WHEN THE LIGHTS GO OUT

Guest blogger, Ryan Novas with games you can play during a power outage.  I add a game of my own after his post.

Only eyes showing during a power outage

In the dark? With your kids? Try some games to conquor their fear. Ryan Nova, guest blogger’. Then I added a game from my childhood .

Losing power in a storm can cause anyone to get anxious and sometimes cause good kids to act out.  Unfortunately, they cannot connect to the internet and probably should not go hang out with friends if power lines are down, so they need to find another way to keep calm and happy during the storm.  This can be tricky, especially if storms make you nervous, which is why it is important to remain calm and have a plan to keep everyone comfortable and relaxed.  Here are 3 things you can do during a power outage that will help promote bonding, reduce the fears of the storm and help your kids overcome things like a fear of the dark.

1.  Hide and Go Seek (with Flashlight Tag):  As long as you have extra batteries for your flashlights, this can be one of the best games.  Because it turns being stuck in the dark from being a scary thing into a game, it can also help kids to overcome some of their fear.  Hide and Seek is fun for almost anyone no matter what their age is.  By combining flashlight tag into the game, your kids will have a source of light to find a hiding space safely while not being afraid of the dark.  Also, your children will begin to build enough courage to try things like going into a dark basement because they want to win the game.
Flashlight tag is when you have to find the person, shine a flashlight on them and call out their name.  If you get the wrong person, they are not “out” and get to hide again.  This may help to build your child’s courage since they will begin to feel more comfortable moving around a dark and scary house.
2.  Board games: 

Although this seems obvious, it is always a winner.  All you need is a light source to be able to see the game and it is something the entire family can enjoy and bond over.

 Board games are fun for the whole family, and by dressing correctly before playing them, everyone can go to bed when they get tired and the game is over.   

 3.  Lights out Pictionary: This is a fun game for everyone.  It does take a bit of practice before you get really good and everyone gets into the game.  The person who is up to draw picks their word or thing from the hat and then remembers it.  Then you hand the person a piece of paper and a pencil and they have 1 minute total to draw the item.  Turn off the flashlight for 10 seconds while they start to draw and then turn it on for 5 seconds while everyone gets a chance to guess what they are drawing.  If in 5 seconds no one has it, you turn the flashlight off again for ten more seconds, during which they can draw more.  After doing this 4 times, if no one has guessed the thing the person was supposed to draw, no one wins any points and the persons turn is over.  If someone does guess what it is, the person who was drawing gets two points and the person guessing gets 1 point.  Everyone will get three turns to draw and then the game is over.   

Added care tip: One thing to think if you live where power outages are common is to make sure every family member as a pair of  footed pajamas and to don them if is looks like the lights are going to be out for a while.  You can buy them at CrazyforBargins.    Footed pajamas are  better than normal sleepwear for three  reasons:

  1. If the power is out it could get cold.  These can help keep you warm since they cover everything.
  2. Many styles come with skid resistant soles, so they may help to prevent falls and sliding on wood floors in the dark.
  3. They are comfortable and perfect to wear to bed right when everyone starts to get tired.
During a long power outage where cold is a problem get the kids in warm robes.  Terry cloth robes can also double as a towel.  Again you can find a huge selection of robes at Crazy for Bargains.

Being warm and cozy comforts and playing some games distracts from fear.   Both  turn a scary time into a fun time.  Fun bonds and helps all in the family, as Katherine says, “Stay Strong.”

Ryan Novas

Thank you Ryan and now for my game:

The Never Ending Story: We played this on long car trips, but it would work as well during a power outages.  Parent goes first and starts a story, usually a scary one.  The parent stops at a cliff hanger moment and names a child.  The child picks up the story.  The parent stops that child at another cliff hanger, and names the next story teller.  The story goes on and on with each family member adding his or her part.  The parent can decide when it is time to end the story. End it with a cliff hanger so the story can be picked up at a later time.

One rule: Only story tellers can talk.

Tip for parent leader: Don’t let ramblers ramble, it is best to wait for a cliff hanger, but not if the audience is getting bored.

STAY STrONG

Laughing and playing when the lights go out does build courage in both the child and the adult.  Another tactic would be to have the family  practice one of the Twelve Easy Emotional Fitness Exercises.  If you haven’t learned and practiced them yet go here to learn the Be With Beauty Exercise.   During a black out ask each family member to recall and describe something they find beautiful.

With the weekend approaching, remember to have me-time, family time, fun time and quiet time.

As always thank you for all you do to support me.

Katherine

TWO DISCLAIMERS

The first:  Although built upon evidenced based practices, there is no guarantee my advice is the right advice for you and your family. Experiment, try my tips; if they are not useful to you try another parent adviser. You are the expert on you and your child; the rest of us experts on many different things.

The second: I have dysgraphia, a learning disability that peppers my writing with mis-spelling and punctuation errors. All my books are professionally edited. Not so my blog posts. Although I use all the grammar and spelling checks, mistakes slip by. If they bother you, seek another source of support for life’s less savory moments.   Life is too short to let problems you can avoid annoy or stress you.

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