Galactic Hot Dogs

Games Are Everywhere!

Thank goodness for “everywhere games.” These games have been handed down through the ages and are great for kids' parties and long car trips. Car games are inspired by the imagination and can be played just about anywhere (and had to be the brainchild of desperate parents on long road trips with bored children). For these games you don't need any accessories—just a creative mind and the ability to keep the kids interested for lengthy periods of time.

High Score

Before embarking on a car journey of any length with young children, make sure you plan ahead and prepare some fun car games. Keeping young minds occupied in the car will make your trips more enjoyable for the entire family and you won't have to hear the ubiquitous, “Are we there yet?”

I can't imagine that there's a single adult who can't think back to some of the games they played as kids. There's “I spy,” a great one for the car that often adults get bored of before the kids do. “I spy with my little eye, something starting with the letter `L',” or “I spy with my little eye, something that is pink.” The kids will guess forever and revel in their opportunity to “spy” something and have you figure out what it is. This is where the parental stamina must take hold!

Then there are the party games like Broken Telephone—no kid's birthday party is complete without games like this one. When the kids are seated eating their slices of birthday cake, have the first kid at the table think of a sentence and whisper it to the person next to him or her. The sentence should be passed all around the table in the form of a whisper. The last person to get the message should speak it aloud and see if it is the same as the original whispered sentence. You'll find that 9 times out of 10 it has taken on a whole new form and meaning. Kids will squeal with laughter over that game.

Musical Chairs is a timeless classic in the party game realm. Kids get really excited to play it and you may have to pull one kid off another as they fight over a chair. You'll have to play referee, but you'll find in the end that everyone has had a good time.

Whether you opt for a parlor game, a card game, an indoor game, an outdoor game, or a game you can take on the road, don't forget to pack your sense of fun!

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Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Family Games © 2002 by BookEnds, LLC. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

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