March 26, 2020

How to Play Grandma's Game (solitaire) - A video tutorial

I shared this video five years ago, but I thought now, amidst this coronavirus social distancing, it'd be a great time to share it again.

I never knew what this game was called until I wrote about it on my blog, and a couple of people suggested it was called "Grandma's Game" or also "13 Stacks". I think the way I play it is slightly different than those rules, but it's very similar.

You can find digital versions of this game, but I think most of the fun of it is playing with actual REAL playing cards. The deal is the funnest part of the game!

You use two decks of cards (no jokers). To explain it in words here is nearly impossible, so I made a video way back in 2015 explaining how to play. I've only ever ONCE won the game, and it was so exciting! Here is what I wrote in my blog that day:

"I've mentioned the game in my blog several times, because it really helps me to keep from binge eating sometimes. I like to play it with real cards (not digitally). I've been playing the game for over two decades, and I'd NEVER WON. Not once! 
Well, apparently, today was my lucky day. I ACTUALLY WON. My heart was pounding toward the end, because I was doing so well, and I couldn't believe it when I actually won. My mom is the one who taught me the game, and she only won it one time (about 40 years ago). It's a really difficult game to win! 
I was dying to tell someone, but nobody really cares(!) so I decided to make a video that I've been planning to do for a long time but just never got around to it. I made a video that explains how to play the game. It's a hard game to describe, and I never even knew what it was called until I wrote about it on my blog a couple of years ago (the closest game I can find to what my mom taught me is called Grandma's Game). 
Anyway, if you're into playing solitaire, here is a video that explains how to play. I wish it was a little closer up, but I hope that it's pretty explanatory."

So, here is the video. Give it a try! You'll be hooked for life, because the odds of actually winning are nearly impossible, hahaha.

This is a photo of what it looks like when you win... Good luck!


  1. I have a solitaire type card game that I like playing, which I was told was called Idiot's Delight, but the rules I learned are different than what comes up when I search that. I think the rules of a lot of card games vary by region despite keeping the same name.

    1. I've not heard of Idiot's Delight! I'm going to have to check that one out. Do you play with real cards? Or digital?

  2. Question, when you are dealing the cards for the first round, Ace through King, if you land on the card with the corresponding card, e.g. 4 on the 4 spot, do you put the two extra cards in the draw pile or wait till you’ve gone through one whole round before adding the two extra cards? Hope that makes sense.

    1. Yes, you go ahead and place them immediately, even though the draw pile hasn't been established yet!


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