My hope was waning.... my hope that a child of mine would like to engage in a pretty silly activity that I find cathartic..... that's right.... puzzles.
When I was growing up we would buy a big puzzle to do at the lake house for our visit, or bring one to Grandma Jolly's when visiting for a holiday. .... not that grandma's was boring, far from it. It was a great way for several of us to wander in and wander out of conversation around the card table it was set up on. It was a favorite memory of mine, so of course I trek them out to the lake house whenever we go because there isn't TV, or computers, and in the summer the afternoon storm is a definite given to drive us indoors.
Big Al loses interest fast, so does Blondie.... I had hopes for T-Rex, but she's only good for about an hour...... BEHOLD CHEESIE. Cheesie is in a STEMS magnet (Science Tech, engineering and mathematics) and her teacher always has a 100 piece puzzle going in the classroom (I swear it helps logic and spatial reasoning - really, I'm a math teacher, I promise) So Cheesie asked if we could do a puzzle over Thanksgiving... WHY OF COURSE DARLING CHILD. So I pulled out a 500 piece one that we could do together, and even Brian joined in. So then we needed more puzzles because my others are 1000 pieces and that would be a bit overwhelming for her, so we borrowed from grandma and Aunt Christy. Now, it can't be just any puzzle, it has to have artwork, and a LOT of elements, not just some photo of a mountain range - boring... Cheesie helped me to do 3 puzzles in 3 days.... except now I'm older... and my back hurts from bending over, and my eyes squint a bit.... but I got to indulge my old holiday memory and work a fun puzzle with my youngest.... thank goodness. The conversation was lovely, and she refused to go to bed or leave the table unless everyone else did because she didn't want someone doing it behind her back. She'll also tell you that she did most of it....
Also, yesterday was Big Al's actual birthday, and we wrapped up the endless celebrations with a family dinner, minus T-Rex who thought it would be more fun to see Miley Cyrus with a friend. Family, and Big I (who also helped with the puzzles) came together and Big Al was quite happy. Not the best picture with leftover dishes on the table, but here is a look at the gathering.