Eagles and Native Americans

Spirit of the Eagle Paul CalleAt first glance, this painting by Paul Calle seems like only a nice picture of a Native American Chief, but don’t let its simplicity mislead you – Eagles are extremely important to Native American belief and culture. That is probably why the artist created the eagle to be larger in size than the chief. Something that important to their culture deserves to be showcased that large in a painting.

Depending on the tribe and clan, eagles can be considered the messengers between humans and the Creator, a “Directional Guardian”, a strong symbol of healing, protection, balance, courage and leadership. Warriors, like this chief, would wear them in their headdresses as a sign of great achievement.

As you and your loved ones assemble this Native American jigsaw puzzle entitled “Spirit of the Eagle”, it would be a great opportunity to learn more about the importance of the eagle to Native Americans. It is a fascinating topic!

 

Did you like this? Share it:
Posted in Animal Jigsaw Puzzles, Jigsaw Puzzles, Puzzle Artists, Puzzle Manufacturers, Puzzle Pieces, Puzzle Themes | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

If You Say “Foxglove Cottage”, What Comes to Mind?

Thomas Kinkade Foxglove CottageSay the word “Cottage” and what comes to mind? Would be “quaint and romantic”? If so, then you and artist Thomas Kinkade would be in agreement. Let’s look at what Wikipedia says about cottages.

First, they are usually considered a small, simple house, which is old-fashioned in style. They were originally the four room homes used by farmers or peasants of small plots of land but by the 1800s, had become small houses or habitation without land. And originally, they were created with thatched roofs, which to modern society gives these older styles of cottages a romantic aura.

In North America, on the other hand, cottages connote “summer vacation” rather than a small home for workers. Usually, they are found near a lake or beach and can be larger than only 4 rooms. The best known example of this is in eastern Canada. With so many small lakes in places like Ontario, thousands of summer tourists love to go stay in “cottages” along the lakes.

This jigsaw puzzle, entitled “Foxglove Cottage” by Thomas Kindade is a beautiful example of a quaint pre-modern version of an English Cottage but one that is also perfect for vacationing along side of a serene lake. You and your loved ones can assemble it and  other nature, landscape and ocean puzzles this spring as you plan your summer vacation.

Did you like this? Share it:
Posted in Jigsaw Puzzles, Puzzle Artists, Puzzle Manufacturers, Puzzle Pieces, Puzzle Themes | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Do You Know What “Light and Dark in Art” Is Called?

Thomas Kinkade always referred to himself as the painter of light. He could say this because he painted in what is known as a Chiaroscuro style. This style contrasts light with dark in significant ways to add body and volume to the scene. It also emphasizes a significant section of the painting that to which the painter wants to draw our attention. Thomas Kinkade Village LIghthouse

“The Village Lighthouse” by Thomas Kindade is a beautiful example of chiaroscuro. The horizon, waves, lights coming from the windows, foxglove and dogwood flowers and a heavenly light radiating on the houses and pathway add to the theme of the village lighthouse which lights the way of the ships at sea so that no one gets lost in the storm.

As you and your loved ones assemble this puzzle or our other Thomas Kinkade jigsaw puzzles, it would be a great opportunity to discuss the source of Light in your lives to help you all during stormy times of life.

 

Did you like this? Share it:
Posted in Jigsaw Puzzles, Puzzle Artists, Puzzle Manufacturers, Puzzle Themes | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Look at This Big, Beautiful Bird!!

The Big BoyIf you’ve ever heard the cry of a peacock, you know that you can’t forget it. I was in a hotel once in San Antonio that had peafowl in its courtyard. One night, I heard the piercing sound of what I thought was a child crying out in distress. After my heart starting beating again, I investigated this sound. It turns out it was the peacocks calling out to the peahens in the courtyard.

Thankfully, peafowl are known for more uplifting things such as their absolutely beautiful plumage. According to Wikipedia, there are three species of peafowl, two from the Indian subcontinent and one from Africa. In all three species, the males have feathers that are either deep blue or green with iridescent glows and a long “train” that expands to show the beautiful plumage that you see here on this jigsaw puzzle entitled “The Big Boy”.

Because of their beautiful colors, in ancient times, peafowl were seen as a symbol of royalty. They are the national bird of India and of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It is also a symbol of immortality, especially in Eastern Christianity, during the Easter season.

With a large number of “eyes” on its feathers, this puzzle will create a great opportunity for you and your loved ones to study the other fascinating characteristics of this marvelous bird. You can find it and other Bird Puzzles at A+ Puzzles, Etc.

