Triple Treat: board games on high rotation

Yes, we are board game geeks.

Late high school and early uni, Stephen had two group of friends regularly gathering to play Risk. Which is essentially a dice rolling game that goes forever… and forever… and is mostly luck.

Once we started dating I tried to curb the late nights of dice rolling. But this established group of friends wanted to keep playing games – their preference of social interaction over dinner or movies or conversation or walks.

Thus began my investigation into other board games. Mostly fuelled early on by Board Game Geek.
Over the past decade our collection has grown from early beginnings of Carcassonne and Risk 2210 A.D. (the best version, it includes strategy) to become a hobby  Stephen and I enjoy together, and share with friends and family.

These three games are on high rotation at our place. They are easy to teach and learn, provide fun for both the newcomer and experienced gamer.

  1. Concept
    The aim is to use provided icons to produce clues for other players to guess what you are describing. Think Pictionary with added fun and drawing ability eliminated. We always play this collaboratively – though there is a team scoring mechanic.
    It’s great with kids and adults; it’s great with new gamers; it’s great for people who prefer to watch.
  2. Carcassonne
    Tile laying game seeking to complete city features to gain points and win the game. The rules are quick to explain and understand. The game is enjoyable for most people. Different temperaments can play together – the deep strategist, the nimble tactician, the companionable disinterested.
  3. Qwirkle
    Mild spatial awareness game, placing tiles in lines of matching colour or shape of symbols. Quick to learn and easy to play, it allows for both deep and light concentration.

I like games because

  • FUN
  • mind stretching
  • low key social interaction
  • personalities’ expressed

Apart from my own house, Netherworld is my current favourite gaming location.

Board games can be expensive it’s great to check a game before you buy it. There a bunch of local games stores in Brisbane now, but I still use Australian Board Game Shopper to look for sales.

Life Event: Dietary requirements due to chronic health

I recently organised 40 of my mother’s friends to gather for her birthday celebration. There was one person with an allergy, and one who was a vegetarian. If I gathered 40 of my friends our dietary requirements and preferences would be diverse and complicated.

Meet my friend Agnes, who has been learning manage her diet, hospitality, and ensuing social interactions.

What is a book or tv show you enjoyed in primary school?Why did you like it?
I loved to read the Secret Garden. I think I loved that she had a secret world away from everything that she could work on and make beautiful 🙂

Give us a quick overview of the details in your life event?
Having had chronic health issues for more than ten years, twelve months ago I discovered significant intolerances to certain naturally occurring chemicals in food (Salicylates, Amines and Glutamates). This has led to a significant improvement in day to day health; however it has led to a strict diet that means that it is very hard to eat out or eat something someone else has prepared.

What’s it like?
I have really gone through the full extent of the grief cycle. I know it seems crazy to grieve for the food you can’t eat…but I was a foodie! So it has been an emotional year:  Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and Acceptance. However, I am still on this cycle and still experience all of these feelings at various times. Overall, I try to live in the acceptance camp. But it isn’t easy.  I have been frustrated and tried to figure out any way out of it. How to fix it. Mostly I have been depressed by it. I am trying to recognise that what I eat doesn’t define me. It shouldn’t fill an emotional hole. And that has actually been helpful, although being forced into it has meant that it has been extra frustrating.

What was a helpful thing someone did at that time?
Sat and let me cry about it. Designed a dinner party around foods I could eat without making it seem like it was a burden. Made me biscuits. Made me meals. Happily ate the food that I made and expressed enjoyment.
What was an unhelpful thing someone did at that time? Assumed it was a choice I was making, and tried to convince me not to make this choice.

What would you want the people around you to know?
I don’t want to be a burden, so I won’t ask you to cook for me. However, it is really hard to always be the person eating something different. There is just something about having someone prepare and meal and you all join in together to eat it. It is hard to always be the odd one out.

What ways could we love you in your present season?
Don’t always ask me about what it is like, although this is occasionally ok. I will probably tell you it’s fine and I’m much healthier etc. That is my way of trying to accept this. But if you can occasionally make a meal that I can share with you, or express happiness for me to make a meal for you that I can eat. That will go a long way to helping me not to feel alone.