The Star Was Too Big, But at Least the Presents are Wrapped

Christmas is just 11 days away! Wow, this month is flying by!

I have the presents all wrapped, but I’m doing something a little different this year. I don’t think I’m going to add bows to the presents, well at least not right now. If I do, they will all get crushed when I pack them into my SUV to head north for Christmas. Maybe once I arrive, I’ll add some bows then. That sounds like a good plan!

Decorated Christmas Tree, Plaid Wrapped Gifts


This year I came across this cute “red truck” gift wrapping paper.

Red Truck Christmas Wrapping Paper


Last year I covered all the packages for my son, daughter-in-law and grandsons with vintage trucks and cars “bringing home the Christmas tree.” That was a big hit with my grandsons, as you might imagine. lol

Gift Wrapping Idea, Toy Chevy Truck with Christmas Tree on Tartan Plaid Paper


They still have all those cars from last year, so this year I decided to just decorate one of their presents with a red truck bringing home the tree. I love how it looks on this cute paper.

Red Truck Bringing Home Christmas Tree Wrapping Paper


The paper is still available here: Red Truck Wrapping Paper. The little red trucks are available here: Red Trucks. They are the perfect size for present toppers. I found the little trees in Hobby Lobby.

Red Truck bringing home the Christmas tree


I was in Hobby Lobby today and spotted this glittery star. It’s much prettier (and bigger)  in person than it looks in this photo below. All their Christmas stuff is 50% off now. I purchased the star hoping it would work on my tree this year, but after I got it home it looked way too big.

I think I’ll hold onto it, though–just in case I one day put up a 9-foot tree in my bedroom or move into a home with 9-foot ceilings. I think it would look right at home on a tree that size. It was also on sale, 50% off.

Gold Star Topper for Christmas Tree


So, this is the state of my living room right now. It looks like a present factory exploded! It’s going to be interesting getting all these boxes into the back of my SUV; I’m not looking forward to that! I hope I don’t end up having to unwrap some of the gifts. I’m determined that they all make the trip north–so they just have to fit, one way or the other. lol

Christmas Tree with Glass Ornaments


Have you finished all your gift wrapping? If you haven’t, don’t panic. You still have 11 more days, so plenty of time.

Christmas Tree & Plaid Wrapped Gifts


Here are few close-ups of some of the ornaments on the tree. Unfortunately, they don’t look as sharp here as they do on my computer. I’ve got to find out why photos that look sharp on my computer always look slightly blurry once I load them to the blog. I will have to work on that in the new year.




Merry Christmas to you!

Decorated Christmas Tree, Plaid Wrapped Gifts

*If a post is sponsored or a product was provided at no charge, it will be stated in post. Some links may be affiliate links and as an Amazon Associate, I may earn from qualifying purchases. *

 Never miss a Between Naps on the Porch post! 

*Subscribe to have updates delivered to your Inbox. 


  1. Susan, I, too, have been looking for a star this year to top my tree. We bought a thinner tree then the beautiful full one we used to have because it needs to go in a smaller corner. Our tree is 7 1/2 feet tall and I don’t need one of those huge stars. All the ones I have seen so far are too big. I am anxious to see if you find one and where. We, too, are heading north to Ohio next Tuesday. I have learned to wrap all my packages and put on bows once I get there. Otherwise beautiful packages get squashed. I have little metal hangers that hook onto our headrests in the car. They hang bags or purses and I keep mine facing toward the back seat and keep one bag for travel garbage and another for snacks. One bag this year holds my bows to put on once we get the packages in the house.
    Merry Christmas to you and yours! We are hoping for a white Christmas in Hudson, Ohio, this year. We had one last year. My husband and I are also going to try to get a sleigh ride about 45 minutes away from where family lives if there is enough snow.

    • If I come across one, I’ll definitely let you know. That’s what I’ll do this year, too…put the bows on later. Last year the presents were mostly all topped with cars, so they didn’t get squished. lol
      I think I may purchase some bows once I get there since I’m arriving a few days early.
      My son wants a white Christmas. I hope if that happens, it waits until I’m off the roads! Ha!
      A sleigh ride sounds amazing! Love that idea!
      Merry Christmas, Martha!

  2. Merry Christmas to you! I know you will get all those presents in your SUV, no doubt! Just like your little Vintage Trucks carry a tree! It’s called “Come hell or high water” Such an “American” frame of mind!! Yes, we do and so will you, over the mountains for Christmas!

