Crossword puzzles are a favourite for seniors who live alone, convalescents, people whose work means hours on planes or commuter trains, people who like a challenge, and many other folks.
Customized Christmas Gift
Many free, downloadable crossword puzzles are available online. They come in varied degrees of difficulty and can be Bible-based or cover various other themes such as movies and famous people.
This gift can be further personalized by preparing a meaningful cover that goes with a chosen theme, or depicts something important in the life of the recipient, such as a vacation home, a golf course, a ski slope, old family pictures, or a nature scene. Do put a dedication page up front, telling why the gift was given; name both the giver and the recipient. Example: To Mary Engle, the best neighbour ever, from Elizabeth Hampstead (three lines, centered, with a space between lines). People will be less tempted to cheat if the answers are all placed in the back of the book.
Assembling the Crossword Puzzle Book
There are several routes to go in assembling the crossword puzzle booklet. They depend upon how much money is spent, how much time is available for this project, and what resources are close at hand.
The inexpensive quick fix is printing the crosswords on standard 8 1/2 x 11” paper. They can then be stapled on the left margin with a wrap-around notebook style cover, or the same size punched in the left margin and bound with a notebook cover.
For a more deluxe version, buy an already-made book with blank white pages and paste the puzzles on the pages. These come in a variety of both quality and size and can be found at such discount stores as Office Depot, Staples and Michael’s Craft Stores. Look in the aisles that have daybooks, journals, appointment books and photo albums.
There are other options which depend upon available computer software and scanning and printing equipment.
Online Sources for Free Crossword Puzzles
Here is a sampling of online downloadable free crossword puzzle sources.
- Dozens of archived puzzles. Look for the “printable” link for each puzzle.
- Free printable crossword puzzles, including some in foreign languages, that also has other types of puzzles. There’s also a history of crosswords for the introduction to this customized crossword puzzle book.
- Puzzles full of puns and obscure words are offered by Jaywalker Crosswords.
- These printable crosswords are free, but they do ask people to join, with a password. Best Crossroads.
- Archived monthly puzzles for the past 9 years, plus the monthly ones so far this year, are available at mirroreyes crosswords.
There are many more sites for free crosswords to use in the personalized Christmas gift book. A browser will direct the way. When the gift is finished, its creator also gets a gift…one of accomplishment, satisfaction and pride in work well done.