Christmas parties are useful - especially when there's a White Elephant involved! It is SO much fun for a recycle-nut like me!
If you've never heard of a "White Elephant" party, you may have heard it under a different name. Perhaps Yankee Swap, Chinese Gift Exchange, Dirty Santa, Thieving Secret Santa, or Parcel Pass.
Gifts are typically inexpensive, humorous items or used items from home. The term "white elephant" refers to a gift whose maintenance costs exceed its usefulness - you know, like something from your garage sale pile! The goal is to entertain and not really about the gift...however, some people really want the gift and will trade and trade and trade until they get something they like!
Now, the rules can vary from party to party - from family to family - heck, even from country to country! The party I attended had a "3 steal limit", meaning that gift could be stolen by 3 people before it was "retired" with person #3. And gifts were opened so you could see what was in the package!
Personally, I like playing the game with the gifts UNWRAPPED! You can get pretty creative as you try to hide a bunch of crap! I've seen some pretty elaborate wrap-jobs...big boxes with big bows, gift boxes with ornaments hanging from the outside, even gifts shaped like a Hershey's kiss! All to hide the hilarious, sometimes hideous gift inside! Best part is, you get to get rid of your junk - although you do have to take someone else's home! (but as they say, one man's white elephant is another man's treasure...or something like that!)
I can get pretty creative when I need to - and believe me, I need to. (Just ask my husband!) Wow-I can hardly wait to get started wrapping...and for garage sale season to start!
So, if you happen upon a "White Elephant Garage Sale" ....... Buyer Beware!