You need a last-minute gift? Here are a few ideas you can pick up or order for quick delivery during the holiday week – suitable for all ages.
Jenga by Hasbro requires a little more brainpower than brawn. It’s a classic low-tech game, fun to play with family and friends of all ages.
You have 54 small wooden blocks, which you stack into a tower, and players take turns trying to remove a block without the tower collapsing. No two sessions are the same, so it always offers something different and can be fun for hours on end. You can grab one at Toys“R”US in Canada for $19.99.
UNO, by Mattel, is classic card game of matching colours and numbers. Even if someone has never played before they can pick it up quickly.
To win, you need to dispose of all the cards you’re dealt by matching the ones you’re holding to one showing on the table. Special action and wild cards change things up a little. When you’re down to your last card, you must shout: “UNO.” You need 500 points to win and earn them for cards left in your opponent’s hands.
It’s good for up to 10 players, ages seven and older. You can get a deck, which includes 112 cards, at your local Toys“R”US in Canada for only $7.99.
To celebrate 35 years of fun in Canada, Toys”R”Us Canada is also offering a special UNO Anniversary Edition featuring Geoffrey the Giraffe. It has 108 cards and retails for $5.99.
Both Jenga and UNO are ideal for a low-tech family gathering around the table.
Thousands of streaming movies, TV shows and more
If gathering around the big screen is your family thing and you want to add access plenty of movies and TV shows, now might be a great time to get the family a new Roku Premiere streaming player.
It’s a great and economical way to make almost any TV a smart TV. It’s also an easy way to get your entertainment like Netflix, Prime Video and other TV, news and sports channels, many free, streaming in HD, 4K Ultra HD and 4K HDR.
Roku supports the Apple TV app and the new Apple TV+ streaming service, as well as Disney+, giving you even more streaming options for the entire family.
It’s as easy as connecting to the Internet. You operate Roku through a simple remote complete with shortcut button to popular channels, or use your mobile device to control it and also listen through it with your headphone or earbuds.
During the holiday season, Roku Premiere is only $44.99. For a limited time, with purchase you also qualify for three free months of CBS All-Access, which offers newly-aired CBS shows and original content.
Roku Premiere is available directly from Roku or at retailers including London Drugs.
Theatre-style popcorn at home
Now that the entire family is ready for some serious TV binge-watching, why not enjoy some great popcorn?
The Cuisinart Theatre-Style Popcorn Maker (CPM-28C) is a scaled-down version of a commercial-style popcorn maker, complete with a pivoting kettle. With up to 500 watts of power, it can pop up to 10 cups of popcorn in just three minutes.
It looks pretty cool and is relatively small. It’s also simple to use. It has a tilt access door for easy-serving and a non-stick aluminum kettle for a quick cleanup.
Greg Gazin, also known as the Gadget Guy and Gadget Greg, is a syndicated veteran tech columnist, communication, leadership and technology speaker, facilitator, blogger, podcaster and author. Reach him @gadgetgreg or at GadgetGuy.ca.