Day 136- Do a jigsaw puzzle

#116- Do a jigsaw puzzle

I have always liked puzzles. When I was little, I would sit for hours making puzzles with my grandmother. She taught me the right way to do it- 1) find a flat surface, 2) turn all the pieces right side up, 3) Stand the box up so that you have a reference to follow, 4) Make the frame, and 5) Work sections of similarly colored pieces. As you might well imagine, the fact that she had a list greatly appealed to me.

My grandmother and I made a lot of puzzles, but my Aunt Gloria was the clear winner in the family. No puzzle seemed too daunting. Her magnum opus was a 10,000 piece puzzle of The Last Supper, which my Uncle Louis glued together and had framed.

When my husband and I were young, we liked to take road trips. On our way out of town, we would stop at Target and grab a puzzle. Usually, it was 500 pieces or less- something that would not require a commitment of biblical proportions. When we would arrive at our motel, we would make our puzzles on the little tables in the room. We were easily entertained in those days.

I suppose I put “making a puzzle” on The List, because I felt like it would be a dose of good, simple fun. And I don’t know about you, but I am always up for a dose of fun.

I remembered that I saw some cool puzzles in the New York Times Store, so I began searching the internet. I found that some puzzles are made of wood instead of dime store cardboard.

I found beautiful puzzles offered by Artifact Puzzles and Liberty Puzzles.

I chose an Artifact Puzzle, called Haeckel Hummingbirds.

It is a 262 piece puzzle and it arrived in a wooden box.

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The lid didn’t slide very easily, perhaps to keep pieces from falling out, so I drug both edges across the bottom of a pillar candle and then it worked just fine.

I looked at all the pieces. They are cut expertly and the shapes are interesting, for instance one is shaped like a gecko and another is shaped like a butterfly.

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I sat down with the puzzle after dinner, about 8:30. I read in the purchaser reviews that some people had said they took a few weeks to complete it, so I wasn’t sure how long it would take me working alone.

I just started putting the pieces together. I soon realized that I am not the kind of person who leisurely makes a puzzle over two or three weeks. I am not moderate. I sat and worked that puzzle until it was done. My neck was sore, my back was sore, I was yawning like crazy and it was 2:30 in the morning, but I DID it!

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And because I like birds, I was pleased to find this legend on Wikipedia which names each species represented in the picture.

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Or here are the common names:

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I had forgotten how much I like puzzles. I would have preferred to be sitting with my Grandma Susie and nibbling a bologna sandwich while working an image of a hundred kittens in Christmas stockings, but this was fun too.

136 days to go!

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