3 Apps to Survive the Holidays With Family

The holidays are the most wonderful time of the year, with the presents, the lights, and holiday cheer. Yet, anyone with a family knows that the holidays can also be the most frustrating, patient-testing time of year too. It’s nothing to feel bad about. Cramming a bunch of family members into one house for an extended period of time can test even the most tolerant person’s patience.

While arguing with your little sister over your favorite sweater may stir up nostalgic childhood memories, there are better ways to pass the time. Avoiding known topics of debate are a good place to start; but believe it or not, there are ways to actually enjoy time spent with family as well. Before deciding to outlaw technology during the holidays in order to enjoy each other’s company, stop!

Technology can be the ultimate buffer between battling siblings and bridge the gap between generations. Here are three must-have apps to help survive the holidays with your family.

Heads Up!

This family-friendly game was invented by Ellen DeGeneres, so it’s guaranteed to give your family a good laugh. If you haven’t seen her play this hilarious game on her show the premise is simple. Hold your smartphone on your forehead, showing your family members a card with a word or phrase on it. Your family will provide you with clues or use charades to try to get you to correctly guess as many cards as possible in one minute.

The app is free to download and comes with several fun-filled decks to choose from including: Act It Out, Animals Gone Wild, BlockBuster Movies, and so on. Additional decks are available to purchase based on your family’s interests. The best part about this app is that you can record a video of your family members frantically giving you clues and watch it afterward.

While some family game nights can highlight sibling rivalries, this game is too funny to cause any serious competition, making it ideal for the holidays!


Catchphrase combines the pressure of hot potato with a guessing game, adding an element of suspense to a hilarious, family-friendly game. It comes as an app or a physical game.

To play you need to make two teams, then sit in a circle with members of opposing teams sitting beside each other. The person holding the phone has to get their team to guess the word or phrase on their smartphone. Once the phrase is guessed correctly, the phone gets passed to the person to your right, which will be someone on the opposing team. While the phone gets passed between teams, a menacing beeping becomes faster and faster as the timer gets closer to going off. Whichever team is left holding the phone when the buzzer goes off loses that round.

This app is a frantic, fun-filled game that the whole family will enjoy. Try it out and see who crumbles under the pressure of the clock!


ShakePop is the digital upgrade to Simon Says, so you know your little ones will love it. Once you select a character, the challenge is to follow their instructions for as long as possible in order to reach a high-score. The more you play, the more moves are unlocked, each more difficult and hilarious to perform than the last.

ShakePop is an ideal game to play at family gatherings around the holidays as it forces everyone to act silly in order to beat each other’s high scores. So, if you’re noticing your family members are a bit quiet and fun is lacking, break the ice with ShakePop and get everyone laughing again.

For some families, the holidays are the one time of the year when everyone gets together. This can cause some awkwardness for family members who haven’t seen each other in a while, but it can also be an opportunity to see just how funny your family can be. A hilarious, stress-free holiday is within reach, with these easily downloaded family-friendly games.


Kali Muir is an ambitious freelance writer with a BA in Communications. She was born in Canada but has since lived in Norway, Denmark, and England. Her work experience is as diverse as her past addresses, including roles in technical communication, corporate communication, marketing, and article writing. She has experience working in varied business sectors: Oil & Gas, Engineering & Technology, Clothing & Equipment Retail, and Creative Writing. Follow Kali’s professional and personal journey at www.kalimuir.com, or connect with her on LinkedIn and Twitter.

SIGN UP NOW            LOG IN        



FamilyTech Guest