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  • The Run Away Game

    July 22, 2009

    I am assuming that every family has some weird little games they play that when described to others fall into the category of evidence for the state.

    We have many of these games, but the one that Sean loves most right now is called The Run Away Game.

    The Run Away Game erupts. It is never planned and usually happens when we are all just standing around the kitchen grazing and looking through mail and that kind of thing.  The first parent to faint from exhaustion loses.

    One of the parents picks up the child and says to the other parent, “No! You may not have my baby!”  And then runs like crazy through the house, carrying said child, while the other parent gives chase.  Eventually the run away duo is captured in a group hug. And then the capturing parent steals the child saying, “No! You may not have my baby!”  Another chase ensues all while the little boy squeals and shouts, “Run! Run faster!”

    Great fun.  And a good bit of exercise running through the house with a five-year-old.

    Yesterday, after a rousing round of Run Away, I set Sean down and clutched my chest and tried to catch my breath.  And I wished that either a) I was about 10 years younger or b) that I worked out more often.

    As I sat on the floor panting, I thought about all the different little made up games we have played along the way, most of which he probably doesn’t even remember and I wouldn’t either if I didn’t write stuff down.

    I wondered if he would remember the Run Away game and play with his own little boy some day.

    I hope so.

    Does your family have any made up, unexplainable, weird games/things?

    46 Comments »

    1. nicole says:

      “Nobody Bother”

      My husband played it with his dad, and now our kids play it with him. He lays on the floor and pretends he is going to sleep. He says “I don’t want anybody to bother me” and the kids all sneak up on him and then jump on him and then he wakes up and tries to catch them. Lots of laughing.

      * * *
      I love it!

      July 22nd, 2009 at 9:58 am

    2. Shirley Cohen says:

      We had the ‘bear game’usually in the car. It went like this… How many bears can you name? Black bear, Panda Bear, Polar Bear, Pooh Bear, Grown bear, Teddy bear, BAREly there, Bear Foot! and we got funnier as we went on, at least it seemed so then, oh yeah… the Bear Market!

      July 22nd, 2009 at 10:15 am

    3. Theresa says:

      “Tickle Bugs”

      The “victim” had to be on a soft surface (chair, couch, bed). Then the “attacker” started scratching on the fabric and said “Tickle bugs are coming to get you” The “victim” was then tickled until they yelled “enough”. Only family members were allowed to play.

      I’ve had the joy of knowing that this is being passed on in the Lemon household.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 10:25 am

    4. Natalie says:

      Every now and then I try out my acting skills on my kids. I do my best to be sad or angry, etc. for no good reason while making lunch or something and I love to see the shock in their eyes at my outburst that turns to delight.
      It’s good fun. 🙂

      July 22nd, 2009 at 11:03 am

    5. Julia says:

      My kids (ages 6, 4 and 2) play “Cheeto”. They pick an item of furniture and run around it in circles, chasing each other.They laugh so hard that someone always falls down and the others trip, crumbling into fits of laughter on the floor.

      I am but a mere observer in Cheeto 🙂

      July 22nd, 2009 at 11:19 am

    6. J says:

      Son and I went to the Park and played. It was his favorite. We took a picnic sandwhich or such. I also arranged a school trip to a place I worked. They all loved it.

      Son says he remembers none of it.

      Oh well, such is life. He turned out ok. Now his mother the verdict is still out.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 11:51 am

    7. Carrie says:

      Z’s favorite game right now is ‘ni-ni’ – Daddy pretends to go to sleep, and I say, “You’d better wake Daddy up, or he’ll be late to work”, and he goes & wakes him up, and Daddy says, “Wha..wha..what?” so then Z says, “ni-ni” and goes to sleep and a couple minutes later, shakes his head, and says, ‘wha-wha-what’. Too cute. 🙂

      July 22nd, 2009 at 12:25 pm

    8. Heidi says:

      When our kids were little and wanted to play and we were exhausted we’d say “okay, mommy and daddy are mountains and you’re the mountain climbers.” Then we’d lie on the floor while they flopped all over us.

      I used to make up songs for the kids, all of which I remember. And believe me, they were really goofy. What was I thinking?

      Now that the kids are teenagers, we pretend we know what we’re doing and they pretend to go along. It’s great fun.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 1:02 pm

    9. Pam says:

      Pillow Butts

      After baths, grandpop rolls each child(3,4&6) into a towel lengthwise then snaps the end until each rolls out squealing and flies onto our king size bed.

      The game is over when 3 little bare butts are lined up on grandma and Pop’s pillows and they are laughing hysterically.

      I’ll miss this game, I know it will soon be over, they are getting too heavy for Pop to throw.:) I’m thinking of a ‘dancing’ game next…

      July 22nd, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    10. Elicia says:

      me and my sisters made up several games with our neighbors. the squirrel game, with a hunter and squirrels, and then stake out. the best one. where we hide and one person looks for us, and the hiding people leave clues, like drops of water on the sidewalk, and crumbled up leaves. played in the dark. great fun 🙂

      July 22nd, 2009 at 1:10 pm

    11. Iota says:

      The immortal phrase at the dinner table (from my husband’s own childhood)

      “we’re not asking you to like it, we’re asking you to eat it”.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 1:10 pm

    12. NAM says:

      Under the sea. My daughter was a big fan of the Little Mermaid and once on a long car trip I tried to amuse her by pretending we were under water. We compare everything we see to things we’d find in an ocean. A police car might be a shark or a city bus might be a whale. I know it is amusing only to the two of us but on a long trips or when in a traffic jam one of us always starts it. Then we both start giggling and the trip goes by much faster.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 2:17 pm

    13. Pam says:

      We play “Polar Bear”. My oldest son started this – we’d get under a blanket and pretend that we are in a polar bear den doing things that polar bears might do in a den. My youngest loves it too.

      And I love Heidi’s comment above: Now that the kids are teenagers, we pretend we know what we’re doing and they pretend to go along. It’s great fun.

      Does it count if I’m doing that now and they’re still pre-school age?

      July 22nd, 2009 at 2:51 pm

    14. LaDonna says:

      My Green Cup! (Playing every evening in our home.)

      Daughter (age 2) always drinks milk at bedtime from the same green sippie cup. Various other family members steal the cup yelling “my green cup!” A chase (and shrieks of laughter) ensues until someone else claims the cup. It passes around until it makes its way back to daughter who yells “NO! My green cup!” and runs to her bedroom with it. She giggles for the longest time every evening about her ability to get the cup away from us. We’ve done it for so long that now she starts laughing when I get the cup out of the cabinet.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 3:05 pm

    15. monica says:

      Not a game, but a phrase. My parents & I (I’m an only child)always said “Goodnight, Sweet Dreams, I love you” before going to bed. Whole phrase, never different,don’t know how it started like that. My little one is 7 weeks old and I’m saying it to him already 🙂

      * * *
      I love those delicate little threads that knit one generation to the next. Both insignificant and more important than we can really understand at the time.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 3:10 pm

    16. Stacey says:

      “Hide the Pillow” (Strange name since there was no hiding of a pillow…but whatever.)

      When I was young my granddaddy would lay on the floor, head on a pillow and pretend to sleep. My sister and I would sneak up to steal his pillow and then the chase would begin! We’d run all over the house, giggling. Invariably, he’d turn the game around on us and jump out from behind a doorway or chair to scare us. We loved it!

      I’m sure he tired of playing this silly game over and over and over every time we would visit…but he never let on.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 3:29 pm

    17. k&c's mom says:

      The children are adults now, but we had “The Magic Pillow”. The child would lay on the pillow lengthwise at bedtime pointing hands and feet. The parent would scoop up said pillow and giggling child from the side and fly through the house slooping up and down until the child would land uncerimoniously onto the bed. We’d collapse in a heap laughing and have bedtime prayers. The miracle? They’d go straight to sleep.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 3:32 pm

    18. Liz says:

      Seriously, any post that gathers comments like these deserves some kind of award!! 🙂

      Okay, our game… since before she was 1 year old my daughter loved to make animal sounds. (By the way, what kind of parent teaches their child animal sounds first and “may I have a cup of milk?” later?) Anyway, she would be all strapped into the carseat and I would be driving along and she would make an animal sound. I would say “Oh no, I forgot to bring Gracie, what am I going to do with a COW at the grocery store today?” Giggles errupt from the backseat and then another sound. “Oh no, I forgot to bring Gracie…” You get the idea. Even today, as a 7 year old, she still might pipe up with an animal sound from the backseat just to get my response.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 4:02 pm

    19. Sarah at themommylogues says:

      Finger. Your hand is a pet named Finger. The middle finger is his head, the rest of the digits make up the feet. We have Mommy Finger, Daddy Finger, and Little Girl Fingers. Sometimes when someone is crying, they will only respond to Finger. Much like the puppets in What About Bob? Finger has a funny voice, and does silly things.

      When my husband was growing up it was named Clothes Weasel. But that name never caught on with our girls.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 4:10 pm

    20. The G-Ma says:

      Our kids used to play “Ceiling.” You didn’t play this with everyone (6 kids) but usually 2 or 3. You’d lay on your back and pretend the ceiling was the floor. If you walked to the left, oops! you’d have to jump over the wall (which in reality was the space above the door) to get to the next room. You could play merry-go-gound with a dining room ceiling light fixture. Moldings were sidewalks all around the room. Spider webs were a special treat.

