I remember playing this thrilling game of cat and mouse with my cousins on numerous occasions! There was nothing quite as exhillarating as sneaking past the person who was “It” and sprinting back to “base” shouting, “Olly, Olly, Oxen-Free!”

I was usually the youngest kid, which meant that I couldn’t run as fast, but I could hide in the best spots, which was a tremendous advantage. I was one of the goofy kids who felt an almost uncontrollable urge to laugh whenever I had a great hiding place and “It” couldn’t find me. Sometimes, I couldn’t hold the giggles in, and I gave myself away. But that was okay, because I was having the time of my life!

My kids love Hide & Seek, too; Sometimes they beg me to play. I’m usually a little reluctant, because they’re young, which means that I have to surreptitiously keep tabs on where they’re hiding, and if they’re safe, which kind of takes the fun out of the game. And now that I’m an adult, there’s virtually nowhere I can hide easily. Still, now that I’ve taken the time to remember why I loved Hide & Seek as a child, maybe I’ll be more easily pursuaded the next time my kids ask to play. I don’t want them to miss that thrill that every kid experiences when hiding and waiting to be discovered.

Here’s one of my son’s mose “creative” hiding spots ever: