Category Archives: games

Christmas Ideas

This post is mostly meant for my family.  It’s a way for me to effectively communicate what I would like for Christmas.  Generally, I am listing these in higher priority first order.  These are ideas and don’t really construe a wish list as such.  Nor is it comprehensive.  Some of my favorite gifts have been the things that I least expect, that I didn’t know that I wanted… like my cast iron skillet or 30 pounds of potatoes.

(Intangible) Things I want and need:

– A deeper relationship with my siblings, particularly my brothers.
– An occasional phone call from one of the above
– Someone to pick me a dentist and schedule me an appointment
– Encouragement (and help) planning and shopping for meals in advance
– Decluttering help and encouragement
– Some time to think  and encouragement to ask and answer the hard questions
– Insight into and practice to become a better friend

(Tangible) Things that I want and need:

– An Ultrasonic Humidifier
– Manly Thank You Notes  (Too many are feminine or wedding TY notes. Not what I need!)
– A Knife Sharpener
– Good Steak knives, and maybe an extra paring knife or two
– A storage solution for my Dominion collection
– Oneida Community Twin Star Serving Pieces (Esp. the Pie Server and Pierced Serving Spoon)
– A Green Tie
– Pocket Squares with Yellow, Orange, Red, or Green accents

Things that I want but probably don’t need:

– Argyle Socks
– Argyle Sweaters
– German Style Games that I don’t already own (ask if you want to know) (I’ve had my eye on Small World and Incan Gold)
– David Allen’s books: Getting Things Done and Making It All Work
– Gretchen Rubin’s book: The Happiness Project
– A Cast Iron Dutch Oven (Kitchen Style, not Campfire style)
– An Immersion Blender
– A Rice Cooker Cookbook, like The Pot and How to Use It
– Dr. Who trinkets


What do you want for Christmas?

Last Minute Pumpkin

I didn’t think that I was going to squeeze a pumpkin carving into my festivities this Halloween, but thanks to a timely FHE activity, I got one carved just in the nick of time.  I tried lighting it up, but the pumpkin is really really thick.  I need to work the walls down a little bit before the effect really works.

So, in all, I managed to work in The Haunting, Chicken Shish Tawook, Count Chocula, a Cider Mill (and the resulting cider!), coloring, Catching Fire, Dominion: Seaside, refusing to dance, blue hairspray, “For All the Saints”, The Lord of all Catan, pork roast, butterfinger brownies, and pumpkin carving into my birthday weekend.  That’s pretty good, right?  What did you do?


Day 3

I’m on my third day of a Facebook game related detox.Cultural Detox

The rules are simple. No Facebook games.

I’ve only been playing three anyway, but they are all three of the click and hope variety. They are significantly less click happy than, say, Mafia Wars, and they do involve some sorts of decision making, but really, it’s just clicking and hoping.

What kind of game play is that anyway?

I got to a point in all three where I had accomplished what I wanted. (As if it can really be called an accomplishment… It’s just an accumulation of clicks over time.) And so I felt like I could let go.

The first day was a breeze, the second a little challenging, but today is not going so great. I apparently need those little dopamine squirts that come when I click my little rat brain buttons. I’ve also never had Facebook game-related nightmares until last night (although I think that might have been significantly influenced by a pair of Doctor Who episodes that I watched earlier in the evening with a similar character.)

In other news, I found a downloadable version of Race for the Galaxy, a board game I have recently been playing in real life. I’m using it to try to improve my understanding of how the game works, and it involves very complex decision making, so that’s good, right? I don’t get as much dopamine but I am improving actual skills (for example, evaluating trade offs, developing and deploying strategy, attempting to learn what

Also, my kitchen is approaching a clean state.

Amazing what a little less MouseHunt can do for you.

Anyone else have any experience with electronic detox? Do you know how long I have until the shakes start in?

Top 5 Games of 2008

You know by now that I am a big fan of the games. Particularly the creative games from such companies as Days of Wonder and Mayfair. Not so much among the Hasbros and Milton-Bradleys of the world. In any case, as you’ll see I’m not just limiting the word game to games that I played in. Here goes my Top 5 Games of 2008:

5. Michigan v. Utah August 2008

I’m going to let these pictures do most of the talking on this one. Go Utes!

4. Killer Bunnies

I picked up a copy of Killer Bunnies for my birthday after I read a copy of the rules at Kara’s place (one of her roommates had it). The game play seemed unique, and now that I’ve had it out and played it with various groups of people, I can say that it is fun. Almost everyone that I’ve played it with have enjoyed it. Flo still hasn’t come through for me.

3. That Bang game in midsummer where I took out Chalsea in a one on one shoot out

Bang! was another game that I really really liked a lot this year. I got it for my sister for Christmas, and enjoyed it so much that I got it for myself. I selected one individual game as my top 5. We were playing at my apartment, at some point midsummer, and I had drawn the Renegade card and Chalsea had drawn the Sheriff. Somehow, I had managed to knock off a whole bunch of players in a very short time frame, effectively tipping my hand as to who I was. Somehow, it came down to a shootout between Chals and myself. I kept drawing cards that would keep her from shooting me, which was fortunate. In the end, I shot her and won. It’s very hard to win as the Renegade, so it was memorable.

2. Utah v. BYU November 2008

Another one where I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.

1. Settlers of Catan

Ok, so Settlers of Catan will probably always be my favorite game. This year has been a great year for Settlers. I’ve had a great group of friends who like to play, and who make for a great game. The rivalries between Jonathan and myself, and between Jonathan and Mike, (Wow, Jonathan, lots of rivalries. What does that say?) have been epic. The victories have been sweet, and the defeats have been bitter. The occasional food has been delicious. I’ll admit that I even had to go buy two more chairs specifically so that I have enough seating for Settlers at my house. In short, I pretty much love Settlers of Catan.

No one has actually made a Settlers of Catan pizza yet, but now that I think of it, I don’t see any reason why this wouldn’t be a good idea.

So there you have it. My favorite games of 2008. What were yours?


A while back, I went to Pennsylvania to a reunion of friends who had been involved in the A Treasure’s Trove arm-chair treasure hunt. Among the festivities, we played a freaking hilarious game called “1000 Blank White Cards.” Apparently, this game was “invented” a while back, but I’d only heard of it recently. It has even been included in the Hoyle’s Book of Card Games. The rules are very basic and mostly deal with the structure of the game.

In a nutshell, you get to make the cards yourself. You make a few before the game, but you are encouraged to add to the deck during game play, modifying the rules, giving yourself points or others penalties and creating general havoc.

I’ve got some scans here of the cards that were created. One of my favorite plays in the game was when I played the “Soccer Rules” card on the player sitting next to me. The card prohibited her from touching her cards with her hands. She immediately got the Yellow card played on her, and resorted to turning over the cards with her mouth. Someone then played the “Icky Spit Card -5pts” on her. Eventually she got around to labeling her cards as belonging to someone else so that she could play them. It was hilarious!

Really, there’s not much point to the game, but I had a great time thinking up new rules, trying to thwart other rules, and at the end of the game, I don’t even know if anyone won or not. It was a laugh a minute though.

You can check out more info on 1000 Blank White Cards at Wikipedia. There are some online repositories of cards around the internets, which are fun, but I will warn that they can tend to be slightly more “adult” in nature.

What would your card be?