Tonight's Family Night is going to be full of firsts. Firstly, it's the first time I've ever made Shepherd's Pie.
The last time I ever ate Shepherd's Pie was in Quebec, Canada, almost 20 years ago. It's about time I reintroduce my taste buds to meat pie encrusted with potatoes. I can't wait! Hopefully I don't screw it up. Because, you know, I have a tendency to do that. When life hands you lemons, you make lemonade. Well, what if life hands you burnt mashed taters? What then?
HERE is the recipe I am using. It's in the crockpot now. Drooling will commence soon.
Also tonight: It'll be the first time our family has ever attempted to construct a puzzle containing over 100 pieces. Up to this point, we've maneuvered child-friendly interlocking pieces illustrating the likes of Bugs Bunny or Mickey Mouse.
I LOVE doing puzzles! But you would never be able to tell that I do. The Mr. & I were on a rare date back in '06-ish & we happened upon a game store in a mall. (Because we, silly us, apparently like to go to crowded places with screaming children being tugged along by frazzled parents, when we don't have our own littles with us.) By "game store", I don't mean video games stocked on shelves for every game console on the planet. I mean BOARD games. It was an amazing little shop filled from floor to ceiling with pretty much any game you could think of. We purchased a puzzle. It is 1500 pieces & is entirely covered in buttons. All colors, shapes & sizes of buttons.
And it's still in the plastic wrap.
Maybe I was a wee bit nervous to give it a go: Little ones + crazy giant puzzle=missing puzzle pieces. But now that my tiny humans have grown up a bit more, it's time for some puzzle action.
The puzzle we'll be attempting tonight is from 1965. It's "The Last Supper" by Leonardo Da Vinci. Goodbye Mickey Mouse! Hello Italian Renaissance! Did you know that Leonardo Da Vinci began working on that famous painting in 1495, & finished it in 1498? As I researched I found out that Leonardo was a known procrastinator with a marked tendency to leave projects unfinished.
WHAT?! Procrastination just took on a...Whole. 'Nother. Meaning.
Who knew that me & Leo had so much in common?
My mind is blown. Seriously. Blown.
Aside from all that, I just hope it doesn't take us 3 years to finish this puzzle. Because that would be the most extensive Family Night activity ever. In the history of puzzles.
This afternoon, I decided to open up the puzzle for the first time. To scope things out. (And maybe spy some corner pieces for future reference.) The thing about this puzzle is that it is used & I purchased it from a thrift store a couple years ago. So, who knows if all the pieces are there. Who buys puzzles at thrift stores??!! I guess I do. I don't make a habit of it though.
So, I open the box, & I see a gallon-sized Ziploc bag with 2 pieces of paper inside, along with a handful of puzzle pieces. Then I see another sandwich-sized plastic bag holding some more pieces. The bottom of the box is filled with plenty more puzzle pieces. I am afraid to disturb the bags---I better leave the pieces inside. What if there is some sort of reason the previous owners did that? Maybe it will help us, who knows. Then, I look at the papers.
There are numbers, like math problems, scribbled & crossed out all over. Hopefully they're not trying to calculate how many pieces are missing.
I see a phone number or two also. Good! Maybe we can call if we get stuck.
Finally, there are two messages written on the back side of one of the pages:
GET THE OXYGEN OUT OF CAR!
I picture this woman, scooping oxygen out of her car as one might, with a bucket, if they discovered a hole in their sinking row boat. There is oxygen all around us, lady. You're gonna be there a while.
GET A MAMMIOGRAM SOON! <––( puffy exclamation mark)
(The misspelling was theirs. But I think from now on I will always pronounce the word "mammogram" that way.)
These are the bits of randomness that I live for!
And the beginning of a memorable Family Night.