Tell us what's happened to you recently (that's interesting)


We had two girls, basically 3 years apart. The oldest was sleeping all night fairly soon, she was a great eater and was reading chapter books by the time she was 6. The youngest took 1 1/2 years to sleep thru the night, was(and still is) a picky eater and never liked to read. Now it turned out she had dyslexia and is now doing very well (she is 26 and has a college degree).

But when they were young we could take the older one anywhere. She would eat and fall asleep. With the younger one we found ourselves leaving restaurants/events early as when she ran out of gas she went right to the crying stage.

We have always said had we had the second first we would never have had a second kid. :)


This is actually pretty funny, although tinged with a little bit of dark. My mom used to make jokes about “Why can’t there be retroactive abortion?” when I’d get difficult, even as an adult. Which is super weird, since the way she votes is totally about being against abortion. Sorry if that’s too P&R.

On a happier note, my kid wanted to learn to walk just at the exact time he needed to have open heart surgery. I brought him home from the hospital and they were all, “Don’t let him run into anything.” And I’m all, “Seriously?”

So he’s pulling himself up on the coffee table and trying to walk and I’m thinking of every sharp edge in the house and basically acting like a human air bag.

Good times.



Huh. I actually own Cribbage and I think he’s played it with his grandmother. I should consider things like that too. As well as Mexican Train, which we played with his grandfather many years ago. These are really good suggestions.

Is your elder child of 5 into Mo Willems at all? Because I got a Pigeon board game for a Secret Santa friend one year and that went over really well.



I joke with people that life begins at 40, so I have to be nice to my parents for a few more years.


Christien looks over at his bookshelf at his “For the First Time Complete & Uncut” version of the book longingly. He almost goes tharn, but realizes he has so many other things to do this year. So he looks away.



She does like herself some Willems. I’ll look into the games, thanks!

I’m a huuuuuuge fan of cribbage/cards/dominoes/dice/etc. Cheap, super-portable, much easier in my experience to get non-“gaming” people on board. And many (most/all) reinforce basic math and counting. And there are a ton of super-fun and timeless games to play with just those props. Just win/win/win/win/win across the board.

I should bust out the old Parcheesi set I rescued from my folks’ house. Played that all the time with my mom as a kid and loved it.


Also, they don’t have to read, which was a problem for games with my kids until they were 6-7. Not that they couldn’t read, but that it was slow enough that it made the game drag.


Ooh! You just made me think of two games we have taken camping and hiking. One I think is the LoTR: Confrontation game, which Tom calls Hobbit Stratego but isn’t that…the other is Lost Cities. I should totally try those out, and the latter is super portable.



The real jam will be when the 2yo is old enough to not throw a fit and/or Godzilla through a game when I try to play one with the elder child. Or even participate! I love my boy and there are fun aspects to toddlers for sure, but so many things are going to be so much easier just in the next year or two.


I did not know there was a thing called that. I’ve played Seven Wonders at the table with a ton of people. As per usual, the first time I played it I won. Which is ridiculous. But it happens. Haven’t won since. But I didn’t know “Duel” was a thing. I’ll have to look into that.

So is that Ticket to Ride: Europe? Because I have friends who advocate for that. I’d consider Ticket to Ride regular too, but there’s a lot of poo-poo-ing about that one because of portals or stations or something. @fire plays a cool speed version of the game with her kid. I love watching them do that.

I don’t quite understand what this means. Is a one-shot game like a legacy game? So you can literally only play it once? Sorry to be so dopey.



I never thought about introducing the kids to that - my wife and I used to love playing it, but it probably would make a pretty good kids’ game.


Nope! It’s a separate map expansion.

This is the rerelease with an India map. Compatible with Europe.

I do consider Europe to be superior to the USA map, better balanced, more interesting route choices, tunnels add a nice feature and stations keep you from getting totally hosed (at a price, but losing a few points for a station > losing 20 for not completing Copenhagen-> Cadiz)

Switzerland is a more compact map, which gives more competition among 2 players, the lack of route conflict is a weakness of lower player counts on the main maps.

Hmm, kind of but not really?

The Exit games can have component destruction, but all are technically replayable in the physically exist meaning. But they are a series of puzzles and riddles. Once you know the solution, there isn’t really any alternative reason or means of play.

But we really like them.

The unlock are literally a deck of cards, so once you play you can easily give to someone else.


I don’t know, never played Roll for the Galaxy. But Dice Throne, everyone has five custom dice with both numbers and symbols on them, and you have a character sheet with powers that require a particular set of symbols to activate. (The numbers aren’t used as much but factor into powers that require a straight, or sometimes you have something that does damage equal to the numbers on the dice, or a card or something.)

The default is three symbols, with 1-3 being one symbol, 4-5 being another, and 6 a third, but some of the more complicated characters have four and different spreads.


The Exit games are a ton of fun with kids about 8 and up. I’ve done it with my kids, their cousins and friends: about 6 kids total and it worked great. And I’ve done some with just me and my kids. They’re pretty clever. About $15 each, but you get 2-3 hours of entertainment out of it, which is cheaper than taking them to a movie. They’re great for birthday parties.


If you haven’t, get the Orient Express one. It’s my favorite yet.

And the last two releases from Unlock have been every bit as good. Wizard of Oz and Scherezade in particular. And they’re doing some fun and clever things with the app integration for machines, things that couldn’t be done with pure paper like Exit.

Unlock used to be the poor cousin to Exit, now they are each their own distinct flavor, fully matured and worthwhile.


Yeah, that’s a serious commitment. It’s huge. But I really enjoyed the extra stuff. It answered a few questions and in my mind more of that story can’t be bad.


I dove into it as well. A fantastic book, one that just literally drove me to continue reading during many sessions. So many characters so effortlessly woven into a driving story.


Yeah, there were people in that book that I really cared about. Tom Moon in the lion’s den is a good example. I was afraid for him.


This is a bad time to reveal I’ve never gotten more than 30 pages into a King novel, isn’t it?


If it’s Salem’s Lot…yes. If it’s Gerald’s Game…no.