Did you like this? Share it:
Posted in Animal Jigsaw Puzzles, Jigsaw Puzzles, Puzzle Manufacturers, Puzzle Pieces, Puzzle Themes | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Front Row Seats for the Summer Holidays

Front Row Seats by Tom WoodYesterday, as I was walking along the sidewalk so that I could see the Memorial Day Parade, I got to see how the spectators were trying to get the best view possible of the parade. Some had chairs and were sitting in the streets [that’s the best place to get candy, by the way], some were seated in a elevated spot on their porches and some young children were held in their family members’ arms.

As I watched them, I had flashbacks to other times in which I was blessed to be able to have a front row seat to watch either a Memorial Day Parade or Fourth of July Fireworks. When I was in High School, I was in the Marching Band and so was involved from beginning to end with the festivities whether it was the Memorial Day Parade or the Fourth of July Parade. That was always fun for me. And to this day, neither holiday is sufficiently celebrated unless I get to hear a marching band.

And for the July 4th fireworks, I always had a great view of the fireworks because I either grew up in a small town or lived in one as an adult. As a child, I would cross the street to where the cemetery was located, and sit on one of the tombstones enjoying the sights. One year, my cousin came for a visit around that time and thought it was so cool that we could do that. She came from a big suburb and had never seen fireworks in her local community.

And then as an adult, I moved to a different small town where I lived for 7 years. I was blessed to be able to see the local fireworks from my front porch. So for each summer, my family would come for a visit on July 4th so that we could sit on my front porch, eat ice cream and watch the fire works. This year though, I am in a new community. I will have to investigate where I can find the closest “front seat” experience so that I can enjoy the Fourth of July Fireworks.

For you and your loved ones this summer holiday season, assembling one of our Patriotic jigsaw puzzles such as this one entitled “Front Row Seats” by Tom Wood would a be a great time to discuss your memories of the times in which you had front row seats for parades or fireworks.

Did you like this? Share it:
Posted in Animal Jigsaw Puzzles, Jigsaw Puzzles, Puzzle Artists, Puzzle Manufacturers, Puzzle Pieces, Puzzle Themes | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

America the Beautiful

America the BeautifulWhen I was a child, my family loved to travel. Half of Kindergarten and practically every summer after that, we would spend it in our car traveling all over the United States of America with a few side trips into Canada and Mexico. By the time I was 18, I had visited 40 states. This amazed my college friends [who had never traveled more than 5 states in their lives] especially when they would be studying for a geography test.  They would struggle to remember the details about each state, meanwhile I could rattle off these details including where each state was located on a map of the USA. I would always tell them that it was easy for me because I had been to so many of them. Thankfully, after they graduated and found employment that allowed them to travel, they caught the travel bug and visited as many states as I have.

This jigsaw puzzle entitled “America the Beautiful”, is a great visual aide for those who want [or need to remember it for a test!] to remember the names and locations of each of the 50 states [and District of Columbia] of the USA, plus their state symbols such as what the flags look like. Assembling it and other of our Map puzzles with your loved ones can help bring back fond memories of past trips, plan for a new trip or help you remember this information for when you need it.

Did you like this? Share it:
Posted in Animal Jigsaw Puzzles, Jigsaw Puzzles, Puzzle Manufacturers, Puzzle Pieces, Puzzle Themes | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Did you know… about New York City?

New York by Naoki TanakaIn six years [2024] the people of New York City, specifically those on the island of Manhattan, will be celebrating the beginning of the city when Dutch colonists first settled the island of Manhattan and called it New Amsterdam in 1524. Later, in 1664, when the English took over, the city was renamed New York after King Charles II’s brother the Duke of York, who later became James II.  Manhattan was the first of the five boroughs of New York city to be founded and Queens was the last one in 1683. The five boroughs of Manhattan, Bronx, Staten Island, Brooklyn and Queens were consolidated into the City of New York in 1898.

According to Wikipedia, it has the largest city in the United States since 1790. It has over 8,600,000 people in an area of over 300 square land miles. This makes it an extremely dense area of 28,458 people per one square mile! An example of this denseness would be Times Square. For miles, the area is filled to overflowing with people, lights and sounds. The City is the cultural, financial and media capital of the world and is the 9th largest megacity in the world.

It also has one of the largest natural harbors in the world which is key to it being a major port city for industry, tourism and immigration. There are 3.2 million people living in the City who were born outside of the United States speaking around 800 different languages. This makes New York City the most linguistically diverse city in the world.

It is also the most photographed city in the world. This puzzle by Naoki Tanaka entitled “New York” shows many examples of places that have been visited and photographed over the decades. As you and your loved ones assemble this puzzle, it would be an excellent opportunity to see how many landmarks you can identify. You can find it and other city village or map jigsaw puzzles at A+ Puzzles, Etc.

