If your family is going to escape the commercialism and make THIS YEAR’s Christmas more meaningful, more memorable, longer lasting, and more fun — or if you would like to help your friends and family upgrade their celebration — drop everything and buy The Christmas Game right now.
1. The Christmas Game Works! Buying and opening presents should not be the central focus of the holiday, but it’s awfully hard to convince people that they want fewer presents. The Christmas Game gives your family an alternative approach that is so fun and meaningful that it is addictive, and they won’t look back.
2. End the Cycle of Spending. Trying to top the prior year’s gift with an even more impressive present is a losing game. Instead, to have your best Christmas ever, top last year’s Christmas with activities that are fun and meaningful, such as Games, Togetherness, New Family Traditions, and Acts of Kindness.
3. You Have the Power to Stop Christmas Commercialism. People have been trying to evict Santa Claus for centuries, ever since Martin Luther decreed that references to St. Nicholas be replaced instead by the Kristkindl, or “christ child.” But soon the “Kristkindl” turned into “Kris Kringle,” and Santa Claus was back. The commercial interests will not stop erecting their Santa idols. But The Christmas Game tames the Santa culture by making it easy for families to re-focus the holiday on what matters most to them. You’ll spend the Christmas season thinking about what to do, instead of what to buy.
4. Support Small Business! The Christmas Game will never be brought to you by Disney, Hasbro, Mattel, or the other most trusted names in Christmas Commercialism. Instead, we are just a family that knows how to make incredibly good and high-quality games. We’ve spent a decade perfecting The Christmas Game, so we know that it works, and that’s why we guarantee you will have your best Christmas ever.
5. It’s Ridiculously Inexpensive. For $15 — which is less than most people spend on an average gift — we’ll send you a Starter Bundle, which includes a game book and 35 cards, AND the official Memory Book, PLUS free shipping, and if you want the Christian Edition (includes 25 additional bible-themed cards), we’ll include that for no additional charge.
Just kidding, there are MORE reasons:
6. You get a top-quality product. The cards are really big — 250% larger than normal playing cards — thick, laminated and colorful. The Official Memory Book is made of heirloom-quality thick, 200gsm, acid-free, wood-free paper, and spiral bound so it lies flat for writing.
7. You get top-quality service. Most orders ship the same day, and we love talking to our customers, so drop us a line at [email protected] to ask a question or just say Hi! US shipping is free, and satisfaction is 100% guaranteed.
The Christmas Game cards are about reinventing the holiday in a more meaningful way by lightening the emphasis on presents and doing things that matter.
But the Memory Book is about connecting at an even deeper level.
A truly magical thing happens when you pause to consider questions involving the things you care about most, or your goals or interests, or the things that make you you.
And when that information is captured it creates an extraordinarily valuable heirloom.
We normally keep our family’s Memory Book tucked away until Christmas. But last week’s Thanksgiving guests were curious about The Christmas Game. Soon everyone was gathered around The Memory Book reviewing prior years’ answers, and then talking about what had changed, and wondering what their own answers might be.
Most families seem to have at least one person inclined to record details, so The Memory Book also includes pages where you can note which cards were played each year, and the card’s outcome (e.g., dad lost again at checkers, or we gave a surprise gift to a convenience store cashier).
So here is what you do:
1. Get a Memory Book – Choose ours, or use your own blank book. Prefer something sturdy that lies flat for writing and uses acid-free paper.
2. Select perhaps 10-15 Memory Cards to include in your deck, depending on the length of your game. The Christmas Game decks include a variety of cards — select cards that make sense for the ages and dispositions of your participants
3. Invent custom Memory Cards. The blank cards included in Decks 1 & 2 can be used for additional Memory Cards that might be peculiar to your family — e.g., What was your favorite part of a family vacation, The most mischievous pet behavior that year, Wishes for a family member who is embarking on a trip, etc.
4. Scatter the Cards in the Deck. We like to have about every third or fourth card played be a Memory Card.
5. Assign someone with legible writing to record everyone’s answers to the questions as the cards are drawn.
It’s just a few simple steps, but you’ll be glad you did it, forever.
And this week only, we are offering Memory Books for just $9.99 each, or purchase a Starter Bundle and a Memory Book together for just $15. At amazon.com, get a free Memory Book with your Standard Bundle purchase – just add both to the cart.
Christmas is a great opportunity for meaningful interaction with others, because the people we care about are more likely to be physically present, and less likely to have other commitments.
The challenge is guiding people’s attention into meaningful interactions together. And that’s where The Christmas Game comes in.
It’s easy for people to drift off into TV and video games, and soon the opportunity has slipped away. It’s also easy to get over-involved with the presents, which don’t serve us well as the holiday’s centerpiece.
Instead, stack the deck in your favor by playing The Christmas Game. Your Christmas will be more meaningful, less commercial, longer lasting, and more fun — we guarantee it.
When you focus your celebration on Togetherness, Kindness, new Family Traditions, Shared Memories, and Fun, you’ll have the kind of Christmas that stores only pretend to sell.
We can’t say any more than George Bailey could exactly what good things will result from bringing people together so they can get to know each other better, and actively reaffirm their commitment to caring.
But we know from our own experience as well as from others’ that The Christmas Game can help make that wonderful life.
A lot of people play defense against Christmas — they limit their gift-giving, and refuse to participate in rituals like black-friday shopping, or they try not to immerse themselves in Christmas carol Musak.
But resisting our culture’s worst offerings is not what The Christmas Game is about. Our goal isn’t to protect ourselves from Christmas, but to create a whole new Christmas tradition that is always joyful, and perfectly tailored to the needs of our families, whether just-beginning or many-generations.
We have always believed that our Christmas celebrations should be as magical as a Christmas print by Currier and Ives. But the shopping and entertainment culture that sells us these Currier and Ives images does not want to — and is in fact unable to — deliver on their promise.
Most people realize that over time. Some become cynical about the holiday, and some retreat into Christmas movies that allow us to feel the magic vicariously, for a while.
But at The Christmas Game, we advocate a much stronger and more satisfying approach: Build from scratch, for yourself, in your own family’s image, the magical Christmas that you’ve always wanted that cannot be bought from any store.
That kind of Christmas doesn’t come in a box, and we’re not selling it, either. But we are selling the ideas, tools, and proven methods that you can use to make your Christmas everything that you ever imagined. And when you do, Christmas won’t last just a day, and it can never come too early or stay too long.
The secret, of course, is that Christmas is about what you do, not about what you have, get, or buy.
The Christmas Game helps your whole family shift the focus of their Christmas celebration toward doing different things. Your family might prefer to play games together, or to do good deeds together, or something else. No matter your focus, you’ll find great ideas in The Christmas Game cards and books, and you’ll add your own ideas on the blank cards that are included in Decks 1 and 2.
It won’t be long before preparing for The Christmas Game becomes a bigger part of your holiday tradition than shopping ever was. And soon after that you’ll be playing The Christmas Game not only on Christmas morning, but on Christmas Day, Christmas Eve, and maybe throughout The Christmas season.
And then finally one day you’ll look back at the old days when the primary focus of Christmas seemed to be children opening wrapped presents. It will seem strange. And that’s when you’ll know that you have really taken control of Christmas and made it into what you wanted most.
Farkle is an easy-to-play dice game requiring six standard (six-sided) dice, and a pencil and paper for scoring. It is simple enough for kids to play, and random enough for kids to win, but still presents strategic opportunities for adults to assess.
The first player to accumulate 10,000 points wins.
A player begins her turn by rolling all six dice. Scores are available for 1s, 5s, and 3-of-a-kind, 4-of-a-kind-, 5-of-a-kind, and 6-of-a-kind.
Scoring dice are set aside, and the player may elect to either bank her score and end her turn, or roll the remaining dice in an attempt to increase her score.
For example, if a player rolled 1-2-2-4-6-6, the only scoring die would be the 1. The player could either take the score for the 1, or set aside the one and roll the remaining five dice hoping to roll additional scoring combinations. If the player’s second roll resulted in 1-1-4-4-6, the player would set aside the two scoring 1s, and could choose to bank their score, or to roll the three remaining dice. Note that the three 1s that have been set aside do not score as 3-of-a-kind because they were not rolled simultaneously. Instead, they score as three separate 1s.
A roll that scores zero is called a Farkle. When a player rolls a Farkle, not only does their turn end, but the player also loses all points that have accumulated during that turn.
If a player manages to score with all six dice, it is called “hot dice,” and the player has the option to roll all six dice again or to end her turn.
