Today was our traditional family gift-wrapping marathon. It’s a little family tradition that my husband and I invented/embraced last Christmas, which was our first Christmas married. He had been at Airborne school and had bought my presents and mailed them to me. (I exercised enormous self-constraint and didn’t peek in a single one!…how mature of me haha) I had been working and nannying and hadn’t wrapped any of his presents. So when he came home just a few days before Christmas and we went on a little vacation to spend it alone together, we brought all the presents and wrapped them together for a couple of hours (still not peeking!).
This year, we had an almost proactive present buying season. Mostly everything arrived on time, and there weren’t TOO many errors. (It’s okay if the frame I ordered comes shattered in a million pieces…right?) So I thought for sure that we would very naturally and responsibly wrap presents periodically, as we collected them. In my mind, by the time Christmas day came, we would have accumulated a magical little stack of wrapped presents, and all we’d have to do is slip them under the tree. ENTER REALITY. My husband and I procrastinate. Both of us. About the same things. And who says opposites attract?…:) So today, only three days before Christmas we were faced with a stack of unwrapped presents and thus began the gift-wrapping marathon. So at this point we are embracing it as a “family tradition” because there’s no fooling us. Next year will be the same, people.
But all the wrapping got my mind on the different styles of Christmas wrapping I have encountered. It inspired me to compose a list of the various wrapping-styles and stylists out there. Maybe you’ll see yourself on the list!
1. The Martha Stewart. They spend quite a bit of money or time on wrapping the presents. Sheets and sheets of tissue paper. Big, thick, beautiful gift bags–the expensive kind. They want the outside of the gift to look just as nice as whatever present it is that they bought. I like being on the receiving-side of this kind of gift.:)
2. The Fixer-Upper. This happens more frequently with adult-to-child presents, but it can sometimes make its way into an adult gift exchange too. It’s the person who dresses up a present to make it seem bigger and better. They wonder, “Isn’t this present a little lame?” And then suddenly an extra bow and some ribbon seems like a way to make it up to the receiver. We’ve all been there. Right? Um…guys? Hehe, me neither.
3. The Scrooge. This person puts the item in a gift bag (so much more low maintenance than cutting and taping paper) and veils the present with a single sheet of white tissue paper. And yes, it is possible that both gift bag and single sheet of tissue paper are recycled from a gift that scrooge received last Christmas. And yes, it is possible that in a desperate circumstance I have found myself in a situation that lent itself (read:DEMANDED itself) to occur.
4. The Thoughtful Planner. Some people use the wrapping paper to color-coordinate which presents belong to which person. This makes it easier and faster to sort through the pile of mixed-up presents so that opening can commence as quickly as possible.:) A very kid-friendly tactic. I remember one year waking up to a map-key that explained which paper coordinated with which sibling. (But parents USE CAUTION as it quickly becomes a tool for children to assess which sibling got the most or biggest presents–not that I did that haha). Another word of warning: make sure you don’t accidentally wrap someone else’s gift in someone else’s paper!
5. The Traditonalist. It’s Christmas. That means no gift bags, or gift card holders, or sneaky little “I’ll-just-put-a-bow-on-it-jobs.” If it’s a gift, it’s getting smothered in wrapping paper. And they don’t care if it’s a car. It will get wrapped.
6. The It-Arrived-Too-Late-To-Wrap Person. This is worse than the Scrooges. This puts procrastination on a whole new level. This is the person who basically has the “I’ll-just-put-a-bow-on-it” kind of mentality–minus the bow.
7. The Squared-Away Wrapper. It has to be square. No matter what. This person wraps everything in paper, and so obviously the only way to do that is to put whatever present they are giving in a box. This can actually turn out to be super thoughtful and extravagant looking. Who doesn’t love opening a present, only to find a pretty sweater box from a department store? This can get out of hand though…when you unwrap a gift to find a Cheerio box staring at you, and the giver prompts, “No silly, open it up!” But you’re thinking…”Why am I the silly one when I opened a Christmas present and see a box of Cheerios and look slightly confused?”
8. The Wrapping Paper Police. Each paper can only be used once, and it absolutely has to have a color coordinating bow and ribbon. Presents that fail to meet expectations during the inspection period (because yes, there is on) must get redone. There’s no purpose in buying someone a present unless it’s perfect.
9. The Git-R-Dun Wrapper. The goal for them is to just get that present covered, no matter the means. Tape, a decent patch-job, a purposefully placed gift tag to cover up the gap between the paper. This wrapper is sweet intentioned and tries their best to keep you from knowing what the present is. But the object here isn’t attractiveness–it’s just getting the job done so you don’t know what you’re about to open.
10. The Sneak. This person is above and beyond wanting you to “not know” what you’re about to open. They are out to get you. Kind of. They don’t want you to have even an INKLING about what they got you. And if they can steer you off-course, even better. This game can get pretty far. As in triple-boxing a small item to make it seem big, and tossing a few marbles in to give it a random rolling-effect. (True story…my husband lives to tell the tale).
Which kind of wrapper are you? Did I forget someone?