Thursday, January 30, 2014

Life Lessons Month of January: Blog 5- Letters from Mom & Mimi

Hi Ellie!

I always wonder, and yes sometimes fret, as to where my blog week’s life lesson will come from.  In the past my ideas have appeared from time spent with special people, interesting conversations, long ago memories and also my own random thoughts.  Thankfully something always “pops” up at just the right time!  This week my blog idea came from a simple cardboard box.  Imagine that!  Here it is:

Life Lesson Learned #49:  As you age, you will never get bored of playing board games!

Ellie, Poppy and I had some friends over recently for a relaxing afternoon to play some board games.  I opted for a good ole fashioned game of Clue (which was invented in the 1940’s) while Poppy voted for a relatively “younger” game called Sequence (and by ‘younger’ I mean it was invented in the 1970’s.)  So to keep the two of us happy… after all it was our house… we played both!  And our friends brought some games as well, one in particular was called Word On The Street which was a lot of fun but a bit nerve-racking too!  The variety of choices added to a truly enjoyable afternoon along with laughter, silliness, good conversation, appetizers, wine and of course great company! 

El, I want you to know that as much as I enjoy this type of game day… there is another type that brings me great pleasure also… maybe even a smidgeon more.  And that would be playing board games with you! There is a vast difference though between the ages on how ‘the players’ interpret the rules.  Our adult friends are pretty good at following the game’s directions to the letter.  You on the other hand, infer to your own ideas of what the rules should be.  I will give you two examples: the first being from the game Candyland.  Ellie, the object of the game is to reach the Candy Castle first.  But you view this colorful board game differently.  In your eyes the object of winning is to accumulate all of the picture cards.  You could care less about the double-color cards which will help you get to the castle first but take greater delight in picking cards like the Duke of Swirl who hangs out in the ice-cream slopes, Grammy Nutt who lives in the Peanut Brittle House and even Jolly who is found in the Gumdrop Mountains!  And yes Ellie, when it is your turn sometimes you pick not one card, but rather three, four or even more cards till you get one of your liking!  The game is finished when you and you alone have visited all six specialty cards!   Within seconds of this amazing feat you will then state the words “I quit” with great satisfaction!  Another example of how you interpret game rules can be seen when playing Chutes and Ladders.  El, the object of this game is to overcome the obstacles (the ladders and chutes of course) by climbing from the number 1 to 100 and getting to the top first.  But again, you see this game board in a whole different light.  Instead of getting upset when a chute or ladder takes you down to a lower number, you try and purposely move your pawn to land on such spaces allowing you to slide all over the board.  And once you’ve completed traveling up as well as down on all the ladders and chutes (mind you it does not matter if you are on the number 5 or 95) you will deem the game ‘done’ and move on to playing restaurant or school!

I guess in time, and as you grow, the rules will fall into place Ellie.  You will also see that there is a whole new level to playing games… it is called ‘competition.’  It will certainly be interesting to see just how competitive you will become.  Games challenge us Ellie, not only our minds but also how we interact with others.  Remember it is ok to win, after all that is the point of playing, but more important is to show good sportsmanship.

And with that being said, I think the lesson I have learned Ellie is that playing board games is a wonderful way to spend unhurried time with good friends and/or family. Board games give us a chance to gather around a table, enjoy the surrounding company and strengthen friendships.   These moments will also bring you a treasured gift El, and that is the gift of a “forever memory.”  And you my darling grand daughter bring me a ‘new memory’ to cherish each and everyday as there is no “bored” in playing board games with you!

Love you Little Miss Rule Maker!


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