Unboxing New Puzzles, Part 2: The Reveal

I dove right in and started The Haunted Castle. As I mentioned in the previous post, this is the first series of puzzles by Flipsi Puzzles.

First I love that the puzzle comes in a reusable bag. I hope that all puzzle companies switch to reusable bags.

The pieces have a nice, solid feel. While both sides are matte, it’s easy to distinguish between the known side, the Castle, and the surprise side (what’s lurking inside).

For this puzzle, I sorted the pieces by shape. From there, I completed the edges and then started on the castle. This 500-piece puzzle is a good challenge. I rank it a medium difficulty.

This was a super fun puzzle and I look forward to completing the other two, the Haunted House and the Haunted Farmhouse.

I took a video of my progress and the finished puzzle:

Unboxing New Puzzles, Part 1

Now that I am mostly settled in my new place, I can get back to what I love—books and puzzles. And it just so happens that I received a new puzzle order today.

This is a blame it on Instagram purchase. Or rather, blame it on the fact that most of the sponsored posts I see on Instagram are puzzles because I follow and like mostly puzzle accounts. And Instagram’s algorithms clearly work.

Well played Instagram. Well played.

In this case, I’m super happy with my purchase. The company is called Flipsi Puzzles, a small and new puzzle company from Australia. (And this is why I do love social media—being able to find and support small businesses anywhere in the world!) Their first series is called Haunted Places and What Lurks Within. As I am insatiably curious, I had to get these puzzles and find out what’s on the flip side.

After struggling to pick one of the puzzles, I gave up and just purchased all 3 puzzles plus the Flipsi Puzzles board. Check out my unboxing video:

And stay tuned. I’ll post part 2 where I complete the Haunted Castle so I can finally see what’s on the flip side.

My Day At the National Book Festival

Yesterday, the Library of Congress held the National Book Festival in-person once again. And I was so excited that I was back just in time to attend.

my original itinerary

Held at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, the Festival was jammed packed full of panels, authors, and books. In fact, I had such a hard time choosing which sessions to attend and which authors to sign books. I mean, check out this incredible schedule. How do you decide?

I attended in 2018 and went with no planning. That was a mistake. I ended up just randomly wandering around, got overwhelmed by the number of people (in fairness, attendance at the 2018 Festival was at capacity), and ended up leaving only buying a couple of books but without really seeing a panel.

So this year, I was determined to have a plan. And my first attempt to schedule all the sessions and book signings I wanted to do meant I would need to be 4 people.

Seriously.

My first few schedule attempts would’ve required Hermoine’s time-turner. But not having a time-turner, I did have at least some kind of plan.

I eventually eliminated those sessions on the main stage because I figured those would have huge lines to get in and I’d be unlikely to get in (as was my experience in 2018). And so I decided to stick mostly with the Science Fiction and Fantasy (SFF) Stage because those are my favorite genres.

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A Snapshot Memory: The Year Was 2008

14 years ago today, I was in NYC to attend a conference and had some time to explore. I was walking through Central Park headed to see something somewhere. (Now I can’t remember exactly where I was headed).

I had a regular digital camera at the time. This was before I owned a smartphone, as the first iPhone had just been released the year before. And if I remember, my camera, although digital, didn’t have a way to review the photos. It was only one step up from a 35MM camera. (I still miss film.)

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Leaving Okinawa, Part 3: Top 8 Things I’m Looking Forward To

Five days until I leave Okinawa, say 元気で (when you won’t see someone for a long time, saying genki de is like saying “all the best”), and close the chapter on this adventure. But when there is an ending, there will be a beginning. So while I will miss Okinawa, I’m looking forward to the next chapter, new beginnings and new adventures.

Every thing must have a beginning . . . and that beginning must be linked to something that went before.

~Mary Shelley

If you haven’t followed along, catch up on Part 1 and Part 2.

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Leaving Okinawa, Part 2: Top 8 Things I Will Miss

Now that I’m a week away from departing Okinawa, my home for the last two years, I’m reflecting on my time here and my experiences and adventures. (Missed Part 1? Catch up here.) I’ve been thinking about all the things I will miss about Okinawa and there are so many things I will miss. And so here are my top 8 things I will miss.

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Why Chris Evans Should Go On A Date With Me

If you haven’t paid attention, Chris Evans has a new movie out, The Gray Man. This, of course, means lots of interviews to promote the movie, which also stars Ryan Gosling and Regé-Jean Page (hello Duke!), as well as Ana de Armas, Billy Bob Thorton, and Julia Butters. In a recent interview with Shondaland, Evans gave a refreshingly honest answer to Interviewer Mariel Turner’s question about what he’s laser-focused on in real life.

Evans answer: “finding a partner.”

I have the same goal. And so I’m entering my name. Yes, I think Chris Evans and I should go on a date.

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Leaving Okinawa, Part 1

All good things must come to an end. And just like that, my time in Okinawa is drawing to a close.

One of my friends asked me the other day if I had given up my blog. I realized, I hadn’t written anything since April! And here we are three weeks into July. How is it nearly August?! So much has happened in the last 3 months.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Let me back up and tell you how I got to this point.

Continue reading “Leaving Okinawa, Part 1”