May 31, 2019

Disclosure: I have received Imhotep and Lost Cities Rivals for free in exchange for a review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Affiliate links are used in this post. You can read my full disclosure here. 

My husband and I love playing board games, but it can be hard to get people together to play. Over the years we have discovered some awesome two-player board games (beyond Checkers, Monopoly and The Game of Life), and here is a list of our favorites, in no particular order.

1) Lost Cities: The Original Card Game

Lost Cities is one of the first two player games we have probably played as a couple. My husband actually owned the game when I met him, so he introduced me to it. It's a really nice quick pace 2 player card game where you race each other to complete expeditions. Your goal is to get the most points, but if you don't complete your expedition, you lose points, so tread carefully! It's a mixture of strategy and luck.

We usually play 3 rounds to make a longer game and add up all our points in the end, but if you only have 10-15 mins to spare, you can do 1 round easily in that amount of time.

2) Lost Cities: Rivals

I was super excited when Thames & Kosmos asked if I wanted sample copies of some games and this was one of their options! We loved the original card game and Lost Cities: Rivals is a fun twist on the classic! There are no negative points and it's designed to last only one round. Instead of just drawing cards and hoping you can get the ones you need, there is a bidding component. Cards are laid out in front and if you both want the same cards, it becomes a bidding war to see who wins!

Another upside this game can have up to 4 players, so if you want to play with friends later on you can, whereas the original Lost Cities was strictly a 2 player game. However, it is a longer game and can take up to 40 mins even with just 2 players.

3) Carcassonne

This is a fun world-building game for 2-5 players. On your turn, you get to add a new tile to the map. Then you have an option to place one of your pieces (people) on the map to claim a city, road, monastery, or field. Each has a different point value. The goal is to get the most points at the end of the game. It's a fun strategy game that also relies on the luck of the draw.

This was a game my husband also introduced me to when we were dating. It takes a bit longer to play, around 30-35 minutes.

4) Ticket To Ride

There are many different versions of Ticket To Ride, but the first one we played together was Ticket To Ride Europe, another game my husband introduced to me. There is also an America version, which is slightly less complicated as it doesn't have stations or tunnels.

We also own the expansion Ticket To Ride: Asia (not a stand-alone game, you will need to own either America or Europe), which is pretty cool as it comes with two different boards (one side is designed for team play). It also came with wooden card holders, which the other games didn't have, and are super helpful for holding the train route cards so you can see all the routes you need to complete.

It's a 2-5 player game and can take 30-60 minutes to play, depending on players, with 2 it's usually closer to 30 minutes. The goal of this game is to build and complete your train routes. The player with the most points at the end wins. This one relies more on strategy, but there is some luck involved.

5) Pandemic  

This was the first game we got where you are actually working together to beat the game. In Pandemic, plagues are running wild, and your goal is to prevent outbreaks, find cures, and eradicate the diseases.

I'm not going to lie, this game can be frustrating as it is very hard to beat! The fun part is that you aren't competing against each other, but working together as a team, so it's a great way to bond with your partner!

It's a longer game taking around 45 minutes, according to the box, but we've had some 60-minute games.

6) Dominion

Dominion is a fun deck-building game designed for 2-4 players and takes about 30 minutes to play. Each player starts with a set amount of cards, and you have the option to purchase cards as you play and add to your deck. There are victory point cards to purchase as well, and once all the province (6 victory points) cards have been bought, the game ends. Whoever has the most victory points at the end of the game wins.

7) Exploding Kittens

This was a fun Kickstarter we actually supported, so we have the box that meows when it opens! It's a fun and quick card game, only takes around 15 minutes to play, for 2-5 players. Exploding Kittens mostly relies on luck as it all depends on what you draw for the most part. Perfect for when you need a laugh!

8) Kittens in a Blender

Kittens in a Blender is totally different from Exploding Kittens and takes a bit longer to play around 30 minutes. It's for 2-4 players. Your goal in this game is to save your cats from being blended! The more cats you save, the more points you get at the end of the game. However, every cat that doesn't make it, costs you negative points. The player with the most points at the end of the game wins.

It's a bit twisted, but a lot of fun and the cards are really cute!

9) Machi Koro: Bright Lights

We had the original Machi Koro first but really liked the Bright Lights version a lot more! The original Machi Koro seemed too short and too easy to win once you figured out a strategy. They really rebalanced the Bright Lights version. Cards are more random, making the game different each time. (Both games are standalone games, Bright Lights isn't an expansion.)

