I've found that it keeps the kids busy (all of them, even the one and half year
old) for a good long while. Definitely enough time to wash all the dinner
dishes, which really doesn't take that long. However, it will make you
smile when you stumble back downstairs, half asleep, after finally getting
everyone into bed, and you will see that the kitchen has already been cleaned.
At first you will think, "oh, dear heavens, finally, my prayers have been
answered, the kitchen angels have visited my house!" And then you will
remember, "no, it was just me after all. Me and the dreidels." The
lovely lovely dreidels that my son's teacher has been giving out (free
dreidels!) for days. Bless her.
Just in case you've forgotten the rules from last year, here they are.
1. Gather everyone around the table, or better yet, sit around on a
carpetless floor. This way the dreidels won't go flying off the table.
2. You'll need pennies, chocolate coins, or for the rich, quarters.
3. Divide the money or chocolate between all the players. Put five of
whatever you're using for chips into the pot (not a real pot, just kind of in the
middle of the table). Let the youngest player spin the dreidel first.
4. If you spin a nun, you get nothing and the next person spins.
5. If you spin a gimel, you get everything in the pot.
6. If you spin a hey, you take half of whatever is in the pot.
7. If you spin a shin, you put one piece into the pot.
8. Keep going until the kids start fighting or the latkes are ready, or
better yet, 'till someone shows up with a box from Dunkin Donuts. Whichever
So yeah, there you have them, the rules. The rules, however, have not been
introduced in my house yet. My kids still think it's fun to just spin them, which is
perfectly fine with me. If you can get away with that, I highly recommend it.