Millennium Mom

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

MM Blog 2/10 - Gifting made easy

One of my favorite tips from my book is "have gifts on hand." I remember the day when we got our big screen TV. We had been back in the US for over a year, I had finally found an entertainment center I liked down in North Carolina that we could buy direct, so it was time for the TV. This meant we had to find a place for my armoire. I grew up in a house that always hid the TV in an armoire, so when it wasn't being watched you didn't see it. So of course, when I got my job at P&G one of the first pieces of furniture I worked to save money for was a nice wood armoire for my TV.

It served us well through our move to Belgium and back, but it was now time to re-purpose it. We had a random "space" in our house that was part of the addition, really a walk through room so I told Arnie to have the delivery men take it there. He gave me a look of "why?", but I convinced him. This would be my gift armoire. We were in the years of all of our friends giving birth, so I was constantly sending gifts out and really wanted to stock up, it would just make life easier. I also like to buy Christmas gifts as I think of them and see something great, versus all between Thanksgiving and the big day. This would give me a place to keep everything (as I have forgotten I got something numerous times only to find it hidden months or years later).

This was the best move ever. I love my armoire (you can even see a pic in my book). The kids love it when they get a glimpse of what's inside. Which is not often. As it is usually followed with "I want that" or "can I have one of those" or "why is that for someone else." They know it is a special place and never, ever open it when I am not around (at least I like to think that).

Tonight I dipped into my armoire to get my niece and nephews birthday gifts out. My in-laws will be here this weekend and my plan is to give the gifts to them, as I am guessing they will head to Iowa before or for Allie's birthday in March. I pulled out their gifts I had bought, found two gift bags, went to my card stash and got two birthday cards and a little tissue paper. A few minutes later I was done, and they are downstairs in the kitchen (so I don't forget). It is so much easier than wrapping. I do wrap, when it is odd shaped, etc but given these will travel the gift bags will hold up better.

Check out your local warehouse clubs for bags. Sometimes they have a box with 20 or 25 for around $16. I have also started to go to Dollar Tree for birthday bags, as usually warehouse clubs only have "all occasion" bags. Don't forget tissue paper too, as that is important with bags. On cards, I have also bought the 40 assorted at Sam's club, or I will use the kids stationary and have them write a note, that works too. This saves a lot of time and stress, knowing you don't have to run out for a gift and prepare it all at the last minute.


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