Wednesday, February 26, 2014

our present ball tradition

A friend asked me about this funny tradition of ours the other day. After telling her all about our present ball she decided to try it this year. And I thought it would be a great thing to blog about, just in case anyone else wants to give this nutty, chaos-inducing tradition a shot.

So, here's the general idea. We save all the wrapping paper from holidays and birthdays all year long, wrapping and wrapping it all around a present. And then on New Year's Day we make a game of it and tear it open.

Now for more of a detailed explanation. 

On Christmas we save all the paper and ribbon. We stuff it in bags or boxes and then it gets shoved to a corner in the food storage room in the basement. Then I forget about it for awhile. But when I run downstaris for a can of corn or black beans I see the bags and remember. At some point I actually think to pick up prizes for the middle of our new ball. (Obviously this may not be the best way to go about doing this.)

Finally I take some time and get wrapping! And our new present ball is begun.

Then throughout the year I continue to add to it. After someone's opened all their birthday presents, we stuff the used paper into a bag. Sometimes I ask the kids to add the next layers. They quite like it!

Finally, on New Year's Day we play a crazy game.

You'll need:

Pair of dice
Two cooking spoons or oven mitts
A massive present ball

Gather your posse in a circle. The first person rolls the dice, hoping for doubles. If they don't get them then they pass the dice to the next person. The first person to get doubles gets to start opening the present ball. But, of course, if they used just their hands it would be waaaaaaay too easy. No, this needs to be a challenge. We've been saving that paper ALL YEAR! We're going to make this game take a bit more time.

So, they must either don oven mitts or use spoons (or maybe even both!) to unwrap the present. While they're going to town, tearing paper and throwing it willy nilly through the air, the rest of the eager participants continue to roll the dice, hoping for doubles and then passing them onto the next person.

Whoever gets the next doubles gets to take over the fun task of relieving the ball of its paper. This continues until, finally, someone manages to get to the middle. Then...Eureka! Whoever gets their first, wins the contents.

Now, a word about that center. It wouldn't be too much fun for all the participants if just one person won, right? So, we like to put some suprises in the center for everyone and then one fun thing for the winner. This last year I put punching balloons, chocolates (this would not normally be the case....but I didn't get the present ball wrapped until...THE DAY WE DID IT! Yes. That whole having-a-baby-thing put me a bit behind last year.) and a package of scented markers.

So, who won this last year? ( was New Year's, this year!)

It was Molly.

And there just might have been a bit of help from her cute brothers in that matter.

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