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Let's talk about the MOST IMPORTANT bag: the fun bag

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    #16
    When we get together with my brothers, we did out a bag of bingo chips to augment the included chips, and make sure we can ALL play!

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      #17
      OK, so I've been working on developing this into a list of contents for a minimalist fun bag that is maximal fun!

      ULTRA minimalists should for goodness sakes have some gridded paper or plain paper (or dot grid) and at least two pencils. With those you can play paper and pencil games such as battleship, hangman, tic tac toe, dots and boxes, connect five. If you also bring a four-colour pen, you can play mastermind on paper and do a lot more doodling. But these items should just be in your bag all the time.

      MINIMALIST packers with kids, for me you can build a very good fun bag in something the size of a q-kit, plus a hardback book.

      Here's my list:

      Pad of paper or notebook – A5; dot grid, plain, perforated; two pen loops on the book if you don't have them in your bag.
      Pencil (on book), eraser, sharpener
      Black pen (on book)
      Travel watercolours (ie cotman set), tiny cup, sponge (or you could have coloured pencils, I just think paint is more FUN)
      Balloons in small bag
      Small sheets of tattoos and stickers (in book envelope)
      Glue stick
      Set of D&D dice + extra d6
      Tiny sewing case: Tiny needle book or bit of felt with needles, thread braid, needle threader, tiny scissors, safety pin (to make spinner for fortune teller game and punch holes in paper), length of elastic (tie to balloon? make a slingshot? just hilarious anyway?), buttons (multiples – could be used as game pieces too)
      Small box of mints or lozenges
      Tiny puppet or doll (in protective sleeping bag)

      WHAT TO DO:
      Art: sketching, painting, back-and-forth doodling, exquisite corpse, spinner doodle mandalas, make from a squiggle (use perforated for exquisite corpse, teeny books); based-on-sticker; draw mirror half; travel journal, nature journal; colour doodles (Mom or Dad make a cartoon, kid colours in, adds)
      Concentration: Paper folding, fortune teller folding, sew a book, sew a design on paper, make RPG characters, thread buttons, make new games to play, make collages
      Physical: balloon back-and-forth, balloon waddle, balloon basketball, tattoos
      Games: Battleship, hangman, dots and boxes, connect 5, mastermind, race with spinner, RPG scenarios, anything with dice practically (homemade race games etc), balloon-paper-blow,
      Comfort: eat lozenges, cuddle and talk to doll, spin spinner

      SOME NOTES

      - Paper. Paper is probably the most versatile thing you can have, my recommendation is a thin dot-grid notebook and a thin plain notebook in A5 size. In my perfect world these would be bound together and there would be perforated pages. The Leuchturm 1917 A5 dotted grid notebook does have some perforate pages in the back. Or just, you know, fold a few sheets of paper in half or buy a super-cheap small A5 plain pad. But I bet you travel with paper anyway.

      My Dad used to make us these things called Googlies. They had lightbulb shaped heads with big teeth and four arms. He would let us decide what they held in each hand and what kind of shoes and hats they wore and then he would draw them for us. Best Game Ever.

      I usually sew little books together for my kids made of any random paper we find. They write and illustrate them. The format of an empty 8 page tiny book is apparently very compelling.

      I always carry a sewing kit, so almost all of the sewing stuff I carry all the time anyway. Talking to my kids I realised buttons and elastic would be great to carry.

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        #18
        And I want to add cards, a rope (long enough for jump-rope), a small ball, and a small box with lego minifies and basic bricks to that if going for longer.

        (also I'm reading about DIY face paint). Thanks for coming to my Ted Talk.

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          #19
          ejvc,

          A pocket sized Etch-a-sketch! I’ve seen them that are a bit smaller than half the size of the original.

          I don’t have kids...but as an adult, I too include my own version of a non-electronics based “fun kit” when I travel. It’s in keeping with a tee shirt a friend used to have...The road to enlightenment is long and winding...so be sure to bring snacks and magazines for the journey.

          My own usually includes A book that doesn’t require long stretches of sustained attention (poetry, light mystery, short essays...); a magazine (Often, The Walrus); a notebook with good paper and sound binding; several extra-fine point blue ink pens; a soft large-ish multi-purpose scarf that can be rolled up small; a couple of trimmed pages from a crossword puzzle book; a twist pencil. And a couple favourite snack bars of one sort or another.

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            #20
            Ooh, nice! In a more extended kit, perhaps. I like your version! Mine contains a kindle, a sewing kit, a dot-grid notebook, a pencil, a pen, and watercolours. And of course my phone is at least in part an entertainment centre.

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              #21
              Actually just add a dice to papers+pens and you will be able to draw simple board games like "snakes and ladders" or "game of goose" (the fun part is creating them on the go) (and random objets as pieces, like stones found on the way or pieces of paper)

              the fun part with coloring doodles is one draw the doodle while the other one color it and vice-versa

              BTW, you gave me an idea, I will sew juggling balls (small balls with rice inside)
              just a Bihnion here

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                #22
                Originally posted by Rei View Post
                Actually just add a dice to papers+pens and you will be able to draw simple board games like "snakes and ladders" or "game of goose" (the fun part is creating them on the go) (and random objets as pieces, like stones found on the way or pieces of paper)

                the fun part with coloring doodles is one draw the doodle while the other one color it and vice-versa

                BTW, you gave me an idea, I will sew juggling balls (small balls with rice inside)
                Agreed, but, my kids also need the physical toys as well as the expressive ones. And then I take the sewing kit because I end up using it all the time anyway, but I think if you don't sew then you don't take it. I'm a big fan of the "if you don't know how to use it you won't learn on the trip" school of packing :-). Also applies to first aid -- my sister who's a doctor has an absolute ton of supplements and first aid stuff that she uses all the time (she claims). Me, I'm more like bandages, antiseptic, nail clippers, headache pills, allergy pills, tweezers and burn cream, done.

                Juggling balls are fun and good but a bit heavy? Depends how much else you are taking. I would rather say water balloons, but double-bag them.

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                  #23
                  Originally posted by ejvc View Post
                  Juggling balls are fun and good but a bit heavy? Depends how much else you are taking. I would rather say water balloons, but double-bag them.
                  just one to throw to myself when bored (+I don't have kids yet), I don't even know how juggling xD, but yes it can become heavy when too many,
                  I don't like balloon, too weak, not fun (for me), neither plastic ball for travel (too annoying to fetch when lost, big or small)

                  yes I understand for physical toys
                  just a Bihnion here

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                    #24
                    I have a set of 3 small juggling beanbag/balls that fit in a #1 stuff sack. Not too bulky or heavy...can't remember where I bought them though.
                    I like all the blues and greys...and all the happy citrus colours too! My search unicorn is the Sapphire Dyneema original Small Shop Bag...

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