Friday, December 09, 2016

Quiet-time puzzle kits

Here’s a neat idea which I came up with for my grandchildren (ages 2-1/2, 3-1/2, and 5-1/2 at the time) many Christmases ago.

This idea came to me when I was browsing in the dollar store and noticed some really cute, good-quality kids’ puzzles. It occurred to me that if I combined the puzzles with a hot-cocoa packet and one of microwave popcorn, I might have a nice gift that would give the kids (and parents) some much-needed downtime during the holiday season.

So I made wrappers for the cocoa and popcorn packets that coordinated with the puzzles -- Strawberry Shortcake for the girls and Thomas the Tank Engine for the boy -- and tied each set (1 puzzle, 1 cocoa packet, and 1 popcorn packet) together with a ribbon. I added the tag which I’ve shared above, writing a poem to explain the purpose of the gift.  Since then, I have done this for other grandkids as well as children at our church.

The kids and their parents seemed to appreciate this gift. 

Sam, many years ago!

In fact, one of my daughters has asked me to do this again  this year for five of her kids.  Perhaps you have children in your life who would enjoy this little treat as well. Feel free to borrow my tag or poem if you like. Have fun with this idea!

Edited to add:  When I came up with this idea, I thought it would work for probably any age up to 10 or so, using age-appropriate puzzles.  But yesterday as I was looking at puzzles in the Dollar Tree, I was noticing a lot of puzzles that would be just fine for adults.  I'm thinking something like this could work for adults as well, maybe with a Christmas teabag or a packet of more upscale hot cocoa mix, and an individually wrapped biscotti instead of the popcorn.


  1. That is a wonderful and creative idea!

  2. Brilliant idea. I think puzzles are a great gift for any age. I just ordered four Ravensbruck (sp?) puzzles from Amazon. They're not expensive and are such a good quality puzzle. Thanks for this idea.


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