  3. Jillaine McNay says

    You could mail some of the gifts ahead of your trip. I just mailed my away gifts today (Fri) and they should arrive on Tues (1,000 miles away). Also, FedEx had much better rates than USPS. It’s a thought…..

    • Thanks for that info. Jillaine! Some of the boxes I used are a little bigger than the item inside since I was recycling all my Amazon boxes, so if I have to, I can take them out and rewrap them in Ohio. I know of at least 2-3 of the boxes I could do that with. Hope I don’t have to, though.

  4. Whew, that’s a lot of wrapping of presents (big ones too). You may end up with some in the front passenger seat. Your tree is lovely! I’m finding that toppers for the tree that have that spiral base topple over; not sure why. I used USPS to send a package to IL. I used the medium box and it was over $13. I packed it full but you can’t put large items in it. I’ve been sending things to Florida that have free shipping and have to rely that the packages get wrapped on the receiving end. Not quite as fun as wrapping the presents myself, but more economical. You are really off to a good start for your visit with your son!

    • lol Either that or my suitcase will end up in the front seat. 🙂
      I know, not sure why they use the spiral base, it never seems to work that great.
      Thanks, Kathleen! I’m looking forward to seeing them all again…already missing them since Thanksgiving. Merry Christmas to you!

  5. Merry Christmas to you as well. Safe journey to your son and his family. Your tree is beautiful!

  6. Once again you’ve done an outstanding job of decorating your tree and wrapping beautiful gifts. I love the way everything is coordinated. Your ornament collection is the kind that makes you want to take the time to admire each one. I’ve been collecting ornaments for years and enjoy the memories attached to them. Although the trees with huge ornaments and flowers look very professional, I like the personal touch of a carefully selected collection that can’t be copied. Enjoy your Christmas with your family, especially those grandsons. Have a safe trip. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

  7. Diana Clark says

    I have saved old cards because of how beautiful they were. When I was a child my mom would often glue a card on top of a package. You might try that.

  8. Donna zoltanski says

    Oh my….everything looks so pretty. Gorgeous wrapped presents under the tree is a favorite of mine. All the time put into thinking of the perfect gift, it’s wonderful to sit and enjoy it before Santa’s arrival! Plaids are a definite plus! Merry Christmas to you too! ⛄

  9. Hope your son and family have a Star on top of their tree because my 3 yr old grandson informed me this year that Santa only comes to houses where there is a star on top of the tree LOL. Not sure where that came from. Enjoy this precious time spent with family, safe travels and Merry Christmas.

  10. Your grandsons will go into high gear when they see you drive up with all those gifts! Have a great family Christmas. And if you get snow, please post some picks 😉

    • lol Yup, it’s always hilarious! Even the look on my son and dil’s faces make my day! Most of the gifts are for them since it’s easy to overload the little ones at this age with too many gifts.

  11. Lovely tree! Since my daughter and her family relocated to Pennsylvania I have taken to shopping through Amazon. I have the gifts for her family shipped directly to her. With Amazon Prime shipping is free and she does the wrapping!

    • Thanks, Roberta! Oh, but if I had them shipped, I would miss the look on my son, dil and grandson’s faces when I open up the back of the SUV and all those presents come tumbling out. 🙂

      • Yes! Good plan. 😉

      • So true! The “WOW” factor is part of the fun. You are very fortunate to be able to travel so frequently. Unfortunately, my court schedule does not allow for such freedom. I hope you and your family have a wonderful Christmas. Enjoy!

  12. Marie in AZ says

    Susan, you are so brave to attempt a glittery star! I have banned (LOL) all glitter from my house, because no matter how much I vacuum there seem to be glitter sparkles on the floor for a month or two after Christmas. The little rascals sneak their way out of carpeting and rugs where they’ve been hiding, and even show up on my tile kitchen floor once in a while. And yes, I have an excellent, strong, Dyson vacuum! This year, and from now on, all the sparkle in my house comes from crystal, silver, and sparkly glass ornaments! Wishing you a safe journey, and enjoy Christmas with your lovely family…I know those grandchildren will enjoy your fun wrappings!

    • Ha, ha, ha…I totally get that. I had to brush all the glitter off my sofa before I took that photo, and I hadn’t even taken the star off the cardboard backing yet! lol
      Thanks, Marie! I’m looking forward to seeing them. The youngest is 2-1/2 so he’s big enough now to understand more of what’s going on…so it should be even more fun this year.

  13. We couldn’t find a star that worked on our tree either. We had one with white lights but it didn’t want to clip on the tree because it is heavy and toppled over. We ran a green garden stick down the tree trunk and attached it that way. Worked really well. Have a great trip and Merry Christmas!