      I loved that game and would play it with them because it involved only talking and imagination. No jumping or running. A perfect game for a lot of sibs.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 4:12 pm

    21. Kelly @ Love Well says:

      “Tushie”

      As the name suggest, this game involves sneaking up on an unsuspecting family member and goosing them while simultaneously squealing, “Tushie!”

      Caution: Be sure to explain the rules of this game say you can ONLY play with people who are aware of its existence. And never, ever play with proper, English grandmas. (I speak from experience.)

      July 22nd, 2009 at 5:07 pm

    22. Christy Cate says:

      “Jack and the Bean Stalk” and “Road Grader” — starting when I was about 3 years old (or at least my earliest memories), Saturday mornings were for pancakes. As soon as I awakened and could smell my mom cooking, I would run into her bedroom and call in bed with Daddy. (I now know he stayed just to wait for me.) I snuggled up next to him and he told the story of Jack and the Bean Stalk using his arm as the growing stalk. I never tired of using my little hand to chop down the stalk, knowing it would fall right across me and I would have to struggle with all my might to get out from under it.

      When the pancakes were ready, Mom would call and I would wait patiently for Dad to start the road grader, making all kinds of tired engine sounds. Then he would “roll over” me as I squealed and laughed. I would then try to jump out of bed and beat him to the table.

      Ahhhh! What a joyous memory for this 36 year old!

      July 22nd, 2009 at 5:32 pm

    23. Melissa says:

      Wynston and I play the “animal game” – we sit/lay on the bed and act like animals. I can’t believe he hasn’t outgrown it yet – it started when he was about 3 and now he is 6. I love every minute he wants to play with me, because I know he will eventually outgrow wanting to play with Mommy.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 5:47 pm

    24. tom says:

      “Lumpy Cushion”.

      Our five-year-old will hurry over to the couch before my wife or I get there, and will park himself right where he knows one of us will sit.

      It’s our job to pretend to sit on him and exclaim “Wow, what a lumpy cushion! I’d better fluff it up…” and then pretend to pound and fold and scrunch him up as though he were a pillow. Repeat until laughter forces a trip to the bathroom.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 5:52 pm

    25. leslie y says:

      wild kingdom.

      remember that show from the seventies?
      We use an afghan as a net and throw it over one of our four kids while giving a running commentary describing “the animal”.
      We then ‘radio tag’ them, release them back into the wild, and look for the next animal to study.
      I don’t even think they’ve seen wild kingdom…

      July 22nd, 2009 at 6:01 pm

    26. everydayMOM says:

      This isn’t exactly a game… but when my kids ask me for something, like a cup of milk, I will say, “OK, but it’s gonna cost ya.”

      “How much?” they will ask.

      “Five hugs and three kisses,” I demand.

      It’s gotten to the point now where they offer to pay me for things in advance. Usually their price is somewhere around 25 hugs and 16 kisses, so it can take a while. =]

      It’s a good way to lighten the mood or just spread the love when we need it!

      July 22nd, 2009 at 6:28 pm

    27. Lisa says:

      Occasionally, and quite randomly, the family will circle around a covertly chosen family member and give them a rousing round of applause- just because! If the chosen family member is still a wee one they might even be lifted up to stand on the kitchen counter or table for their ovation. It’s amazing how much the kids love it.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 6:53 pm

    28. mannequin says:

      We don’t really have any weird games, we’re just weird. My son and I are the only ones that get each other’s jokes. Everyone around us can be confused and straight faced and we’re rollin’ on the floor. It’s wonderful having the same sense of humor as your child, everything is an inside joke!

      July 22nd, 2009 at 7:57 pm

    29. Shelly W. says:

      My husband gives our kids “the claw.” He holds his arm up and says, “Oh no! It’s the claw!” and then he proceeds to tickle them in the gut until they pee in their pants (not really). His dad did the same to him, and they all thought his family made it up. Imagine our surprise when we saw “Liar, Liar” for the first time and Jim Carey was doing The Claw with his on-screen son. We freaked out! But I guess there was an old wrestler who used to play that same trick on his opponents or something like that. Weird.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 8:06 pm

    30. Sherri K. Edman says:

      “Bite! Bite! In the Night!”

      My dad worked a night shift when we were little, so he had taped up a black tarp over the window in their bedroom. You could go in at any time of day and shut the door and turn off the lights and it would be pitch black in there.

