Fun for the whole family, Christmas edition.
November 29, 2012 8:45 AM   Subscribe

Gift-filter: What are your best gift ideas for a family of 5 adults?

Members of my immediate family are very difficult to shop for, since they all make significantly more money than I do and are the, "If I want it, I'll buy it" type. However, Christmas gifts are very much expected.

To combat this, I'm thinking that instead of buying everybody their own present, I'd like to buy 4-5 games/activities/experiences that we can do as a family on Christmas and/or the following days.

We generally enjoy word-type games; (Scrabble and Boggle are great; Risk not so much)
we are all foodies;
There are 3 men who are very into gadget-y type things-- we currently own a fleet of about 12 helicopters, and greatly enjoyed last year's remote control shark.

What presents can I buy that will be fun for the whole family and avoid me ruining Christmas?
posted by karminai to Shopping (14 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
Dixit is a great family game.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 8:47 AM on November 29, 2012 [5 favorites]

Bananagrams is probably right up their alley.

There are also a number of other scrabble variants out there that you can play using just the tiles, it might be fun to do some web research, print out the rules to some of those and include them in your gifts too.

Sequence isn't word-type but it feels like a similar type of thinking - how can I arrange these, what are the possible connections I can make, etc. Doesn't work great for 5 players, though, but if you often play four player games it would be good to join the collection.
posted by Lady Li at 8:51 AM on November 29, 2012

A family game night packages is a great idea!

Game ideas: Apples to Apples; Cranium; Trivia Pursuit; pictonary; cards and dice; ticket to ride; blokus.

Food: Jeni's ice cream; packs of candy (check the target dollar spot); popcorn and nuts; maybe pizza gift cards?

Prizes along the gadgety?
posted by dpx.mfx at 8:52 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Quiddler is good for the Scrabble-inclined. By the way, I think this is a brilliant solution.
posted by eralclare at 8:54 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Also, you could pick up some terrible movies and Bad Movie Bingo depending on how much fun the fam has with bad cinema.
posted by eralclare at 9:01 AM on November 29, 2012

Maybe a Keurig or some kind of single-serving coffee maker?
posted by nickerbocker at 9:35 AM on November 29, 2012


Maybe Fluxx?

You could gather the ingredients for fun snacks to make, such as flavoured popcorn or just buy prepackaged versions.

Personally, I like home roasted nuts with rosemary and salt.
posted by Heart_on_Sleeve at 9:43 AM on November 29, 2012

I think it would be pretty fun if you purchased a set of ugly christmas sweaters for your family in addition to board games and delicious snacks.
posted by livinglearning at 9:57 AM on November 29, 2012

Obviously you want Balderdash. I too come from a wordy scrabble playing household and Balderdash is one of the best games around. Each turn can go from absolutely hilarious to really really hard because there were so many possible answers!

Apples to Apples is awesome and fun. Played best while a little drunk as the combinations get more and more hilarious. It also better with a big group, so it works that way too.

Maybe look at to research good group games out there.
posted by PuppetMcSockerson at 10:26 AM on November 29, 2012

Apple to Apples, or Cards Against Humanity, depending on what sort of family they are.

My extended family just played Taboo at Thanksgiving and we had a ball.
posted by bondcliff at 10:27 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Word of caution - you may want to run this plan by someone. If gifts are very much expected, does that mean individual gifts? I speak from experience...
posted by mrs. taters at 10:36 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Game: 5 Second Rule

Food: Beef jerky . . . lots of it.
posted by Sassyfras at 10:37 AM on November 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Mad Gab would be a great choice on the game front. Hilarity always ensues when my family plays this.

"Bwahaha, you're saying the answer!!"

"But I don't KNOW the answer!"

"But you. are. SAYING. it!"
posted by ZabeLeeZoo at 10:41 AM on November 29, 2012

I LOVE this idea!

Seconding dixit. Great game, based on story telling, very social, plays on in-jokes the family shares really well. My family loves this and it is our go-to game for those not into strategy.

(My mom hates board games almost universally but she loved Dixit so much she bought her own copy so we can always play when visiting. She also loves Carcassone, which I recommend to anyone who likes jigsaw puzzles and mild strategy)

Board Game geek lists several party games you might consider.

Also, a different card game learned each night for the holiday can be fun. I recommend Big 2. My family learned that from my sister in law and played obsessively while travellng together.
posted by chapps at 9:25 PM on November 29, 2012

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