especially for Jenna

          In 2000 Mattel distributed a game called Chatter Matters.  I don’t know how the game happened to fall into the hands of Sunny’s family, or if it had been given to a specific child.  But they didn’t seem to enjoy it.

          They left it at my mom’s house without directions.  It’s pretty self explanatory, but I printed the directions anyway.  Jenna absolutely LOVES this game.  We started playing it just this year.

          We must have started in summer when Jenna was off from school.  The game continued to live at Grandma’s house, and that is where we would play it.  Jenna wanted to take the game home.  I told her that it wasn’t ours to take.  But Corey said he thought it would be okay if we did.  But I know Jenna and her lack of ability to clean up after herself and how many game pieces turn up missing.  I fully believed we could make better use of it at my mom’s.
          And after Thanksgiving we brought the game home to live with us.  Not intentionally. But I haven’t bothered to return it – which has been intentional.

          Jenna has always liked answeringquestions and listening to the answers of others.  We would play the ungame  – which isn’t a game but a pocket sized case containing questions.  Questions such as:  “what was your favorite subject in school? and why?”  “Where would you like to go on vacation?”  “What is one quality you admire about each family member?”    

          Each case came with two sets of questions.  The generic easy ones and the more thought provoking ones like: “name an experience involving death”
          I remember asking my dad that one before he passed away.  His Uncle Reese was seventeen when he passed away.  I think my dad was six.  He choked as he answered.  Kayla and I set the cards aside and decided to play something else.

          I don’t know how many years fell between the card packet to the board game (I would guess 14) – though it was still not a “game”.  There were no winners, no losers . . . no definite end. 

          Chatter Matter’s seemed to have many similar questions that were asked in Ungame’s level one – but with a twist.  The board game was designed with four rooms and a deck of cards for each room that would ask questions not necessarily geared toward the room – but may be where you are when you ask yourself the questions that come with the card.

          For example, the bedroom has questions especially geared to the player about his or her personal self like:
“What’s one of the strangest foods I’ve ever eaten?” 
or “If I could travel anywhere, where would I go? For how long? Who would go with me?

          The other players write down answers they believe the card holder will say and for each one that matches, both (or all) receive chips.

The Family room is designed for the player to answer questions about family members:

          “What religion, if any, did one of my parents practice as a child?”
          “What is the name of the first street I lived on?”

          Sometimes the other players will write down their predictions but not always.  The two questions above offers chips for each correct answer.  Helps if you actually have family members playing that can assist with the correct answer.

          Kitchen.  This card will allow you to collect chips for doing chores or will punish you and have you move your game piece to “time out” 
Examples of these are:

          I painted the bathroom.  Go to Chores/Allowance corner and collect

And then the player has an opportunity to talk about a project he or she has done around the house.

            The game room offers a variety of “games” to be played with each card.  Jenna’s favorite is called “Scavenger Hunt”

          It helps if you are familiar with the house of where the game is being played.  You divide into teams and look for whatever is written on the card:

          A receipt
          Something with a player’s name written on it (that could be a monogram or a piece of mail)
          A picture of me and somebody else in my family

          “Verbal Blitz” is the one I like the best.  It is also played in teams.  Three categories are listed on the card.  The player who draws the card selects the category and each team goes back and forth naming off soup flavors, or vegetables, or television shows or whatever happened to be selected, until one team stops or repeats an answer.  Winners get one chip each.

          “Doodles” is a mini version of Pictionary.  Three words are listed on the card (usually household items or chores) and you can draw either a chimney, a kitchen table or a window.  And the first person who guesses correctly gets a chip along with the “artist”

          The last game room play card is called “Home Movies”   Player acts out verbs that are written on the card:

          Riding a bike, skateboarding or skiing for example.

          Each player has a chip holder that will fill with 15 chips.  The first player to have 15 chips wins.  Not a tough game.  But can be long – especially when the players get stuck on a game card.

          I told Jenna that we would play it after our Thanksgiving dinner on Saturday – and we probably would have had it been on top, but Jenna picked another game.  And that was the only one we played as Grandma was getting restless and we needed to remove her from the environment.

          I told her that we could possibly play it after Thursday’s dinner – but everyone else had to agree.  We played Spades instead. 