    • Smart! I’ll have to remember that if I can find one that is the right size. This one is just way too tall and big overall…but it’s beautiful! Thanks, Sandy!

  14. Rebecca Dexter says

    Beautiful tree…love all of the red!

  15. Hi, Susan,
    Looks like you’re ready to go! I haven’t even started to wrap yet. My cousin comes over every year. We put on Christmas music and spend the afternoon wrapping gifts (with 4 daughters, 4 sons-in-law and 9 grandchildren , it takes quite a while), but it’s a fun time. I LOVE your tree. Your ornaments seem to each tell a story and the final effect is breathtaking. Have a safe journey and enjoy those warm snuggles with your grandsons. Merry Christmas, Susan!

  16. Merry Christmas to you, too, Susan. You are a girl after my own heart. I want to wow my grand-kids when they come to my house and I have a ton of presents. It is such a short time. All too soon they will be grown up. Have a safe trip and enjoy your family. I too struggled to find a star for my tree this year. Most were just too top heavy to stay on the tree.

  17. Based on your beautiful tree, I bought a Just Cut Canadian tree from Home Depot this year. Instead of a tree topper, I arranged five picks of gold leaves in a circle around the top, then put five glittery red picks around them on the outside of the circle. It looks great if I do say so myself.

  18. penney helms says

    That very star is on top of the Chrismon trees at our UM church in Knoxville, TN. Being big was what made it work. Wish you a warm and happy Advent and Christmas.

  19. Just beautiful !

  20. Well, ho – ho – ho as it appears Santa has already been to your place. 🙂 Your tree is gorgeous Susan and no doubt you are exhausted from wrapping all those gifts. Hopefully you had more success in finding bows than I did (particularly for the larger gifts) as out of desperation I ended up making quite a few of my own as refused to pay $8.00 or more (plus 16% tax on top of it) for reasonably sized ones. (Made them out of ribbon and/or paper.) I also resorted to making pom-poms this year for some parcels and used the coordinated yarn instead of ribbon. (Yes, call me cheap if you wish … BUT … I got the job done!) Last but not least; just want to wish you a safe journey to your son’s and the MERRIEST CHRISTMAS EVER. Warm hugs -Brenda-

    P.S.: For those wishing to create their own bows — they may wish to try using 2-sided glue runner tape (that comes in a small dispenser/often used in Scrap booking). Plus if into decorative wrapping that entails either pleating, weaving, using two colours of paper etc. it will also make the process much easier . (Most $-Stores carry it.)

    • Footnote: Forgot to mention, for those who may be using just plain brown gift wrap but may be wanting to add a tree-topped vehicle (like Susan has done) a cute idea that I seen on Pinterest is where the person created a tree farm/winter scene by spraying the top of the package with faux snow and while still wet, ran the car/truck through it to create tire tracks and a few little trees. (Wipe off the tires 1st then attach it and/or the trees with glue dots or runner tape.) -Brenda-

  21. Beautiful packages! Hope you have a safe trip and a very Merry Christmas! I was told a good trick long ago if you have to overnight on your journey……cover your cargo with a black tarp, black sheet, etc. At night makes it hard for anyone looking in through the windows to determine you have something maybe worth stealing….

  22. Kimberly - KKAbsherWrites says

    Wow! I love all the paper you used. When we’ve traveled, I pack as many presents in boxes as will fit. I, too, reuse amazon boxes to wrap, but flatten them and I just wrap or gift bag on the other end. That way it all fits. There have been years I wrapped and did bows on the other end, too. I hope it all fits. Big boxes first and luggage and then small stuff. I know you know that. For spiral tree toppers, I’ve always had to secure with floral wire or ornament hooks since they topple over without. Anyway, I know the vintage trucks were last year but I’d love to know where you found them. Merry Christmas and safe travels!

  23. Bonnie Gutierrez says

    Susan, your tree is so beautiful! We also have packages to haul and I am determined to have them wrapped prior to our departure. Saving the adornments until after we arrive is a great idea. Travel safe and Merry Christmas to you and yours!

  24. Susan, everything looks so pretty and cozy. As usual, you put the rest of us to shame.

    This year I’m planning to make your chocolate truffle for Christmas dessert! So thank you for that. It makes such a pretty presentation.

    I love that little camper ornament. 🙂 It looks like a lot of your ornaments are on the small side, which I love. I need more small ornaments but have trouble finding them. I love it when a tree has a variety of sizes and colors and the ornaments are both buried deep and near the tips. It’s so pretty and festive! But I agree. This Christmas season seems to be whizzing by. Slow it down, please!

