Archive | December, 2013

Cranium Crunches First Attempt at Twisted Mix Tape

31 Dec

I have been doing this for about a month and one of the weeks was an off week so it is hard to have a favorite when there are only 3!!! Here is a rewind of my first attempt at following the rules! It also happens to be my holiday songs so — it still applies :)!

My Skewed View

Music is a continual theme for brain health — it makes you feel and engage in the world so deeply.  So participating in Twisted Mixed Tape Tuesday is not really off mission! So here goes!

This is my first Twisted Mixed Tape Tuesday and I considered playing it safe and following the rules so I don’t get kicked out with my first entry. It was a nice thought, right?   The theme this week is holiday songs. Holidays in my house mean spending time with people who make us smile and laugh, and finding and spreading peace whenever possible. For us it is less about the day or the religion or the tradition but about sharing that exact moment in time with those most important to us.

My first selection is from an artist we saw in concert not too long ago. Michael Franti expresses exactly how I feel about my friends (new and old) and my family…. Dedicating this one to all of you…. Life is Better With You.

My favorite “peace” song is by an artist who has changed his name several times in his career. When he wrote and sang this song he went by Cat Stevens so, for this version of Peace Train at least, let’s call him Mr. Stevens.

I have a weird, but really warm, teenage memory of the holidays and it involves a TV commercial…. This one is for my friend Lois Alter Mark from Midlife at the Oasis, my favorite Diet Coke addict who, by the way, always makes me smile!

This year I am feeling pretty homesick for Colorado. We spent 20+ holiday seasons there and have so many great memories. This one is for my son, David because it is a little too country for me but oh so sweet. Bring on the twang Nitty Gritty Dirt Band!

This songs screams “holiday” to me!

What holiday songs make you feel?

Weekly Brain Challenge: Changes Hidden in Works of Art

30 Dec

Finding things that are just not right in a scene is a difficult job on its own but when you add distractions or images that need closer attention, the task becomes even more challenging.   Here is an example of a puzzle from game Find the Difference that uses art as a “distractor”.   This puzzle uses a piece of art titled Beach Bums created by Aileen Reyes, a talented San Diego based artist who grew splitting time between New York City and Puerto Rico.    Aileen created this puzzle for us with 5 differences.   How quickly  can you find them?

Aileen Creates

y Find the 5 differences in these 2 photos.

How easily did you find the differences?  Probably not as easily as most puzzles we post.  Here is what is going on:

  • Your brain needs to make sense of what it is looking at before you can begin searching and sorting.  That changes the goal of the task momentarily and takes you off track while you acknowledge that there are some abstract elements that need to be put in context.
  • In addition, there are some unexpected and unique feeling aspects of this piece that also distract you from your task — taking a step back to appreciate / evaluate the piece of art  shifts your focus from the job at hand.  Appreciating those things that make this “art” is a big picture task and requires a larger view.  Finding differences is a highly detailed and focused task that is tough to do when you are looking at something through a wide lens.
  • All of the elements are made up of continuous lines so your eye tends to follow those lines. When that leads you to a change (flowing hair), that helps you.  When it doesn’t (the spiral in the knee joint goes in the other direction), that becomes a stumbling block.

With all that mind, try this one!

Rainy Day

Find 5 Differences in set.

What was your experience with this puzzle?

This one has a bit of color.   Will the experience be any different for you?

Aileeen Turtle

Find more of the amazing puzzles Aileen made for us in Find the Difference — choose Level 2 and explore Funny Ladies, Little Friends, Odd Couples, and Colorful Canvases!   You can find examples of Aileen’s art on her Facebook page or on her new and soon to be filled out portfolio page



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