April 11, 2007

Getting there is more than half the fun

I had meant to write about our new game (and a bunch of other things) shortly after returning from our trip the other month to visit my parents, and now that it's homeschool convention/ curriculum fair season, I thought I'd better get moving.

On our trip we were lucky to get the chance to catch up with a dear family friend, my English fairy godmother. One of the many gifts with which she showered the kids was the board game 10 Days in Europe, great fun for all of us to play; even though it's labelled "Ages 10 to Adult", six-and-a-half year-old Davy has no problem and fancies himself a junior travel agent. You can play with two to four players or two to four teams (teams of two work very well). One thing I especially like the game, after enduring the seemingly endless Monopoly games of my childhood, is that 10 Days takes only about half an hour to play, just the right amount of time with younger children.

Reading through the instructions and checking the maker's website, I was surprised to learn that 10 Days in Europe is from Out of the Box Publishing, which just happens to make Apples to Apples, one of the more popular games in homeschooling circles.

Just as Apples to Apples comes in several varieties (Apples to Apples Kids for ages 7 and up, Apples to Apples Junior for ages 9 and up, Yiddish/ German/ Jewish/ British Isles -- but sadly no French -- editions, one with Customizable Cards which could even be turned into a Latin or ancient Greek version, and an LDS version under development), so too do the 10 Days games. In addition to 10 Days in Europe, OTB offers:

10 Days in Asia (covering Asia, Australia, and New Zealand)
10 Days in the USA
10 Days in Africa

After enough 10 Days trips, you might be interested in another OTB game, Shipwrecked. The OTB website is well worth a search to see the variety of their games, retailers, and international distributors. Lucky Americans can find Out of the Box games directly from OTB (free ground shipping with orders of at least $14.99) as well as at Barnes & Nobles, Borders, Booksamillion, and Target. I'm considering buying a few of the other 10 Days games, and think I'll ask my favorite Canadian homeschool supplier/vendor if she'd be interested in bringing them in for me.

No, I don't get a penny from this recommendation. Just the possibility of a few more friends to play with whenever we get together in real life.

These days, with most actual travel downright daunting and unpleasant, where it often feels as if you're spending 10 days in airport security lines, what better way to travel than in the comfort of your own home? Especially when, if you miss your connection, you can get a snack from the fridge while you wait.

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