Did you know that there is a National Puzzle Day? Yep, it was yesterday, January 29th. I know, I know… there is a “day” for everything it seems! But this day caught my eye and made me think about how important puzzles are to me and how many precious moments I’ve had sitting around a table, putting a puzzle together.
When I was a little girl, there was an elderly woman who lived around the corner from us. There was a card table permanently set up in her living room, scattered with pieces of a partially put together puzzle, and there was always a box of cookies on the table too. Me, my siblings, and other kids in the neighborhood would often stop by her house on our way home from school to visit, work on the puzzle, and of course enjoy a cookie or two (or four).
When I was little, I just thought I was doing a puzzle with an old lady, and eating cookies. It was pretty awesome. But looking back now, I realized how important those times were. How much I learned from her. How precious those moments were.
We are all so busy and have a million things going on, and a million people that need us, and a to-do list with a million things on it. We need to almost force ourselves to slow down sometimes! To sit. To be. For me, one of the best ways to do this is by doing a puzzle. Doing a puzzle takes time. It takes patience and strategy. It is something that the entire family can do together no matter their age. Doing a puzzle is quiet and peaceful, and allows room for great conversations to be had.
My boys and I love starting a new puzzle on a Friday night and then work on it slowly over the weekend. The puzzle is just there… calling out to you and inviting you to come and sit and work on it. We talk and laugh and have the best conversations while we work on that puzzle together. If we have to go somewhere, we can’t wait to get back home and work on the puzzle again! It’s a challenge and it is so rewarding to finally finish it together! We high five and celebrate our victory together! It’s just the best.
It’s always kind of sad to take the puzzle apart and put it away after you’ve spent so much time working to complete it. I wanted to treasure those moments we had while working on the puzzles, so I decided to make a puzzle book. I take a picture of each puzzle we complete and create a photo book or an album. It’s fun to look back at all the puzzles we’ve done together, to remember what time of year it was, what was going on in our lives at that time and reminisce.
So, in honor of National Puzzle Day, I invite you to start a puzzle with your family, and start creating more precious moments – moments where you slow down, sit together, be together, laugh together, and accomplish together. Whether your kids are still toddlers or teenagers, you can find a puzzle they will like. And if jigsaw puzzles aren’t your thing, try doing a crossword puzzle, or a soduko puzzle, or whatever kind of puzzle you like! As long as it involves sitting down together and taking your time to work on something together, that is all that matters.