They always say that ‘It’s better to give than to receive’, but that’s the sort of statement that you can’t believe until you’ve become … well, old(er). It’s like when you were in Year 8 and everyone would say, ‘Your school years are the best years of your life‘ and you’re like ‘Urm nah, this is so dull.’ It’s not until after you have a job that requires you to work from 8 in the morning until 5 in the afternoon without spending the majority talking about ‘fit’ boys and who kissed who, that you begin to realise, actually that wasn’t so bad after all.
And so it was with the whole ‘It’s better to give than to receive’ malarkey. Is that a word? I love getting presents. Who doesn’t? Unless they’re from your grandparents and turn out to be a pack of paper (yes, that happened to me once. My 11th birthday, 11 sheets of paper for every year of my life). But I discovered recently that wrapping presents is my highlight of anyone’s birthday. It’s just the watching people tear them apart that I can’t deal with.
These are my creations. Two of these were for my eldest brother’s 26th (and one of those may or may not be a Thomas the Tank Engine book…) and the other’s for my American sister’s 20th. Seen as these presents will be travelling all the way over to the US I wanted to make them extra special (and also to make her cry. It’s the mark of a good present don’t you know).
It was also an excuse to spend many hours on Pintrest, without feeling as guilty when I should have spent the last few hours making dinner.
I also added little pieces of paper to tell her why I’d bought each present. The first – “Because of what you said the first time I talked about this” – is a bar of Cadbury’s dairy milk, and is in remembrance of the time I took her for her first English McDonald’s and was going on about Dairy Milk McFlurries. She asked me what was sprinkled on top and I repeatedly told her ‘Dairy Milk! Dairy Milk!” to which she replied “Yes I know ice-cream’s made from milk but WHAT’S SPRINKLED ON TOP!” Bless. It’s so easy to forget to America isn’t actually England with a funny accent.