Monday, December 10, 2007

Christmas Gifts

December 10 - Christmas Gifts
What were your favorite gifts,

both to receive and to give?


Books were my refuge as a kid. I would have spent all of my time reading if I could have. I love to give books to others. My grandchildren know that they will each get a toy, some clothes and at least one book from me.

Mike was just selected for the "Challenge Team" at his school. He has to read several books and then his team will be quizzed on what they remember. Right now he is reading Charlotte's Web. Can you see me beaming with pride through your screen?

There are some special gifts that stand out. All of the handmade gifts that people have made for me over the years I still treasure. 1971 was the first year that Dad wasn't there for Christmas. My sister and I were moved into the larger front bedroom and I was allowed to pick out the bedspreads for our new room. Even though I knew what was under the tree the bedspreads were special because I felt grown-up by being allowed to pick them out and for be trusted to act surprised in front of my brother and sister on Christmas morning.

On Christmas Eve we play Steal Bingo. Everyone brings one gift with a dollar limit, usually $10. The gifts are placed in a pile and everyone who is playing draws a number. Number 1 opens a gift. Number 2 then can steal that gift or open another. If they steal, #1 then opens another. Number three may chose to steal either of the open gifts or they may open a new one. If they steal from #1 then #1 can steal from #2 or open. You may not steal directly back from the person that stole from you but anything else is fair game. When the majority of gifts are open the stealing is fast and furious! The game ends when someone chooses to open the last gift. We have played this with up to 20 people and we can get quite obnoxious with each other. If someone has a gift they don't want they may be begging to have their gift stolen and offering additional items to make the trade sweeter. Some couples or families are notorious for teaming up together to ensure they get what they want. Certain family members have been known to try and hide gifts so that they are not noticed. We always have a great time and everyone looks forward to playing.

An Advent Calendar count down
to Christmas!

Who else is participating?

Visit Thomas at
Destination: Austin Family
and get the details!


Colleen said...

We call Steal Bingo "White Elephant" here. And it is fun. Usually it's played here at office parties or parties for organizations. Once we played with 22 people, and since it was an office party and people couldn't stay all night, they had a limit to the number of times a gift could be stolen.

Jasia said...

Sounds like fun!

Terry Thornton said...

Apple, I admire anyone who gives books. Because I was given and then "made to read" a never-ending series of books during my childhood [books selected by adults with no concept of the content or of age appropriate interests], I'm somewhat jaded on selecting books for other people. But some folks have the skills and insights to select good reading for others. I'm glad you do!

Lori Thornton said...

We either call what you call "Steal Bingo" bringing a White elephant gift or "Dirty Santa."

I like books too.