A quick look around the retail sector and you’d be forgiven for thinking that Christmas is next Monday – but whilst there are five weeks to go, there’s no denying that the seasonal excitement is building.
No sooner had the smoke from November 5ths Fireworks cleared and the Christmas advertisements hit our screens to entice us into the next seasonal spend-fest. If you’re indulging in some early shopping – ahead of the Christmas rush – you might well be wondering where’s best to keep the presents you buy. Especially if you’ve got ‘independently minded’ children who like nothing more than a pre-Christmas treasure hunt around the house. So here’s our Top Trumps style guide to keeping Christmas Presents out of sight of prying eyes, so any super-sleuth offspring don’t ruin their surprise before the big day…
Under Clothing at the Back of the Wardrobe
For : It’s easy and accessible.
Against : It’s easy and accessible.
Summary : Probably the first place they’ll look.
Secrecy Rating 1/10 – Only the children who aren’t interested in finding out what’ll be under the tree are likely to leave this one alone.
Under the Bed/Divan Storage Drawers
For : Easy access, you can hide presents in the middle/at the back of drawers, under clothes.
Against : They might find that ‘special outfit’ you bought for a fancy dress party – if you’re lucky they’ll think it’s a present for someone else. If you’re unlucky they’ll never see Mum and Dad in the same light again.
Summary : Probably the second place they’ll look.
Secrecy Rating 1/10 : no more sophisticated than in the Wardrobe.
Hidden at the Back of a Store Cupboard
For : You can bury the gifts under the vacuum cleaner, brushes, wash basket etc.
Against : In yoof speak; it’s a bit ‘obvs’.
Summary : Having to move icky cleaning equipment may put some off, but if there’s something on the list that they’re really desperate to get they’ll brave the dusters and wash basket.
Secrecy Rating 2/10 – If they’re home alone, with time on their hands, it’ll be a part of their systematic CSI style detection procedure.
In the Loft
For : Special skills required to open the loft hatch and use a ladder.
Against : Not everyone has a Loft. In fact, in London, not many at all.
Summary : Great if you’ve got a loft space and secure against only the most tenacious of children, but does carry the risk you’ll spend Christmas Eve in A&E trying to retrieve it from the top of the house.
Secrecy Rating 6/10 :
BONUS CARD : Wrapping Everything Up Early
For : Even if they find their presents, they won’t be able to
Against : You’ll almost certainly face questions about the legitimacy of Santa.
Secrecy Rating : add 2 points to any of the above.
Swapping with Next Door
For : Your kids won’t find their presents.
Against : They’ll find next doors’ instead.
Summary : Confusion could reign when little Johnny discovers little Jane’s Barbie set – instead of the Jurassic World Lego he wanted – hidden in the wardrobe. You’ll also need to be sure your neighbours are going to be available to make the swap back in enough time for Christmas Day.
Secrecy Rating : 8/10, but with a strong caveat that things can go wrong – with confused children and dodgy logistics.
In Plain Sight (Wrapped under the Tree)
For : You don’t have to worry about them finding them.
Against : You’ll have to buy your tree and put up the decorations really early.
Summary : The temptation for them to shake, rattle and tear the corners off of wrapping paper will be immense, so you’ll need to be a ‘teach-them-zen-like-levels-of-self-control’ grand master, or the wrapped presents might not make it to December 25th.
Secrecy Rating : 8/10, reducing to 0/10 when one of the little darlings caves into temptation.
In a Storage Unit
For : It’s safe, secure and off-site, so the kids will never find it.
Against : It’s not free.
Summary : In the grand scheme of the cost of Christmas presents, a storage unit or locker during the 4 week run up to Christmas is a great solution. It ticks all the boxes in terms of security and safety, and you can access it easily. You might even find it turns out to be useful – particularly if you’re short on storage space at home anyway.
Secrecy Rating : 10/10 – it really is a secret hideout. For your kids to find their Christmas presents they’d have to deduce you’d rented a storage unit, steal the keycard for entry to the building, work out the floor and number of the unit and deduce the keypad door code to get in… so unless your surname is Bourne and your eldest is called Jason, a storage unit is top of pops for keeping Christmas presents nicely hidden away in 2017.