Each 1: 100 points
Each 5: 50 points
Three 1s: 1,000 points
Three 2s: 200 points
Three 3s: 300 points
Three 4s: 400 points
Three 5s: 500 points
Three 6s: 600 points
Four-of-a-Kind scores double what 3-of-a-kind would have scored. (e.g.,four 3s = 6oo instead of 300)
Five-of-a-Kind scores double what 4-of-a-kind would have scored. (e.g., five 3s =1,200 instead of 600)
Six of a Kind scores double what 5-of-a-kind would have scored. (e.g., six 3s – 2,400 instead of 1,200)
Some players optionally award special scores for some combinations:
No scoring dice on the first roll: 500 points
Straight (1-2-3-4-5-6): 2,500 points
Full House (three of a kind and a pair): 3-of-a-kind value plus 250
We understand that there is a season for everything, but the intensity of the response suggests that somehow Christmas has become painful — “If I have to hear one more Christmas carol, or see one more inflatable Santa Claus, or endure one more holiday demand on my attention, I’ll scream!” they seem to say.
Statements like that suggest an advanced case of Christmas Commercialism, in which the Christmas Spirit has been completely obscured by the commercial noise. It is the loss of the Christmas feeling that causes the pain, and that painful feeling of loss may be expressed as frustration.
But ideally, The Christmas Spirit is something we not only celebrate at Christmas, but which also lives on throughout the year.
If you are losing the Christmas feeling and instead feel manipulated by the commercial symbols of Christmas, it’s time to re-think your approach to the holiday.
Start by identifying what’s bothering you: fake Santas, repetitive Christmas carols, artificial decorations, exhortations to buy, or something else. Chances are good that the thing bothering you is NOT one of the core Christmas values, like Kindness, Togetherness, Charity, Love, Peace, Fellowship, Fun, etc. More likely, you are troubled by something that symbolizes just the opposite of those values.
The next step is to disarm the offending symbol. If you’re hearing too many Christmas carols, you’re probably spending too much time in stores. If it’s the decorations that the Chamber of Commerce has put up, keep in mind that Christmas does not happen in a mall, and what you are seeing is not Christmas or a celebration of Christmas. Is it the meaningless secular symbols? That’s not Christmas either. Know this: The thing that is upsetting you is not Christmas, the celebration of Christmas, or even the early celebration of Christmas. It’s something un-Christmas-like that is replacing what your heart remembers.
Finally, reject the commercial definition of Christmas. Commit yourself to expressing within yourself and within your circle of influence your true meaning of Christmas — whether that be mostly about Love, Charity, Kindness, or the Gospels. If Frosty the Snowman doesn’t fit with your understanding of the Christmas holiday, just ignore that inflatable toy as if it were 4th of July fireworks, totally irrelevant to Christmas.
Once you stop buying into the commercial vision of Christmas, and commit yourself to living your own vision, Christmas can never come too early, nor last too long.
In the weeks before Black Friday, the Boycott Black Friday backlash against Christmas commercialism is sure to pick up steam. A Google search for “boycott black Friday” generates 66,000 results. Without the quotes it’s 40 million results.
Here at The Christmas Game we boycott Black Friday every year. But we also boycott the day after Black Friday, and the days after that, too.
The annual Boycott Black Friday kabuki may feel good, but it doesn’t do much, because sending a message to commercial interests that are incapable of hearing or responding to that message is ineffective.
If you really want to take the wind out of their sales (pun intended), what you do on Black Friday does not matter. What matters is that you must do these three things:
1. Buy fewer presents
2. Spend less overall on presents
3. Broaden the focus of your celebration beyond presents
As long as the Christmas tree is the holiday’s centerpiece, and as long as kids look forward to Christmas primarily because of the goodies they know they will be getting, nothing much is going to change.
It’s not as easy as it sounds to buy fewer presents and to spend less. Your social circle may be expanding, people’s expectations may be rising, things cost more, and the commercial interests can give you so much for your money (did you see the new iPad???).
But it’s much easier to buy fewer and spend less, if you can substitute for the missing presents something that is worth more than presents. For example, the gift of time. Giving someone your time, and your attention, may be the greatest gift of all. Or create moments of genuine togetherness, or meaning. That’s what people will remember long after the decorations come down.
The reason we invented The Christmas Game was to create an enticing path to a better holiday that our whole family could tread together.
It feels grinch-like and unseasonable to tell the kids “No presents this year,” or to accuse them even implicitly of being shallow materialists just for wanting what they have been told to want, and what everyone else seems to want and to expect.
The better way is to offer them something more fun and more satisfying than a brief fury of wrapping paper. If it’s more fun, and lasts longer, and feels better than the old presents ritual, the family will go for it hook, line, and sinker. And you will spend less and get more out of every Christmas.
The Christmas Game is a proven format that really works.
