Cinderellas Days! Games And Activities For Older Kids!

Cinderella Days!  Games And Activities For Older Kids!

Cinderella Days! www.mytributejournal.comNo matter how much I might try to will it otherwise, my grandchildren seem to grow-up just as quickly as my own children did.  (We really wouldn’t have it any other way…right?!)  While it might be an easier task to keep little hands and minds entertained with various toys and crafts, I have found it to be a delightful challenge to find some neat games and activities that my older grandkids enjoy playing on those special Cinderella Days we spend together!

Being A Cool Grandma!

Every grandma wants to be that “cool” grandma that always has some neat things to do when their grandchildren come to visit…especially as they start getting a little older!  Here are a few games I’ve found that are a lot of fun to play with your growing children and grandkids!

Dominos

Chicken Foot is just one of many great domino games that we enjoyed playing as a family with our children when they were young, but it has required a whole new skill set as my two older granddaughters have learned to play and dominate this game.

Doninos for Chicken Foot game.

While there are “Chicken Foot” domino sets available in most game and department stores, we just use regular colored domino tiles.

Games and activities for older kids.

The domino tiles in the game box are turned face-down to begin with, each player then draws 7 dominos.  The rest of the dominos are the chicken yard where you draw a tile when you can’t add one you have to the ones played.

You start playing Chicken Foot by placing the highest numbered double domino in the center of the game table, you play all four sides of this tile.  Whenever a double is played, it is a chicken foot.  You must complete the three toes of the chicken foot before players can put pieces on any other open end.

The game ends when someone plays all of their tiles.  Other players then add the total of their remaining dominos.  The object of the game is to score the least number of points.  You can get more in-depth instructions here.

Games and activities for older kids.

Chicken Foot is a fun game that my older granddaughters love to play! 

Qwirkle! Games for older kids.

Another great domino-type game is Qwirkle, where you create columns and rows of matching colors and shapes to score points.  Older kids love playing this game.

♦ Dice Games

I think the trick to finding games that older kids like to play is that they are easy to learn and move quickly to keep their attention.  Dice games do that perfectly!

Games and activities for older kids

It does us good put away our electronics for a while to play some fun games!    

Heart dice game.

I played this fun heart dice game with my granddaughters at my Valentine Tea Party, but you could play it anytime using candy bars or better yet, quarters.

Yahtzee! Games older kids lover to play.

A beloved dice game that I used to play with my parents, is still a family favorite!

FullSizeRender (35)

For each turn you can shake the dice up to three times to try and get the highest scoring combination to fill in one of the 13 categories on the score card.  Luck may or may not be in your favor on any particular throw of the dice, but the desire to beat the odds is a mutual feeling for all players, young and old!

Zilch! Dice games for older kids.

Zilch is a fast-paced dice game that is easy to learn, but requires that you brush up on your math skills.  You also have to practice some self-restraint because if you keep shaking and don’t score any points, you will lose all the points you earned that turn.  The first person to score 10,000 points wins the game. 

♦ Board Games

Fun board games are always a good “go to” when planning a game night with kids of all ages!

Board games to play with older kids.

The main object of the board game, Sequence, is to form rows of 5 poker chips by placing them on the board spaces that correspond with cards played from your hand.  Initially, you may have to team up with younger children to help them learn the strategy of getting their rows completed while blocking opponent’s plays…they catch on quick though!  Get details on playing Sequence here.

Chutes and Ladders board game.

There’s some board games that kids will always love to play no matter their age, but we’ve found that changing them up a bit is a fun way to keep them exciting.

Adaptations of fun board games.

My husband is a genius at adapting a board game for special occasions.  For our Halloween Festival last year, he swapped out the usual boy and girl characters for spooky faces on our Chutes and Ladders game.  When you’d land on one of the faces, you drew from a pile of papers that gave instructions to either do a physical activity or pick a toy!  It was a fun, unexpected twist to the game!

Fun Activities

My granddaughter’s have taught me that boys aren’t the only ones who love a little friendly competition.  Timed activities and relay games always seem to be a big hit with growing kids."Minute To Win It" games.

Any type of “minute to win it” game, where you have to accomplish certain tasks in a minute, is a fun and funny way to keep kids (and grown-ups) entertained!

"Minute To Win It" games.

My oldest granddaughter, Makena, recently had a fun “late night” with some of her friends where they played a variety of these type of games…from stacking Dixie cups to seeing who could pull out the most Kleenex tissues in a minute. 

Find some other fun “Minute To Win It” activity ideas here.

♦ The Magic Of Imagination

Oftentimes, a little imagination and a few creative minds working together are all you need in planning a fun day at grandma’s house!

Creative play! Making a box huts!

There’s just something about a special box hut that makes for the best kind of fun!

Creative play! Making a box hut!

Grandpa could only imagine when he was putting it together, how much the girls would love holding secret meetings and playing games inside this fun fortress! 

Playing In Good Company!

The best thing about playing games is just being together with those you love!

Playing games quote.                                                                      –Gary Gygax

I am always looking for some fun, new games to play with my grandkids…what are some you love to play with your family?

–Mary                                                                                        

 

Cinderella Days! Fairy Gardens!

Cinderella Days!  Fairy Gardens!

