Saturday, January 17, 2009

Big Families and Santa Claus

(I promise I'll quit beating the dead Christmas horse after this post!)

Whew. I got all the Christmas presents wrapped by 6:45 p.m. on Christmas Eve.

This year we put a limit on the number of presents (5 for each kid, and Santa has no problem giving a used gift if it’s something the kid will enjoy) and I tried to keep the cost the same for each kid (except the baby, who wants for nothing, so she got some cheaper gifts).

My sister-in-law just puts out all the gifts from Santa the night before UNWRAPPED, which sounds brilliant to me, but my husband won’t go for it. Of course, they also have buttloads of gifts for their kids from THEM. I guess nobody wants their kid thinking they didn’t get them a gift, but I don’t personally do this.

In case you’re wondering where we hide all 20 presents plus stockings, I’ll tell you. This year the “stockings” were plastic lap trays from Michael’s with “pockets” on either side of the tray. I put stuff in the pockets, like crafts, gum, a huge Hershey’s chocolate bar (I am the Sugar Mama, after all), Hannah Montana lip gloss for Callie, a ball and bath toys for the baby, rubber stamps and other junk. I stacked the lap trays and hid them in a corner of the basement, then covered it with Aron’s sleeping bag.

The smaller wrapped toys fit nicely in the huge cooler. The rest we put in the emptied-out Christmas tree box (what will we do next year when we have a live tree???), mostly stackable box-type gifts. Then I closed the box and stood it on end, opening to the wall.

For those of you with large families, I’m dying to know how you do the Santa thing (or if you even do it at all).