There's no denying it, it's depressing out there. Sunshine is a rare commodity, the wind snaps umbrellas in half, the rain hits your face and you just want to hibernate through the next two months.
But there's a silver lining to all of this (I'm trying my best). You don't want to face the cold, you're being virtuous in the month of January and cutting down on eating out or your consumption of alcohol, but you also don't want to sit around at home doing nothing on a Saturday night.
If you are the going out type, no doubt you would face any kind of weather-related misery to have a night out in your fancy heels, and I tip my hat off to you! But I am definitely not so ambitious, and my idea of a perfect evening during this grey, limbo season is a dinner at home with friends.
Even better - dinner, drinks and a board game or two to make us forget all about the winter blues.
I thought that since we discovered all the games we currently love through friends, I would share them on here in the hope that you might get to know one that could provide you with hours of fun.
First up, Taboo. This is the first game E and I picked up for ourselves a few months ago, and we've played it countless of times since. You can play it with 4 people and upwards, get split into two teams and try to describe and guess as many words as possible within the turn's time limit. The catch is the taboo element: you can't describe your given word using the taboo words listed on the card. For example, you might not be able to describe Guacamole using the words avocado, green, Mexican, and so on. You have to come up with very creative ways to make your teammates guess your word, and trust me, it gets very tense. It's a simple, no fuss game that is fail proof fun.
The second addition to our collection has been Absolute Balderdash. This is a brilliant, brilliant game, forcing you to get your creative juices flowing and come up with weird and wonderful ideas. It's best played with at least 5 people, though even better with more. It's a little complicated to explain the rules in a nutshell (though the idea is easy to grasp), but have a read here for the details. This is probably mine and E's number one favourite at the moment.
Oh Telestrations. There is serious fun to be had with this one. A mix between Chinese whispers and Pictionary, you need at least 5 people and preferably more, but again it's a simple concept that is guaranteed to make you laugh. You start off with a word, the next person draws the word, the next person guesses what the picture
is of, the next person draws that guess, etc. etc. and you can imagine the outcome. In one of the many rounds we played in France over Christmas, what started off being "fish eye" ended up being "barbecue". In the middle, it had been "Saturn". A hilarious game that you can play with people of all ages, we don't currently own this one but I am itching to.
Last but not least, a different kind of "game", and I have to mention it because we had a blast playing it in France with friends. It's a well-known thing, but I hadn't done it in over a decade and it was a lot of fun. The idea is that you and your guests are all characters of a murder mystery story, and you can buy a set like this one or just download a script/story/character list online (you can find lots on google and also on Etsy. You dress up as the character you have been given (not obligatory, but so much more fun), and throughout the dinner you make your way through the interactive story, reading your parts and trying to figure out who the murderer is. It may sound slightly naff on paper, but trust me, this makes for a unique and hilarious evening, perfect for breaking the ice if you have a group of friends together that may not know each other very well.
I'm sure that some of you are familiar with these, and I would love any recommendations that I haven't discovered yet! What's your favourite party game? Because you can never have too much fun.