Playing games is always an important part of a Nanna Visit as far as my (Not So Very Little) Welsh Boys and their parents are concerned. The same applies whether the visit in question involves them travelling to see their
Grandad (Mr B) and me or whether I travel to Cardiff on the train. Either way, it’s all about The Games.
On this most recent visit, we found that our time
for playing games was a little more limited than usual, with one whole day given over to the Family Beach Day and another to a visit to Portsmouth’s Historic Dockyard. Hence the boys and I came up with the novel idea of playing two games at once. It
turned out to be an interesting experiment in exercising the brain. Here is how we did it.
We chose two games for our experiment. The first was that age-old card
game called Sevens. I’m sure you have all played Sevens at least once in your life but, just in case you have forgotten the rules, all the cards are dealt out and the players take it in turns trying to be the first to use up all their cards by completing
sets of hearts, clubs spades and diamonds - starting with the seven of diamonds. What you really, really don’t want to find is that you have a hand full of Kings and Aces - or to be playing against a Cunning Type like Young James who enjoys holding up
play by keeping, say, the eight of clubs firmly in his hand.
Our other chosen game was called “Guess Zoo” for which we all had to wear a coloured
headband into which a picture of an animal, bird or insect was randomly inserted. The objective of the game was to guess which animal, bird or insect you were by asking questions to which the other players would only answer Yes or No. Hopefully you now have
a brief understanding of both games?
In order to play two games at once, each time a player set down a card he or she had to ask a question. Sounds simple enough,
did you say? Indeed it wasn’t - it proved extremely tricky, for a start, to keep one eye on what was happening in in the card game, at the same time remembering the answers to the questions you had asked about your Zoo Identity. What made it even more
difficult was that the boys - animal lovers all - didn’t confine their questions to easy ones like “do I have four legs?” or “am I fluffy?” but preferred to query “Am I a carnivore?” “Am I a mammal?” or
“Am I am amphibian?” Honestly I had been worrying that Guess Zoo might prove to be a bit young for my boys - I wasn’t expecting it would prove such a challenge for me, struggling to get in touch with my Inner David Attenborough.
The Welsh Boys love an experiment. We found time, even while we were preparing for Family Beach Day, to make fruit lollies using blueberries and raspberries mixed with Greek
yoghurt. The idea was to serve them up as a surprise to their cousins and other relatives when we returned to our house from the beach at the day. I was made to promise that I wouldn’t let anyone into the secret -“Cross my heart and hope to die!”
I declared, theatrically, only to have Young Sam throw his arms around me: “Please don’t hope to die!” he cried. I need to choose my words more carefully...
The lollies were a great success, despite a few problems turning them out of their moulds. None of the cousins seemed concerned about being served up slightly misshapen desserts and everyone declared them to be delicious. The boys, buoyed by this success,
have already decided on further experimentation on their next visit - strawberries and chocolate are top of their list of ingredients though I’m not sure if we will be making two different types of lollies or a strawberry chocolate mixture.
Given the problems we experienced in playing two games at once, I reckon we should play safe....