My friend Kalli makes a sampler of rare and obscure seasonal tunes each year for all of her friends and loved ones. We put them on in the car when we are running here and there in preparation for all of the lovely days ahead. At some point this season, Rylie has become completely enamored with the song Pretty Paper as sung by Roy Orbison. She asks for it on demand and wants it repeated throughout the duration of our car ride. And I don't object because her other favorite, as she so affectionately calls: Jingle Bells! Jingle Bells! Jingle All The Way! tends to jangle my nerves a bit, especially when I am operating at a pace somewhere between breakneck and harried. With both sides of our family in different states, we have to get most of our gifts in the mail at least the week before Christmas each year. And each year I swear up and down that it will be different. But, really and truly, I am putting it down in typing that next year, oh yes, next year, I am going to make it a priority to have my packages mailed by December 1. Wouldn't that be dreamy? Everything becomes lighter once they are on their way.
I actually did get an early start this year, and the majority of the gifts we are giving are handmade (by me, or other artisans.) It's just the wrapping up, packing in and shipping off part that seems to be put aside until the very last second. I have grand ambitions of making the most beautiful packages imaginable and I get a little overwhelmed with all of the wonderful ideas out there on the internets - it tends to paralyze me a bit. I simplified things by making a few fabric gift bags. I would love to make a bunch of these in different sizes for all season gift giving. I also used the same basic method on all of the gifts that needed to be wrapped: dotty paper, speckled twine, and a handmade gift tag. And I even got Rylie in on the action by asking her to make the paper for her gifts.
As I dropped the last of my packages and cards at the crowded, slightly hostile PO last night, I couldn't help but dance a little step. I had to fight the urge to tell the nearest stranger standing in the 25 person line that I would not be returning to the PO this year. I had to exercise restraint to not exclaim with glee that I was done, that it was over, that my hands had been washed from boxes and tape, no more would I need to think about bubble wrap and postage. No more would I need to strap the toddler to my chest in her baby carrier because her stroller was piled high with parcels. No, I am done, done, done. Now it is time to get power knitting if I am to finish that dress . . .