Friday, July 17, 2009

GAMES! Friday Five

Friday Five: GAMES!

Jan, over at RGBP, writes: In less than three weeks, my family, including children and their partners, will be gathering in Seattle, WA for 12 days. After various days in Seattle sightseeing and in Bellingham seeing family, we will travel to the coast of Washington State to spend three nights in a large rented house. With nine adults (from almost 20 years old and up), I am thinking that we need to have some activities pre-planned--like GAMES! (Any ideas will be appreciated.)

So this Friday Five is about games, so play on ahead. . . .

1. Childhood games?
Family game night! We also played outside a lot: follow the leader (managed to break our younger brother's leg this way), tag (freeze, cartoon, there were others I can't recall), SPUD (I don't even remember how that goes, except someone throws a ball as high in the air as possible then runs away... Did anyone else play this?).
2. Favorite and/or most hated board games?
The 3 I remember always wanting to play, to the annoyance of my brothers, were:
Click to enlarge
Mrs. Byrne's Dictionary of Unusual, Obscure, and Preposterous Words: Gathered from Numerous and Diverse Authoritative So by Josefa Heifetz Byrne
  • Encore: because my mom and I would get on opposite teams and try to out-remember each other in song lyrics
  • The Dictionary Game (later I came to realize that this was a real board game, played, not simply with the household dictionary, but called Balderdash: "Mrs. Byrne's Dictionary of Unusual, Obscure, and Preposterous Words" was the text we ended up using in my teen years)
  • Trivial Pursuit, Young Players Edition - anyone up for a game? we can play whichever is the latest version we own...
On the other hand, I have generally disliked having to play Monopoly and Risk.
3. Card games?
Rummy with my dad. Slap Jack with my friends (ouch!). Pinochle with the whole family, when we were old enough.
4. Travel/car games?
The Alphabet game (looking for signs); the License Plate game (how many states?); and Silent Contests (whoever stays quiet the longest wins!). Well done, parents.
5. Adult pastimes that are not video games?
Scrabble! Played 3 games of it yesterday. And Apples to Apples - what a GREAT newer game. Or are we moving beyond games, now?
Bonus: Any ideas for family vacations or gatherings?
  • Singing along to some favorite songs that bring back good memories.
  • Cooking together (not one of my favorites, but some people really enjoy communal kitchening).
  • Remembering stories - or being asked stories - about holidays past, childhood escapades, etc. I've begun doing this with my parents and brothers, and I learn the most fascinating things.
  • And I DO recommend Apples to Apples for a large family to play - too much fun, and you learn a lot about who you know well.
May you have a wonderful time with your family, Jan!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Instant Sermon 2009 (Sunday, July 12)

This was the format for our sermon at Plymouth UCC in Fort Collins, CO last Sunday. I can't recall how long Plymouth has been offering the Instant Sermon, but this was my 4th or 5th year to take part. Enjoy!

"Pastors Hal Chorpenning, Sharon Benton, and Julie Mavity Maddalena answer impromptu questions
of theological and congregational interest, submitted by the members of the congregation. One retired pastor in attendance called the event the theological equivalent of the High Wire Act."

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Accountable with Cockroaches

Back again with an update on one of the books I'm working my way through.

I hadn't opened Killing Cockroaches in a while, because I've found its cocky "this-stuff-is-so-simple-you-idiot-why-didn't-you-think-of-it?" and "now-that-I've-told-you-about-it-if-you-don't-implement-my-suggestions-you're-a-double-idiot" attitudes annoying (I'm also not overly enthusiastic about the author's underlying theology...the two have a direct correlation, I believe). However, today I found this note that I penciled in the margin from my last endeavor:
"Every time I'm ready to write off this author, he comes up with a 'good fit' idea".
Which reminds me to stop being so judgmental and enjoy the good stuff. Oy!

Speaking of "good fit" ideas from the Cockroaches author, he pointed me toward this article by Steve Pavlina, a personal development blogger, author and (apparent) expert on personal growth. "What's Your Optimism Ratio" is a fun way to test whether you tend toward being positive or negative.

Just for fun, smiley points to anyone who puts this post to the "optimism ratio" test (I promise not to change any words to weight the outcome one way or the other!).