Now, as I normally do, a disclaimer/clarifying my title since I just write catchy titles, or something like that. This isn’t only going to be about gaming with a baby around, it’s going to cover a number of nerdy things.
So, for those of you who aren’t friends of Kristen and myself, I can’t remember if I posted anywhere on Twitter or on Facebook for Nerdologists that we’re expecting our first kid. Which is super exciting, stressful, and life changing. One thing that I’ve been thinking about is how that’s going to affect the website, playing games, D&D, anime, movies, books, etc. I mean, clearly it’s going to affect it, but how much is it going to affect things.
First, I think that the Dungeons and Flagons podcast is probably going to take a bit of a break. Though I’m not sure about that, it’ll depend on a number of things, but at least a little bit of a break and more so than it has. We did just record recently, but once the baby is around it might be more of an official break.
However, I don’t want to get away from my nerdy roots and stop doing things that I’ve loved doing the past few years for the website as well as just in my life. I’ve found that a lot of these things, like playing Dungeons and Dragons, going to AcadeCon, starting up board game night and playing games like Risk Legacy, Gloomhaven, and Charterstone regularly have been great experiences. They also help me because I’m an extrovert and being around people keeps me energized and ready to go as well as keeping me in a better frame of mind.
So what are some tips and tricks for this? How do you balance wanting to do nerdy things and having a kid?
I don’t have a ton of answers for this, and for every person, it’s going to be different. But I think that there are a few things that I’ve been thinking about, that may or may not work, but that I think we’re planning on trying.
- Be fine taking the kid places. They have to get used to being at other peoples places, and while we have to take care of their needs as they arise, just because they want something, doesn’t mean that they are going to get it right away. Also, with our friends, we have friends, who are already modeling this some with taking their young children to our place another others places. There just has to be flexibility with Kristen and myself, as well as with others, because things aren’t going to run as consistently with a board game if Kristen or I have to step away to check on the baby, feed the baby or change the baby.
- Be fine having people come to a messy house. Small children and babies are horrible messy monsters, or something like that. But seriously, it’s going to be hard staying on top of cleaning when there is a small child who needs a lot of attention and makes a lot of messes so our house isn’t going to be as clean as it might be normally. And Kristen and I aren’t over the top and think that our house has to be completely clean when people come over, but we do try and keep it neat. It just might be a little less neat until the kid can pick-up after themselves several years down the line.
- Make intentional space for nerdy things. Now, with this, some of it is creating physical locations for these things where we can kind of keep board games separate from the baby by me finishing cleaning up and getting my games sorted and set-up in the basement or the corner of the office set-up for retro video gaming. But it’s also time wise, keeping going things like board game night or the Wednesday nights of playing Charterstone and Risk: Legacy or the Tuesday nights of Gloomhaven. But being flexible with them, which we already are, but trying to keep those things on the calendar will be important for me. And for Kristen, helping her keep time where she can play Breath of the Wilds or Dragon Age: Origins.
- Find faster nerdy things to do or fit them in where we can. Right now, I will probably watch a couple episodes of an anime before Kristen gets home from work. That might not be as possible in a few months, but watching one during down times and being intentional about those things is going to be how we can get in some more nerdy things. Probably won’t be able to play Arkham Horror every night, but getting in a quick round of Sushi Go! Party with Kristen after the kid has gone to bed and before we do, that’s certainly possible. Let those every day nerdy moments still happen whether it’s reading while in bed for a little bit a new fantasy book or watching an anime or sci-fi show.
So, I’m not sure how well most of these will work, and how much brain power Kristen and I’ll have on nights without a ton of sleep. But these are ideas that I wanted to get out of my head and into an article now, because otherwise, while I’m sleep deprived, I’m probably not going to remember any of them.
Do you have kids, or know someone who does, how do you keep nerdy things going yourself or with those people? What changes in nerdy things have you made, and what opportunities has it opened up? I know I’m excited for a few years down the line when I can start playing board games, not the normal kids ones, but some of the new kids games with our kid or introduce them to D&D or some RPG for the first time or until they can do better than me at Mario (that last one probably by the age of one).
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