      So my sister and I would go stand in there and Daddy would shut the door and turn off the lights and crawl around on all fours, growling, “BITE! BITE! IN THE NIGHT!” We’d scamper, squealing and giggling, all over the room until one of us was caught and got chomped on the fingers or toes.

      Best. Game. Ever.

      July 22nd, 2009 at 8:57 pm

    31. Ann says:

      So many games over these past few years, it’s hard to remember them all. Let’s see…there’s the one where my daughter pretends she’s a kitty (we played this every morning for months, maybe years). At breakfast, I say, “Good morning, Polkadot” and she meows and jumps into my lap to eat her cereal. Then there’s the “Hello Kitty” game that we play in the car. Someone (usually my daughter) thinks of where Hello Kitty is and my husband and I try to guess. “Is Hello Kitty on the telephone we just passed?” My daughter grins and shakes her head, no. “I know, she’s back at home in our bathtub!” A great way to while away the road hours.
      And can you tell, she’s a cat lover?

      July 22nd, 2009 at 9:29 pm

    32. Jenny says:

      “Steamroller”
      Usually played when someone is laying on the floor or bed. You shout ‘Steamroller’ and roll back and forth over the other person. My kids loooove to play this with their dad. Then it usually becomes a game of wrestling and jumping on top of him!

      “Surprise”
      My son (3 yrs.) loves to hide behind clothes in the closet while I’m getting ready. I will act worried and talk to myself about where he is. That he is missing and what am I going to do without him, etc. If he makes a sound, I say ‘oh, is that my big boy? Where is he?’ and so on. He always ends the hiding game by jumping out and yelling “Surprise” or “Ta-da.” And then we start all over with him hiding again.

      July 23rd, 2009 at 12:58 am

    33. edj says:

      “Tickle Island” or “Nap Island.” Adult lies on couch. When child ventures near enough to be snatched, adult grabs child and either tickles him/her while yelling “Tickle Island!” or uses him/her as pillow yelling “Nap Island.” There is no escape from The Island! Child giggles hysterically and wiggles away eventually.

      July 23rd, 2009 at 7:31 am

    34. cyndi says:

      Oh, you always make me smile, and this one includes a sweet tear and yet another “I HAVE to write more stuff down.” We are super silly at our house, and you’re right that so many have been forgotten already. Our favorite and most enduring, tho, is “The Circle Of Love” At nite, after stories, DH and I will lay facing each other, join hands and touch feet, then the boys jump in the middle and we sing, pray, whisper. A friend was over for a sleepover and we passed it along :wub: Thanx for the mushy smiles this morning!

      July 23rd, 2009 at 10:11 am

    35. Roxanne says:

      I made up a lot of really silly songs when the kids were babies. The first was the “Dry Diaper Song.” As if by magic, the first time I changed my new neice’s diaper I started singing it. It’s just what you do when you change a diaper.

      July 23rd, 2009 at 10:59 am

    36. Christine says:

      We have a couple of “silly” things we do. My husband just reminded me of the “rowar-dance” I used to do for the babies when they were little. It involved rotating my hips making the “rowar” sound four times then shaking the hips from left to right to “boom-shakka, boom-shakka, boom-sha-boom” twice, made them giggle cause I’d do it at all sorts of odd time. We also applaude for tuna fish – we had just finished watching Wall-E and applauded at the end of the movie, but the children noticed that other people didn’t. We told them we just like to have so much more fun that’s we’ll even clap for tuna fish, so they started clapping everytime someone says “tuna fish” no matter where we are.

      July 23rd, 2009 at 12:16 pm

    37. Allison says:

      I love this post and the comments. Growing up we had “pinchy crabs.” We do this with our childern. Pinchy crabs show up anywhere and turn into stair crabs, bed crabs, kitchen crabs, couch crabs, you get the idea. Always a source of giggles and moving a reluctant child a little faster.

      Two more sentimental things I grew up with that we do with our kids are “kissie sessions” and “love squeezes.” “Kissies sessions” was created when my mom and dad were giving each other a hug or a kiss. We would wiggle our way inbetween. My dad would pick us up and each parent would grab a cheeck and make lots of kissie noises. We do this constantely with our kids (guess we’re hugging and kissing a lot!) and each kids loves to get in on the action. This lasted well into high school and probably collage growing up. “Love Squeezes” goes back to my grandmother and maybe further. You simple squeeze whose ever hand you are holding. Most people do this without thinking, but I always tell my kids why I’m squeeze their hands, and show them how excited I am to hold their hands. I loved when they reached an age where they tried to give a squeeze back but had to use two hands!

