Fun family activities in the midst of a quarantine

There are lots of lists online of games, homeschooling schedules, activities, and workout regiments for the whole family, which are fun, but not exactly my style. I decided to make one of my own. Play at your own risk.

Marker Fights
While frequently played with markers, this game can also be played with books, dining room place settings, Xbox controllers, or anything else you have 150 of. Simply find something in your house that your family owns copious amounts of that your brother or sister just happens to be using at that moment. Insist that it’s yours, or that you had it first, and then get into a screaming, hair-pulling fight over who’s entitled to use it. This game is fun because it can be stopped for a few hours only to randomly and excruciatingly come up again and again over the course of a day.

This game is fun for the whole family, especially mothers. It’s a variation of the classic hide-and-seek, without the part where you find mommy. It works the other way, too—what’s more fun for a child than sitting quietly on the linen closet floor for thirty minutes until she accidentally falls asleep?

Leave the Front Door Open All Night
This is an easy one for kids to play, especially those who live in the country and have coyotes and raccoons living in the woods behind their house. It has the added bonuses of racking up the heating bill and possibly letting a wild animal into the kitchen in the middle of the night.

Frat Guy
This game is popular in my house, since I have a husband and three boy children. Simply drink a seltzer or Coca-Cola, smash and twist the can so it has sharp pokey edges, then leave it slightly dripping and sharp on the custom-made fabric ottoman mom ordered because we were deceivingly acting one day like we could finally have nice things. Cans can be left other places, too, like bathroom floors, in mom and dad’s bed, or under the couch as a surprise for later.

Can I Play a Video Game/Use My Phone/Watch YouTube?
Easy because it requires no equipment or knowledge or skills of any kind. Kids just walk around the house one foot behind their mother or father, who are usually on a conference call or writing an article for a newspaper or trying to cancel spring break trip plans and have been on hold with the airline for seven hours, and just ask over and over, “Can I do electronics now? Can I have screen time now? What if I stay off the internet and just watch a movie? All of my friends are on Xbox right now and they won’t be later so please just for a minute?”

Cry in the Car
This has many levels for all abilities: if you’re a child and you hate your family because they’re the meanest ever but you can’t go far because you’re supposed to stay six feet away from everyone in the world, you can play. Parents can also play, possibly whilst listening to their prom theme song or wedding song or any Beastie Boys song to remind them of better days.

Eat Everything in the House
Despite reminders that this food could possibly need to last for weeks, this game requires children to devour every food item that you bulk-purchased from Costco last week. Bonus points for the kids who eat all the delicious stuff first, leaving you facing the entire month of April with only expired cans of refried beans and non-frosted mini wheat cereal for food.

I Don’t Care if it’s Snowing and 4 Degrees, Go Outside
If you’ve been at home with your family all week, this one needs no explanation.

Stay healthy, have fun, and hang in there.