Posts Tagged ‘Made in USA’

Thomas Kinkade- Nature's Paradise

Thomas Kinkade- Nature's Paradise

With Christmas and the new year quickly approaching we finally finished the fourth puzzle of 2010.

Though I’ll count this puzzle as 1000 of the 2010- 5000 piece goal, the completed puzzle consisted of only 999 pieces.  This was likely the result of kitty’s help.

The puzzle was Thomas Kinkade’s Nature’s Paradise.  A wonderful depiction of a rustic log cabin on a lake, with a backdrop of mountains and sunrise.   Another of Ceaco’s fine American made puzzles!

I’ve been very happy with Ceaco’s quality puzzles.  Their die cuts are very random and tight-fitting, unlike the inexpensive” kitty on pumpkin” puzzle that was 2010 Puzzle 03.

I’m only 1000 pieces and 12 days away from reaching my 2010 goal!  Puzzle 05 is a 500 piece “classic” puzzle I picked up a garage sale earlier this summer.  It looks like this puzzle is over 50-years old.  It is a great example of what looks to be a hand drawn die pattern.   I’m hoping to write the blog post about this puzzle REALLY soon!

Time to get busy!


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End Result- Rubber Paver Floor

After a long, cold. snowy winter, the indoor-outdoor carpet on the screen porch was looking pretty bad.

We’ve discussed replacing this carpet several times throughout the last year.  From the looks of it this spring we knew we wanted to do it before summer. 

We considered ceramic and porcelain tile options but had concerns about the tiles cracking in the winter, being slippery when wet, getting scratched by the feet on the patio furniture, having to deal with the maintenance of the grout, hard on the knees, and the tiles being too cold to the touch when the weather gets cool outside.

After a thorough research period, we agreed on the Flexible Rubber Pavers, from Gen-Rubber of Galion, Ohio.

The pavers look somewhat like cast-concrete bricks but are made from 100% recycled tire rubber.  They measure 16″x16″x3/8″ and come in several colors like brown, red and grey.  We opted for the Brown Brick color.

Lacie supervising

These pavers met our criteria of low maintenance, cost-effective, easy to install (or replace), soft on the knees, very durable, and most importantly, they look good!  An extra bonus, the tiles are Made in the USA!!

I purchased a few to test.  I wanted to see if they would off-gas, get really warm in the sun, or lose their finish after being exposed to the elements.  I places four pavers in the porch to see if they ‘smelled’ (which they didn’t) then I placed them under the  hose spigots outside.  After several weeks in the elements and being walked on they still look as good as the day I placed them in service.

We purchased another eighty for the porch from Menards.  On sale, they cost $4.99 each.  It took us 74 pavers to complete the whole screen porch, with a half-dozen extras for use around the landscape or in the garage, the whole project cost less than $400 to complete (before tax).

We really like these pavers for this application.  After removing the carpet, I swept the floor and placed the pavers.  I cut the edge pavers to size (with a sharp utility knife), no special tools needed.  No glue, no levelling, no special floor prep, nothing fancy.  Place them end-to-end and trim the edge tiles to fit.  The whole project (not including pulling up the old crappy indoor-outdoor carpet) took less than two hours to complete.

I wish every project was this easy to complete!

Old crappy carpet

I have no relation to either Gen-Rubber or Menards, besides being a cash paying customer of both.

Related links

Gen-Rubber, LLC

Menards (one of my favorite stores- someday I’ll write a post about Menards and why I like them so much)

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Kim Norlien's "Beside Still Waters"

Kim Norlien's "Beside Still Waters"

Working towards the 2010 goal of 5000 puzzle pieces, puzzle two has been completed. 

As you can see in the photo, our kitty, Gunner, is exhausted after an afternoon of puzzling.  Actually, Lisa did the majority of this puzzle.

This puzzle is MasterPieces Puzzle Company’s “Besides Still Waters”, #70911.  A painting by Kim Norlien.  I purchased this puzzle at WalMart last year.  I think it was around $9.00US.

It is a 1000 piece panoramic that measures 39″x13″.  The image portrayed, a log cabin on a tranquil lake , backed by woods, is a personal dream of mine.  Someday that dream will become reality, but until then, 1000 piece puzzles will have to do.

The puzzle was more challenging to assemble because many of the brush strokes are very similar in color tones and mixed horizontal and vertical alignment.

While doing some research on masterpiecesinc.com, I noticed they have a 1000 pc. panoramic Grist Mill puzzle.  Grist Mills (in particular),  and non-electric technologies in general , are of great interest to me.  This will most likely be the next puzzle in the rotation.

Whichever puzzle ends up being puzzle 03, it probably won’t get started until late summer.

By the way, this is another fine product proudly Made in USA. 

I have no affiliation with MasterPieces Puzzle Co. or Kim Norlien.

More info on:

MasterPieces Puzzle Co.

Kim Norlien

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As I mentioned in my last post, one of my 2010 goals is to complete 5000 jigsaw puzzle pieces in 2010.

Last week my step daughter Lisa and I began working on a Ceaco Jigsaw Puzzle she gave me for Christmas.  Today we finished it.  It was the “Trump’s General Store ” puzzle from the “Joan Steiner’s Can You Find” series.

We estimate that it took about 20 man hours to complete.

Joan did a great job using over 150 real items to create the miniature scene.  Very clever!  Check out the link here for a better image of the puzzle.

This was a very fun puzzle to complete.  The pieces were small, there was a very good variety of shapes, and the fit and finish was very nice.   I am extremely pleased with the quality and value of this puzzle.

I was also happy to discover that Caeco  makes their puzzles in the USA.

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Jigsaw Puzzle

Jigsaw Puzzle

In this fast-paced, technology driven world I’ve recently re-discovered the enjoyment of putting together jigsaw puzzles.

During a recent visit to Walmart, I picked up a couple of 1000 piece puzzles. What a great way to unwind after a stressful day at work.

I was pleased (and honestly surprised) to see that Buffalo Games manufactures their jigsaw puzzles in the USA! It’s amazing how rare it is becoming to find things still manufactured in the USA.

The green mat under the puzzle is the puzzle mat I use to roll up the puzzle when I’m done working on it for the day. This helps prevent my little helper kitty from messing with the pieces.

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