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It’s Puzzle Time

December 22nd, 2011

I talked about my love of puzzles before. Around Christmas each year I clear off the table and do a few puzzles. I have a few in my collection that I put together over and over again, but every year or two I buy a new one. When I was in Cincinnati in early November I picked up a new Ravensberger ‘Road Trip USA’ for this week. It was a fairly easy puzzle, we opened it up Tuesday night and finished it the next morning. It’s a fun one though, I love the theme!

Since the puzzle was so easy I decided to buy a 2000 piece puzzle! A few of you guys recommended Springbok puzzles, so I purchased their“Packets of Promise” puzzle, it’s perfectly fitting since it’s a bunch of seed packets. It’s supposed to arrive on Friday so we’ll be able to work on it over the Christmas weekend!

I find puzzles to be a great stress reliever during this busy holiday season. There’s nothing like finding a piece or two throughout the day as I’m going from one task to another.

When you find two pieces already stuck together in the box do you keep them together as a bonus or take them apart before starting the puzzle?

25 Comments to “It’s Puzzle Time”
  1. kristin @ going country on December 22, 2011 at 6:52 am

    Now that is an intriguing question. It’s been a long time since I’ve done puzzles, though I do enjoy them. I suspect I would keep them together. But if I was feeling virtuous and wanted to challenge myself, maybe I would pull them apart. Hmmm. This could reveal a lot about my character, couldn’t it?

    As an aside, my sister and one of her roommates used to do these beautiful puzzles and then glue them onto heavy cardboard and frame them. They made for some really cool wall hangings.

    Reply to kristin @ going country's comment

  2. kristin @ going country on December 22, 2011 at 6:55 am

    Oh, and P.S. Your book list over there on the side reminded me . . . have you heard of a new book called “Canning for a New Generation,” by Liana Krissoff? I got it for Christmas (we did presents early here since we’re leaving tomorrow) and I think you might really enjoy it. There are lots of interesting and different recipes in it, plus actual recipes to use the stuff you’ve canned. Including cocktails, which I know isn’t a big plus for you, but certainly endeared it to me. Anyway, you should check it out. And Merry Christmas!

    Reply to kristin @ going country's comment

    • Susy on December 22, 2011 at 7:21 am

      Sounds great, my kind of book. I find most books to be heavy on jams/jellies which we don’t eat that much. I’ll definitely look into that!

      Reply to Susy's comment

    • KimH on December 22, 2011 at 11:37 am

      Im getting this book for Christmas too.. My amazon wish list tells me its been purchased. ;)
      I renewed this book 5 times from the library since that is the most it will let you renew. Cant wait to have my own copy! ;)

      Reply to KimH's comment

  3. SNB on December 22, 2011 at 7:32 am

    I grew up doing puzzles. They were a football season thing. There was always one on the coffee table during football season. Daddy taught us that you never look at the picture on the box once the puzzle is out on the table. It certainly increases the challenge. This year, I bought a small 500-piece puzzle and took it to our Thanksgiving cabin where we stayed with our grown kids for three nights. It was fun to see how absorbed they were with it. I agree, it is quite relaxing.

    Reply to SNB's comment

  4. Andrea on December 22, 2011 at 7:40 am

    Pieces stuck together are a BONUS, lol!!

    Reply to Andrea's comment

  5. Teresa on December 22, 2011 at 8:04 am

    This year we gave a few puzzles as gifts to friends
    in a bag, but no picture. There was a lot of beggin
    for the pictures. haha

    Reply to Teresa's comment

    • Susy on December 22, 2011 at 8:12 am

      That would make it a big more of a challenge for sure.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  6. goatpod2 on December 22, 2011 at 8:25 am

    I usually keep them together if they’re already put together in the box.


    Reply to goatpod2's comment

  7. Victoria on December 22, 2011 at 9:10 am

    Break ’em up! My 3 y/o is going through his destructo-phase so we tend to get the “demo” out of the way so that we can put together a variety of puzzles before he’s ready to roll-over the puzzle (aka “new road”) with his trucks.

    Oh – and stress reliever indeed…there’s nothing like a little quiet puzzle time.

    Have a wonderful Christmas weekend!

    Reply to Victoria's comment

  8. DebbieB on December 22, 2011 at 10:21 am

    I always take them apart. I love the sense of accomplishment when I’ve put it together from scratch. :)

    Puzzles ARE a stress reliever – we used them during our evacuation from Katrina (I’m in New Orleans) when we lived with my sister for a month in a small house with 10 adults. We kept a puzzle on the coffee table and worked it as a group, starting a new one as soon as a puzzle was completed. That’s a fun memory of a sad time, thanks!

