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How To Use The Library | Borrow Puzzles

I’m a big fan of the library. We check out lots of books, but there are so many other ways to use local libraries. This post is part of a series about the many ways to make the most of local libraries because Libraries Are More Than Books.

Have you ever checked out a puzzle from your library? Our library has so many things to borrow other than books, not the least of which is a solid collection of jigsaw puzzles. It’s one of my younger son’s favorite sections to stop by each time we visit. We can take the puzzles home and do them together as a family.

Puzzles are a relatively new addition to our library collection, though I know many libraries have carried puzzles for quite some time. Currently, our library has mostly adult puzzles and not too many puzzles for kids. However, my son loves to check out a puzzle every once in a while and do his best to piece it together, oftentimes with a little help from me.

When borrowing a puzzle from the library, there is one thing to keep in mind. These puzzles shuffle from home to home, and (at least based on our experience) some puzzles from the library are missing a piece or two. If you’re the puzzler that must finish every last piece to feel the satisfaction of a job well done, be forwarned that might not be an option.

For us, doing the puzzle is really about the process. Like much in life, the finished product definitely matters. But how we accomplished the journey is often far more important. Even though you don’t have that one last piece, you still completed the challenge.

If you complete 499 pieces of a 500-piece puzzle, remember that you enjoyed substantially all of the experience. And just because there’s one missing piece doesn’t make you a failure. In fact, you did everything you needed to do and you know exactly where that last piece would fit. You could finish that puzzle perfectly just as you hoped.

To help reduce the number of lost pieces, our library puts rubber bands around each box. You also have to return them directly to the desk and can’t put them in the outdoor return bins. I can only imagine the disaster the librarians would find of jumbled 1,000-piece puzzles exploding at the bottom of the bins each time they emptied them out.

Do you want to know my favorite part about borrowing puzzles from the library? There’s no guilt about not finishing it. I spent no money. I don’t have to store it. And if I end up not liking it, I can simply return it like the whole puzzle sh-bang never even happened.

Does your library lend out puzzles? If you borrowed a jigsaw puzzle from your library did it have all the pieces? Definitely let me know in the comments.

Jen Panaro

Jen Panaro, founder and editor-in-chief of Honestly Modern, is a self-proclaimed composting nerd and advocate for sustainable living for modern families. To find her latest work, subscribe to her newsletter, Stepping Stones.

In her spare time, she’s a serial library book borrower, a messy gardener, and a mom of two boys who spends a lot of time in hockey rinks and on baseball fields.

You can find more of her work at Raising Global Kidizens, an online space to help parents and caregivers raise the next generation of responsible global citizens.

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