Don’t tell your family that you are going to play The Austerity Game this year, with fewer presents, because it’s the morally right thing to do, even if it is the morally right thing to do. Instead, tell them you are going to play The Christmas Game, which includes presents, but also includes much, much more. Then build a wonderful game that will be the start of a new way to celebrate, forever.
The Christmas Game is a great idea whose time has come. Get The Christmas Game now, and when Black Friday hits, you’ll be ready to opt out in a much bigger way.
Amateur sleuths of all ages enjoy a secret code. For families that enjoy a challenge, breaking the code is its own reward. For families more used to extrinsic motivation, you can condition the opening of the next present on the breaking of the code, with all family members working together on the solution.
Once you start making and breaking secret codes, the habit can be addicting. You may find yourself leaving encoded messages for other family members in obvious places such as mirrors and pillows, or to be discovered only when the recipient opens a particular drawer or container.
If breaking the code is itself a hard-to-ignore temptation, discovering the person who sent the message — also encrypted — may be irresistible.
The sample codes below start out easy, and get more difficult.
23-5 23-9-19-8 25-15-21 1 13-5-18-18-25 3-8-18-9-19-20-13-1-19 1-14-4 1 8-1-16-16-25 14-5-23 25-5-1-18
-.. . -.-. -.- / – …. . / …. .- .-.. .-.. … / .– .. – …. / -… — ..- –. …. … / — ..-. / …. — .-.. .-.. -.–
Szip gsv svizow zmtvoh hrmt, tolib gl gsv mvdylim prmt
Tjmfou ojhiu ipmz ojhiu bmm jt dbmn bmm jt csjhiu
Fcxg zmwtqgjh c ogttz jkrrjg aftkqrocq
Have your biggest dictionary on hand. One player leads by announcing a challenging word drawn from the dictionary and writing the definition on a slip of paper. All other players have one minute to fabricate and write down a false definition on their slips of paper. All definitions are handed to the leader.
The leader then reads aloud in random order each of the proposed definitions, including the actual definition. Once all the definitions are read, they are read a second time, and each player votes for the definition they think is the actual definition.
Any player who votes for the actual definition scores a point. Players also score a point for each person who votes for their false definition. The leader scores three points if no player votes for the actual definition.
If a player knows the true definition of a proposed word, she must nonetheless compose a false definition that may draw votes from the others. The correct definition will be included by the leader, and the wise player can score a point by voting correctly, while still attempting to score additional points by fooling other players.
A round is completed when every player has had a chance to select a word from the dictionary. The winner is whichever player has scored the most points after a pre-determined number of rounds.
Commercial versions of Fictionary include Balderdash, Dictionary Dabble, and Flummoxed. If a commercial version is available and the players would prefer to use it, then substitute the commercial version when you play this card.
A Book of Super Cool Tongue Twisters, is a family self-publishing project that is the opposite of most tongue twister books. Instead of being a book written by adults for children, it seems more like a book written by children for adults.
There are no child-oriented illustrations that attempt to make sense of the strange constructions or to make interesting to young children a collection of words that lacks story or sense. Instead, the book gets right down to business, presenting sixty verses on sixty pages.
Such a thick collection might make this book among the higher rated tongue-twisters available. Unfortunately, most of what it presents are not tongue twisters at all, but drab or nonsensical alliterations and rhymes. Arguably the book contains no tongue twisters at all. The closest entry to a tongue twister would be the first in the book:
Plato’s potatoes are like Seattle’s tomatoes but Seattle’s potatoes are unlike Plato’s tomatoes. When Plato with some potatoes goes to Seattle for some tomatoes, Plato is surprised by Seattle’s potato-like tomatoes.
Juxtaposing, Plato, Potato, Seattle, and Tomato is not particularly rich material for a tongue twister. But if you take the time to decipher the underlying meaning of the verse, a new layer of disappointment sets in: it’s hard to believe that Seattle potatoes are surprisingly similar to Plato’s tomatoes. The words resist the meaning that the authors are trying to force upon them. By contrast, with Dr. Suess, we completely understand why Luke Luck’s duck would take licks from lakes Luke Luck likes.
From there things go downhill:
With sand in my hand, I stand on the sand land of the strand and look at the grand band
is not a tongue twister. It’s not really anything. Similarly incoherent is:
The pope mopes and hopes he can get a rope to cope with the soap that lopes on the dope.
Most of the book’s entries are in this style of strained rhyme that does not twist tongues, and presents no alternate reasons for recitation.
We cheer the attempt to create original tongue twisters, but A Book of Super Cool Tongue Twisters does not contribute to the art.