Last year, after reading Molly's post about summer games, (she has a handy PDF here) we put together this box. It sits on a shelf in our living room and is used often, but even better, it's thrown in the car and used for all our road trips, vacations, etc. We all love playing these games—having ones that work for multiple ages is key. The fabric pouch contains Uno, which usually gets stashed into my bag, so it's pretty much always with us. It was pretty fun playing on top of sleeping bags in the tent with a flashlight a few weeks ago.
While playing these games I love seeing how the girls' personalities come out and how they manage the different components. We don't have an iphone, or a smart phone even, which is a deliberate choice. Don't get me wrong, I love technology. I just can't be trusted with one, it would not be good for me. But I do have cards in my purse and small sketchbooks and pens at all times. I really cherish the interaction of playing games with them and not seeing them looking at a little hand held screen. So, our favorites right now (of the small portable variety, not bigger board games, which should be a different post) are:
These are all really easy to find. I would love to get started on some role playing games, but these are quick, easy to travel with, and fun to play with everyone. We also love Bananagrams but I'm a bit paranoid about losing squares, so they stay at home.
I'd love to know what your favorite family games are that are easily transportable. We also have been playing word games more (like 20 questions, etc.) but that's also another post. Playing 20 questions with a 4 year old gets pretty surreal.