We did a LOT of puzzles with the girls when they were small. They’re good for a whole bunch of reasons: developing hand/eye coordination, fine motor development, problem solving. We had some fun ones too; puzzles that glowed in the dark and had “heat spots” that revealed hidden pictures underneath if you pressed your hand on them.
My MIL has been a big fan of puzzles ever since I’ve known her. I’ve been slow to come around, because the idea of assembling 1000 tiny pieces into one big picture all by my lonesome never held much appeal before now. Perhaps puzzle interest develops with age, but I’m starting to see the appeal of puzzles, especially if there are other people around who are willing to help. Assembling a puzzle is an oddly meditative, isn’t it? Looking at the pieces and mulling each one over… it forces you to slow down and focus. I imagine it’s good for grown up brains too.
Related: Once upon a time I spotted a really smart puzzle/board game table at IKEA. It had wheels and was very low to the ground, so low in fact that it could actually be pushed under the sofa and kept undisturbed for the next puzzle session. Well, I should have bought that table when I had the chance because they don’t carry it anymore. (If you have one and are looking to get rid of it, please let me know.)
Over March Break, the four of us ventured out to Vanier (“why are there so many pawn shops here daddy?”) to check out the Hobby Shop. Mark bought a model rocket. (Sidebar: I sense a blog post in the near future, hopefully one that does not include a story about someone igniting his eyebrows.) While he browsed, I found myself admiring a selection of puzzles. I surprised myself and bought this one:
Cool eh? It’s a WHOLE NEW GENERATION OF PUZZLE! What do you think? Is it time to bring back puzzles? Or were they always here and I just never noticed?