Bah Humbug #222

Discussion in 'Countryside Families' started by bare, Dec 18, 2006.

  1. bare

    bare Head Muderator

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    Mentioned in an e-mail exchange with a friend the other day about my complete distaste of the fairly recent tradition of wrapping Christmas gifts. When I was a kid I don't recall stuff being all enclosed in expensive fancy paper, Santa just showed up in the middle of the night and left everything under the tree with a name tag on it, or sometimes when my family was less prosperous, filled our stockings.

    A couple reasons I don't like wrapping paper is that it seems so dang wasteful and on top of that, it takes me forever to get the job done and looks like heck.

    Few years ago, I thought society had finally come to it's senses when someone was telling me that "gift bags" were all the rage in more upscale places. This appealed to my "guy" nature, what could be easier, stick the dang stuff in a bag and put a bow on it!

    I took a bit of heat that year from my mom when I plunked my bags under the tree with their gaudy ribbons and bows. Her complaint was the bags I'd used which were the only ones I had on hand, black plastic garbage bags. Even though I tried to convince her that gift bags were all the rage, she was still a bit put out with me.

    They really do serve a dual purpose though, comes time to open everything, they are handy to dispose of all the other wrappings, boxes and stuff.

    Since I ran out of paper trying to wrap some bigger boxes last night, I brought back the tradition and will pass it along to a new generation. Bet I still get some flack for it.
     
  2. arabian knight

    arabian knight Miniature Horse lover Supporter

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    IMO have the fun of Christmas is wrapping Presents, Playing Christmas music at the same time, while wrapping all the gifts, and we always had presents wrapped in nice Christmas paper and such I guess so I know no other way. But that is the way I get "In The Mood" Music large roll of Scotch Tape and Big rolls of wrapping paper. Neat.
     

  3. bare

    bare Head Muderator

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    Always knew you were strange dude.
     
  4. Ardie/WI

    Ardie/WI Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I HATEHATEHATE wrapping gifts!
     
  5. CraftyDiva

    CraftyDiva Is anybody here?

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    Made my folks mad (dismayed) as a teen with gift wrapping. One year my father told me since "I had an eye" I was assigned gift wrapping the gifts for Christmas. Which at the time I thought "What, you have two eyes and so does mom, giving you four to my "eye". Anywho, around this time wrapping gifts in brown postal paper with twine (instead of ribbon) was the vogue, don't you love hippies. My parents from the old school, were looking for shiny paper and fluffy bows, Ha! So when family and friends arrived for Christmas at our house they were greeted with brown papper and twine wrapped gifts under the tree.

    Needless to say, that was the last time my "eye" was asked to wrap gifts for my parents. My father was running around telling everyone that we really haven't fallen on hard times, it was just "the kid's" idea of something different. I always knew I was in trouble when I became "the kid". :rolleyes:
     
  6. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

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    I hate wrapping gifts and the wrapping paper these days is so cheap (no matter where you buy it) that it rips with the slightest movement. Bah Humbug!
     
  7. Peacock

    Peacock writing some wrongs Supporter

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    If I'm particularly strapped for cash, or for whatever reason don't have wrapping paper, I use the Sunday comics. Or we'll wrap gifts in freezer paper and the kids decorate it with stamps and markers.

    REAL gift bags are reusable, and routinely collected by frugal family members each time along with bows and tissue paper.
     
  8. Dubai Vol

    Dubai Vol Well-Known Member

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    Beat me to it.

    There are a couple of tricks to wrapping. First: use a bit of tape to hold the first edge of the paper to the box. That way you have your hands free to stretch the paper. Also, you can measure how much to cut by rolling the box across the paper. The ends are trickier, but you want just over half the length of the long side, so measure out the length of one side to cut, add a bit, and put the box in the middle. Round or irregular shapes, just twist the ends like a tootsie roll (or an English Christmas cracker if you've seen one) and tie the ends with ribbon.

    If you're totally clueless, go to one of those fancy stores that do gift-wrapping and watch those folks for half an hour. You thought I was gonna say pay them to do it! HA! You don't know how cheap I am!
     
  9. tamatik

    tamatik Well-Known Member

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    I always thot Santa wrapped his gifts in "woolco.zellers etc" bags when i was a kid.now I use newspaper..My wife hates it when i do that..
    Gord
     
  10. Zipporah

    Zipporah Well-Known Member

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    My mom used news paper,brown bags and red ribbons.The ribbon was reused.Sometimes she'd buy paper after Christmas for next year if it was cheap enough.She liked white or gold paper since it could double for other holidays.I do the same thing now when wrapping.
     
  11. patnewmex

    patnewmex Jane of all trades

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    My mother has so much used paper and bows, the old kind of thick, shiny paper that you can reuse again and again...

    I love that stuff. But I totally love the plastic bag idea. Bravo!
     
  12. BasicLiving

    BasicLiving Well-Known Member

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    My feelings exactly!

    I'm happy for this thread. I always felt like an oddball on this subject.

    Truth be known, I'd rather get rid of the gift giving part of Christmas all together. It's deteriorated in my family to the point that everyone calls and asks "What do you want me to give you for Christmas?" or "If you haven't already bought me something for Christmas, this is what I really need". I don't want ANYTHING but to be with family and enjoy the day. If I have to tell you what I want, it's not really a gift in my mind. But I guess that's a-whole-nother thread.

    Penny (who has been feverishly wrapping "gifts" that people told me they wanted)
     
  13. Christine in OK

    Christine in OK Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The best wrapping I've ever seen was the year my dad bought my mom a microwave (I was in high school). He came in and laid newspaper out on the floor in front of the tree while we were reading/watching TV one evening, then went outside and was gone for about 20 minutes. We were baffled (and a little nervous, you had to know my dad's sense of humor!).

