There’s been a lot of talk about how to handle the big, fat, jolly issue of Santa’s existence in our house. My eldest daughter is two, and suddenly aware of the folklore that accompanies Christmas.
In the next few years I’ll be fielding the “is that weird, beardy, dude who watches me sleep real?” questions. In the meantime, I have to grapple with a much more practical problem: where do I hide the presents?
Here are eight ways to hide presents and stop the snooping:
Using the vertically challenged thing against your kids is a great way to hide presents when they are small. The tops of kitchen counters, armoires, and other tall shelving is a great way to keep gifts out of sight. My living room baskets are high enough that I can climb on the couch to fill them with stocking stuffers (but not so high that I need a stool to reach them (subtle hiding is the name of the game, where possible).
Send the presents to Granny’s house! Family, friends, and neighbours' homes are a great present storage option, if they have the space. One drawback of this method is the lack of convenience for stashing and wrapping. However, putting gifts entirely out of harms way is a big winner if you have cunningly curious wee ones.
Unless you’re a big, organized, nerd like I was as a child, storage tubs are the best boring hiding place that no one thinks to look. Labelling your tubs with uninteresting descriptions like “old books”or “stuff” is an extra layer of insurance against prying eyes.
One (non-recommended) option is waiting until the last minute to shop. Use at your own risk. Wait! Please don’t use at all…Being disorganized for the holiday you can see coming since the day after Halloween is just plain lazy. I've said it before, and I will never stop: being fashionably late is like being "chicly rude" or "trendily selfish." You're an adult now, so this isn't an option.
Be real with your kids: “Snooping for the gifts means ruining the surprise and fun for yourself on Christmas morning. It ruins the fun for the gift-giver too!” This won't be a great option for my two-year-old (yet!), but could work well with older kids and the more mature adults in your life.
Wrap all presents immediately upon purchase! Anything that comes into the house is securely and lovingly wrapped, labelled, and placed tauntingly under the tree. We had to use this tactic with my father, who still takes gloaty-pride in feeling, smelling, touching, and licking each wrapped present to decipher its contents. I come by my present-hiding paranoia honestly...
Let people think they know where you hide the gifts.
"Oh! You found the present stash in my closet. Well, try not to look in there again..."
(Meanwhile, the real stash is elsewhere). If they think they’ve found the jackpot, they’ll quit snooping!
Using neat nooks like this oversized art is another way to go. Crazy props, like this weird head of iceberg lettuce, are a neat way to stealthfully stash Christmas presents. Or, these 10 kick-ass secret passage bookshelves might do the trick if your family are as relentless as mine. The one below from wifandhub.com is my fave:
No matter how you choose to hide the Christmas presents, don’t forget: lose the evidence! Unwrap the big stuff so its smaller to hide, and ditch those shopping bags.