Have you ever been really excited to give someone a gift? Have you ever planned the wrapping, planted seeds of doubt and gleefully awaited the moment when your gift would be opened? I have.
These are the type of gifts (not always costly or impractical) that you know the moment you see it that it is perfect for the person on your list. If you’re very lucky the item literally speaks to you — looking so much like the person that you can see them using/wearing/enjoying it. The feeling it is to have found the perfect gift is so incredibly rewarding, it’s what keeps us hot and thirsty in line, waiting endlessly on hold, checking the mail anxiously for the order to arrive safely.
I love this part of the holidays, when you come up with a gift you can afford and you know the other person will like (love) it or that they need it but can’t (or won’t) get it for themselves. It’s a great feeling, the best. “It’s what Christmas is all about Charlie Brown,” so the famous line from my TV childhood goes.
Truth is, giving is so much better (it’s close I’ll admit!) than getting. I’ve whiled away many an hour thinking about what this person or that might like… and then planning how to package it so the surprise is preserved. Anonymous gifts are my personal favorite — especially if the gift is over budget. This kind of giving can keep a smile on your face that will carry you through the worst days.
I’m guessing this is what they mean by the spirit of giving.
One of my best memories of how packaging can make the gift is the Christmas in my early teens where we (okay I) shopped, wrapped and packed all my Mom’s Christmas gifts in a giant appliance box. She was so frustrated by the thought of an appliance as a gift — so thrown off by the hints we gleefully gave that she never guessed we’d hidden all her real gifts inside. The reverse also works, packing a photo (or keys) of a huge item in a small box, or merely giving directions (go to garage) as to where to find the gift.
These techniques work especially well if the person is particularly hard to buy for, or is a very good guesser when they eyeball a wrapped gift.
Wrapping, so long as you have the proper tools (tissue, boxes/gift bags, ribbons, bows, tags, pen and good scissors) and enough time, is a fun part of the gifting process. I love doing it… making different combinations so that each person gets a gift that looks pretty. I take pleasure in the fact that packages of varying sizes all look nice when I finish, they actually make me smile to look at them, all wrapped and ready.
Oh sure it hurts a little to have my beautiful, shiny wrappings torn to shreds, bits of ribbon everywhere, bows crushed beyond repair and left in a heap on the living room floor, but it’s not so bad. There are far worse hurts In this world — that one ranks pretty low on the list.