If you’re like me, you’re up to your shoulders in packages needing to be wrapped and sent. Here are five sure-fire tactics we use every year to add festive cheer (or flagrant irritation) to our Christmas. (Some of these are actually useful.)
- Cheetos make a great package filler, the puffed bags a much better (and more tasty) treat than packing peanuts in a package. But, unlike packing peanuts, I wouldn’t recommend taking them OUT of the bag and pouring them in your package, or you’ll have a very unhappy postal worker at your front door, caked in orange dust, demanding an explanation. (Not that I have any experience with that.)
- Disguise obvious gifts like DVDs, video games, and books by slipping them into cracker and cereal boxes. Then revel in the expression on your child’s face as they excitedly open their . . . box of Ritz? (But the kids are on to us, knowing that the Chick’n-in-a-Biscuit box always carries DVDs. But not this year; I’m actually giving them boxes of crackers FILLED WITH CRACKERS for Christmas. This will also serve as a test to see if any of my kids actually read my blog.)
- Clothing doesn’t need to be put into cereal boxes or purchased gift boxes which then get thrown away. Roll up your items before wrapping, either long-ways or fat-ways to keep the recipients guessing. (A son living out of state will be most perplexed by the bulky sweaters his brother lovingly ranger-rolled, army style, before wrapping. He’s hoping for something to keep him warm as he rides a bike for miles each day in the cold rain; he’ll instead think he’s getting useless, soft footballs. Ah, the joy of the holiday season. [cue evil laughter])
- This one’s more of a warning: If you tormented a child in the past by making a highly-anticipated gift very difficult to unwrap, he WILL remember and exact revenge in the future. (Yes, hubby—this is a gift for you, every edge taped down securely by your 13-year-old son who has a very long memory. And I’ve had to hide the duct tape from him.)
- How do you start traditions like that above? Use packing tape to wrap those gifts you want to take a verrry long time to unwrap, AND (this is the crucial part) hide all the scissors. (But if your house is like mine, the eleven pairs of scissors we own are already all missing, and to cut ribbon we’re searching for box cutters, all of which have also disappeared. We’re now chewing on the curling ribbon for that shabby/chic frayed look.)
Packing tape ensures that we can make Christmas morning last until late afternoon, and brings us one step closer to keeping Christmas going all year round which is what all of us are after anyway.
Now get back to wrapping. Here’s some sounds to give you inspiration (or to make your skin crawl):
Perrin snarled. “Why is this here?”
Peto looked at Jaytsy, who was cringing.
“It’s a gift,” she murmured.
“Who gives gifts like THIS?” Perrin bellowed.
~Book 4, The Falcon in the Barn
(Get your official Forest at the Edge clock here! In the comments type, “Book reader” and I’ll refund you $5.)