Machi Koro Bright Lights is designed for 2-5 players and can take up to 45 minutes to play. It's a card game, based on strategy and luck. Your goal is to build a city and the game ends whenever a player completes their 6th landmark. That player wins the game.

10) Imhotep

I was also received Imhotep as a sample from Thames & Kosmos. It's a 2 to 4 player game, takes about 40 minutes to play, and relies heavily on strategy. It's totally new and different compared to other games we played, which is why we really enjoyed it.

In this game, there are 6 rounds. In each round, there are a set of boats. The round ends when all the boats have delivered their stones. There are 4 different pieces of the board you can deliver stones and each one does different things. Some give you cards, some give you points right away, and others you have to wait to the end of the game to receive points. The player with the most points wins!

If you love strategy games, highly recommend this one! It's definitely more competitive as a 2 player game.

11) Evolution: The Beginning

I originally got this at Target on clearance. It's apparently a simpler version of the Evolution game, which we haven't played yet, but may have to look into as this one is a lot of fun! It's designed for 2-5 players and takes about 30 minutes to play. It's a highly strategic game, so if you like strategy games, this is a great one for 2 players!

In Evolution: The Beginning, you have different species which you can evolve to have different traits. These traits will help you get food, which is the goal of the game as the winner is the player who has the most food at the end of the game.

12) Timeline

There are many different versions of Timeline, but they all play the same. We have Timeline: Science and Discoveries, which appears to no longer be available, but we have played the Americana version with friends. It's designed for 2-8 players and lasts 15 minutes, so it's a fun short game.

In this game, you draw cards, and each card has an event on side and date on the other.  You don't get to see the date until you place your card. Your goal is to put your card on the timeline in the correct spot. This is fun because a lot of the events no one knows when it happened, so your ultimately guessing at what point in history something happened. It's kind of a cool history lesson.

The downside is if you play too often, you'll start remembering the dates things happened and the game can stop being fun. However, you can always add another version of Timeline to expand it and make it more challenging!

13) Hive

Hive is a fun twist on checkers. There is no board as you create the board, The goal is to surround the other player's Queen Bee. Different bugs allow you to move your pieces in different ways, some can jump over pieces, others move around the edge. It's strictly a 2 player game and is usually pretty quick (10 minutes), but can take up to 30 minutes to play. It's a fun little strategic game.

14) Tsuro: The Game Of The Path

Tsuro is a fun short little game (15-20 mins) for 2 to 8 players. In this game, you draw tiles with paths on them and your goal is to stay on the board. The last person on the board wins!

It is mostly strategic, but there is some luck as it can depend on what tiles you draw. We've had family members who hate strategy games love this one, so it's a great intro into strategy games if those aren't typically your thing!

You can find all of these games in my Amazon Shop.

May 20, 2019


With the rapid amount of strict abortion laws passing in states (Currently: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississipi, Missouri, Ohio, Utah), I decided it was time for me to write this post. 

A few years ago, I made it my goal to read the Bible, to actually read it. I didn't get far as the God in the bible is nothing like the one at church. I think that is the real problem with Christians. They trust everything their pastor, father, preacher, etc tell them, but never took the time to actually read what was written.

The "God" in the Bible was a murderer, and very violent. He was not kind or loving as everyone says he is and certainly didn't value life, as he preferred killing over eradicating sin. 

God killed a lot or often tested his followers' loyalty by asking them to kill, often their own children, but here are just some passages where God committed mass murders:

 2 Kings 2:23-24
From there Elisha went up to Bethel. As he was walking along the road, some boys came out of the town and jeered at him. “Get out of here, baldy!” they said. “Get out of here, baldy!” He turned around, looked at them and called down a curse on them in the name of the Lord. Then two bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the boys. 

Genesis 19:24-25
Then the Lord rained down burning sulfur on Sodom and Gomorrah—from the Lord out of the heavens. Thus he overthrew those cities and the entire plain, destroying all those living in the cities—and also the vegetation in the land.

Judges 14:19
Then the Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon him. He went down to Ashkelon, struck down thirty of their men, stripped them of everything and gave their clothes to those who had explained the riddle. Burning with anger, he returned to his father’s home. 

Numbers 16:31-35
As soon as he finished saying all this, the ground under them split apart and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed them and their households, and all those associated with Korah, together with their possessions. They went down alive into the realm of the dead, with everything they owned; the earth closed over them, and they perished and were gone from the community. At their cries, all the Israelites around them fled, shouting, “The earth is going to swallow us too!” And fire came out from the Lord and consumed the 250 men who were offering the incense.

