Well, the good news is that I finally figured out that I could thaw the frozen meat that I found in the basement of the village grocery, give the thawed meat to the wolf at the intersection of the two snow-covered trails, then make my way to the previously undiscovered hunting lodge at Dire Grove.

The bad news is that I may be just a wee bit obsessed WITH A COMPUTER GAME.

Just so you know: I never could bring myself to buy the full version. I know my personality, and if I start purchasing and downloading hidden object games? Oh, it’s all over, my friends. My family will have to fend for themselves and learn to get by on frozen chicken pot pies (that they cook for themselves, mind you, because I’ll be way too busy thawing pretend meat in a pretend microwave FOR A PRETEND WOLF).

However, even though I didn’t buy the full version, I have it, because my brother-in-law bought it for me as a little surprise.


So after supper last night I grabbed my computer and opened the game and the next thing I knew it was four-ish hours later and OH MY WORD HOW DID THAT HAPPEN?

I knew when I climbed in the bed last night that I was going to dream about that silly game, and I absolutely did. Right before I woke up this morning I had a dream that a friend of mine had a toolbox that she couldn’t open, and when she off-handedly said, “You don’t happen to have a key for this thing, do you?” – well, I was so puffed-up with pride that I could barely find adequate breath to say, “Why, I DO have a key. I found it in the safe in the office. The secret code is 4997, you know.” And then I opened that tool box and there were little pops of light all around it as well as a light tinkling of bells in the distance.

It’s perfectly fine if you pity me. It might even be fair.

Especially since I might end up wearing a t-shirt that looks like this before it’s all said and done.

I believe the word that you’re looking for is “KLASSY.”

Yes ma’am.

I’m hoping that there are six or maybe thirty of y’all out there who have experienced a similar LOSS OF ALL REASON where a computer and/or video game is concerned. Like maybe you secretly play your kid’s DS when he or she is at school? Or maybe you like to put the hurt on a little Mario Kart to wind down after dinner? Or maybe you have unraveled every Zelda-related puzzle known to man?


There’s strength in numbers, people.

Especially if one of those numbers knows how to solve the puzzle in the electrical box at the historical society.


  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • email


  1. Oh, yes. All of the Mystery Case File games are so fun and hard to pull yourself away from. I haven’t tried Dire Grove, but have loved all of the other MCF games.

  2. I have to admit, I have a slight gaming obsession myself. My best friend and I are addicted to a Facebook game. It’s so bad that we actually discuss it like we are IN the game. Her husband thinks we are nuts. We will have conversations about it on the phone as if it’s REAL. The worst part is that I am on medical leave and have been obsessively playing it lately. Now, I come to your site and read about this game you have been playing and of course, I go and try a trial version of it. I have one week of medical leave left and I think I know what I will be doing. :)
    I don’t think you can steer me wrong, you did after all lead me to the wonderful world of Revenge.
    Happy Gaming!

  3. I’m not a big video game person, but my hubby is:) The Wii we got for Christmas last year has been played at least 5 times more by my hubby than my three kiddos. He was a little bit obsessed with beating Super Mario Brothers when we first got it! I think he finally made it after a month or so of trying:)

  4. Oh be careful. Years and years and years ago, when my two boys were little (they are mid-twenties now) (I know, how did that happen, I’m so young and all…) anyway they got the first Mario video games and Oh My Goodness. I was hooked. At night after everyone was in bed I would jump and fail and jump and burn and jump and die over and over again. I could not stop. It was bad.
    So I repeat. Oh be careful.

  5. Frontierville on Facebook. I had to quit. Sometimes I still think about going back…

  6. Hi, my name is Melanie and I have a gaming problem.

    I very rarely play anything like Dire Grove because I know I’ll be sucked in for hours. I occasionally let myself play games like Tetris and Bejeweled because they’re quick, right? Play a few levels, finish the game and then move on. Except, ok, just one more round because maybe I’ll beat my high score. Three hours later…

  7. you are not alone!!!! I’m with you 100% and btw…if you actually find a tshirt, could you send me one in a medium. I want to be KLASSY along with you!! Have fun!!!

