Saturday, January 29, 2011


"There are no extra pieces in the universe. Everyone is here because he or she has a place to fill, and every piece must fit itself into the big jigsaw puzzle."
~ Deepak Chopra, Indian American, public speaker, and writer on Ayurveda, 
spirituality, & mind-body medicine

puzzles from places we've traveled

Today is National Puzzle Day - which recognizes ALL puzzles, large & small, word games and tactile tangles.

WE LOVE jigsaw puzzles... we set up a puzzle any time there's a break in our work schedule (winter break, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, summer... well, you get the idea!). 

JPE likes 500-550 piece puzzles best! 

Some puzzles are purchased on trips... I bought this one in the Library of Congress gift store.

When I was growing up, a rainy day meant the puzzle table would be set up ~ it was actually a card table that was placed near the window!

We also had some rules for working jigsaw puzzles!

someone?? didn't put the puzzle away correctly!! ha! ha!
1. You had to take the puzzle completely apart before putting it away.

close-up of Toonville puzzle ~ a favorite of ACE's
2. You were considered a "super puzzler" if you didn't have to look closely at the box lid to figure out where your piece would fit. Some of my family members say, "it's cheating" if you use the picture to solve the puzzle.
we have quite a collection of Christmas puzzles - this one is 750 pieces & JPE agreed to work on it!
3. If you find a piece missing, you need to mark the location on the cover of the box. You can see my note at the top of this puzzle (near the horse).

"Fruzzle" = puzzle dust
4. If you are the first person opening a new puzzle, you need to set the pieces out carefully, and then wipe up the "fruzzle" - no one likes putting together a puzzle that is gritty with "fruzzle"... Oh, and don't forget to wipe (or dust) out the puzzle box while you are at it!!

  • have made us late to work (gotta find that one last piece while sipping coffee)
  • brought us together as a couple (we completed a 550 piece puzzle in a Saturday - listening to jazz on NPR)
  • provide "inexpensive" entertainment - did you know you can get some pretty good puzzles from the Dollar Store? (see the pink puzzle box, second picture? it's was purchased for a $1 - reminds us of our trip to Cinque Terre, Italian coast village in 2005)
  • are considered a "thoughtful gift" for any occasion
  • keep our fingers nimble (hey! gotta keep them flexible), our minds sharp and focused
Oh! we've been known to spend time working SUDOKU, Word Jumbles, and even Wordsearch puzzles... 

My mom works crossword puzzles-but she's a voracious reader (which I'm not) & knows all kinds of words. On an airplane trip from CA to Washington DC, she completed 9 crossword puzzles on the way there, and 8 on the way home! (she hates flying)

So - tell me - how did you spend National Puzzle Day? or better yet, what puzzles do you do?


  1. Shoot!!! I wish I had know so I could have celebrated properly. I LOVE puzzles. Jigsaw, Sudoku, crossword and especially logic. I never thought about marking the box for the missing piece. I have a tin box full of the runaway pieces that are still searching for their lost box.
    Love the term fruzzle. You are so clever.
    Maybe I will work on a puzzle tomorrow to make up for missing today.

  2. I didn't even know about National Puzzle Day! But we do love puzzles as well. When I was a child every Christmas my mom would unpack the 1500 pieces puzzle of the "Alexanderschlacht", a painting by Albrecht Altdorfer, and start assembling it - it took several days. Our puzzles today are smaller...

  3. Card tables were at my grandparents house and the dining room table was used in my childhood home. My household as a whole is almost ready for a big puzzle. I would probably go nuts about missing pieces though, so we'll wait just a bit longer. ;-)

    Thank you, I didn't know I was tagged. Word is now posted if you want to mull it over as you puzzle or rest your aching arm pits. Speedy recovery! (Some stickers don't really stick to the air cast, but better than gray. I am allowed to start weening myself off mine. But with the wacky weather, it's actually a great safety device!

  4. I replied on my blog to your comment, but came here too, to say so sorry about your foot! More time for puzzles, tho, yay!

    I loved reading this post. When my husband & I first bought this house, it was a summer camp in very rough shape. There was no TV reception or internet, so in the evenings, we did jigsaw puzzles. Our town library has free ones you can "check out" just as one checks out books. Only you can keep them as long as you want (on the honor system). People donate them. The rule is: you take one, you leave one.

    My sister just gave us a new puzzle for Christmas. It's a very pretty one she bought in Ireland, as our souvenir from her trip.

    Happy Natl Puzzle Day & speedy foot healing!



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