          So on Friday, when I took her over to Bill and Kayla’s house, we played.  Anna wanted to play with the chip holders and game pieces.  So Bill decided that she would play the game.  So he shook the di for her and asked and answered questions.  Ironically I think Anna won. And Bill declared that it was really a boring game.  I think we could have ended sooner if he hadn’t insisted on taking a turn for Anna (as well as himself) every time (after all she had lost interest long before he did)

          It can get boring.  But so can Monopoly. And given a choice, I’d much rather play Chatter Matters.  And I’m really happy that Jenna really likes it.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

I meant to detail the games we played

          My mom has a huge variety of games in the back room.  There are at least three word games, at least six versions of trivial pursuit, and a bunch of party games. 

The first game that we played on Thursday was Scrabble.  My mom wanted to play and Jenna joined us.  I was impressed when she found the word “raisin” among my tiles – of course it wasn’t worth much.  But Jenna against grandma?  Those were fair odds.  And so I decided to put Jenna in charge.

But after only about four words she got tired of spelling and decided that she would just keep score.  And she was really doing fine until she misaligned the 30 and gave us 404 points instead of 134.  Silly girl. 

The game was long, and Jenna slipped away to play with the tangram puzzle my mom had purchased years ago.  We ended up playing several games including Upwords, Taboo and Apples to Apples.

          Celebrity Taboo did not work out too well, but Jenna and my mom both seemed to enjoy the regular taboo – except for when Jenna insisted on using the buzzer (which my nephew had once used as a toy electric razor and gave it the name “shaver”) but I told her to stop because it was “annoying grandma and making her flustered” which really was the truth, but Jenna didn’t seem to believe me.

          The game that had us laughing most was Apples to Apples.  The cards in our hands didn’t always go with the word.  That’s when mom would laugh – at the two obviously stupid choices.  Like the word “charming” describing “a terrorist attack” or “Adolf Hitler” for example.

          My biggest laugh came with Jenna’s mispronunciation.  The green card gave the description word of “Horrid” I had thrown in “Bad Dogs” onto the table as it was the most horrid of my hand.  Jenna was about to pick it until I made her read them both out loud. 

          She held the other card and read, “The Attack of Pearl Hairball” – after my mom explained to her what it really was and why it was picked, Jenna decided that it was a lot more horrid than “Bad Dogs”

          It really doesn’t matter who wins or loses the game (especially now) just so long as we’re having fun.  And it is actually the most fun I’ve had playing games with my mom in the last couple of years.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Some of the Places where my Mind takes me

          It’s time to get my hair cut – or at least thinned out.  I feel like I have a heavy scarf draped over the back of my neck.  I have been pulling it back – but some days just don’t seem to matter.

          We’re down to just one car.  Jenna and I have to get up in the morning to leave by 6:30 to take Roland to work.  Jenna stays in her pajamas, wears slippers out to the car, buckles herself in, lies down and throws a blanket over herself. 

          Roland turns the heater on – I usually turn my side down before we arrive to his work (one nice feature which still exists on the car – passenger and driver can adjust to different temperatures) I shut the heater off before completing the journey home.

          We return home one hour before I take Jenna to school.  By that time I have the A/C on.

          Biff and Roland put up the A/C in our living room the other night (on Biff’s birthday actually). We’re expecting rain now.  It always rains after we put up the A/C.  Though yesterday seemed unbearably hot, it’s been quite overcast today.  I see several people out in their yards working – pulling weeds, planting.

          I went out to see my mom.  We used to be rivals when we played word games like Scrabble or Upwords.  Mom was a sore loser, but even a more prideful winner.  It was all in fun. 
          That was then.  I continue to play games with her in order to stimulate her brain, but there is really no point in keeping score anymore.  No longer do we share our playful competiveness.   She seems to have lost interest in how to keep score and doesn’t bother looking for points so much as just getting rid of her letters. 

          Seems I need to work harder at getting her to smile or understand a joke.  And we have all repeated ourselves almost as often as she has.  Very little seems to stick with her anymore.  This change is hard on everybody.  And there are some of us who have questioned as to how much longer until I am in her shoes.  (I often wonder if I’ll be there tomorrow – for real)

          I’ve been searching through tapes and taking glimpses of home movies – not really that far in the past.  My mom is more put together and aware of things even just a few years ago more so than now.

          My niece and her husband live in the basement.  They don’t have their own private entrance.  Seems “grandma” is forever locking them out.  And so my niece has learned to always have her keys on her – even if she is just in the yard.

          Just as the weather changes, so do our lives.  Sometimes we can revisit where we were – but often we’re forced to move on or ahead and don’t have the capability of revisiting – not even in photographs.