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Puzzled over a puzzle piece

The box for the jigsaw puzzle didn’t lie – technically.

It said the puzzle Mom, my sister Cathy and I were putting together over the past couple of weeks was 1,000 pieces, and that’s what was in the box.

The only problem was when we finished the puzzle, there was a piece missing and one duplicate piece. I’ve never seen that before.

There have been times when we finished a puzzle and found a couple of pieces were missing, but they could very easily have fallen on the floor and been vacuumed up.

Our family has always enjoyed jigsaw puzzles. They’re something the whole family can get involved with, and you can get them to be as easy or as hard as you want.

I remember many years ago when we had a hand-built cabin at Stuart Lake, I brought out a puzzle I had bought for us to work on. It was circular, which wasn’t that big a deal, but it was also all purple.

No picture, just a whole bunch of purple pieces to fit together.

I think I did most of that puzzle myself because everyone else refused to take part.

I don’t do as many puzzles at my place these days because I just don’t have room, but Mom almost always has one on the go at her place and any time I go over, we usually spend a few minutes working on it.

It is still very much a family thing for us. Some years ago we were out in St. Albert, visiting my sister Susan and her family. Three nephews and their wives, Susan and her husband, Cathy and her husband, and Mom and I.

There was always a puzzle out in the downstairs rec room, with six chairs around it. As one person stood up to take a break, there was always someone else ready to take their place.

There were a couple of grandnephews there as well, but they were very easy to entertain. All you had to do was read to them and they usually stayed quiet and enjoyed themselves.

I did find War and Peace was not a good choice to read to them, though.

We usually do 1,000-piece puzzles, but sometimes scale back to 500 pieces. There are so many choices at stores in Prince George for subjects and sizes, and when we finish with them, I think Mom usually finds a local group to donate them to so other people can have that same enjoyment.

I don’t know if she can do that with that last puzzle we did, though. After all, missing one piece and duplicating another is a nasty surprise to spring on someone.

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