  8. My husband plays games on Webkinz. Regularly. He also obsesses over Wii Ben Ten and Lego Star Wars.

    It’s hopeless. Just Sayin’.

  9. Smurfs Village on my iPad. Sigh……

  10. Oh yes! I get hooked easily. I finally had to turn the games off on FB because I was spending way to much time in the frontier and farming my fields, and creating my own city and my own amusement park! haha Now I’m playing Words with Friends, but fortunately I have to wait for them to take their turn, so it’s just take a turn and wait. It’s usually only once or twice a day to take a turn. Although, what you’re playing there looks like fun… Cathy…! haha

  11. I’m NO gamer since everyone else in my home is BUT, a certain neighbor (Wendi) of mine a few years ago and I would get together shamelessly after the bus would pick up our 7 children collectively and we would jump on our trampoline until we could no longer breathe from flips, toe touches and the like…….I’m just saying

  12. I’ll confess that Minesweeper has eaten hours of my life. Can anyone beat my record of 128 seconds on the Expert level? Oh my word – I just saw that I’ve played that dumb game 1183 times and only won 10.

  13. The MCF games are incredibly addicting. I am also a sucker for the Nancy Drew series. There are 25 games so far and I’ve played all of them. I go so far as to pre-order them so the arrive the day of release. Yes ma’am, I am addicted.

  14. Worked on Zelda Twilight Princess for the Wii. Did the walk of shame to the bedroom around 1 am.

  15. Do we need to pray for an intervention?!!

    I’m addicted to Parking Mania on my iPhone – I may or may not have repetitive strain injury …. But I WILL complete all levels!

  16. One Word: Tetris

  17. Since I did not want to spend $6.99 on Dire Grove, I opted for th $4.99 Big City NY. Weird, I know.

    I am on level 12 of 60. I CANNOT STOP! Thanks, I think.

  18. Hahahaha…Love MCF and most any hidden object game. I’m seriously thinking of checking out this Dire Grove game!

  19. Look! Another thing I can do at school tomorrow besides grade!

  20. Heros of Might and Magic. My mom and my husband both won’t let me buy it. There are UPGRADES! You collect GEMSTONES! You explore the map and find TREASURES!! It is taking all of my willpower not to get on ebay and throw caution to the wind. Bearing in mind that I’d also be throwing my pursuit of my PhD out with the caution…

  21. Words With Friends on my iPhone. Can seriously get lost in it for hours.

  22. I play just about every hidden object type game you can find online. I’m too cheap to buy them for my MAC, though (and they would be NO fun on an iPhone… just not big enough to see the pictures well). I’ve played some of the MCF games (the online versions) and love them. I am totally addicted to games.

  23. My daughter had me hooked on Farmville – until I woke up in the middle of the night, my heart pounding and me hyperventilating because I FORGOT TO HARVEST MY CROPS!!!!

    I realized I had a problem and went cold-turkey.

  24. Animal Crossing on the Wii. If one of my animal neighbors asks me to find their house key, I can’t rest until I fish it out of the river. I think that if I don’t, they won’t be able to get back into their home and might freeze overnight while I sleep soundly in my comfy bed. Who needs that on their conscious?

  25. I remember when my mom got a GameBoy. It was MOM’S GAMEBOY. Do not touch MOM’S GAMEBOY unless given express permission. And we all got a tad bit addicted to the game Spiritual Warfare, because it was all biblical and fruits of the Spirit.


  27. I may or may not waste inordinate amounts of time trying to get 3 stars on Angry Birds.

    Oh, and does stalking your blog stats count as a video Mae? If so, then yeah. That.

