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Monday, December 11, 2023

Playing Reindeer Games This Christmas

Last year after Christmas, Alice told us (in the comments) about playing a game with her family on Christmas. I recall she said it was a big hit with her family members. I tucked this info in the back of my mind and pulled it back up in early November. I think she called it a cup game. 

Anyway, I went online to see if I could find a cup game that might work with my family.

Here's a video that demonstrates how one family plays this game. One person sort of plays "game show host" and uses Solo cups to conceal different prizes. Then family members take turns picking cups to find their prize. The prizes don't need to be as extravagant as this family uses. Alice, I don't know if this is anything like what your family played last year.

So I was thinking this would work well for our 6 (or 5 would be playing, I'd be the host). While I've been out shopping, I've picked up some inexpensive prizes and a pack of Solo cups to use for our game. The plan is for us to play this after Christmas dinner.

What propelled me forward with this game plan was a conversation I had early last week. I was talking with the medical assistant at a doctor's appointment and he told me his family plays games after Christmas dinner each year. They take turns planning the games each year and all chip in for the prizes. His stories of their games were very entertaining and made me want to put together something similar for my own family. So that's the plan.

I'm curious, does your family play games on Christmas or other holidays? Give details if you can.

As for the reindeer games, the four of us watched this old version of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer this weekend and wanted to share the link in case you haven't seen it. This animated version was produced in 1948, long before the production of the stop-motion version that most of us knew in our younger years. It's not too long, about 8 & 1/2 minutes. Enjoy!

click here Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1948)


  1. Yes, that is pretty much how we played the game except we had no "bad" items under the cups. I also had some prizes larger than would fit under the cup so I used numbers and had the corresponding prize hidden in the bedroom where I would go get it when someone got a number. Old people (parents) and my adult children enjoyed the game very much. This year we will do Christmas bingo. Prizes will be money because candy and chapstick and gum, etc. were ok but money is more exciting. Enjoy the game. We must have had 50 cups of all sizes and played before dinner and after dinner.

    1. Oh, Lili, you should play also even though you are the "host".

    2. Hi Alice,
      That's a great idea to have numbers for the larger prizes, then hide those in another room. Thanks so much for sharing about this. You've inspired me to do something fun and different on Christmas for my family. You'll have to tell us all about how Christmas Bingo went afterward. I suspect my family will be playing Christmas Bingo next year and I'll need some tips. LOL!

  2. That looks like it could be fun. I think it's the element of surprise and that makes it along with the prizes. We don't play games per se. After we open gifts here, we travel to my FIL's house to celebrate Christmas with my husband's family. The whole scene is kind of chaotic with lots of people, little kids, music, and dinner. Not really conducive to a game. However, after everything settles down in the evening, a board game or a game of Dungeons and Dragons takes place sometimes among some of the crowd. And I agree with Alice. You should play Lili. Have one of your daughters put some of the prizes under the cups, so there will be some surprises for you, too.

    1. Hi Live and Learn,
      I think a large crowd with lots of little kids for the holiday has its own excitement and interest built in. I agree, the element of surprise will make the game more fun, at least I hope it will. As I pick up prizes, in addition to some basic, functional items, I'm also looking for items that will spark a little conversation. Anyway, I'm hoping this will be fun for my family of 6.

  3. You weren't kidding about the extravagent prizes on the video, Lili! This looks like it could be fun with my high school Sunday School class. Sort of a riff on the White Elephant game.

    We don't play games on Christmas, but we do have a games night on New Year's Eve. I usually make a snacky style supper (charcuterie board or appetizers for dinner) and we pull out the board games. If you haven't played Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza before, it's a riot and goes quickly (I'm not into the long Catan-style games--fast and fun are my style).

    1. Hi Kris,
      Extravagant, I know -- a fistful of cash isn't necessary for fun. I've found lots of small prizes that will be fun. I think your Sunday school class would love this. Although Whit Elephant is also very fun and can lead to lots of laughs.

      Game night on New Year's Eve sounds like fun. I'll check out Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza. I've never heard of that game before. Thanks for the recommendation.

  4. We usually play 1 game each year such as Christmas trivia or scrambled up Christmas carol titles etc. I was thinking that you can have one of your kids pick a cup for you & maybe they'll pick a good one for you!

    1. Hi Cynthia,
      Both Christmas trivia and the Christmas carol scrambled titles sounds like they're fun.
      Maybe I will have one of my kids choose a cup for me. Thanks for the suggestion.


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