Every year I have lots of wrapping paper and Christmas cards left over. So this year I thought I would be really organised and not buy new ones. I would simply use up the leftovers. If only I had been organised enough to check whether I actually HAD any leftovers.

On the wrapping paper front, I had the remnants of a VERY creased roll of paper with dogs on. Festive, Christmas dogs. What is that about?! Why did I ever buy that?! My younger kids don’t even LIKE dogs. I also had the two rolls of paper I bought the other day for Operation Christmas Child – one most definitely girls’ paper and one unisex children’s paper.

But by this point the Chamber of Secrets had been opened. There was no going back. The getting out and putting away again I find almost as time-consuming as the actual wrapping, so I just had to go with it.

The unisex children’s paper went a surprisingly long way. No doubt the kids will be intrigued that Father Christmas has used the EXACT same paper from Tesco as we had for the shoe boxes for the vast majority of their presents.

And some of their Daddy’s. And one of their Grandma and Grandpa’s. And both sets of Aunties and Uncles on Mummy’s side. So it’s children’s paper. Whatever. Will my brother really care? Although it’s a bit embarrassing compared to the effort my Mum and sister go to with their wrapping.

Father Christmas also wrapped half of my daughter’s presents in the girls’ shoe box paper and he wrapped a couple of my eldest’s very small presents in the least-creased remnants of dog paper. Most of it had to go in the recycling.

When I wrap presents I need at least two rolls of sellotape on hand because I am endlessly losing it. Two pairs of scissors would be ideal too. It would take me about half the time to wrap stuff if I didn’t keep losing things. I’m really not sure how it happens. One roll of sellotape disappeared for at least half an hour, only to appear from under a carrier bag, smugly mocking me.

I don’t do tags for my own children. The presents are from Father Christmas anyway, so tags saying Mummy and Daddy would just prove confusing. I do tags for grown ups and other people’s kids though. It’s a shame I appeared to have none left over from last year. So will I remember which unisex children’s paper wrapped parcel belongs to which adult?

I don’t do bows either. The kids aren’t bothered whether the presents have bows on or not. Bows cost money, but most of all it is an environmental decision. One minute of looking pretty and shiny on a present followed by a lifetime in landfill. But does that just make me look like a slummy mummy? Possibly. I’m not quite earth mother enough to go down that whole ‘wrap your presents in brown paper/ newspaper’ route though.

So now clearly I need to buy some more wrapping paper for the remaining presents. Having reached that conclusion, I at least had the good sense to check my wardrobe to see whether I did have any cards left over from last year. A few, but nowhere near enough.

While I was in there I discovered a couple of books for my kids which I’d shoved there rather than putting them in the Chamber of Secrets. I have a habit of buying books in September and October and forgetting about them. However I’d bought these less than two weeks ago and had completely forgotten about them.

Who knows what else I may unearth over the next month?

Author: Sarah Mummy

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