How do YOU Unwrap Gifts?

A MUST for my brother's gifts

Is there one in every family? I thought it was just mine, but after a funny conversation during our gift exchange at work last week, I have to wonder.

It all started with the mention of gift bags – which not only look pretty, but can be a huge time-saver. A coworker said, “Gift bags are a MUST for my stepdaughter. I never wrap presents for her. Otherwise, she has to painstakingly remove every single piece of tape, and damage the wrapping paper as little as possible–”

ME: “Oh my gosh, my brother does that!”

COWORKER: “Yes, it’s like she has to save the paper, but she never reuses it!”

ME: “Neither does my brother!”

IN UNISON: “It drives everyone nuts!”

“My mom does that too,”Β another coworker said. “But she actually does reuse the paper.”

Coworker #1 and I agreed that this was different, as there was a reason for preserving the paper.

Yet another coworker wondered how old these relatives are, thinking they were children.

COWORKER #1: “She’s twenty-one!”

ME: “He’s forty!”

Somehow, I bet this guy is one of those who unwraps s-l-o-o-o-w

Coworker #1 theorizes that her stepdaughter does this because the longer it takes her to unwrap her gift, the longer she gets to be the center of attention.

I’m not sure what my brother’s motivation is. Maybe he just likes to savor the moment and the anticipation. He’s unwrapped presents this way since he was a little kid, and after a few years of suffering through packages that took him a half-hour or more to open, the family got so that we simply moved on and ignored him, only returning attention to him once he got his gift unwrapped. He’s been married for six or seven years, and his wife and mother-in-law still give him wrapped gifts. Invariably, he’s still sitting on the floor with unopened presents long after everyone else is done and people are leaving.

I, on the other hand, dig into my gifts with gusto. Paper flies, and is always torn through the middle. When I was a little kid, my parents always found it amusing. I throw the paper less now, but I still have fun.

What about you? Do you tear into your presents like a tornado, or savor the anticipation? Do you have a family member who unwraps presents piece-of-tape by meticulously-removed-piece-of-tape? Or if you’re “that guy,” what’s your reason for dragging it out so long? Curious minds want to know!

Whatever holiday you celebrate, I hope you have (or had) a wonderful one! Or if you don’t celebrate, here’s hoping you at least enjoyed a day off work, or good pay if you didn’t even get that.

Photos via Microsoft Office Clipart

21 Responses to \

  1. When I was younger, I tried to carefully unwrap if the paper was pretty because, at six or seven, I actually kept it for some reason (gave that up long ago). Now I unwrap quickly because the quicker I get it unwrapped, the quicker we can watch the cats play with it, and they’re hilarious on Christmas morning πŸ™‚

  2. I may not rip it open, but I’m not that careful, either. However, my daughter makes openeing presents quickly impossible. She likes to tape up every little opening. It’s like solving a puzzle to find the one space she left open! At least she leaves an opening for me and my husband. She’s been known to duct tapes her brother’s gift with no opening! Then again, he’s been known to give her a present that involves lots of empty boxes one inside the other until you get to a little box that tells here where to find her gift.

    Yeah – I’ve raised monsters!

  3. I used to deliberately coat the present in tape so the recipient had to struggle to open it :-D. I don’t do that anymore, and these days I use bags more often than not. Myself, I rip into the paper with gusto! Then I crumple up the pieces into small balls and roll them on the floor for the cats to play with. The best kitty toy ever!

  4. LOL great reason to tear into those gifts, Marcy! I bet they love the bows, too. It’s so much fun to watch our dogs open presents!

  5. Melinda – Cats love the holidays, don’t they? Dogs pretty much lose interest in the paper once they get their toys or treats. So funny about using tons of tape – my brother would be there all day if someone did that in our family LOL!

  6. LOL Stacy- I bet those gift-openings are fun to watch! My brother would spend all day trying to figure out how to open it without cutting if he got one wrapped like that.

  7. Lol. I’ll fess up. I’m the one. I love unwrapping packages so I draw it out as long as possible. And a gift bag? Forget it. I take out each piece of tissue separately without looking in the bag and then I neatly fold it before proceeding. I know it drives people nuts, but that’s part of the fun. πŸ™‚

  8. When I was a kid, I was expected to unwrap slowly so we could save the wrapping paper to use again. Not a bad idea really. Reduce reuse recycle and all that. Now, we just gather the paper up for recycle but my 9 year old loves to unwrap slowly. She hates to tear pretty paper. I like gift bags in general because they’re so easy to reuse. Now they have cloth gift bags and such. *thumbs up*

  9. Sonia – I’m all for recycling! I have some gift bags that have probably been reused a dozen times. But wrapping paper? My brother never reuses it.

  10. Too funny! I still open carefully and reuse sometimes, but often its just r-i-p! And then scrunch it up for the sack. Our kitties never were interested. Now, I’m all for gift bags, especially for my own family where I’m the one who gets to reuse them!

  11. I rip into them as well! Much more fun. πŸ™‚ I had a niece who used to take FOREVER to open her gifts. One year, I just reached over and said, “Here, let me help you with that!” and tore part of the paper off. Then everyone else did that until she no longer does it. LOL Merry Christmas, Jennette!

  12. Jennifer – I like receiving presents in gift bags, too – for the same reason!

    Rhonda – LOL! Now there’s an idea….

  13. I used to reuse the wrapping paper so I would open carefully. and I purposely put very little tape on the kids gifts so that that paper could be reused. But as things changed in our lives, so did my wrapping habits.

    I still wrap everything, because I love to have my grandchildren rip off the paper and throw it around. I don’t have kittens to play with it but we all get busy and pick up the mess.

    thanks for a fun post

  14. Louise – it’s so much more fun with little kids around! But unwrapping carefully is different if you save the paper – but my brother never does. Thanks for stopping by!

  15. If the paper is pretty, then I like to open carefully to reuse. I can’t help it–my mom drummed that whole ‘waste not want not’ in me from a very young age πŸ™‚ ha ha

  16. Hey Coleen, reusing makes sense! Especially considering how expensive some paper is. Bows always get recycled in my house, until they’re too torn up to reuse!