  28. Chocolatier – several versions. And any of the time management games starring “Flo” the waitress. I hate to think of the wasted hours. Oh, and Build a Lot – several versions of that one too. It’s usually time management games. I think I have control issues.

  29. No games but I’ve spent much time on Pinterest, my new obssession at the moment. I have to have a Pin fix every 30 minutes or so when I get home. Been known to lost track of time every now and then. **sigh** It’s so much fun!

  30. “…….because I’ll be way too busy thawing pretend meat in a pretend microwave FOR A PRETEND WOLF).”

    BEST.LINE.EVER. I cannot stop laughing!

  31. Mine is also the time management games, ala Diner Dash, Hotel Dash, Wedding Dash. They are so addictive! When my husband sees me clicking away on the computer, he always says “You waiting tables again?” But the hidden objects games have also been an addiction, as well as Farmtown and Dr Mario and I’m sure many others.

  32. This could be dangerous. And hopelessly fun…

  33. When I was in elementary school my brother and I went to our teacher’s house for music lessons. While one was playing instruments, the other was in the computer room playing Monkey’s Island. So fun.

    Now, I feel like I can’t justify the time that a game like that takes, but I have trouble staying away from the small computer games like Bubble Blaster. Kind of the same reasoning that goes into the fact that I won’t eat a whole candy bar, but I have no problems polishing off a couple or 4 little bitesize bars.

  34. I’ve never been a gamer… until Dire Grove! Oh my — yes I’m hooked. I spent a few minutes playing last night — aka 3 hours — and then had to SHUT it DOWN! Haven’t been back today, but going to play again tonight. Must find a way to get across that covered bridge!

  35. Oh my gosh I have SUCH a weakness for games! I finally, like three weeks ago, decided that I need to trim some of my time-wasters, so I had to trim the games. They’re great in moderation, right? I lose ALL SENSE of moderation when I download a game from the web… *shakes head in shame* lol

  36. Connielynn says:

    Some years ago, about 15 or so, my daughter and son both had virtual pets. My daughter had a cat and my son had a dog. If these pets were not taken care of, like feeding, discipline, and taking out poop, they would die. I found myself taking care of the virtual pets while the kids were at school. Oh, we laugh now. I carried them around in my pocket while at work, shopping, running errands or just whatever. I couldn’t stand the thought of those little cartoon pets dying on my watch.

  37. I am a WWF junkie myself, but I have gotten involved with the Million Heir Nintendo DS version. Until my kids lost it. Erg.

  38. Love the post and the obsessive/addictive personality… Guilty. I may or may not have asked for and received Super Mario Brothers Wii for my thirty-fourth birthday last week… and given my kids things to keep them busy last night so I would not feel guilty that I had no intention of taking turns.

  39. Love the hidden object games, but I still haven’t bought one. I download the free version and play it until it says I’ve used up all my time. I got caught up in Gardens of Time on FB and finally had to quit, that and Castle Age. I was killing monsters, ya’ll – people needed my help. I still play a little Family Feud and Words with Friends, and I’ve subscribed to Pogo, but that’s it. :)

  40. I believe you’ve just introduced me to a new addiction. I had no clue!
    I went through a Tetris phase, then a spider solitaire phase, a minesweeper phase, and now a Mario Kart phase (with my 9yo who hates to lose to his mother). Maybe I need to stay far, far away from a mystery game. I can see four or five hours down the drain…

  41. I blame my Typing Maniac addiction on the big mama. She casually mentioned her obsession in a post sometime last year and my life has never been the same.

  42. Not that I am an obsessive gamer or anything, but I thought I would let everyone know that when I went to the big fish games website to download Dire Grove this morning, I found out they have a special for today only. If you are a new customer, any game download is $2.99 by using the coupon code NEW299. Now, I must get back to my game…Y’all have a great day!

