Merry and bright

First, a critical update: I finished the fall-themed 1000-piece puzzle. This project provided several hours of “effortful fun” to do before the effortless variety. I enjoyed getting back into puzzle-mode. However, it is missing one piece in the middle! I’m sure it fell on the floor at some point over the past month and got swept up. Maybe it will turn up. We shall see.

I have been giving some thought lately to how I will structure the annual Time Tracking Challenge. For the past few years I’ve designated a week in January where folks can track their time knowing lots of other people are tracking time too. I send motivational emails and post my time logs here on the blog. This year’s dates will be January 9-15 (if anyone wants to plan ahead to schedule something log-worthy that week…).

Of course given that Tranquility by Tuesday is now available I thought it would be fun to do a TBT Challenge too, which would nudge people to work through the nine TBT rules knowing that many other folks were doing so at the same time. So the current plan is to start that soon after the Time Tracking Challenge. There will be pre-challenge emails January 17-19, and then on January 20th we’ll start with Rule 1. The general rhythm will be the same as I did in the TBT project: learn a rule on Friday and answer planning questions, get a reminder on Monday, then get some reflection questions on Thursday. That schedule means that people will hear about Rule #9 on March 17 and get the reflection questions on March 23.

I’ll likely do a few “office hours” (Zoom sessions) during the TBT Challenge where people can talk about the rules or get answers to questions.

If any of that sounds like fun, then keep watching here and the newsletters as I’ll have sign-ups for both challenges available in the next few weeks.

(Did you know I have newsletters? “Just a Minute” comes out around the 1st of each month. “A Week’s Worth” comes out every Saturday morning. You can sign up for either/both and a few other things here.)

As for things being merry and bright…this is a work in progress. Yesterday was cold and rainy. I did manage to run before the deluge in the afternoon, but I was in the car or at kid activities for the vast majority of the time between 4 p.m. and 9 p.m. This culminated in the fun of entertaining a 2-year-old during the 7-year-old’s parkour class from 7:30-8:30 p.m. We did OK, but driving home in the pouring rain as the roads were flooding with a 2-year-old yelling at me because he was tired was not exactly the most festive way to spend an evening.

(My husband had a dinner and so he wasn’t available; I would have skipped parkour but this is one of the 7-year-old’s absolute favorite activities. I can leave the 2-year-old with the older kids for an hour but it would have been closer to 2 hours with travel time once all was said and done.)

Today should be better. We only have one activity and it’s at home.

Now I’m pondering if I want to buy a Christmas-themed 1000-piece puzzle. Theoretically the Lego Christmas set should show up soon, so that might be my next effortless fun of choice…

10 thoughts on “Merry and bright

  1. What do you do with your Lego sets once they are complete?? My older son still enjoys Lego sets from time to time, and as you know, some are super cool. (We never buy the HUGE ones, but neat cars, etc.) We installed a shelf in his room that holds some, but obviously there are limits. Taking it apart always feels wrong after all that work, and also like a shame, because they are really cool! I feel like in a perfect world he would take them apart and store WITH the booklet in a clearly labeled container so it could be done again, but that never seems to happen.

    1. @Grateful Kae- the Christmas ones we display year to year and then just store when it is not Christmas. As for the ones the kids have built, one of my sons displays his. The others often just kind of fall apart and get absorbed into the bins of Legos…

  2. Why is the missing puzzle piece always in the middle like that? What a beautiful picture though. I think a guided TBT course in early 2023 would be brilliant thanks, so please do this.

  3. I’m working on a puzzle, too, although I have kind of stalled out now because there are several areas with trees, which is worse, IMO, that one area with trees. So I haven’t gotten it out in about a week. But I need to get back at it. I’m looking forward to my sons being old enough for lego sets. I did buy a small one for the older one for a stocking stuffer. It’s Spidey themed so I think he’ll love it.

    The guided TBT challenge sounds great! I did the time tracking challenge last year for the first time and will do it again.

    1. @Lisa – yep, the multiple green areas (or blue areas with sky) can even be worse than the single spot. I just bought a Christmas themed puzzle but I looked for one that had a lot of visual interest – no giant patches of blue sky even though I tend to find those more esthetically appealing!

  4. Our town transfer station has a large Lego “trash” bin were you can drop off unwanted Lego pieces. Check your local transfer station or reclamation center (i.e., town dump).

  5. I’m excited for the TBT challenge! I’m also curious about the participants you tracked…will you follow up with them at some point and see what rules they kept and what rules they didn’t? It’s impressive that you aim for all 9 every week because I feel like I can only focus on one at a time…although I suppose once my glee club starts back up in February that the “take one night for you” will just happen on its own…hope you’re having a great weekend!

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