I can really associate the names of games with parts of my life.

Thinking back on my childhood, I’d have to say the best game name that comes to mind is CHUTES AND LADDERS. Most days were good. In school and other places, sometimes there was a chance to ‘climb a ladder’ and achieve a new level or stand out. For me, that place was the band. But as with everyone, there were days that were not so great like when I got bronchitis or had chicken pox.   That’s when I’d slide down the chutes of life and not be so happy.


I remember a game called COOTIES and for sure back in elementary school we girls never wanted to catch COOTIES from the boys. It made for great times at recess as we’d run screaming away to avoid this dastardly imagined infection from any boy who dared approach.


I remember sleepovers for birthdays and other such events with friends and gaggles of giggling girls all over the floor. We climbed over each other, laughing and running back and forth, eating, talking, playing games, etc.   Looking back on that now, I’m reminded of the game name BARREL OF MONKEYS, though the sleepovers were always more fun.


I remember the first time I wore high heels.   I wasn’t very good at walking in them.   I reminded myself of when I was younger and played with ROMPER STOMPERS. That’s about what I looked like.   Actually, I’m not sure I really ever got good at heels.   Romper Stompers may be the better idea for some of us – at least I got good at those!


Sometimes people tell me things and then they want me to keep it to myself. How many times I almost trip up on something only to remember in the nick of time I’m not supposed to tell!   I always think of the game name DON’T SPILL THE BEANS when this happens.


The period directly before our move here I would have to say bears a close resemblance to the game of PERFECTION (the game itself, NOT the game name!)


In this game, you are trying to beat the clock by arranging geometric shapes into their proper places on the spring board before the timer runs out. When the timer runs out, the spring releases under the board, the board pops up, and all the pieces go flying.   I can honestly say that’s what last year felt like.   The life I carefully built and lived for 20 years all went awry and when all the pieces landed, I was living on the Eastern Shore.   I’m still not sure how it all happened.

I guess that leads me to another game name I could use to describe my mindset about my life of late….BOGGLE.


As my husband and I try to find our footing and determine our next step, it does seem the impossible task to find one place that is going to give us all what we need.  This brings to mind another game from our generation….the RUBIK’S CUBE where you try and get all the right pieces in all the right places with a limited number of options on how the pieces can move.


Sometimes I still wish I had that MAGIC 8-BALL so I could ask it what to do or what will happen next when life gets confusing.

12      13

Usually, I really don’t have a CLUE.


Lately, after this long, long winter and all the issues two homes and 3 lives could possibly have in one overly long season, I could use the game name AGGRAVATION to describe my experiences.



 And yet, there is always one day of the week that I always look forward to – PAY DAY. I loved that game, keeping track of debits and credits and so on.   It’s really a shame that balancing a checkbook isn’t nearly as much fun. Though it is interesting to note that I ended up being a hotel auditor for a dozen years.   I wonder if this game had anything to do with it?


I remember Sunday afternoons with Dad reading his Sunday paper and stealing the comics section and using my SILLY PUTTY to lift the pictures onto the putty.


I also associate some names of games with people in my life.

Little children remind me so much of WEEBLES, the little figures that would webble and wobble but don’t fall down. Indeed, it seems that anything that goes wrong in a child’s world from learning to walk, falling down, or riding a bike, or anything else that knocks them over for a minute just propels them more and makes them try harder.   That seems to be one of the things we adults have a hard time hanging onto when things get tough.15

Trying to deal with the needs of a teen, a baby, and a husband in addition to the rest of the world always made me feel like STRETCH ARMSTRONG. I’m not sure he really counts as a game, but I really can relate to the feeling of being held by arms and legs and being pulled well beyond my limits!


Trying to feed that teen, baby, and husband, I can calmly state two games that I bring to mind: MR. MOUTH and HUNGRY, HUNGRY HIPPOS!

