Since I have retired I have begun working jigsaw puzzles fairly frequently. I enjoy them during the winter months when I can't get outside and when the weather is not so good. I do not possess a lot of patience so longer term projects such as building a plane or restoring a car is probably not for me. A jigsaw puzzle allows me to have many little wins while I am working it. I really enjoy White Mountain puzzles that contain a collection of many different things. I am currently working the one above with TV lunch boxes. I have also worked White Mountain puzzles that involve cereal boxes, childhood books, candy, etc. I get my little wins and sense of accomplishment many times with these puzzles. Finish the Fruit Loops cereal box among the 20 cereal boxes...Win! Finish the Goodnight Moon book cover among 20 other book covers....Win! Finish the whole puzzle....Mega Win!
In the winter I may finish one puzzle and break out the next one. Right now, I may finish a puzzle and not start another for several days or weeks depending on my mood and how busy I am with other things. Over the last two weeks, I finished two puzzles while my wife and I were in Houston for her cancer surgery. I'm sure I will finish many more if we are down there for extended periods for any chemo or radiation treatments. Last week's puzzles included a 500 piece and a 1000 piece. Most of the ones I do are in that range. I have picked up a few 500 piece puzzles at Dollar Tree of colorful hot air balloons, fields of flowers, etc.
With my patience level, I do not attempt those crazy two sided puzzles with the same scene on each side but at 90 degree angels. I do puzzles for fun, not to drive me crazy! I usually pick colorful puzzles that are fairly easy to put together. I want enough color and shape difference in the scene to allow me to concentrate on certain areas at a time. I do not want to do a 1000 piece puzzle of a green grassy field or cloud filled sky where every piece looks like it could fit anywhere on the puzzle. That is madness for me! I really like White Mountain Puzzles and Buffalo puzzles. The piece sizes and quality seem to be better than most. White Mountain puzzles often retail for $18.99 or more. I get most of my puzzles on discount or at thrift stores and pay 99 cents to $2.99. I have found two White Mountain puzzles (all pieces were there!) at thrift stores for $1.49 and $2.99. Once you find those deals it is hard to pay full price for them. The one above was bought at a toy store at a discount at $8.99. I figured for hours of entertainment, that wasn't too bad of a price.
Puzzles are probably "old fashioned" these days with all the games and things on our phones and endless streaming possibilities. But, the engagement of my mind, I think, is better than being on my phone or watching TV. Hopefully, my puzzle habit will stave off dementia.
Speaking of "old fashioned", I enjoy playing dominos and cards, but haven't played either in some time. Maybe when we get past this pandemic, I can convince some friends or neighbors into a game every once in awhile. My parents used to play "42" dominoes with friend often. They also played "Conasta", the card game. I learned "Conasta" but haven't played it in 30+ years and would need a refresher. I'm sure there are some that still play a weekly or monthly game of dominoes or cards and I think I would enjoy that. A recent phenomenon seems to be Mahjong. I hear that the game is fun but takes some time to master. I would definitely like to add Mahjong to my accomplished list of new things this year or next.