Monday, November 25, 2019

Pre-Party Puzzle Pieces!

Welcome Thanksgiving guests! 

Back in antiquated days, when politeness personality, "Miss Manners," prominently tutored the ignominy of uncouth behavior, this game would have fallen solidly under the category of "ice breakers." Those desperately-reached-for gimmicks offered a loosen-up cure for guests who awkwardly assemble to hold up the walls while Madam Hostess frets the unsavory social spectacle of an evening spent in sullen silence.

At our house, the ring of the doorbell on Thanksgiving Day initiates a cacophony of barking dogs, stampeding grandkids, blaring football, scattering cats, beeping oven timers, clinking wine flutes, disappearing appetizer platters and.....grandma - smiling on the outside, but stressing on the inside because turkey's yet un-carved, soup's on and rapidly cooling, veggies still need roasting, and.....what if everything just doesn't come together on time?

What's a grandma to do?

That's an easy one! Hand out Pre-Party Puzzle Pieces and let dinner guests (18 total in our case!) get busy finding the two other guests who complete their personal unit while you put finishing touches on the feast that follows. You'll find both kids and adults engaged in the fun, racing to be the first trio that presents itself to you - for a prize, or for the privilege of passing out prizes - in our case, foil covered chocolate turkeys for everyone. (Grandma doesn't tolerate "losers" when she's solidly in charge of things!)

So, I know what you're thinking now: "Where was she a week ago when I still had time to divide my guest list by three and make enough puzzles for everyone?" Fair enough. But you can also take a grandchild's line drawing and run it through your printer for a simpler version. That'll work. Not everyone loves to putzy with paper the way I do!

My puzzles are about 6" round. Each is cut into 3 free-hand pieces, make sure they are all different! Mix up the pile before passing them out.

Another variation of this game is to hide all the pieces for kids to find and then mix and match on their own. And, of course, the fun is adaptable for any holiday or event. We used it as part of an Easter relay competition a few years ago, and now I'm wondering if upcoming classroom Valentine parties wouldn't launch with a lively start while 25+ kids scramble to find their mates.....allowing teacher and room-moms a moment to settle back and enjoy the happy chaos!

Happy Thanksgiving, dear readers and friends! 

1 comment:

  1. I hear it - the laughter, the screams, the fun. This is a hoot, and I can imagine the cats will be hiding as the grands run around trying to find their puzzle pieces. :-) Happy Thanksgiving to you and your other 17 loved ones. I know the dinner will be delicious and hot. :-)