Did you like this? Share it:
Posted in Jigsaw Puzzles, Puzzle Artists, Puzzle Manufacturers, Puzzle Pieces, Puzzle Themes | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Celebrating Wolves in the National Parks

Wolves in the National ParksAt first glance, this seems like only a pretty picture about some wolves in a National Park. But some simple research shows that this topic is by no means a pretty or easy topic.

According to Wikipedia, in the United States, the oldest National Park is Yellowstone. It was created in 1872 but by 1926, the gray wolf had been eradicated within the park. Local ranchers wanted them gone because the wolves would attack local cattle herds. Hunters obliged by getting rid one of the major apex predator in the area. But while local ranchers were relieved that their livestock were safe, others started to notice over time that another problem was occurring – the Elk population was growing because its main challenger was gone. This led to serious disruption in the surrounding ecosystem.

Starting in the 1940s, conservationists and others started campaigning for reintroduction of the gray wolf in the park. It did not happen overnight. In 1973, the Endangered Species Act started the legal ball rolling to allow them to be eventually reintroduced in 1995. As of 2016, there are around 100 wolves in the park, but they are of a different species and size than the original. Some claim that the introduction of a species a bit larger than the extinct original means that the ecosystem still will not be at the optimal best. Safety of cattle is no longer guaranteed. With wolves being taken off of the endangered species list, who knows what will happen with the ecosystem in and around Yellowstone National Park?

There are no easy answers, but as you and your loved ones assemble this jigsaw puzzle entitled “National Park Wolves”, it would be a great time to learn more about and discuss solutions. You can find this puzzle and other Wolf/Coyote Puzzles at A+ Puzzles, Etc.

Did you like this? Share it:
Posted in Animal Jigsaw Puzzles, Jigsaw Puzzles, Puzzle Manufacturers, Puzzle Pieces, Puzzle Themes | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Look What We Found?: Garden Shed Seedlings

Garden Shed Seedlings SunsoutBesides Baseball’s opening season, warmer weather and flowers on the plants and trees, something that many people look forward to each spring is working in the garden.

Imagine that first day of gardening, when you enter your garage and discover that over the winter and early spring, a young family of song birds have taken up space where your seeds, pots and trowel are located. As you see the mother feeding and singing to her chicks, what should you do? Should you move the chicks so that you can start planting right away or do you let them enjoy their new home and go to the store for new supplies?

This spring as you and your loved ones wait for the weather to warm up or at the end of a fun day of gardening, you can assemble a great puzzle like this one by Carol Decker entitled “Garden Shed Seedlings” or other bird jigsaw puzzles, and discuss what you would do if you found a family of songbirds in your garden materials.

 

Did you like this? Share it:
Posted in Animal Jigsaw Puzzles, Jigsaw Puzzles, Puzzle Artists, Puzzle Manufacturers, Puzzle Pieces, Puzzle Themes | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Who loves Puppies and Christmas?

Twas the Night Warm Winter CuddlesSanta Clause is usually said to live at the “North Pole”, yet as anyone who has looked at a globe knows, there is no actual land at the north pole for Santa and his reindeer to live on. Instead, this picture is probably located in the area of northern Scandinavia where an indigenous group of people called the Sami live. Another name for the Sami is Lapp which is why some people call this area Lapland although the Sami refer to their homeland as Sápmi. The Sami raise reindeer and have traditional dress similar to what we see here.

In the Artic Circle where Sápmi is located, you can find a variety of climates. Near the coast there will be mild winters but in the interior, the winters will be very cold [ex. in Jan the average low can be -18 F]. One thing that all parts of the Sápmi region in the Artic Circle have in common is what is called “Polar Night”. This means that there will be a slight bit of blue light during the day but the sun does not actually rise above the horizon.

By now, most of the readers of this blog are shivering at the thought of such cold and darkness. This is why Santa Clause [or Father Christmas or St. Nicklaus] is cuddling some warm puppies and kittens while eating seasonal goodies. Artist Liz Goodrich-Dillon has beautifully and tenderly portrayed these playful creatures in this jigsaw puzzle entitled ‘Twas the Night:Warm Winter Cuddles. In fact, she has done such an expert job that it makes one want to cuddle some puppies and kittens regardless if you are in the Artic Circle or not.

This holiday season as you and your loved ones spend quality time together, assembling a puzzle like this one from our Christmas jigsaw puzzles would be a great way to have a “warm” holiday season.

 

Did you like this? Share it:
Posted in Animal Jigsaw Puzzles, Jigsaw Puzzles, Puzzle Artists, Puzzle Manufacturers, Puzzle Pieces, Puzzle Themes | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment