Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Sunday night is family night. And family night is CRAZY.

Ok, so Staci and I decided we need to have family night every Sunday night. And each week, we alternate who is in charge of the meal. This was the Raborn week.

Oh, have I shown you all this portrait Don had made for Staci? Does something look "different" about this one?!

Ok, back to famly night. Big Don did the cooking on this night. The big boys always think they are going to get out of it, by telling us all about how everyone else is doing something wlse with their friends, yada, yada, yada. It doesn't work! In fact, the big boys are the primary reason we started family night! Hunter is only a couple of years away from moving out potentially and going away to college.

Ooooooh. Mexican fiesta!

And it just wouldn't be a night together without a "Presenting.... Madi" night! They announce each other over and over and change clothes incessantly. But by now, you know that!

NOT SURE where Ellie came up with this pole dancing costume. Surely it is just ripped up the side. Surely!

And in comes sweet little precious Gabbi Girl.. just happy to have on a tutu. Still in her play clothes underneath!

And yet, so satisfied, just to be part of the action!

They occasionally let her play with them. And act like they like it.

Ok, so now for the interesting part of the night. Sorry JinJin, it's what you get for losing all that weight! OK, so have you played Quelf?! It is the most bizarre, random game in the world! Here, I do believe that JinJin drew a card which commanded her to expose her middrift and do a belly dance for 30 seconds. Thank GOD, I didn't draw that card! If you don't do what it tells you to, you are penalized and have to move backwards a designated number of spaces on the board.

Staci and Hayden were getting a kick out of it, Hunter (above) couldn't even bring himself to look!

And here, we have MimMim and Staci slowdancing for an entire song that I believe, they had to hum.

Hunter, even as cool as he thinks he is, cracks up at this game. It is so blame random!

Here, I do believe, he is being a blind mime, trying to get out of a box.

Mary Allison has to stay for our Quelf battles.

One would think that this big ol mitten on Hayden's hand was part of the game, but nope! He just felt like wearing one big ol mitten!

It's really good to see him smiling! It's been a rough year for Hayden. Really, it's been a rough several years!

And of course, Ellie has to come in with some made up bobo for some attention from the g'ma!
Veronicia and Mary Allison had to play leap frog for 5 repetitions. That was hysterical!

ANd speaking of hysterical, anytime someone laughed, I had to slap my thigh and say, "waka waka waka". If I forgot, I had to move back on the board. Hayden is like the dadgum game police. He doesn't miss a thing!

Like for instance, Mary Allison had to snort every time she laughed.

When she forgot, Hayden was quick to remind.... and move her back on the board!

Here Hunter is attempting to lick his elbow. Apparently JinJin is offering moral support. And you KNOW we all tried this. ANd I KNOW you are probably about to try it too. It's hard!

Mary Allison, now tooting the National Anthem with her nostril. ANd Hayden, either a) reading his card and deciding he is NOT going to do what it says (he was bad about that) or b) pretending to do something while paying total attention to everyone else and what they are NOT doing that they are supposed to be doing, so he can rightly move them back.

This is the happiest I see him in a week. So, it is ALL worth it! We play even when we don't want to play. Because, we know Hayden loves games, and we know we will all soon be glad we are playing!

and will all soon be laughing our heads off. I think this is Staci using a made up language to recite a nursery rhyme.

Or maybe her making up a rap song. or writing a poem using certain words dictated by Quelf.

This is how Veronicia looked through an entire song as she was instructed to not change expression at all and not crack a smile at all. She seriously looked like a zombie. We were rolling.

Lots of bonding goes on on our Sunday family nights. And for several of you who mentioned how close our family is and "do you ever get on each other's nerves?". Well... of course we do! But the point is to keep on keeping on. There will always be times when we are aggrevating each other. It's how families are. But, we keep going back... week after week, because we know it is what is best for the kiddos. ANd in the long run, it is how traditions are formed.

The boys will someday, hopefully, bring their girlfriends, then wives, then kids, back to our houses on Sunday nights for full-on dinners and games, and even college friends so we can get to know their peeps.

So we put up with each others' aggrevating idiosyncracies, because, well, let's face it... who doesn't have them?!

But even when Hunter didn't think he wanted to play, he ended up laughing and having a great time! And Mary Allison, toilet paper and all, enjoyed it too, meaning high school kids even like board games!

Hope this encourages you to try Family night too!



Kai said...

Oh, Mo! Thank you for sharing!

Auntie Mip said...

We play games all the time in my big ole Norther version of your family. We a all about a family gathering and play lots of games. Especially in summertime when we are at our family beach homes (3 right next store to each other on the Pugest Sound). I have never heard of this one and went on line and bought it. I laughed my head off trying to imagine my oldest sister playing this game or my next oldest sister playing this game after a couple of beers. It will be so much fun.

