How to: Mystery Trips

Create a Memory:  “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”

Older adults trapped in a vehicle with 3-4 of their grand-children for hours on end. Who would do that? Only Grandparents hiding secrets. Grandparents on a mystery trip with kindergarten and elementary schoolers in tow. Here’s one way to do it adapted from a suggestion by my good friend Carolyn P.

1. Insert Mystery Trip Card on your windshield.

2. Insert children, belted in and believing anywhere is possible!



Mystery Trip # 1  Museum of Science and History (MOSH, downtown Jacksonville) Billed as a place where Wonders Never Cease.

Three of our four grandchildren are boys, and they have all followed Bob-the-Builder / Thomas-the-Train line of interest. Now it’s dinosaurs! This trip will feed their fetish.

Screen shot 2013-05-30 at 6.15.33 PM

Always end with FOOD! With no fast food place in sight, we make a hot dog—cookie—juice box picnic out of it this time.

Mystery Trip # 2  Polar Express: Any theatre, even a DVD at home will do. But the iMAX 80 foot-wide-screen bumps it up a notch. Besides, you get into a van and GO somewhere special. The woofer and tweeter sounds make the story come alive!


Mystery Trip # 3  Let’s Go Science! With Professor Smart and Dr. Knowitall

 Screen shot 2013-05-30 at 6.29.32 PMCurtPatWhataburger

Patrick and Curtis went berserk-y trying to touch the huge floating balloon, a  before-the-show stunt. We ended with WhataBurger! As you can see, eating is serious business!

Mystery Trip # 4  Blueberry Pickin’  Good country fun @ $3.00 a pound! 


Jenna says, “This is good, family fun!” And that was before the gang in the back-seat made up a silly song of 4-5 stanzas about picking blueberries to the tune of “Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush.”


The last stanza included barfing although that never really happened!

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9 thoughts on “How to: Mystery Trips

  1. I loved this one even more than usual because it’s news I can use. My grandchildren are 26 months and 7 months old right now, a little young for mystery trips. But they will be ready to roll soon. What I enjoyed was thinking of how much of your own childhood, as described in previous posts here, has been transmuted into your position as a 21st-century grandma. I’ve written a little poem called “The Plain Girl” and dedicated it to my 7-month old granddaughter who was recently dedicated in Brooklyn’s first UU Church.


    1. Thanks to your comment, I was prompted to remember something else: The year they were born, I typed a letter to each of my grandchildren (two 9-year-olds, a 7 and a 5 year old) and mailed it to their parents, so there would be a post-mark. It included something of my impressions of them as infants and my wishes and dreams for each one. However, I didn’t specify when these letters would be opened; I need to put that on my radar too!

      Your poem is a great memento for your granddaughter. I wonder if it will appear on a post one of these days! You know, of course, baby dedications are also parent and grandparent dedications too.


    1. I did make a video of their silly, make-up song and thought I posted it with the piece, but I guess I was mistaken. Well, there is always next week. Thanks for taking a peek, Judy.


    1. How sweet of you to back-track with me. We tried to repeat the blueberry picking trip this morning to no avail. Last week the berries weren’t ripe, and today the farm was flooded after a late-night storm, a real gully washer. So we will try again early next week, hoping “Three’s a charm!” Thanks for clicking back.


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