The Case of the Missing Turtles

As is tradition, Maddie's family birthday celebration is always held up at Gull Lake, with my parents coming down from Canada to meet us for the week.

We LOVE this tradition.

We spiced it up at bit this year and just might have started a new "tradition within a tradition."

You know how Maddie is SO into mystery books, especially Box Car Children? Well, we thought it only appropriate to pull together a mystery that she could solve up at the Lake during her birthday week.

Papa brought her down to Frona's and while there, they "mentioned" that they had overheard customers talking about turtles coming up missing at the Lake. Hmmmm. They knew she loved turtles so they thought she'd better go home and check to see if hers were still there. (She had 9 in captivity, getting ready for the annual turtle race.)

She came back, looked for her turtles and "Oh no!" The turtles were gone. A clue was taped to the bin, which began her mystery/scavenger hunt to figure out WHO took the turtles and WHY.

She raced all over the neighborhood with Jack, reading the clues, figuring them out, and heading to the next clue.
It was SO fun to see her in "mystery" mode. She was intent and driven and so full of life as she zipped here and there, working with her daddy to figure out the clues.

The final clue led her to our neighbor's shed, and voila, there were her turtles.

She marched up to steps to Mr. Laninga and declared,

"YOU STOLE MY TURTLES!!!!" To which he promised her that he was going to put them back and that he was just testing them to see which turtle was the fastest because he wanted HER, the BIRTHDAY GIRL, to win the annual turtle race the following day. She sort of bought it, but still accused him of stealing, so we had to work on that all day, trying to convince her that while yes, he did take her turtles, he was just trying to help her win the big race.

What a fun memory was made!

{And props to my husband: Jack was instrumental in making this happen, because when it came down to us actually figuring everything out, I was about ready to just say, "Ah, forget it, it's too much work and she'll never know we were actually gonna do this anyway." So thank you, hun, for making this a special, special birthday for our sweet Maddie!}


Kim said…
Adorable! What fun memories she will have!
Alice said…
That is so cool ( idea for us sometime!!!) She will remember that birthday forever!

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