Puzzle 2 – Brands

This is many of the brand names that I can see in the office at work.


I thought this made a good point about how inundated we are with brands on a daily basis.

  • Adobe
  • Bookingcom
  • Canon
  • Choice
  • CokaCola
  • ColonialWilliamsburg
  • ComfortInn
  • Costco
  • Dell
  • Dominos
  • Expedia
  • Google
  • Hammermill
  • HolidayInn
  • Intel
  • LAFitness
  • MarketWax
  • Mitel
  • OfficeImpressions
  • Onity
  • OtisSpunkmeyer
  • Panasonic
  • QualityPark
  • Samsung
  • SilentKnight
  • Snuggle
  • Snyders
  • Sterlite
  • Tide
  • Toshiba
  • TripAdvisor
  • VictoriasSecret
  • Windows
  • Xacto
  • YellowCab
  • Ziploc

Puzzle 1 – Religions



Words for the puzzle are:

  • Agnostic
  • Animalistic
  • Bahai
  • Buddhism
  • Catholisicm
  • Christianity
  • Confucianism
  • Druid
  • Gnostic
  • Hinduism
  • Islam
  • Judaism
  • Mysticism
  • Mythology
  • Paganism
  • PowWow
  • Quaker
  • Rastafari
  • Satanism
  • Scientology
  • Shamanism
  • Shinto
  • Sufism
  • Taoism
  • Voodoo
  • Wicca
  • Zoroastrianism



I decided to do some doodling. I love knotwork because it is very formulaic, which works well with my OCD mind. I am fascinated by seeing how the choices I make in the initial layout change the pattern of knots. Specifically I enjoy following an individual line in a full circle, it’s interesting to see where it ended up.

In this one I made a small error in the initial layout that made it so that the final colors were not symmetrical. But I thought I would finish and post it anyway. I will probably post more of these later.

Why my Son’s Favorite Game is Mine Too

I had a problem. I work afternoons, and my 18 month old uses when I leave for work as his queue to take a nap. On my days off, he would stay up until bedtime! I had to come up with some routine that he could follow whether I was going to work or not.

I decided that we would pick up his toys before I left for work, and do it at the same time on my days off. I had no idea how well that would go over. I figured that it would end up with me putting the toys away and him pulling them back out again, just like when we tidy up before vacuuming.

For the first few days, my son mostly just watched, and I tried to get him involved. I am pregnant, and the bending over is difficult, so I was not sure how well this routine would work as I progressed.

After a few days I was able to get my son to pick up a few things that he knew the names of and bring them to me. Now it has been just over a month and now he recognizes the names of most of his toys. He has been saying more of them, and his spoken vocabulary is growing faster than it was before.

To my son, it is not work. To him it is a word association game. I sit in front of the drawers where his toys belong and ask him to bring me something while pointing and saying the name of it. He gleefully skips off to find the item. I start with the words he knows well, like ball or block. Once those are out of the way we move on to ones he doesn’t know quite as well. When he down to only a few options left on the floor, I go ahead and introduce newer words. He usually needs some help with these, since he tends to look too far away, but he is very proud once he finds the right thing.

I know this game will not last forever, but right now my little man is so helpful. I get the room tidied up every day and all I have to is sit and point. My son gets not only fun, but good habits, and an expanding vocabulary. It is a win for everyone!


I realize that I have been covering a lot of really heavy topics lately so I would like to focus on something a little lighter. I thought I would introduce you to a culture known as the Snacirema.

This group of people live in large communities, but only socialize within a close circle.

They tend to be very ethno-centric (they believe that their culture is the best in the world.)

Most exchanges for goods are marked by the ritual passing of a small token back and forth. The original owner of the token takes it, and all goods exchanged.

Parents spend very little time with their children. Most are sent away during the day, while the parents take care of their responsibilities.

Curiously, people are kept deliberately unhappy with themselves and on a constant quest for improvement.

People in this culture spend a lot of energy learning about and following the lives of people that they do not know and will never meet. A great deal of energy is put into following people and events that do not have impact on them or the world.

It would be highly interesting to me to find out what readers think of this culture and the people in it.

And then…read the name backwards.

I do not take credit for this clever idea. My teacher Joaquin Martinez did this activity with the class when I was in 7th grade, and I thought it was pretty clever. Thank you Mr. Martinez!

If anyone has any advice on how this surprise can work better, please let me know in the comments. It is very hard to predict people’s thought patterns.