I love that our grown up kids are loving the each as much as I did growing up. My grandparents bought the first house when my mommy was 3, she is 75 now. Funny thing is when we are at home or in town, we a only about 3 miles apart then too! We have so much fun.

Thanks for the game suggestion. Thanks for the fun pictures. Prayers everyday for your precious family!

Riley said...

Games are always fun for all ages. Goodness knows that when I go to my adopted Aggie family's house or back home that game nights are definitely in order!!

Amy K said...

Apples to Apples is one of our favorites.
Thanks for sharing another inspiring family tradition.

Jeni said...

I am going to have to buy that game. Sounds like it is a blast!

Zhohn said...

That looks hilarious!
Wishing y'all many more Sunday game nights!!

Ava said...

The boys have really grown. I taught at Drew when they were in 2nd and 3rd grade. It looks like they are doing well and have made it through the rough times.

Sandy P said...

Sounds like fun!

Have you ever seen bird nest rings? I saw them on the blog today and thought you could make them. If you figure it out, let me know. I would love one.

jmckemie said...

Oh, my. That portrait is breath-taking and heart-breaking at the same time. Such an absolutely wonderful picture to have, though. ALL of their children together. I am sure it is a treasure for them all.
That game looks amazing. I will have to look for it. What a wonderful way to stay connected to those boys as they grow and move emotionally away for a time. Life-long memories are being made, for sure.

tricia said...

this post makes me miss my family(we live over a thousand miles apart!). You're so right we all have quirks.
That portrait is just breathtaking!

Unknown said...

Mo, thanks for the laugh. I seriously laughed out loud when I saw the picture of Hunter licking his elbow and then JinJin with her tongue. It's the first time I have laughed this week, my dad suffered a stroke one week ago today. He is doing ok, but my thought in the hospital was, I wish I personally knew you so I could get your PT advise! We have our first family getaway planned and I am going to be getting this game!! I think we could all use some laughs by then.

MaryH said...

That was hysterical - my family has shrunk to almost nothing with elderly parents or deceased parents and kids moved away and it is hard to get a small group together for a holiday dinner - I so enjoy living "through" your family and all its fun and trials and traditions - and I sure hope that is okay. You have the right idea and the right priorities and all your "kids" are so lucky to be in this family - if they don't know it know, they will shortly - keep on keeping on and doing the good stuff - Jake was there giggling also, you just know he was.

snekcip said...

Auggggh just lost a WHOLE COMMENT!!! WHYYYYYYYYYYY!!! Okay!! Here it is in shorter version! Love the pic of the of the kids!! AWESOME!! Our family believes in FAMILY FUN and I think it's a tradition every family should incorporate!! It's 8 of us w/17 kids amongst us, so family-time was essential! The kids (all grown w/kids of their own) STILL remember those fun times!

Becky said...

That is AWESOME!!! Thanks for sharing your family nights! And I really chuckled about the little girls, because my five year old makes me "introduce" her too! She LOVES to dance and sing, too! Too funny!
And I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the portrait from Don! Did he draw that??

Emery Wilkerson said...

I love it!! I think that is an awesome tradition to have! What fun memories!! Laughter is good for the soul!!

Momma and Her Doodle said...

That portrait is beautiful. Your dedication and love of your family shines through.

Jakes Owen's journey touched many lives even those across the miles.


crazy said...

Hey Mo - we love game nights! Now that everyone is old enough we do banana gram, apples to apples, scrabble, rummikub, you name it. Even had one recently my daughters boyfriend taught. It does create bonding and unique fun family time. My new daughter in law is great about them (that's how I knew she would fit in). Continuing to "embrace" 2011.....

Ali said...

We love Quelf... waka waka waka- I think my mom had that card before.

SarahBeth said...

we love qulef!!!!!!!!! so much fun! so glad yall do family night!

Theresa Shirley said...

Looks like so much fun!! Love the family night....I also love that portrait...that is so special! I bet she just loves it. Thanks for sharing :)

nineisenuff said...

This is GREAT! You are doing such a wonderful thing for your entire family. What memories! I think I need to buy Quelf tomorrow - I hadn't heard of it, but it sounds like a game right up my family's alley!

Kaia said...

That game looks hilarious! And also like one I would refuse to play.. or just be like Hayden and refuse to do half of the cards!

Renee said...

Sounds like a fun night! And that portrait is priceless.

dyrzas13 said...

The boys are getting so big and so handsome! Thanks for sharing! Families are so important and sometimes we might forget that!

Beth E. said...

All of the pics are great, but I am LOVIN' the pics of Hayden with that big ol' grin on his face! I don't think I've ever seen him smile like that!

Family nights are very important....you are so BLESSED to have your family living nearby!

I totally tried to lick my elbow...is that even possible?! LOL