  25. Love your tree, but guess what happened at my house? The porch pirated struck this week! I couldn’t believe it! We live in a small town and a safe neighborhood, but apparently that doesn’t matter. We have ordered the security doorbell thing you wrote about. We’re a little to late, but it should help in the future.

    • Oh, no! How did you figure out it was a dastardly porch pirate…and not a failed delivery or the company’s fault? I’m so sorry that happened, Mary.
      Mary, I’m going to post (probably on Monday or Tuesday) about the installation process, along with an important tip that will save a lot of frustration. So look for that post early next week. I’m really glad I have it, have really enjoyed it.

      • Susan, I’m glad to hear that. After reading your post about Ring, I told my husband about it and we’re looking into it, as well. Looking forward to what you have to say.

        Mary, so sorry that happened. 🙁

  26. Hi Susan, Because of you, we bought ‘your’ Christmas tree this year. #2 son was so disappointed that for the first time ever we won’t have a real tree. Oh well, he’ll get over it. But your tree is so lovely. I think you have more talent than us when it comes to fluffing the branches. Our tree does look beautiful, just not as full. I’ve had the tree up since just after Thanksgiving and appreciate that we don’t have to water it! I also appreciate that the needles aren’t dropping! Don’t know why but that was a chronic problem for us—past trees would stop drawing water and branches would start to droop usually around mid December. This tree doesn’t do that, wink, wink. My only complaint was that I couldn’t put our star on top (very similar to the one you just bought). It was too heavy and kept falling off. I solved it by going to a local nursery that also sells the most beautiful bows. I splurged (hid the price tag from my husband!) and got a beautiful double ribbon ‘topper’ bow that coordinates with the ribbon I wrap around my tree. I’m glad I did, as it really ‘made’ the tree. So thank you for your blog, and I thought I’d share how I solved my tree topper dilemma. Enjoy your time with your family and thank you for your wonderful blog.

  27. There seem to be a lot of kindred souls among your admirers, Susan. So many have mentioned using or wanting to use stars atop their trees, just as you also wanted to do, but found their stars were not cooperating. Count me among the group. My favorite star is heavy and floppy and hubby doesn’t want to use it without finding a way to stabilize it. There are good ideas shared here.

  28. Barbara Haunton says

    At 84, I’ve resorted to the most interesting or pretty gift bags and tissue I can find. I do have Caspari’s new doggy wrap and their classic Winterberry. After decades I noticed Caspari comes from Charlottesville, not England or Italy.

    Your plaid year indeed.

  29. Oh Susan, your tree is absolutely beautiful. I just want to know one thing. How does one become a family member? I’ll love to have one of your cute wrapped gifts. It box can be empty, I just want the wrapping. Ha ha Hope you don’t have to rent a trailer to get all of your gifts up north. Have a safe and Merry Christmas.

  30. Your tree is so pretty. Love all of the German blown glass ornaments. Did I see a little glass rabbit ? Maybe the toppers fall over because the top branch is too tall and flimsy. Try bending it in half and pushing into the spiral. You could use floral tape and tape a green bamboo gardening stake to the center before pushing it into the spiral.
    We all wish you and your family a Merry Christmas. Safe travels.

  31. I can see you packing now….it’ll be like one of those push-pull puzzles, for sure. That’ll make a great before & after post. Be sure to take pictures, lol. The tree looks beautiful.

  32. Dorinda Selke says

    Merry Christmas, Susan. Your tree looks beautiful with all the presents underneath it. I should mention that my whole family enjoyed your Christmas vacation village post. That movie is an all-time Family favorite! Safe travels up to your family. Hugs, Dorinda

  33. Susan, your new tree is beautiful! All those packages to load in your car will be a task, but i am sure you can do it, just fold down those two back passenger seats and it is amazing the additional space you will have. I borrowed your idea with the red truck wrapping paper, and red truck with brush tree on top for my 2 and 3 year old grandsons. They will love it! Those trucks with the doors that open are the cutest. Thanks for the idea.

  34. Mary Rogozinski says

    Well I went to Hobby lobby today looking for the gold Moravian star tree topper and all they had left over was the red with 50% off I got it for $10 hopefully when I spray-paint it gold it will look just as nice as the gold one should have if they had it in stock

  35. Used your truck, car, van paper and put trucks with trees on top of everything last year and had a great time playing with everything. Going to be hard to top that this year.

I'd love to hear from you! Please leave a comment!


Send this to a friend