The Art of Present Wrapping


Yesterday I sat there and watched as my partner commenced wrapping all the christmas presents we had brought so far.  I’d never realised it was such an art form, but he really puts my present wrapping to shame!

Denis’ rules for wrapping presents:

  • Measure the paper you need by using the present to measure it;
  • Fold and crease the paper where you are going to cut it;
  • Cut the wrapping paper with a knife – no scissors in sight;
  • There is a 3 piece sticky tape rule (this is not strict, but he is silently impressed with himself when he pulls it off!);
  • Finishing off the wrapping is all in the art of the paper folds at either ends – this really reminds me of origami.

The result is that he can wrap the strangest shaped present with style and finesse, people comment on the wrapping (i.e. my Mum) – and how perfect it is, and with all of these ‘rules’ he gets the job down quicker than I ever would, with less wastage (paper and tape).

Note: I tried wrapping a present today, as I can’t really get him to wrap his own presents.   One must ensure they use a sharp knife – otherwise the result is torn paper.  And I must admit this works (once you swap to a sharp knife), as I stupidly started with scissors, and one side of the paper is not too straight, then swapping to a blunt knife – tearing the paper, ending up with a sharp knife and a lovely precision cut on the other side of the paper!  Oh – and I managed the 3 piece sticky tape rule. WOOH!

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It’s 2010


It’s 2010.

The world survived Y2K.

We can connect with people all over the world instantaneously thanks to MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube…

The average person changes mobile phones more than their underpants (well…perhaps that’s a bit of an exaggeration).

The United States of America elected its first African-American President.

There have been major advances in hybrid vehicles.

We have seen Reality TV come, and hopefully go.

We can watch 3D television at home…if we can afford it.

Scientists now have their first images and data of Mars.

Thanks to globalisation, travel has never been easier (although it has been cheaper).

It’s 2010.

‘At least one out of every three women around the world has been beaten, coerced into sex, or otherwise abused in her lifetime – with the abuser usually someone known to her’. LEE Jong-Wook, Director-General, World Health Organization.

Loss at Christmas


Death is inevitable – ‘Just like taxes’ – or so I’ve been told numerous times this year.  But when you lose someone important in your life, it can affect you in all sorts of ways…days, weeks, months and years down the track –  with those special occasions being especially challenging.  I always heard that the onset of Christmas (and the actual day) was one of the hardest.  I guess that’s what my family is experiencing.

It’s been about 6 months since Nan passed on.  In a way it’s gotten easier, but the memories live on, and sometimes the thoughts coming trickling back, or – like yesterday – hitting me like a tsunami.

Nan and Me - Christmas 2009

I know I’m not alone though.  My dear Uncle, who lived with Nan for his whole life, still has the feeling that he will get back from his night shift with a beer waiting for him on the kitchen bench. A nice ‘night’ cap before going to bed.  My Mum has been walking around the shops christmas shopping, with a little tear in her eyes, at it was at Christmas we would always put the most thought into the gifts for my Nan (and her Mum).  Me. I’m also missing that.  I opened my underwear draw the other day – where I place a few special mementos (right next to the bed) – and remembered that’s where I had put what I gave Nan last year. Mum gave them back to me a few months ago.  It was an ornate, silver lipstick holder and a old-fashioned mesh jewellery pouch. Unfortunately she’d never gotten the chance to use them, as she declined rapidly after Christmas 2009.  I loved shopping for my Nan at Christmas.  I still go into shops and see things that I would love to spoil her with.

At least the people that are left can cherish these thoughts – the memory of that beautiful woman – and celebrate Christmas together.

2010 has been a hard year for so many people, but I think nearing the close of the year we should use this time as an opportunity to also come together, celebrate our friendships, family, successes, failures, life, trade a whole load of hugs, and most of all just have a laugh.

The early bird gets the worm…or just has a lot of time to kill while waiting


I suffer from the uncanny ability to be prompt.  Unfortunately, this does not align to a majority of my work colleagues, friends or family (with the exception of my brother), who are chronic late people (or just ‘really relaxed’).  It’s like it is ingrained in me – I just can’t be late.  IF I think I will be late – man I stress!  I’ve possibly programmed myself, in order to avoid the stress, to be a chronically early person. 

More often than not, I arrive at places at least 30 minutes early.  Then I either sit in the car listening to the radio, wander around the streets, play with my phone, anything to look ‘busy’ – waiting for the time that I was meant to meet up with someone.  I then usually spend another half an hour waiting as they are running late.

Sometimes I try really hard to be late – deliberately.  But then I usually end up being right on time, so then I wait.

I admit this is where the I-Phone has come in handy.  It is the perfect device to occupy my time and keep me busy, whilst I’m standing on the street corner waiting…or sitting in the restaurant waiting…really just thinking, clock watching and waiting.