So Aaron did as Moses said, and ran into the midst of the assembly. The plague had already started among the people, but Aaron offered the incense and made atonement for them. He stood between the living and the dead, and the plague stopped. But 14,700 people died from the plague, in addition to those who had died because of Korah.

Let's also not forget the story of Noah's Ark, where God drowned the whole world (Genesis 5:32-10:1).

Not only did God, someone who is supposed to value life, kill people, often innocents (like the Egyptian babies), he actually performed abortions (ripping babies from pregnant women).

Here are passages from the Bible where God talks about abortion and killing the unborn:

Exodus 21:22-25
If people are fighting and hit a pregnant woman and she gives birth prematurely[a] but there is no serious injury, the offender must be fined whatever the woman’s husband demands and the court allows.
Basically, the baby is the father's "property," so if the baby dies, the offender just has to pay a fine.

Numbers 5:20-22 
But if you have gone astray while married to your husband and you have made yourself impure by having sexual relations with a man other than your husband”— here the priest is to put the woman under this curse—“may the Lord cause you to become a curse[b] among your people when he makes your womb miscarry and your abdomen swell. May this water that brings a curse enter your body so that your abdomen swells or your womb miscarries.”
Basically, if the woman is guilty of an affair, she will have an abortion. Thus God is okay with abortion when the baby is conceived out of adultery.

2 Kings 15:16
At that time Menahem, starting out from Tirzah, attacked Tiphsah and everyone in the city and its vicinity, because they refused to open their gates. He sacked Tiphsah and ripped open all the pregnant women.
So much for the sanctity of life, he ripped babies out of pregnant women.

Hosea 9:10-16
Even if they rear children, I will bereave them of every one. Woe to them when I turn away from them!
Doesn't sound like God really cares about children, does it?

Hosea 13:16
The people of Samaria must bear their guilt, because they have rebelled against their God. They will fall by the sword; their little ones will be dashed to the ground, their pregnant women ripped open.
More ripping of babies out of pregnant women and killing of children, doesn't sound like a very pro-life God, does it?

Even Jesus showed little concern for the unborn and children at the anticipated "End of Times:"

Matthew 24:19 
How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers!

One more thing, the bible even states that the ability to breathe is the first sign of life: 

Genesis 2:7
Then the Lord God formed a man[a] from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being. 

Job 34: 14-15
If it were his intention and he withdrew his spirit[a] and breath, all humanity would perish together and mankind would return to the dust. 

Isaiah 42:5
This is what God the Lord says— the Creator of the heavens, who stretches them out, who spreads out the earth with all that springs from it, who gives breath to its people, and life to those who walk on it:

God only ever talks about breathing as being a sign of life, nothing about heartbeats.

Final Thoughts

If you are pro-life, don't use God or the Bible as your leader or resource. He's not the best role model as he killed the unborn and born, and even states that breathing is a requirement for life, not a heartbeat.

If you are pro-life, that's totally fine, but your belief is not the law of the land. The constitution specifically states:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion... (source)
So please stop forcing your beliefs onto everyone else.

I am personally scared to live in a world where I would have no choice. Basically living the Handmaid's Tale, or if you want a real-life example, Romania had an abortion ban and it wasn't pretty:

When communism collapsed in Romania in 1989, an estimated 170,000 children were found warehoused in filthy orphanages. Having previously been hidden from the world, images emerged of stick-thin children, many of whom had been beaten and abused. Some were left shackled to metal bed frames. (source)

Forcing people who don't want children to have children is only going to create emotionally unstable children, who will later turn into mentally unstable adults.

We, as a society, need to stop focusing on the unborn and start focusing on the lives already in this world, that are already breathing.

We need to improve our sex education programs. Birth control needs to be more affordable, if not made free (It's ironic how the same people who are against abortion are also often against birth control), and we need to work on catching rapists and stop blaming victims.

Rapists should not have any parental rights should the woman decide to have the baby despite the circumstances. The fact that rapists have more rights than women is sickening.

So if you are truly pro-life, then start putting more effort into preventing unwanted pregnancies, rather than only caring once the woman is pregnant. Otherwise, you are just pro-birth.

