In my family, it has been a tradition to play two different games at our annual Christmas Eve get-together. Both games are usually played by the adults however, the kids can play too. To throw the best casino parties in Texas may be a good idea, but we always prefer to celebrate holidays in a simple manner.
‘Win Lose or Draw’ (we invented a new way of playing this old favorite)
What you will need:
A white board about 2 ft by 3ft
An easel or something to hold the white board
Colored erasable markers (we use a package of 8 colors)
An eraser or paper towels
25 or more song titles written on little pieces of paper (we took songs out of our Christmas piano book)
A fish bowl or something to hold the song title slips
Snacks and goodies to eat
How to play:
Break up into two teams (If there a large group of 16 or more you might want to have two games going on and winners play next round)
Each team picks a person to draw first and then flip a coin to decide what team draws first.
Whoever is up to draw picks a Christmas song title paper out of the bowl.
That person must draw a picture to give clues to their team members so that they can guess the song title. If their team members can guess the song title correctly within the two minute time limit, that team will get two points. If they do not guess it correctly the other team has a chance to steal for one point.
We play until one team reaches 25 points but you can decide how long you want to go. We always buy a box of chocolates or something that the winning team gets to share. One year we all put five dollars in a pot and the winning team got to split the pot.
‘White Elephant gift Exchange’
This game can get kind of brutal, so be prepared. Each person that plays has to bring some sort of gift that is wrapped. We have gotten anything from movies that have been used, BBQ spices, crayons, and even a sponge Bob toilet seat one year. You can put a monetary limit on it if you choose to purchase a gift instead of using something around the house. We never spend any more than 10 dollars per person.
Everyone playing sits in a circle and puts all the gifts in the middle. You need to have slips with numbers on them that goes up to the number of players. Everyone picks a number slip out of a bowl. That determines what order you go in.
Player one opens up any gift they choose from the middle. Player two has the choice of stealing the gift player one opened or opening another gift from the middle. Player three can choose to steal any of the gifts opened or to open another one.
If your gift gets stolen, you cannot steal it back right away. You will have to open another gift or steal another player’s gift first and wait until that gift gets taken in order to steal back what you really wanted.
The game ends when the last gift is opened. You cannot trade or steal once that last gift is opened. When it is your turn you can steal any gift already opened from any player. If you are the last person you basically can decide what gift you want. Especially if you know what is in the last gift that has not been opened. This game can go on forever and can be really fun if you play with people that like to compete and steal from each other.
‘Treasure Hunt for the Children’
In our family we don’t have the children play the gift exchange. We purchase little gifts for each child in our family. We set it up like a treasure hunt where each child gets to pick a color out of a bowl and those are the clues they get to read and that is the gift they get at the end when they find the treasure. We have it set up to where all the clues lead them to some place in the house to find their next clue. We have done anywhere from 4 or 5 clues for ages 2-4 up to 15-20 clues for ages 10-12. We have also done team treasure hunts.
The point is for everyone, no matter how old they are, to get a gift on Christmas Eve. These are only ideas of what you can do. There is plenty of room to adjust things to the number of people in a group or the ages of the players.
I hope this helps make your holiday party a memorable one. No matter what you do, make sure to have fun!! Happy Holidays!!