Monday, December 17, 2012

Oh Christmas wrapping paper...where art thou?

I thought I was so clever.
When we packed up our house in England, 
I divided the contents.
Part of our shipment followed us to Vietnam, 
and the other half set sail to the USA.

I explicitly marked the Christmas boxes that
I wanted to go to Vietnam.
I guess I must have been distracted.
In opening them the other day I discovered..
those odds and ends for winter weather.
Ice scrapers, shovels....the sort of things 
I will have absolutely no use for in Vietnam.

But most disappointing is my 25 year collection 
of Christmas wrapping paper.
I imagine it is tucked away in the container, 
in a warehouse, in Boston.
Not helpful.

Not surprisingly, there is not a large selection
 of Christmas wrapping paper in Vietnam.
I decided creativity and ingenuity must prevail.
When in Vietnam do as the Vietnamese do.

In fact, I am kind of glad that I had to move on.
I am enjoying the change of pace.
I was lucky enough to grab a few things at
 French Christmas market in our compound.

My wrapping paper of choice...

9 Nguyen Phuc Chu An Hoi

Their gift paper is hand screened...with a choice of 
three symbols and their meanings. A nice touch, to pass
on the message to one who receives a gift wrapped in this paper.

The Owl
Ruler of the night,
seer of souls and a true keeper of spirits.
A symbol of wisdom, mystery
protections and secrets.

The Fish
Water is a universal symbol 
of subconscious and depth of knowledge
the fish representing transformation 
and creations
A symbol of fertility, creativity, feminity and
good luck.

The Bird
Air animals assist us with matters of 
higher knowledge- heralding our desires 
to the gods in the skies.
A symbol of communciaiton,
 curiosity, vibrancy and clarity.

Christmas wrapping just took on a whole new meaning for me!

A few coulourful accents go a long way.

I came across these little tags at another booth...
I wish I had grabbed a card..they are a lot of fun. the paper below may not be on a Christmas theme
but I was happy to have found it. I think it works in
a tropical climate. I may be stretching that one a bit...but
I am going to go with it.

Last but not least...when in doubt. 
I pulled out the stack of London Review of Books newspapers 
that I have not been able to part with.
It is time.
Perfect for small gifts...and interesting reading too!

Christmas paper....check
Sending Christmas presents overseas...
more difficult than anticipated.
It involves clearances by the post office, 
paying a tax for sending the item
 and wrapping gifts in the post office.

I think I will be passing out Christmas gifts 
for months to come during my 2013 travels.
That makes the wrapping paper just perfect! 


  1. Oh, I can sympathize - so many things I could have used are languishing in our storage unit in the US! On the other side of the coin, I have way too many skillets and enough towels to open a hotel of my own! Last year I wrapped most of my Christmas gifts in wonderful beojagi - Korean wrapping cloths that can be re-used. I think the uniqueness of the gift wrap was part of the fun of the gift, and I'm sure all of your recipients will feel the same way!

    1. Caroline...I have heard about the Korean wrapping cloths, I will keep an eye out for them. Funny about those towels. I went out and bought lots of thick, extra absorbent towels before we left the UK and can not use any of them in Vietnam. They take forever to dry and have that eau de swamp smell if they are not dry enough. I had to go out and purchase the thinnest towels I could find and they work just fine. It's the little things! :)

  2. We lived for 6 years of my childhood in Bangkok and Taipei, and to this day my mother loathes thick towels - I wonder if that's the reason? I know my mum worries a lot about mildew - I'll have to ask her where that started! You might be able to buy the bojagi online, but it seems to me you could probably make your own more easily!

  3. Jeanne, same same happened to me all time .....searching, buying, finally I find it...most of them is still in a storage. But you have a good taste and you are creative too, I'm sure with these paper you will wrap very special parcels. Have fun with wrapping. Rena

  4. All of the papers are so incredibly beautiful! I send lots of patience towards your way for sending such beauties out into the world.

  5. I love this wrapping paper Jeanne... so much fun and your gifts will appear so festive... Can you believe this year ... it seems like yesterday we were wandering Paris... and now, look at you... all entrenched in Vietnam and with a new home in the States... Big Year...:) xv