Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Gifts in the Attic

Diane. AKA: Snoopy.
In yesterday’s post, I described missing a couple of important steps in the whole chocolate-making-deliciousness process. (See here.)
I have to tell you now that missing things at Christmastime wasn’t my forte.
Nope.
Ol’ Diane was unusually keen at this time of year. I could spot presents coming into the house no matter how they were disguised.
Even in my sleep.
Well, okay, maybe that is an exaggeration.
But during any and all waking hours.
And if I somehow missed them coming in through the front door, my snooping would uncover them in their varied—and sometimes genius—hiding places.
My Mom knew to wrap everything immediately and get it under the tree.
Diane could then squeeze and shake, but, ironically, would not open.
Something about the whole don’t-get-caught scenario.
I know. Weird.
Dad, on the other hand, usually did his shopping on Christmas Eve. Less chance of snoopage/findage when the gifts don’t even come into the house until after Diane is in la-la land. But if he, for some strange reason, brought something into the house before the fateful night, he had never developed Mom’s adeptness at  hidage/coverage.
Heh. Heh. Heh.
Trustingly, he would slip said ‘something’ under the neatly-folded clothes in the top of his closet, secure in the knowledge that his middle daughter would never—ever—stoop to snoopage/findage. (See above.)
Dads. Pfff . . .
He had barely left the room before Diane had scaled the hanging clothes, scampered along the shelves and disclosed the undisclosable.
Ooooh!
Then, careful to cover my tracks, I would arrange things as I had found them, but with the little, golden nugget of knowledge tucked away into my avaricetic (Is that a word?) brain.
Usually, my snooping went undiscovered.
Until that Christmas.
When all was revealed. Because something wasn’t revealed.
Ahem . . .
The frenzy of unwrapping, exclaiming and gloating had finished.
And, as the euphoria evaporated, I realized one thing had not appeared.
That package neatly hidden among Dad’s shirts in the bowels of Dad’s closet.
Cleverly and stealthily, I tried to extract the information from my father. “Dad! What about that package in the top of your closet? Who was that for?”
Yeah. I’m up for a clever prevarication award. I think I have a good shot.
He looked at me. “Oh. I completely forgot!” The package was produced and bestowed.
Oddly, I can’t even remember if it came to me.
But I do remember that from that time forward, Daddy became much clever-er in the whole shopping/hiding-from-his-snoopy-daughter situation.
Rats.
Have you heard the term ‘Me and my big mouth’?
Yeah. That would apply here.

14 comments:

  1. Santa loves Snoopers, too.
    And it's a good thing.
    There are a lot of y'all out there!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes, but, it MIGHT have been for you and, well, you wouldn't want to miss out on a gift. I was a snooper too...stay tuned for that post.

    ReplyDelete
  3. My dad would assign a dollar bill to each kid and on the Christmas presents instead of names he would put the serial number for the corresponding dollar. On Christmas Eve we would receive our dollars. It made it so hard to snoop...but not impossible!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ingenious! My Dad tried putting packages under the tree without labels, thinking he'd just assign on Christmas morning. But he couldn't remember which package went to whom. That was a fun Christmas!

      Delete
  4. I was a very, very skilled pinch, poke and rattler of presents. And still am.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I once switched a tag on a present that was supposed to be for my sister. No one said a word.

    ReplyDelete
  6. My older brother was the one who snooped in our family. I didn't want to ruin the surprise!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Here's where I admit I never accomplished anything with all my snooping. I was still flabbergasted (real word) when the packages were opened. The best surprise, though, was my Husby. He wanted a deep fryer for Christmas and I got him a router. He shook the wrapped box and nodded happily as it rattled appropriately. Then Christmas morning, he was the picture of surprise when he opened it a found a tool instead of an appliance. HeeHee!

      Delete
    2. Sooo funny! And sooo satisfying for you, I bet :)

      Delete
  7. I did my snooping via listening. Mum and Dad would discuss Christmas gifts in German and I would listen in of course, they thought they were safe because we kids only spoke English. Sometime later I would casually ask "what does xxx mean?" and learn what we were getting for Christmas.

    ReplyDelete

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