Since we won't be spending Christmas with our families this year, I had to complete my shopping, wrapping and sending of gifts a little bit earlier this year. And, I learned some things along the way about mailing gifts...
1. It's significantly more expensive to mail gifts from California to our families than it was from New York. I guess I should have figured this would be the case, but man, what a difference.
2. Do not use the prepaid USPS priority mail boxes. Unless you're mailing something incredibly heavy, you'll end up paying more.
3. Order gifts online on Black Friday/ Cyber Monday to take advantage of free shipping and internet deals, and then save the boxes and packaging. I saved untold amounts of money reusing boxes and packaging materials.
4. This one is obvious, but don't buy heavy presents. And, if you do need send something that is heavy have it sent directly from the source to save a little money.
5. By all means, wrap the present and dress it up with a bow. I've had so much fun opening big boxes from both of our parents and pulling out beautifully wrapped gifts. My mom (who is ever the planner) used ribbon with wire, so all I had to do was re-fluff the bows before placing them under the tree.
6. If possible, get everything done early. I'm all about eliminating stress whenever and wherever I can. I shipped my presents pretty early, BUT I avoided crazy crowds at the post office.
7. Last, but certainly not least, invest in good packing tape with the dispenser that cuts the tape for you. This will save you endless headaches.
Here are some shots of the packaging process... (Notice Mack in the middle picture? He couldn't stop sniffing (and licking!) cousin Daisy's gift. He REALLY wanted what was inside!)
All packed and ready to go!