I know I’m probably in the minority here, but I absolutely love wrapping Christmas presents. It’s actually one of my favorite parts of the holiday. I love looking at each present before I wrap it, thinking about what the recipient of the gift means to me, and smiling as I anticipate the look on his or her face upon opening it.
This love of wrapping goes back to my childhood, when I would help my Mom wrap Christmas gifts. She always, always gift wrapped right on her bed, spreading out the wrapping paper, the scissors, the tape, the ribbons and bows, the gift tags – and, of course, the presents – all across her bedspread.
I would help my Mom as much as I could… handing her the scissors, writing names on gift tags, keeping as many pieces of tape on my little hands as I could until she called for one. Mom would tell me the stories behind the gifts… how she had remembered my Dad mentioning how much he loved something, and so she couldn’t wait to see his face when he opened the gift and saw she had found it. Or the traditions behind gifts for other relatives, and how those traditions began.
I remember marveling at how meticulously she creased the gift wrap when she folded the ends into a perfect “V”… and trying to memorize exactly how her hands worked their way around the gifts so that the finished product looked so neat, so even and so perfect. Even now, as an adult, after years and years of trying to get my gift wrapping abilities to match those of my Mom, I am still in awe of just how quickly and perfectly she can wrap any gift.
With each gift purchase during the Christmas season, I think about how I will wrap it. There are some gifts that come in their own boxes, so wrapping is pretty easy to determine. But then there are the gifts that you can play around with a little… try to keep the recipient guessing with the type of gift packaging you decide to use.
I can’t wait to start wrapping gifts this year. I will do it on my family room floor, with the wrapping paper, the scissors, the tape, the ribbons and bows, the gift tags – and, of course, the presents – all spread out around me.
And I am so looking forward to Christmas Eve, which is when my entire family gets together at Mom and Dad’s house for a big dinner and gift opening celebration. That’s when I get to enjoy one of my other favorite parts of the holiday – seeing my family (innocently and unknowingly) show complete disregard for my meticulously-performed gift wrapping effort and tear into their carefully and lovingly chosen gifts.
For me, it really is more fun to give than it is to receive. That’s another valuable lesson I learned from Mom.