    When he returned, he had a huge box wrapped in a gunny sack and tied at the top with baling wire! Mom took a picture of it - it sat right in that spot for several days until Christmas evening.

    But we sure used the heck out of it when daddy was in the field or I had to work late!

    But I do have to say that I really enjoy wrapping the presents - I hate gift bags. I buy my paper when it's half-price, and buy either 6" tulle on a spool or wire-edged ribbon when it's cheap and use it for bows. Usually I only buy two different patterns of paper, different colors; so all the presents match, with different bows that co-ordinate.

    Just call me a little OCD when it comes to presents, I guess! (or, as a friend once told me, it's actually CDO, in alphabetical order like it should be!)
     
  14. FarmboyBill

    FarmboyBill Well-Known Member Supporter

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    All the wrappabe size presents was always wrapped. First in white wrapping paper with wooden green holly berrys taped on the package, which I 5thought was real and bit one, and then when fancy wrapping paper came out mom used that
     
  15. Burbsteader

    Burbsteader Well-Known Member

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    When I give a gift to a sewer or quilter now I wrap the gift in fabric.

    I dislike wrapping. Very few people save their paper or bother to recycle it.
    I buy generic paper on sale and Christmas paper after Christmas. If I had my way all of the paper would be generic patterned stuff like stripes, dots, or flowers. But DH pitched a fit that I wasn't using Holiday paper.

    One year I used brown paper sacks and let the kids draw and stamp artwork to their heart's content.
     
  16. menollyrj

    menollyrj Joy Supporter

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    Oh, Burbsteader! I wish I could get gifts from you! I'd love a gift wrapped in fabric!! Any way to add to the stash!

    I like wrapping gifts. As said by Christine, it appeals to my orderly mind. I like having crisp corners and fluffy bows and 7 different kinds of paper under the tree. I do recycle gift bags for the "quick" wrap or odd-sized packages. I have one of those gift wrap organizers with all of my wrapping supplies (orderly, OCD-ish, I know), including tape, scissors, ribbon, gift bags, and paper for all occasions. I have some wrapping paper that has to be over 4 years old. I use a little every year. I have thought about using brown craft paper, but can find wrapping paper cheaper... Go figure.

    DH is the nonwrapper in the family, and it's okay with me. It isn't everyone's thing...

    As for unwrapped gifts, Santa never wrapped gifts, only my parents. Any gifts brought by Santa were unwrapped...

    -Joy
     
  17. AR Cattails

    AR Cattails Well-Known Member Supporter

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    When I was young the presents from mom & dad were always wrapped but Santa never wrapped his gifts to us. I'm one of those who love wrapping presents and I like to use an assortment of wrapping papers. It makes a pretty picture under the tree.

    On a slightly different note, in recent years my family started wrapping birthday presents from the comic strip section of the Sunday paper. One reason was the higher costs of the wrapping paper but also just because we thought the comic strip paper looked very colorful and unusual. My mother originally started doing this and then my sister and I started doing this for our family's birthdays.
     
  18. Tracy Rimmer

    Tracy Rimmer CF, Classroom & Books Mod Supporter

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    I enjoy wrapping gifts. It's cathartic for me, during this season of rushing here, there, and everywhere, to spend some time wrapping gifts, sipping a cup of tea, and thinking of the recipient and why I got them this PARTICULAR gift.

    This year, all of my wrapping paper is red or metallic gold -- and the tree is done in red & gold, as well. It's pretty, and as much a part of our Christmas decorations as the holly on my mantle, or the mistletoe above the door.
     
  19. jd4020

    jd4020 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I don't mind wrapping gifts, but I just can't bring myself to buy wrapping paper. We use the funnies or paper from the end rolls I bought from the local paper. I let the children decorate it with hand prints or stamps, crayons and markers. We have used it just plain and the color came from the bows and ribbons, which Yes, we save from year to year. :) We use the bags as well and of course save ones received to use again. I have bought the plain brown, white or colored bags that one can decorate or stencil for lots cheaper. I've even used the plain little lunch sacks. Just wrapped the small gift in tissue paper, tucked it in the bag, folded over the top, used a paper punch for two holes and then threaded ribbon through it. They were really pretty.
    We don't have a lot of money for gifts, so I figure, I can spend a little more or give a little more if I don't have to waste it on purchasing paper. All white packages, decorated with red bows and ribbons look quite striking under the tree.
    My Dad has a life size figure of Maxine--of greeting card fame. I found this huge ugly pillow at the thrift store that was shaped and made of fabric, that it looked like a real carp fish. Probably about 4-5 feet long. We are know for gag Christmas gifts, so I bought it for Maxine. Wrapped it in two big black trash bags and used duct tape. My daughter even made a very nice bow out of the duct tape. It was a huge laugh.
    Another good laugh was something we did for all the hunters in my family. We had tied a shotgun shell onto a small tree branch. We line the guys up and gave them each, one of these branches. Then my family & I sang, "On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me, (long dramatic pause for the finish here) a CARTRIDGE in a BARE TREE!" lol :)
    Merry Christmas to ya'll.
     
  20. suburbanite

    suburbanite Well-Known Member

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    Pier 1 Imports has some plastic wrapping paper that is pretty sturdy. A friend had a birthday last week and unwrapped her gift at my house before I took her out to her favorite restaurant for lunch. Which left me with the ability to re-use the wrapping paper on a Christmas gift for my sister. It was fairly expensive to begin with but was already on mark-down, and with its re-usability I think it has turned out to be a decent value. It came with matching bows and ribbon.