“The Waiting Room”

As one of four children, I spent a lot of time in the pediatrician’s waiting room. One or another of us was always catching something or needing a shot or breaking something or needing stitches. Those of us unscathed waited with nothing but a large fish aquarium and many issues of Highlights Magazine. Here I encountered two of my favorite early puzzles, “Hidden Pictures” and “Spot the DIfferences.”

I expect that both puzzles ended up preparing me for adult life. Certainly as a mother I was constantly trying to find “hidden” objects ranging from the other shoe to permission slips to the “I must have my blue shirt for chorus.” As a college English professor I spent too many hours pointing out the differences between its and it’s, commas and semi-colons, active and passive voice, and fragments and complete sentences.

I seem to have confused some of my readers in my last post. I won’t usually put up actual puzzles to solve. Rather, I am going to meander through my life’s experiences with puzzles. Where possible I will try to include links to pages of similar puzzles.

20 thoughts on ““The Waiting Room”

  1. When I went to the doctor as a chilld there were no puzzle books or comics for children. The best we could hope for was a 5 year-old copy of National Geographic magazine to flick through. 🙂
    Best wishes, Pete.

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  2. I icluded some ‘spot the difference’ booklets as part of my grandchildren’s birthday ‘lucky dips’. I’m not sure if I’m jumping the gun as the twins are only four years old, but it seemed to me something they could easily understand and a change from the endless colouring books.

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  3. There were 6 children in my family but I don’t ever remember waiting in a doctor’s office. We rarely went for checkups and for any emergency visits the one went, the rest stayed home with the oldest or a sitter. As far as puzzles go, my husband likes to do the ‘spot the differences’ puzzle that runs in our daily paper. 😊

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  4. I don’t know the source of the puzzles you have included in your post, Elizabeth, but their style reminded me of such puzzles when my own children were small. I can’t recall enjoying such puzzles from my own childhood; I remember join the dots. We did lots of those! I enjoy puzzles now and the types you’ve included are my favourites. Aside from word puzzles of course!

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      1. I don’t think so, but the title sounds very familiar. I must have seen the magazine as a child. I’m definitely looking forward to that post.

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  5. Highlights, especially “Hidden Pictures” and “Spot the Differences,” were part of my childhood.

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  6. I loved those same puzzles Elizabeth!
    They were a very early foundation for my professional life in being able to detect what was ‘hidden’ in the subtext & behaviours of my clients.
    Blessings, Jennifer

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