Cinderella Days! www.mytributejournal.comI’ve enjoyed sharing some special “Cinderella Days” this summer with my older granddaughters, Makena and Marli.  I love seeing them grow into such delightful little ladies!  Recently, we did an activity that combined my love of all things gardening with their fanciful and creative imaginations …..as well as a little magic!  Making a fairy garden with any of the daughters or granddaughters in your life should prove to be some of the best fun you have had in a long time!

Making A Magical Fairy Garden!

First and foremost, no matter your age–my granddaughter’s have taught me that it’s important to always believe in magic…..and a little bit of fairy dust too!

Tinker Belle quote

In preparation for making our fairy garden, I shopped my local garden stores, (most have a whole area dedicated to fairy gardens) and found a few good online resources as well, that had some great deals on fun and unique fairy accessories.

Whatever you can dream up, there seems to be no limit to the number of darling trinkets you’ll find that will go along with any style of fairy garden you want to create!  Here are a few of the things I purchased for our fairy garden and the places I found that had the best prices.

Making a fairy garden.

This retro mini camper set the theme for my granddaughter’s mini fairy garden—I think it spoke to their carefree spirits!  (I bought our camper at amazon.com, but it’s available at other online mini garden stores.)

Fairy garden accessories.

Fairy garden accessories are adorable…..you can’t help but want to become a fairy yourself!  (I found that FactoryDirectCraft.com had a wide assortment of fun fairy garden supplies with good pricing and fast shipping.)

Containers for your fairy gardens are as diverse as the accessories and strictly personal preference–you might want to go with something that goes with your existing flowerpot yard décor.  I found that keeping it fairly shallow made the fairies and supplies easily accessible for my granddaughters to play with them.

Making a fairy garden.

I picked a pot with a little fairy shimmer–just make sure it has good drainage.  Adding hardy succulents are a great choice for easy care. 

Making a fairy garden.

 I can’t even begin to tell you how much fun it is to watch little hands create their very own magical mini fairy garden!   (Fill your pot about two thirds full with equal amounts of dirt and mulch for planting, mix it well.) 

Making a fairy garden.

I love that fairy gardens are always evolving…..the accessories are as flexible as the fun imaginations of the little girls playing with them!

Making a fairy garden.

Making a fairy garden.

When making a fairy garden, I think you’ll find the best magic takes place as the love is strengthened between the people making them!

Fairy Stardust quote.

As another school year gets underway, let’s all remember that…

“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams!”  Eleanor Roosevelt

I’d love to hear about any magical things you’ve done this summer!  What are some of your dreams and goals for the new school year? 

–Mary

Cinderella Days! Let’s Party!

Cinderella Days!  Let’s Party!

Cinderella Days! www.mytributejournal.comI don’t know of too many little girls who don’t love American Girl dolls.  My daughters loved them and now my granddaughters are enjoying playing with their life-like dolls; (the new 14 1/2 inch WellieWisher dolls are darling) along with the books, movies and varied accessories, they create the best make-believe fun!

On a recent trip our local William and Sonoma kitchen store, I found out that the American Girl franchise has expanded the enchantment of their product to include party planning and baking books for even more fun with the real little girls in our lives!  I gave my two older granddaughters the party planning book for Christmas accompanied with a note that said we’d plan a few parties for family and friends throughout the year!  For our first official Cinderella Days of 2017, we threw a party a few weeks ago to celebrate all the things we love about our family!!

American Gilr party book.

The American Girl Party Book is full of fun and easy ideas for little girls who want to help plan a special party for their family!

American Girl dolls. "Lets Party!"

Of course, Makena and Marli’s American Girl dolls were included in our first big party event!  (I ordered their cute, little aprons with matching ones for their dolls from the fun Etsy shop, Sweet Apronz N Cupcakes.)

A week before their party, the girls and I got together and planned what we wanted to do and made a list of the things we’d need to buy at the store.  The anticipation and preparation for the party was almost as much fun as the actual event!

Americn Girl "Let's Party!"

There are several darling party invitation ideas included in the book, but one of the things I loved the most about our party was the cute, handmade invitations that Makena made–complete with scented stickers!  I mean seriously…how adorable is this!!!

Cinderella Days! Let's Party!

I’ve always been a firm believer that if you want your children to take a personal interest in a special project–get them involved!  These cute girls were a whirlwind of activity and culinary creativity as they helped make every detail of this special party come to life!

Makena and Marli had little menus, seated their “guests” with great decorum and served the food like well-trained maître d’s!  Their enthusiastic role-playing was simply too cute for words!

American Girl Party book food.

Food served in miniature size is always a hit at any party!  The menu included mini sloppy joes, ham rollups, veggies and chips…

Mini No-Bake Cheesecakes

…and mini no-bake raspberry cheesecakes–which were admittedly the most favorite entrée to make and eat!

Here’s the adapted version we made of the Mini No-Bake Cheesecake recipe that was in the American Girl Party book.

No-Bake Cheesecake recipe

Single mini no-bake cheesecake

My granddaughters loved garnishing the tops of the cheesecakes!  You could change out the jam and fruit for what you love best.

It tickled me so much to see how this activity sparked the spirit of camaraderie, organization and unabashed creativity with these two cute granddaughters…mostly it was just so much fun!  We’re all looking forward to planning our next party!

American Girl Party book!

“You rarely succeed in life unless you have some fun along the way!”  Vikas Runwal

This cute party book gave a lot of darling suggestions for fabulous party planning, but left plenty of room for children’s imaginations to run wild!

Any fun parties you have planned or attended lately?  We’re always looking for more fun ideas!

–Mary