      One game that was created by our family was “lion” Very simply papa is the lion hiding in the house and the kids (hunters)have to go find it and kill it. It’s best to play at night with the lights turned off with flashlights. The roars papa can make our ferocious and the screams are a wonderful mix of fear and laughter. It always ends with the lion “eating them up” We dont’ play this much since we got a dog (he goes berserk) but it’s one of my favorites, and the kids!

      You can also play safari this way by hiding stuffed animals and finding them with a flashlight.

      great memories!

      July 23rd, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    38. Aunt Murry says:

      Wow, you are really making me think…

      We played the grocery store game where my Dad, to amuse us in the grocery store would ask us what a vegetable or something looked like. Like a potato in the shape of a duck. Worked with clouds too.

      Then there was Ugga Mugga. being a fan of Mr. Rodgers we would rub noses at night night and say ‘Ugga Mugga’

      July 23rd, 2009 at 2:54 pm

    39. Alice@Supratentorial says:

      “The Tickle Test” where I pretend to very seriously determine where on his body my 5 yr old is the most ticklish. He is ticklish pretty much everywhere and loves to be tickled and will often request “the test”.

      “Bull” is a game I played with my Dad. He would put a blanket over his head and be the bull down on all fours. Object of the game was to try and run past him without him catching us. I have no idea how it started or why we called it bull. He plays it with my boys now sometimes which is fun to see.

      “I love you more than” is a game my 5 yr old and I play. “I love you more than ice cream” “I love you more than legos” etc. The goal is to one-up each other with better and better statements.

      July 23rd, 2009 at 3:54 pm

    40. Jan says:

      I Love You More.
      I wrote a post about this. I thought I had left the description in a comment, but I guess it didn’t take.

      July 23rd, 2009 at 5:43 pm

    41. Ann says:

      I thought of one more: The Snuggie Game
      My husband, daughter and I sit close together on the couch and we pile our hands on top of each other. Whosever hand is on the top gets hugged and snuggled by the other two.

      This afternoon I grabbed Sydney and ran around the house playing your game. Oh, dear, I never want these games to end….

      July 23rd, 2009 at 8:43 pm

    42. Lysa TerKeurst says:

      Towel Man… my husband runs through the house with the most fun evil laugh you can imagine swatting a towel and popping anyone’s legs he can get.

      I wish I could say I join in. But alas, I’m usually the one telling the kids where to hide from him and giving Art the eye— you know the one that says if you swat me with that towel, there will be consequences buddy!

      July 24th, 2009 at 1:15 pm

    43. Fraulicious says:

      My 20-month old DD started playing sound games with me … her first made up game. She starts out by whispering “babababa”. I match her. Then she suddenly shouts “BABABAAAA” or “LALALAAAA” and I match her. She goes back to whispering “babababa”. Etc. etc. Until she gets tired of it. As silly as the game is, I love it. Especially since she came up with it and is the one to initiate it. Can’t wait for more!

      July 24th, 2009 at 7:57 pm

    44. Prairie Rose says:

      My little sister and I used to play “Rides.” I (six years older) would lay on my back on the floor with my knees curled up, and she would sit on them facing away from me. My feet were therefore right in front of her. She would push a toe and each toe had a different “ride” associated with it, (bumping, flying, etc.) and I would then give her the ride on my legs/feet that she had requested. Sometimes I’d surprise her with a new twist, and once she was supposed to be holding on and wasn’t and went flipping backward over my head and landed with such a thud on the floor that it knocked the breath out of her and I thought I’d killed her. But we spent many many hours of fun doing Rides. 🙂

      July 25th, 2009 at 11:41 am

    45. jen says:

      “Daddy Traps” My husband chases the kids around on all fours til he catches one and then “traps” her and she has to wriggle her way out, giggling the whole time, of course.

      “naked baby dance” this is my favorite with the tiny new ones. post bath, the girls like to air dry and I made up a silly song about “it’s naked baby time!” and they dance and dance. the little one would strip all her clothing and do it al day if she could.

      and my favorite “Sweetie” This one involves me lying on the couch as the “sweetie” while my oldest covers me up and pretends to be my mommy. I often get a rest. love it! (i also love pulling all the tricks that she pulls at night, “mama? tickle me please!”)

      July 26th, 2009 at 1:12 pm

    46. Meredith says:

      When I was small, I would sit on my mother’s foot and “hug” her leg with my arms and legs. She would hobble around chanting, “turn me loose, little goose!”

      Now, my four-year-old and two-year-old sit on my feet while I akwardly waddle around chanting, “turn me leese, little geese!”

      Mom loves watching us play, and I think some of her enjoyment is knowing that now I know why she always tired of the game before I did.

      July 27th, 2009 at 1:59 am

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