Quarantine Clean the Deck or Walk the Plank!

When Niki first mentioned the title of this week’s installment (the second, if you’ve lost count of days, nights or time, in general) in her creative Quarantine Cleaning Games, I was all in. With my mind’s eye, I imagined a swashbuckling, high seas adventure in which scurvy (but cheerful) pirates, in full costume, danced and sang while cheerfully scrubbing the deck of their pirate ship! At the end of the musical number and after the many, but hilarious, near disasters, the deck shone and sparkled in the sunlight and the pirates collapsed in an exhausted but satisfied heap as they surveyed a hard morning’s work…accomplished in the 7 minutes it took to sing and dance their way to ship-shape. Alas, mateys, this is not the “deck” that our dear friend had in HER mind’s eye.

Ahoy! It’s time to locate and shuffle your trusty deck o’ CARDS and play along!

If you’re anything like our family, you can only handle so many hours of TV and/or screen time. We’ve pulled out games that we haven’t played in years. In the middle of our kitchen table is a bowl of accessible, quick and easy games…UNO, Tenzi, Phase 10, Bananagrams, Skip-Bo, Blink and the 3-4 decks of playing cards we’ve collected (but never intentionally purchased) from different places over the years. It’s kind of fun to remember where we got them…a vacation, signing up for a credit card, a “convention”. My chosen deck is a thousand years old. It was randomly acquired by playing a game at a Blockbuster in the 90s. I spun a wheel and “won” a deck of cards…an old promo item for the movie, “Honeymoon in Vegas“. Anyone remember that movie? Nicholas Cage, James Caan, Sarah Jessica Parker…yeah, me neither. I digress.

Onward! To the game!!

Last week’s game, “Clean B-I-N-G-O“, debuted a Creative Covid Cleaning Costume but this week, we assume you’ve mastered your attire and we dive right in. The video is quick, entertaining and helpful. Along with the video, I’ve attached the printable for you to fill out with your chosen tasks. “Clean the Deck” is not only an engaging game to get things done, it’s also a fantastic way to get your workout in. The rain will not stop already. Our gyms are closed. Why not try something different? Pushups, Push-outs, Mountain Climbers…Yep. You heard correctly. The “Clean the Deck” card game combines cleaning with exercise OR another healthy habit of your choosing…for example, if you dare, drinking 8 oz of water every time you draw a club. Apparently, Niki drew 6 clubs which meant she drank 48 oz of water throughout the afternoon and spent the night traveling back and forth to the bathroom which just happened to be remarkably clean.

This game could get SUPER challenging and interesting, friends. For example, you draw a 2 of hearts…2 is clean the toilet in the master bath. A heart is 10 mountain climbers. You clean the toilet. You do the mountain climbers. You move on and draw another card. You draw the 10 of hearts. A 10 is organize a drawer or clean the kitchen counters. And yep…another 10 mountain climbers. You get it done and keep moving. Next to each number and face card, there are blanks for 2 chores. If you’ve drawn a 2 of hearts and spades and happen to draw a 2 of diamonds or clubs, you choose the chore (or a reward, just sayin). If you’re up for an extra challenge, invite the family to play along by having them choose the chores for each number/face card, draw a card or do some pushups, every now and then, as they’re working hard in their virtual classrooms. It’s Health and PE, fellow homebound educators!

REWARDS. REWARDS. REWARDS. A nap. A snack. An episode of Tiger King while eating a snack. It’s whatever. You get it. You know how to treat yo’self. Jokers and Instruction Cards bring the welcome rewards. Tip: for those of you who like to “bend” the rules, add a couple of Jokers from another deck. This is YOUR game.

Until next week, enjoy the quick video. Print and fill out the “Clean the Deck” printable. Shuffle the cards or stack the deck. Just have fun while getting it done!


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