Wrapped Up in Christmas Spirit

Written by Carolyn Truong, Client Relations

Wrapping paper! Sparkles! Bows! Ribbons! All necessities for a successful gift wrapping station. It was December 13th, the second last weekend for people to get in their Christmas shopping, and my friend and I were volunteering to wrap gifts. The last minute surge of shoppers was beginning to get a tad overwhelming, and I wondered what I had gotten myself into.

“Look Mommy, its Santa’s elves!” a wide-eyed curly-haired little girl points at us, and that innocent comment completely put me back into perspective. That’s why I do it; to make just one small difference in someone’s day, to help check off another item on someone’s hectic Christmas to-do list.

It amazes me how many malls are now going above and beyond to add more to their customer service. From coat checks, to interactive directories, and now gift wrapping stations to ease the stressful Christmas season. Because Christmas shouldn’t be stressful. Because Christmas should be about spending more time with the ones you love, and anything that saves you time is wonderful.  

Most gift wrapping services are volunteer based, the services are by donation, and the proceeds go to charity. At Millwoods Town Centre, the proceeds last year went to the Edmonton Women’s Shelter, and this year it will go to the Salvation Army.

I love hearing the different stories on why people use the service. One gentlemen said that he had his presents wrapped at a gift wrapping station every single year. This year he had moved outside of the city and still drove in just to have his gifts wrapped at the same location. And he wasn’t the only one.

Some people are all thumbs and need just a little bit of extra help when it comes to gift wrapping, especially when it comes to those awkwardly shaped gifts i.e. a fishing rod, or a Hello Kitty gum-ball machine. It’s a simple service where everyone wins. The mall has happier customers, the customers feel good about giving, the volunteers feel good about volunteering (or maybe they just LOVE wrapping gifts), and proceeds all go to charity.

So in the next couple of days of extreme power shopping, perhaps you might consider seeking out a gift wrapping station and save yourself some time while helping to make a difference. You might be even more impressed with how your gift came out, or if you think “I can do better”, volunteer next year. In the meantime, Happy Holidays!

Chris Smith