Sunday, February 15, 2009

Puzzling effects...

What's this?




It is a picture of two adorable kittens with a yarn of wool. It is also a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle being puzzled over by a six yr-old and his mother...

Yes! We are very smart, thank you very much! Much to the amazement of the resident snorter who thought we couldn't do it...(*i think he was just jealous)



Little S has always been fascinated by puzzles since he was almost 2 years old. He's spent many a rainy day with Kaleidoscope, the puzzle made up of colored little squares, which i love too. But jigsaws are his favorite. It's addictive and a great stress buster. Solving it teaches one about perspectives, about tenacity and is good exercise for the mind. This was the first time, though, that he tried his hand at a 1000 piece puzzle.

It is a fascinating thing to sit down with these odd shaped pieces and coax them into forming the complete picture. At first they are just meaningless shapes, and it's difficult to make sense of the mayhem. But we figured it out, me and my little helper. We started with the border, because the border pieces have one flat edge, thereby making it easier for us to start. It was not very easy because the fur looked almost the same. Sometimes, I would hold the piece the wrong way, and then lil S would slap his forehead and put it…right there where it belonged.

Every time S returned from school, he would wash up and bounce into the room, first to check how much i got done without him and then to try and beat me at it...


Sometimes it just wouldn't move forward. And then miraculously, when we tackled it after some time or the next day, we seemed to instantly find that missing piece. And everything would fall into place for a while. So much like life, isn't it?


Little by little, piece by piece, we finished it. And the look of satisfaction on his face when he fitted in that last piece was worth recording. He didn't know I had completed it hours before but had messed it up a bit, just so that he could have the satisfaction of finishing his very own "big people' puzzle.

And as usual because i just can't help it, i think of associations.

Of Scrabble boards. Of incredibly lazy evenings, of worry free minds and easy laughter, of a family bonding over a scrabble game, which my sister would invariably win.

I hope that my kids too would weave happy associations around certain things. I'm sure they could never look at a football without thinking of G, of all those evenings spent kicking the dratted ball or watching the games together. Maybe the 11 yrold would look at books and remember the books devoured together by him and me?

And perhaps, jigsaw puzzles would do the same for my 6 yrold. Sometimes, i look beyond and see a young man buying a puzzle for his child, and telling him "See this? i used to do that with my mom". sigh!

*a happy Sigh!

There you go again, my wistful heart...why peer into a whimsical future when you have such a beautiful present....?


So tell me, since i'm a curious cat sometimes....are there certain things which bring back an instant happy recollection for you?


17 comments:

--xh-- said...

wow! a 1000 piece puzzle.. and your post contained all the warmth with you both did the puzzle.
i just love the last part - and it gives me inspiration to do same thing when I become a father... :)
i could visualize the situation it made me smile....

for me, carrom board brings back lot of memories, and long bike rides - some of the best bike rides in my life happened when I was with my dad - we two have done quiet a lot of touring and that really made a special bonding :)

brocasarea said...

u shd get an award for this article..:)

its senti and at the same time philosophical...

Pavi!!!! said...

oops the last bit caused a flash of goose bumps on ur screen...lookin so FAAAAAAAR ahead seems silly..n yet mothers know that days ,weeks n months will fly by..

Instant memories for me...is playin antakshari in the car, solving sudoku in the mom[my mom's obsession started a few yrs back n she is the one who got me started on playin the game], road trips...oh gosh, therz zillllllions of them suma!

rayshma said...

aww... i love 'em puzzles too! :D

associations? loads!! top of mind...
i can't look at vintage cars without thinking of dad coz he loved them so... and used to "educate" me with all the trivia... playing cards remind me of him too...

u're making me all nostalgic early in the morng! :D

WhatsInAName said...

Lovely post there! For my family it was the game of rummy :) Appa, Amma, me and my bro used to ritually play this post dinner and it sure remains one of the cherished memories of mine!

ceedy said...

That was really a warm post...and great that you had the patience to finish the puzzle...

For me every time I read I remember my Moms Dad...he inculcated this habit in me....and used to buy me lots of books....

Joy said...

Cooooooooool..This reminds me I should pick up the 500 piece puzzle I bought few months back.. How long did it take? You are a wonderful person and bonding so well with S&S. They must be cherishing these moments too....

Mama - Mia said...

awesome!! :) reminds me of something i wrote on another website about snakes and ladders!

and the jigsaw is sooo nice. we had a similar with two white rabbits amidst purple flowers. we did it once and its so heary breaking to break it up after putting in so much effort!

this was a beyyootiful post Suma!

and what makes me smile? endless hours spent playing cards during summer vacations.

cheers!

abha

Compassion Unlimitted said...

Such a cute post with all the warmth of mothers love !
TC
CU

Monika said...

awwwwwwwwwww that was such a nice post, had such warmth...

and 1000 piece is just great:)

Rambler said...

Mom and a son putting pieces of a beautiful picture together..this was really good..i am sure S will cherish it for years..

its this small thing I had with my dad when I was about 10, he used to work away from home, so once when he was in bangalore, he thought me crypting, simple ones where each picture represents a letter, and once he went back he used to send me letters written cryptically with the cypher at the end of the letter, man I would kill to get my hand on one of those, every time I remember that, It kind of brings instant happiness

Suma said...

hey thanks for the lovely comments... i think you all are wonderful...


xh:: the bike rides sound absolutely wonderful...no wonder bikes are your passion...

Suma said...

brocas:: thanks :))


Pavi!!!!:: can't help looking ahead sometimes...and those are fun memories...i introduced my mom to sudoku to keep her mind active and she's hooked onto it now...


rayshma:: you get to my age, nostalgic is what you become :P...and vintage cars? now that's unique...and cool


WIAN:: we played cards too, but the seedha sadha ones, something to do with sets...(*i think)...but a ritual is quite a nice thing to do, it gives you soemthing to look forward to at the end of teh day...

ceedy:: thanks ceedy, patience is omething i try top stock up on...:P and books, i remember my dad everytime i read...


Joy:: yep, go do it, and get your lil girl to help out...i'm sure you wil enjoy it... we took a long time, probably 3 weeks, because it was done lil by lil everyday, we kept it in a corner and would use it like a stress buster/time filler kinda thing...
and its feels good when you say such lovely things about me ...*wide grin

abha:: yep, i felt bad to braek it up, but he just messed it up and said, we'll do it again amma!
ah yes, we used to play cards too during vacations when all teh cousins gathered together...what fun, nah?

CU:: thank you...some bonding moments recorded, that's all :)


Monika:: thank you,

rambler::wow the cryptic letter is so unique..., that must have been so interesting to figure out what he wrote and i must say, you must have had tremendous patience to solve it...have you saved any?

Upkaran Gupta said...

Man looking at the comments I realize a lot of people have a lot of Interesting recollections………

For me it has been the very Simple indeed……The happiest recollections I have is my moms & mine scavenger hunt for the video of the latest English movie……

Deepali said...

Wow a 1000 piece puzzle is no joke I'm sure. As a kid even I loved jigsaw puzzles and it's actually a great activity for the mind too. Don't know but I always feel that the reason I can tinker around with thing and figure how they work, or fix them or something because I use to solve jigsaw puzzles when I was a kid...

oormila vijayakrishnan said...

My daughter loves Jigsaw puzzles too! Great stress buster ( for the mom! Coz the kiddo stays off your back! :-D)

xanindia said...

AMAZING! 1000 puzzles eh?? That's many and you still manage to finished it. You guys are awesome and really believe that everything's possible if you just believe in it.