Monday, August 07, 2006

There Are Some Skills I Just Wasn't Meant to Master...

First, I have to start this post with a horrible admission. I am a freak when it comes to Christmas shopping. I'm one of those people who loses sleep if my shopping isn't all done when November 1st hits. And Internet shopping has made me even worse, because I'm always on some Web site that's peddling some crap and then, if there's a good deal and I think to myself "gee, I'm pretty sure Mom would love a collectible GI Joe takes Manhattan genuine porcelain doll," then that's what Mom's getting. Even if it's April 1st.

This year, I've been even worse than ever, because of Baby Boy. I was on one of my favorite baby/toddler Web sites in January, and they had a freaking Hummer for babies on clearance, the kind that you push around with your feet. Which considering the cost of gas, I'm sure there's more than one Hummer driver who wishes their big honkin Monster SUV allowed for them to get around with foot pushing power. When I saw the SUV for 70 percent off. I had to have it. It was January 5th. Only 354 shopping days left until Christmas folks.

And so now, it's August 7th and my holiday shopping is almost 50 percent done. Yeah, I know, I should be thrown in the loony bin next to the people who think it's funny to turn their eye lids inside out.

The holiday presents are hidden in the guest room closet, because if Sweetie Pie saw them, he'd blow a gasket. Sweetie Pie doesn't understand that Christmas comes every year. And that we'd have to come up with a crapload of money at once and drive to crowded malls and desperately try to think of something lame to buy for each of our family members. My way allows us to have the expense spread out and he never has to lift a finger. Really, what the hell is his problem?

My point is, that I have my presents all stashed in the closet. To keep track of what I've bought, I have a list in a Word document titled "Christmas Gifts 2006." Yeah, I have my anal side.

My presents, however, are not wrapped. Despite me owning an abusive amount of Christmas-themed wrapping paper, because I always buy more when it goes on clearance in late December/early January. Because I like Christmas trees to have gifts wrapped in tons of different types of papers. To me, that's Christmas.

So why, when I'm this anal retentive are my Christmas presents not wrapped yet? Because I was born without the good wrapping skill gene. My wrapping of Christmas presents means that a shirt box turns out looking like I've wrapped a live Llama.

I once went to a wedding years and years ago (in the Before Sweetie Pie age), and since the couple wasn't registered, I got them my old standby of a picnic basket filled with a martini shaker, martini glasses and a book on making martinis. Because it ain't a picnic without cranberry martinis. I wrapped the picnic basket the best I could, but it looked like I'd had a horrible epilepsy attack while I was doing it.

I was sharing a hotel room with two other people for the weekend and when I arrived in the room, one of my friends laughed so hard she pulled a muscle in her back. "What the fuck is that????" was all she could say for about 10 minutes. I kept trying to answer, but her laughter was so loud, she couldn't hear me. She thought I was giving the poor couple a bird house. Yeah, what every young couple needs.

In the middle of the night, the laughing girl woke up. I'd placed my gift on top of the TV in the room, and when she woke up she thought some serial killer with a weird pointy hat was standing in the corner. She screamed woke us all up and my two roommates told me that my gift needed to stay on the balcony until the wedding.

Baby Boy being as popular as he is, is invited to three one-year birthday parties in the next few weeks. I bought three of the same gifts and this morning, while Baby Boy is asleep, attempted to wrap said gifts. The box is a little bit of an awkward shape, but nothing someone with opposable thumbs should find too difficult.

I've currently got two wrapped. And I've already pictured the look of terror on the two babies faces when they're presented with my gifts. I'm afraid they will develop a phobia of all gift-related holidays. I'm thinking maybe a gift card in an enveloped should be the way I go always.




random_mommy said...

i'm picturing a gift wrapped during an epileptic attack, and it is frightening!!! get help!!! go to dillard's or something. they have people that can help you! maybe there's some weird support group for people like you!!

Catwoman said...

It is frightening... But here's the thing... Even though I could probably be diagnosed as being borderline shopaholic, I am extremely cheap when it comes to crap like paying to have a gift wrapped. It's because of my belief that "I don't need to pay someone to do it when I can do it myself" that Sweetie Pie and I spent three weeks installing glue down hardwood floors and almost ended up getting permanently glued to our house and being those people who are found three weeks later half eaten by their cats.

Plus I hate Dillard's. Couldn't even tell you why. It's ingrained in me like my hatred of kitten kickers.

Emma in Canada said...

There's a reason why they invented gift bags ya know. It's for people like you and I who have no wrapping skills. I, however, spent a brief time working at Hallmark in the long ago past and am now an excellent tissue paper flicker.

I'm the same with Christmas gifts. The earlier the better, though I have discovered that even though I am done in October while all those fliers are arriving in November and December I feel bad for not getting my kids the must have toy that was not available 6 months before Christmas. So it goes on and on.

random_mommy said...

i am eagerly awaiting future post to explain weird dillard's aversion.

susan said...

I can teach you how to gift wrap. I watched Martha Stewart do it on TV. I know all the secrets. BTW, I just purchased all the NY extended family's gifts at Red Envelope. Clearance stuff baby. Also, if you call and place the order and complain about the website enough you can ask for free shipping (and get it - along with a little attitude from the lady who takes your order). How cheap am I? lol.

MartiniGal said...

I will have to send you my SPREADSHEET of my holiday shopping lists. Yes, I said lists. I keep every year in it so I know I don't duplicate any presents. I keep how much I spent so I know what my grand total is after the holiday and I keep the store and date of purchase. I also keep my holiday card list in there. It is a handy workbook!

Do I need to teach you how to wrap presents?