Being Present

Okay people… time to give credit where credit is due. All of you wrappers of presents– KUDOS! With the holiday season in full force, I am sure that you as well as myself,  have been brainstorming and coming up with the absolute perfect gifts for our loved ones. If you are like me, having the task of present shopping at hand, you feel incredibly excited about the happiness and joy that will shortly present itself on our special day.  No matter the holiday that you celebrate, you  most likely have a handful of gifts that you strategically chose for the individual personalities of your friends or family. The hard part is wrapping that perfect, heart-felt gift!

Wrapping presents requires two things, time and money. I personally like my presents to look perfectly wrapped. I love those sharply folded corners and seamless edges. In order to get that perfect fold and pristine looking gift box, you must take your time. Each gift I wrap, I try to put the same amount of effort and energy as each before and after it. I feel that the wrapping is really a part of the gift itself.  Even if you are a bag type of person rather than wrapping paper, there is significant thought that goes into picking the bag, matching the tissue paper and then, of course the cost. Oh yes, the cost of wrapping paper is surely built into our budgets, because it really can be expensive. Especially if you use that thick, glittered, textured, fancy paper- the cost can really climb fast.

Here are some of my tips & tricks for the best way to wrap your presents for any occasion:

  • Try using something you may have around the house. Do you read the newspaper, still? Great! I love the look of presents wrapped in newspaper. You can really spice it up by using gorgeous ribbons or bows. For that special kiddo in your life, try using the ‘funnies’. It’s a great low-cost alternative (obviously you pay for your newspaper), but it helps the environment by ‘re-purposing’ materials that already exist.
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  • Maybe you are a kraft type of person. Me too! I love kraft everything- cards, packing material, paper, etc. You can buy bulk rolls in almost any mailing or superstore. There are lots of online options for purchasing rolls of kraft paper too. Kraft gives you the ability to conform it to any color scheme. You can add ribbon or bow of any occasion. I personally like to use my white chalk marker to write on the package, which cuts down on the cost of gift tags. Another cost saving, environment saving technique is using a grocery bag! Just cut out the bottom of the bag, make a slit up one side and use the inside of the bag for the outside of the package.
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  • Similar to the kraft paper, you can buy rolls of white or black paper too! Lots of teachers use this for classes, but the fun definitely doesn’t stop there! White obviously goes with everything and gives you the possibility of stamping, or maybe even having your kiddos draw on it. This is a major win with the family! The black paper you can definitely spice up with the white chalk marker I mentioned above. Polka dots, squiggle, jokes, memories, etc  You can really make this wrapping super personal with little effort and it’s definitely a cost-saving material.
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  • Scrap material. Not that the majority of us have random scraps of material around, but you can find some at your nearest hobby or fabric store. Any time that you go to your craft store or even a superstore, you can find lots of fabrics on sale for less than what you might spend on a roll of paper. This idea requires a bit more effort with double-sided tape and almost always need a ribbon to hold it tightly closed, but it is a serious conversation starter when you present your loved one with such a unique idea. The scraps can then be used for practically anything, or even saved for the next gift.
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No matter the material you choose to use, I strongly suggest trying to re-use it or recycle it if possible.

Wrapping presents really gives you the opportunity to be present in the moment, appreciate what you have in front of you and feel excited about the possibility of making someone else happy. I have really tried to make myself be present in the moment while wrapping presents this year and have found it incredibly soothing. I can’t deny that my back hurts a bit from wrapping so many presents, but I am more excited about this year than I have been in quite some time and I think that really says something about appreciating the moment. I look forward to hearing about your present wrapping experiences and hope that when everyone at your holiday celebration compliments what great wrapping you have, that you really let it soak in! It’s these little acts that make all the difference for us and for others, and especially in the season of giving, taking that time for yourself to enjoy the moment of wrapping is really crucial. I hope that you find appreciation in doing something for someone else this year and go into the new year feeling satisfied and fulfilled!

Now, let’s wrap this up!

Daleen

*Song pick for this post: Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas by Frank Sinatra

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