    I love reading your musings. Wishing you and yours a peaceful holiday weekend!

    Reply to DebbieB's comment

  9. Grace on December 22, 2011 at 11:09 am

    I feel like I’m cheating if I don’t break them up. I love puzzles. We’ve found that almost all rental vacation houses have them. It has become a tradition in our family to spend time working on them together. It’s nice because you may find yourself spending time with that one person you usually can’t find any common ground with.

    Reply to Grace's comment

  10. on December 22, 2011 at 11:17 am

    Im definitely not a big puzzle person! There is a great puzzle game in Ubuntu linux which I do from time to time. Its called “Palapeli” and works in any linux operating system. I usually import one of my own photos and depending on how long I want to work the puzzle I decide how many pieces it will be :) If I only have 20 minutes to spend, I might pick a 50 piece puzzle. If its something i want to come back to from time to time I might pick something more like 300 or 500 pieces. (for most who dont run linux, im sure theres a Win or Mac program similar)

    Reply to's comment

  11. KimH on December 22, 2011 at 11:39 am

    The only puzzles I’ve done in the last 30 years are children’s puzzles.. I think I’d take them apart. ;) Even they can accomplish putting them back together. haha ;)

    Reply to KimH's comment

  12. K.B. on December 22, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    I love puzzles! For years, Dad and I would do one when I came to visit over the Christmas holidays. Now that I live back in the same area, we don’t do as many, but I am planning to build my coffee table so that it can hold a large puzzle.

    And there are three rules you MUST abide by:

    1. all pieces must be taken apart first
    2. All pieces must be out of the box and turned the proper way up before starting
    3. the border has to be completed first


    Reply to K.B.'s comment

    • Susy on December 22, 2011 at 12:32 pm

      Same rules here! Especially doing the border first, always!

      Reply to Susy's comment

  13. Christine McCormick on December 22, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    My dad loves puzzles— I get him one every year for Christmas. Last year I ordered him a personalized 500 piece puzzle made from a family photo. This year I’m giving him a 3D puzzle. He’s never done one before, and it looked like an interesting challenge.

    Reply to Christine McCormick's comment

  14. Trish on December 22, 2011 at 3:31 pm

    We have worked puzzles as a family since I was a kid, and also have rules –
    – All pieces must be broken apart before starting.
    – The edge is worked first.
    – After the edge is complete, all of the pieces are placed face up on the table, preferably not inside the frame (if there’s room).
    – If you pick a piece up to try somewhere and it doesn’t fit, you have to put it back in the same spot (or at least a close approximation).

    My dad usually works on the sky, or any large swath of fairly uniform color, since he’s good at that and more patient about it than the rest of us. My sister, who doesn’t get much enjoyment out of puzzles, will steal a piece and hide it so that she can be the one to ‘finish’ the puzzle.

    Reply to Trish's comment

  15. Marcia on December 22, 2011 at 4:57 pm

    We always thought of stuck together pieces as a bonus, kinda like reaching into the cookie jar and getting two cookies stuck together. It`s not like you did it on purpose, they just came that way. So enjoy the break, life just winked at you.

    Reply to Marcia's comment

  16. MAYBELLINE on December 22, 2011 at 5:21 pm

    Are you serious?! I consider pieces stuck together a bonus. I will pick those out just as I pick out the outside pieces.

    Love jigsaw puzzles. Now when will you have some of your own puzzles available?

    Reply to MAYBELLINE's comment

    • Susy on December 22, 2011 at 5:29 pm

      I should do that, someday I’ll have a little store with greeting cards, post cards, prints, and puzzles!

      Reply to Susy's comment

      • Kathi Cook on December 22, 2011 at 8:20 pm

        or a puzzle Christmas card!

        to Kathi Cook's comment

  17. daisy on December 22, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    I love doing puzzles, although it’s been a while. Something feels so good about finding just the right fit…I take ’em apart, for sure.

    Enjoy your new puzzle!

    Reply to daisy's comment

  18. songbirdtiff on December 23, 2011 at 11:25 am

    There are no puzzles in our house, we have too many cats! I do love them, though. :)

    Reply to songbirdtiff's comment

  19. Sincerely, Emily on December 23, 2011 at 12:58 pm

    Oh, I am always tempted to leave them together, but I end up taking them apart. I just got a table out so I could start on a puzzle. It is that time of year.

    Reply to Sincerely, Emily's comment


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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