What's your name?
Jessica, but most people call me Jess or Jessa.
Where are you based?
Tell us about what your ordinary day looks like.
An ordinary day for me usually starts with waking up to snuggles with my three kiddos. We homeschool in the morning, and sometimes in pockets of time throughout the afternoon, depending on what other extracurricular activities we have going on. Our days are pretty flexible and we tend to go with the flow so that we can spend time doing the things we love. There is ALWAYS a puzzle or two out on various surfaces for my kids and I to take “breaks” with throughout our day. Outside of mom life, I have a small business making various forms of home decor and other artsy goods. I’m also just starting a career as a birth doula, which brings me so much joy—I love and adore babies!
How did you get into the world of puzzling?
I’ve been puzzle obsessed ever since I can remember (roughly around 1992). As the only girl out of 5 siblings, I found myself loving the space puzzles gave me to escape from the chaos around me. They were my happy place! Thanks to my 4 brothers, I also enjoyed competing and taking on challenges. Quite often, I would make up competitions in my head while I puzzled. If the puzzle was an illustration of farm animals in a barn, I was there sitting on a hay bale in the world’s fastest jigsaw puzzle competition racing against other speedy competitors. I know…get this girl into a real competition already! She’s pretty much been practicing her whole life! ;)
What makes you keep puzzling & how often do you puzzle?
I went through a long period of time where I stopped pursuing the things and hobbies that brought me joy. This past year, I’ve been intentionally pursuing and making time for the things I love—like puzzling! Now I puzzle almost every day, except for when I am extra busy with my kids or life. The online puzzle community definitely inspires me to get my puzzles out and try new brands! I never knew that so many stunning puzzles existed until I started my puzzle account in December of last year. Seriously, who knew?! The number of puzzles on my wishlist keeps getting larger and larger, and I’m pretty sure it’s never going to slow down. I have decided I’m going to need a designated room to store all my puzzles at the rate I’m going. I’m sure one of my kids won’t mind sleeping in between towers of puzzles, will they?
What is your favorite type of puzzles?
I enjoy 500 piece puzzles the most because I can usually complete them in one sitting. With very little alone time, finishing a puzzle in one sitting truly is a rare accomplishment for me! As far as design goes, I’m drawn to colorful and whimsical illustrations that are wholesome and full of artistic detail. Anything with an Anne of Green Gables type vibe and I’m sold!
During puzzling sessions, do you listen to anything or puzzle in silence?
Depends on my mood and sensory needs of the day. Most of the time I listen to an audio book, but every once in a while I enjoy puzzling in silence. There is something so peaceful and calming about it!
If you were to describe what puzzling means to you, what would it be?
Therapy in a box (or bag—for some brands)!
Tell us about your other interests & joys.
What brings me the greatest joy in life is being a mom to my three littles. Spending time snuggling, reading, creating, and being silly with them, are the memories I hold dear to my heart. I’m also passionate about art/illustrating, playing volleyball, and advocacy work for domestic violence victims.
Do you have anything you want to share?
I just love being apart of the puzzle community and am grateful for all the wonderful friends I have made here—truly the kindest, most generous bunch of people I have ever met! I look forward to more puzzling adventures, hopefully attending a puzzle event or two, and meeting many of my puzzle pals someday!