My secret code gift labelling system

A few days before Christmas, I was surprised to hear our 13-year-old daughter say what she was looking forward to the most. “I can’t wait to crack mom’s code on the gifts,” she said. About five years ago, I began replacing my traditional gift tags with a secret code. When the kids were little, I would write their names on their gifts like a normal person. But as they got older, they began going through the gifts, sorting them into piles by name. Once they knew which gifts belonged to each child, the shaking, squishing and guessing began. They were...
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The hands of Christmas past

Fifteen years ago, I was a mom to two little boys. One was 2 years old, and the other was just a baby. Back then, I didn’t have Pinterest. I didn’t have Instagram or even Facebook. Somehow, even living on a planet empty of social media, I was able to glean creative ideas from sources of which I now have absolutely no memory. Somewhere, I saw an idea to trace a child’s hands on the skirt of a Christmas tree. I thought this was cute, so I set out to find a plain tree skirt that I could decorate with...
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