18          17

My husband works in the operating room all day.  (I should’ve known how this life would turn out when he proposed to me in front of a hospital!)  So of course the game I associate with him has to be OPERATION. I also remember him playing with our oldest son when he was young with 2 small Playmobil building sets, both of which contained parts of rooms in the hospital.


When I think of my Dad, I remember his old, old game called ELECTRIC BINGO which he stored in the attic in its original box and only brought down once in a blue moon.   He then stood over us to make sure that no harm came to his ‘wonderful’ toy.   I think it’s actually still in the attic now, though I know it’s been brought out when the grandchildren visit too.


I remember my niece spending time at our house and how strange it was to have a girl child that didn’t eat every morsel of food put in front of her. That’s not ever the case in a house of boys! As time went on, she started to eat more and keep up with my youngest son. One day, she even took food off my plate when I had my head turned.   At that point, I gave her the nickname from an old game (and movie) I remembered….JAWS.   She laughed and laughed about this.


When I think of my oldest son, the game that comes to mind always has to be MONOPOLY. He was really into this game when he was 4 or 5 and even went so far as to be the MONOPOLY Man on Halloween.   He was quite thrilled to win a costume contest that year. This was back in the early 90s when we were still the trendsetters with this costume idea.


Watching my young son now in the midst of his quest for young female attention, it brings to mind DON’T BREAK THE ICE.


Luckily for us, he’s still unsure about what to do beyond working up the nerve to talk with them and he’s very careful about things right now thinking more than doing and tentatively taking his first steps toward making an open admission about liking someone specific.   In this realm, he’s not much into taking RISK.


I have memories of my aunts at their house playing TWISTER of all things and indeed that’s how they actually are, even all grown up and living their own lives, they’re still all quite happily twisted up with each other and have very little mental distance between them even through marriages, children, grandchildren, death, divorces, house moves, etc.


These are some memories in my GAME OF LIFE.


(Random credits given for images obtained from image searches on the Internet.   The only pic that is actually mine is my son up there as the Monopoly Man.)



  1. Love this! You certainly brought back a lot of fun memories for me. I grew up with games and made sure that my kids had tons of them too. Many of them, like Life and Monopoly, are available on the iPad now…but it just isn’t the same. Don’t Spill the Beans was one of my favorites to play with my kids when they were little. Merlin was my first electronic game. My kids think this is hilarious. Great post!! 🙂


  2. Sasha says:

    Haha, I LOVE these comparisons! I remember playing so many of these games as well, just looking at the photos brought back happy memories!


  3. I had a good few of these myself! I don’t know if I’m older than you, or if I just had older parents, but Lego and TinkerToys and Lincoln Logs also featured heavily in my childhood. Those Romper Stompers were a huge let down! My Big Wheel however – I still want one!


    • OH Big Wheel BEST THING EVER. I ran mine till my wheels were no more and even bought one for both my boys and they ran theirs too till the wheels were no more! Big Wheels! Legos, Tinkertoys, and Lincoln Logs still big as a mother of boys, but I can’t believe you didn’t like the Romper Stompers! They were a riot!


  4. The great games stick around and just as much fun the second time around with our kids. I wonder if they will be so much fun with our grandchildren ? Funny seeing ‘chutes and ladders’ we call it Snakes and Ladders!!


    • Yes, agreed on that….good games never go away and are better when shared on down the lines. The chutes and snakes thing…yes, I have actually seen both…not sure why there are two names…..


  5. Oh, this post was like walking through the history of some of the best parts of my childhood! I loved these games–and I swear I had nearly every one of them. And with three other siblings, there was always somebody who agreed to play with you.
    Memories–sweet and warm. Thank you for encouraging them to bubble up to the surface. What a treasure. 🙂


    • Oh, thank you! I’m so flattered to hear you enjoyed it. It’s been a trip through memory lane this club of mine…I’m going to miss it with the move. But I have plans….oh, I have plans for keeping on with things…if I can ever wade through this nightmare of boxes!


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