  43. I absolutely LOVE Dire Grove! I love hidden object games and play several. I even go back after I’ve “won” and replay them. After all, I payed $6.99 for each one of them, I gotta get my money’s worth. Love, love, love the Mystery Case Files line of games. They are so challenging. I get caught up in the story and find myself playing “just a few more minutes” so I can finish the scene, then I finally surface and realize it’s 1 a.m! My kids Nintendo games aren’t safe either. My son and I play Xbox together and I am involved in several games in Facebook! It’s to the point I have to set a game allowance for myself or I wouldn’t accomplish anything else.

  44. Last night I was trying a new recipe. I got so into a game that the next thing I knew my apartment was filled with smoke and the new recipe was a burned mess.

  45. Christina says:

    I may or may not have spent 8 hours at Best Buy on Thanksgiving/Black Friday trying to buy a super-cheap tablet mainly so that I could play Angry Birds without having to squint at my husband’s tiny phone screen.

    I’m only slightly embarassed to admit that.

  46. Oh yes, I LOVE games. Especially puzzle games or games like cake mania. I recently discovered Professor Layton and the Diabolical Box at Sam’s Club for $4.99. It was a DS game that I “bought” my son for Christmas. Except I had to try it out first, ya know, to make sure he would like it. I played that thing round the clock whenever the kiddos where not home, until I beat it four days later. And got absolutely nothing done. And now I am in trouble because I googled it and found out there is a whole series of Professor Layton games…

  47. Joelle @goldenchances says:

    Two very low points in my gaming history:
    1. My boys told the neighbor’s kids who were STUCK on Level 11 of Donkey Kong Country 3 that I could be of some service. So they came in the house and asked if I would get them past said level. Well, Mama’s definitely up to a challenge like that, and in all the excitement I told them that I could do it but I would need COMPLETE AND TOTAL SILENCE!!! They had some mixed emotions about the whole deal after that.
    2. Perhaps worse, I admit I used to get on my kids’ Webkinz account and play games. And sometimes, because you cannot choose your opponent, I might have had to show a few children how to get their GAME ON in Goober’s Laboratory. I mean they never really saw what was coming. It wasn’t a healthy place to be, despite the fact that I was RAKING IN THE KINZCASH. Don’t judge.

  48. I do enjoy Mario Kart and Tetris. I will sometimes play on Webkinz after my kids go to bed. But I have never really been lost in a game like you describe. Much more likely to be a book that leads me to neglect my family. ;)

  49. i may or may not have logged on as my children and played with their webkinz pets. they could not figure out how they were earning so much kinzcash! of course the animal had to constantly go to the doctor because he was not being fed / bathed but he sure did have a nicely decorated home.

  50. Two weeks ago, I would not have been able to relate…AT ALL!! Although, from the description you’re giving of your game…I may have not been introduced to the right games. I’ve always assumed that I wouldn’t enjoy computer games.

    That was until I innocently picked up my love’s phone and started checking out his games on our drive to Birmingham! (BeaUtiful city by the way! I am in love! I always assumed that Alabama would look like South Carolina or Georgia (Atlanta area) which I don’t care for; but Birmingham reminded me of my faves VA/WV. I didn’t realize that it was in the hills!! I can’t wait to go back to visit my new family to be!)

    Annnnyway! I discovered Jewels! And was sneaking his phone all weekend, and playing before going to sleep. K was laughing hysterically at me and my new obsession!!

  51. Let it be noted that before this moment, I had never heard of MCF or hidden object games. I’m getting ready to put my cursor in the Google Box, type in those words, and hit Enter.

    I am holding you all accountable for the consequences. Enablers ! ;-)

  52. I LOVE all of the Mystery Case Files games (especially Ravenhurst, the first), and I am so glad to know that I am not the only one who loses track of time and spends way more than I should on these fun games.


  1. […] that I downloaded last night. So far it hasn’t sent me into a spiral of obsession quite like my beloved Dire Grove did, but I’m optimistic that it’s going to be a good […]