White Elephant Bingo

Can I share just one more tradition from our Remix celebration? (Boy can we cram a lot of them in one short weekend!)

We had a hoot playing White Elephant Bingo!

Bingo Fun

The rules are simple.

Everybody brings a wrapped white elephant gift. One person is the designated “caller” – everyone else can play with as many Bingo cards as they wish.

Whenever you get a Bingo – you choose a gift from the vast assortment on the table – or you can take a gift from someone else. Then that person needs to pick another one from the table – or take one from someone else which means that person now needs to pick another one from the table or from someone else which means… well… you get the picture!


It gets pretty wild toward the end as multiple people are getting Bingos at once! We play until someone gets a black-out. Then we take turns opening our “gifts”.

It’s interesting that when you don’t know what’s inside a present – you pick according to the wrapping.

For awhile a nicely wrapped gift with a toy chicken on top was a hot commodity.  Lovey (age 5) was thrilled when she ended up with it – at least until she opened it. The tire gauge and fancy bath soaps just didn’t thrill her!

PosterPedro was pretty excited about his gift – a poster showing airline barf bags from around the world.  Yes – I’m serious – barf bags.  No – it is NOT going in his room.

It was amazing how often the perfect gift went to the perfect person. My musical niece got a set of old Broadway Songs on cassette. (I hope she knows what a cassette player is!) 🙂

Remember Butter Buns? She got a vintage movie camera – one that actually uses film. I bet she already has it taken apart or has figured out to use it!

Then there’s my nephew TJ. This guy really needs a wife.


I’m sure the romantic super-sized heart candle and the Joe Cool sunglasses will help immensely – don’t you think?!

Buddy was very excited when he ended up with the pirate gift bag – and was even more happy to find it full of Burger King and McDonald’s Happy Meal toys.

Some gifts just keep on giving.

Poor Jan got a brand new how-to golf video (circa 1987) that we had brought the year before!

GiftsIt’s amazing the fun you can have with a garage sale Bingo game and everybody’s junk!

But then in my crazy family – it doesn’t take much to make memory!

The Remix: A Family Tradition

I love my family.

I love getting together with my family.

With 2 amazing parents, three sisters, one brother, 4 in-laws and a large collection of assorted nieces and nephews, aged 3 to 24 , any gathering is an undertaking best described as “organized chaos.”

Our official spring gathering is called the Remix and is entirely grandchildren driven. Since we celebrate Christmas together over Labor Day they thought we should remix Christmas in the spring.

Now every year the grandkids (with Grandma’s guidance) plan a fun- filled week-end at Mom and Dad’s on the prairie.

Some of the traditions include:

White Elephant Bingo: Everyone brings a wrapped white elephant gift and one evening we play bingo. Every time you get a Bingo you get to chose a present – either from the table full of presents, or you can take a gift away from someone who has already chosen one.  Things can get pretty wild as presents start flying from one person to another!

When someone gets a black-out, the game is over and everybody opens their gifts. (Anybody need a talking Bob the Builder and Wendy who can no longer talk?!)

Dress-Up Night : No, we don’t do a white tie meal with tuxes and formal attire, instead, we dress-up as any assortment of strange characters. We had pirates, ninja’s, and some Lord of the Ring characters (swords were definitely a favorite accessory this year!)

But we also had a sweet old granny, door-to-door salesmen, a camel herder, and even Shaun Cassidy (complete with entourage).  The creativity among those young’uns was amazing!

Family Worship Service: On Sunday morning we gather together to sing, pray and share. This year was especially sweet as both of my parents shared their testimonies.

For my siblings and I,  it was a precious review of events we experienced together as our entire family of seven came to know the Lord in just a few years. But for our spouses and children,  it was a look at events that changed the course of our family for generations.

Tears were flowing freely by the time we sang our traditional closing hymn – “Blest be the Tie That Binds.”

There were huge meals, too  many desserts,  games galore,  a family sock hop, and lots of laughter.

What precious memories we made this week-end.

Yep…I really love my family.