Made My List, Checked It Twice, Shopped Online, and Then…

Made My List, Checked It Twice, Shopped Online, and Then…

On Cyber Monday, armed with my 2023 Christmas list (an Excel spreadsheet), I spent about four hours online and I started and finished my shopping. A couple of days later, the packages started arriving. I like to wrap my own gifts to send out of town rather than sending them in those ugly Amazon tie-string bags. I also have a deep fondness for beautiful, glittery ribbons. That’s my Christmas weakness.

It appears that, this year, Amazon sent every little thing I ordered in a separate box/mailing bag. The pile stacking up was pretty ridiculous. Every tiny thing I bought for our fun game came in a different package!

Each year, we play what we call the Saran Wrap Game on Christmas Eve. I buy about 20 small gifts and gag gifts, and a couple of nice gift cards. I have a large roll of plastic wrap with a handle. I will put one of the gift cards in the middle (the last gift they will get to) and I will start wrapping Saran Wrap around it. I will then add another thing, and keep wrapping. Every few minutes, I’ll cut the Saran Wrap and start over on another side of the now-growing ball of plastic wrap. I do this because one year, our son, Frank, always the jokester, stood up and held the end of the plastic wrap and the entire ball started unrolling. The game went by too fast (and Frank’s siblings were booing him) but cutting the wrap every few minutes has prevented that from happening again.

I will keep adding items, and wrapping them in plastic, and making the ball bigger, and bigger, and bigger. Once everything is in there, I’ll wrap a ribbon around the ball and put it under the tree. Also in our Christmas supplies are two oven mitts. They do NOT have plastic or silicone on them. The slippier they are, the better.

So, on Christmas Eve (we will have 15 people here this year), we move the furniture back and we all sit on the floor. The ball is in the middle. We also have 2 dice. We pass those around the circle and each person gets to roll the dice one time. Whoever gets doubles first gets to go first.

That person puts on the oven mitts, grabs the ball (it’s difficult to get a grip with the mitts on!), and starts trying to unpeel the plastic wrap to get to the first “prize.” The person to the left of him/her is frantically rolling the dice over and over again, trying to get double. When he/she does, he/she yells, “DOUBLES!” and the person next to him/her must hand over the oven mitts and the ball. The person to the left of him/her has already grabbed the dice, and started rolling. Sometimes, that person rolls doubles before the person who is “it” can get the oven mitts on.

It is, by far, the funnest game our family plays all year. Everyone is yelling and laughing. Plastic is flying everywhere. The competition is INTENSE! IT’S A HOOT!!!

Tonight, I’ll be at my gift wrapping station in the office here, watching Christmas movies on my iPad, and lovingly wrapping and tying beautiful ribbons around each gift. And, I know from past years that we’ll be finding glitter all over the house for the next 6 months.



Angela is not only the publisher of She is President & CEO of,
a self-publishing services company that has been in business since 1998. Ask her anything.


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