A Day To:

Buy packaging materials for mailing gifts overseas and domestically – including boxes, bubble-wrap, padded envelopes, labels, string and tape.

Order a selection of gifts for delivery.

(Scroll down for the day in detail)

Watch:

“Trapped in Paradise” (1994): starring Nicolas Cage, Dana Carvey and Jon Lovitz. A crime comedy in which Nicolas Cage’s character Bill Firpo is lumbered with his two paroled brothers Alvin and Dave, who ask him to take them to Paradise, Pennsylvania to do a favour for a recent acquaintance. Make that inmate. Lax security at the bank there leads to a plot to rob it on Christmas Eve. But what did the welcoming town folk ever do to hurt them? And in the end, what would the calamitous brothers do without these super-kind people? (Movie Magic: Ma Firpo – played in her own inimitably feisty and cranky style by Florence Stanley – is so exasperated by her hapless thug abductors, she declares: “You guys are dumber than a box of hair.”)

Ponder:

“There are some wonderful aspects to Christmas. It’s magical. And each year, from at least November, well, September, well, if I’m honest, May, I look forward to it hugely.” 

Miranda Hart, British comedian, from “Is it Just me?”

Listen:

“Classic Sleighride” by Leopold Mozart, arranged by Philip Lane from the album “The Night Before Christmas”;

“Christmas Lights” by Coldplay;

Favourites from the 40 tracks on the album “It’s Christmas!” by Jonas Kaufmann.

Learn:

Did you know…Sir Henry Cole, who introduced the penny post in Britain in 1840, also created the world’s first commercial Christmas card in 1843? They sold for a shilling each – an average man’s weekly wage at the time. Most of the original 1,000 print-run was in colour, with only a small selection in monochrome. There are believed to be just 12 in existence today, only three monochrome. They can fetch thousands of pounds at auction. One sold at Devizes, Wiltshire in November 2001 for £20,000. It was originally sent by Cole to his grandmother in 1843 and was hand-coloured by London illustrator John Calcott Horsley. The pictured scene was criticised for promoting drunkenness – it included an adult feeding wine to a child.

PLEASING PAGES TO PERUSE: Global Traditions – CLICK HERE; Outdoor Lights – CLICK HERE; Table Dressing – CLICK HERE; Classical Christmas Music – CLICK HERE; Victorian Christmas – CLICK HERE

The Day in Detail:

Mrs. C says: I very much like the bustle of Christmas shoppers, all on a mission, and certainly want to support my local high street – always. I’ve also learnt to choose my moments…when to visit the shops and when not to. Of course, for vast swathes of last year and this, we have rightly been limited in our shopping habits because of social distancing. Yes, there are products we might want to see and touch before purchasing, but when there is no option we can adapt. We have shown that. So, put the kettle on, brew a soothing pot of tea, open your favourite biscuits and browse away on your computer or tablet.

Ed Elf: Relax and get your Garibaldi’s out.

Mrs. C: First, order for delivery or collection a batch of packaging material for presents you are likely to send by post, either here or abroad. The list might include: brown paper, cardboard boxes, bubble-wrap and padded envelopes. Next, time for your first significant present buying of the festive season. Yes, today’s the day to put a first serious dent in your gifts list.

Ed Elf: Presents! Yes!!! Ooh…I’ve got a tummy full of butterflies at the very thought of that mountain of gifts. I hope I don’t barf.

Mrs. C: The organised among us will have some presents bought by now. I start in summer, sometimes sooner – my list is long. But if you haven’t, there are still weeks stretching out ahead of us before the big day. Please, don’t panic. Prioritise the gifts you will need to parcel up for overseas family and friends, followed by those you will mail in the UK. You might also order an array of stocking fillers and search out the Secret Santa gifts you may need for the workplace, your church community or social group.

We suggest that some of the gift buying that has become excessive can be cut back on slightly. Set a budget, stick to your limit. It really is the thought that counts. Something you have put a great deal of thought into, but costs a fiver, is preferable every time to a gift five-times as expensive that makes the recipient feel you don’t know them at all.

Conifer and berries 64686097So today’s the day to:

  • Peruse and shop online, starting with the purchase of an array of mailing and packaging materials.
  • Buy some Christmas gifts, focusing on stocking fillers and presents you will need to mail abroad or post in the UK.
  • Search out Secret Santa gifts you may need for work, church or home.