Suggested Reading:

God Is So Not Pro-Life
​God's 12 Biggest Dick Moves in the Old Testament
Examples of God personally killing people
Old Testament Mass Killings
What Actually Happens When a Country Bans Abortion
Convicted rapist gets joint custody of victim’s child
In 7 US states, rape victims can be legally forced to share custody of their children with their rapist fathers

May 9, 2019

Disclosure: Affiliate links are used in this post. You can read my full disclosure here. 

Here are ten easy switches one can make to be more environmentally friendly. A lot of these we have already done in our own home.

1) Plastic Bags → Reusable Cloth Bags

This is a switch I made a long time ago and have been doing for years! There are times now where I do forget, and in those cases, I opt for paper if possible. However, for the most part, I remember my bags and keep a few in the car at all times.

Some stores are even no longer providing plastic bags, like the Disney Store, so you have to remember your own bag or buy a reusable one from them.

A bonus to using your own bags is some stores, like Target, will give you a small discount (Target gives 5 cents back per bag).

2) Tampons or Disposable Menstrual Pads → Reusable Cup or Cloth Pads

I was never a fan of tampons, tried them once and they weren't for me, so I only ever used disposable pads. Awhile after having my daughter, I decided to give cloth pads a try instead. We were already cloth diapering so it wouldn't have added much to the laundry. Ever since I made the switch, I haven't gone back. I only use disposables when traveling now. You can read about my experience with cloth pads in my previous post here.

3) Disposable Diapers → Cloth Diapers

One of the big reasons we chose to cloth diaper was because it was more eco-friendly. It also saves money and the prints are adorable! You can check out my favorite cloth diaper brands in this post and find out what my must-haves to start cloth diapering are in this post.

4) Plastic Straws → Metal Straws or No Straws

This was more a recent switch for us. We don't use straws very often,  usually for smoothies or drinks at home, but decided it wouldn't hurt to have some on hand. However, now when I do happen to stop to pick up food to bring home, I don't bother to grab plastic straws as we have these at home, so we surprisingly use them a lot more than I thought! (We honestly could just not use the straws, but they are fun to use!) This is the set we got on Amazon.

5) Tissues → Handkerchiefs 

I just made this switch this year. I was hesitant at first because handkerchiefs just get so gross, but I go through so many tissues due to allergies and it's just a waste. I ended up buying a total of 24 handkerchiefs. This way I had a least 3 per day for 1 week and wouldn't have to do laundry till the end of the week. After using them for a while, I realize I could get by with 2 a day and rarely do I need the third one. The Docker ones are my favorite, which you buy on Amazon.

6) Plastic Bottles & Coffee Cups → Stainless Steel or Glass Reusable Bottle & Thermos

Instead of buying those packs of plastic water bottles, opt to buy a reusable bottle, preferably steel or glass as they biodegrade, and filling it with water at home.

If you are a coffee lover, opt to bring your own thermos. If you aren't a fan of making your own coffee at home or are on the go, many coffee shops will refill your reusable one!

7) Plastic Food Storage → Glass Food Storage Containers

We made this switch awhile back and use Pyrex, but are hoping to switch to something that has a more airtight seal, like the ones in the picture above. I wouldn't recommend the Pyrex set as the lids are bendy and easily rip/tear over time.

The one major downside to glass is that it can break, but we haven't had any issues yet. You just have to more careful when handling it.

8) Paper Towels → Washcloths or Dish Rags

We still have paper towels, but do our best to use cloth to clean up messes whenever possible. We just use washcloths, dish towels, dish clothes, etc basically whatever is lying around. Anything works really to clean up a mess and then you just wash it later.

There are "unpaper" towels you can purchase on Amazon and various sellers on Etsy make them as well, some even with snaps so you can make them into a roll if you want! These tend to be more pricey than just buying a cheap pack of washcloths, but the upside is they are designed to be the size of paper towel and you can get fun prints.

9) Toilet Paper → Cloth Wipes & Bidet/Sprayer

This is one switch I haven't made yet, but have considered and might do it eventually. We use cloth wipes for our daughter, so was thinking once she's toilet trained, we'll use those as toilet paper. I would still keep paper around for guests of course.

For poop, you'll want a bidet or sprayer. We already have a diaper sprayer to wash the poop off our baby's diapers. 

10) Contacts → Glasses or LASIK Eye Surgery

I stopped wearing contacts a long time ago, but just recently discovered that contacts are not biodegradable! Choosing to wear glasses is the better way to go, or if you really dislike glasses, LASIK eye surgery is another option.

If you must wear contacts, opt for the ones that don't need to be replaced daily. There is also a contact lens recycling program you can check out here