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Meet the Columnist

Columnist, Sheila Moss, is a free-lance writer from  Tennessee. She writes  funny stuff about southern life, women's issues, family matters and anything else that  she finds amusing.

She is seen weekly in the Daily News of Kingsport  and Hill Country Times and appears in a monthly humor publication called Foolish Times.  She has written for  Atlanta Woman Magazine, Aberdeen Examiner, Angleton Advocate,  and Smyrna AM, a supplement of the Murfreesboro Daily News Journal. She has been published by Voyageur Press, McGraw Hill, and the good folks at Guidepost Books have recently published a number of her articles in their Let There Be Laughter series of books. Her articles have appeared in numerous other publications, both print and online.

She is a board member and the Web Editor of, website of  the National Society of Newspaper Columnists, the oldest and largest professional organization for  news columnists. She is also the Web Editor of as well as this website,

To carry her self- syndicated weekly column in your newspaper, or to republish an article, please contact her. It's that easy.

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Wrapping Perfect Gifts...

Twelve Easy Steps for 
Wrapping Perfect Gifts

You too can have beautifully wrapped gifts without paying department store gift wrap prices. Wrapping gifts is not that difficult and something anyone can learn with a small amount of effort.

  1. Get a sturdy box for the gift. You canít find one? There must be something in the closet from last year. Okay, that one is a bit small, but close enough. Line it with colorful tissue and place your gift inside. Whadda ya mean it popped open? Tape it shut! Good grief! Use more tape this time and make sure it stays shut!

  2. Choose colorful paper appropriate for the occasion. Is that crummy stuff from last year all you have? Well, it will have to do. Why didnít you buy some new paper when you bought the gift? Measure the paper by gently wrapping it around the box. Leave two extra inches to overlap. Cut the paper evenly.

  3. Measure the ends by using the end of the box. The paper should fold to cover the end of the box exactly at both ends. Now trim the sides of the paper. Where are the scissors? How should I know? They are your scissors. Try looking under the box! How can you learn to wrap gifts if you keep losing things?

  4. Okay, wrap the box lengthwise and tape the paper tightly. What do you mean it doesnít reach? I told you leave two extra inches! You forgot? FORGOT??? Repeat Steps 2 and 3. Now wrap the box lengthwise and tape the paper. Double-edged tape is nice and doesnít show. You donít have any? That figures.

  5. Tuck the ends in on the side and make crisp creases. Fold the bottom flap up and the top flap down, like an envelope. Itís too long? Well, just fold the extra under and tape it! Okay, so it made a lump. So what?

  6. Repeat Step 5 for the other end. The paper doesnít meet? So, thatís why the other end was too long! Okay, cut a little extra paper off the roll and patch it so the box doesnít show. No, it doesnít look too good, but we donít have enough paper to start over. Maybe no one will notice.

  7. Choose bright ribbon that coordinates with the wrapping paper. Watch out, cats like to chase loose ribbon! Tie ribbon around box leaving ends long enough to tie the bow with. Untie cat from box.

  8. To make an easy bow, wrap ribbon around your hand and tie the loops tightly in the middle. You donít have enough hands? Okay, Iíll tie it for you. Canít you do anything? Now, pull the loops out one at the time on alternate sides and twist slightly. See how it works? Donít worry, it looks good enough. Tie the bow to the box. Now untie cat again.

  9. Extra items on the outside of a box add a festive touch. Try tying a small ornament or toy tied next to the bow. No, a small cat will not work.

  10. The end came untapped? Tape it back. No more tape, huh? You shouldnít have used so much to tape the box shut. Use adhesive tape or duct tape. At this point, who cares? Itís the gift that matters, not the wrapping anyhow.

  11. Additional gifts may be wrapped in the same manner. Helpful suggestion: Put cat in basement and lock door first. How many more gifts to you need to wrap?

  12. Gift bags are nice. Go to the discount store and buy bags and tissue paper. Wrap gifts loosely with tissue and tape. Put several sheets of extra tissue paper in each bag. Add gifts and you are done! Why didnít we think of this step in the first place?

Copyright 2002 Sheila Moss


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Sheila Moss
PO Box 198019
Nashville, TN  37219

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