gamesAnnaliese Griffin’s article about the relationship benefits of board games on Quartz.com last week really struck a chord with me, since I’ve been crazy about board games since I played my first round of Candy Land when I was three.

In fact, board games often play a role in one of the long standing birthday traditions we have in the DeYoe household: the birthday celebrant gets to choose a special activity.

Whenever my wife and kids want to know what activity I would like to do for my birthday, I opt for a day of Board Games almost every year. Although research suggests that playing board games can make you a nicer person, I don’t think that’s why I love The Settlers of Catan so much. I think it’s the family togetherness.

There is simply nothing I would rather do than spend a day rolling the dice, spinning the dial, and moving pieces around the board with my loved ones. My one rule when it’s my turn to call the birthday shots? They don’t have to let me win, but no cell phones, no music players, and no i-devices whatsoever. Just boards, pieces, people, and laughter. That’s the definition of happiness for me.

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