Virginia Living – I’m a “Wrap” Star!

Just a little announcement:

I’m excited to let you know I have an essay appearing in the current issue of Virginia Living magazine!

It was a thrill to work with the kind folks at the magazine again (my third essay for them now) and as a native Virginian, like my parents and theirs, it was especially fun to contribute to a publication I’ve had in my own home over the years.

Below is a link to my piece in the online version of Virginia Living.  Check it out and if you like, please comment on their site in the space just below the essay. I’d love to hear your feedback!

Thanks to all those who’ve asked what I’ve been up to lately. Blogging continues to be fun and has proven to be an exciting pathway to some great opportunities.

Stuart M. Perkins



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76 responses to “Virginia Living – I’m a “Wrap” Star!

  1. Wonderful essay, Stuart! And great to see that you got it published.

    One year just before Christmas, I remember my mother asking,
    “Greg, where you going with that staple gun?”

  2. Delightful Christmas story! I’m still smiling at the “odd sized” gifts! Brilliant idea! Merry Christmas!

  3. Congratulations! I always look forward to your stories.

  4. Sharon Eshler

    Once again, our superstar writer!

    Sent from my iPhone


  5. Garrie Madison Stoutimore

    Congratulations! I love the article.

  6. I wrap just like you! My favourite memories of Christmas were of shaking my gifts and wondering. . . . Loved the article.

  7. That’s a great story. I didn’t see how to leave a comment at the linked page, but I enjoyed the story.

  8. Great story. I enjoyed it. I tried to comment on the magazine page but it didn’t take. My gift wrapping isn’t as precise as it used to be, maybe because I have less patience. If they had gift bags when you were a boy, would you have used them? They don’t stack nicely under the tree and take up a lot of floor space, but the upside is they’re recyclable. I use leftovers, sometimes year after year. Still, wrapped gifts are nice, even when imperfectly done.

    • Thanks! And that’s ok about their site, I’m happy to hear your comment here! If I’d known about gift bags way back then, ohhh yes! They would have solved everything! Thanks again.

    • Interestingly enough, I made a similar comment – about using gift bags. And while I resort to that gifting style, I absolutely love tearing apart beautifully wrapped gifts.

      • Thanks! I can’t wait to look and read the feedback. That’s as fun as the writing! Thanks again for reading that and taking the time, I really do appreciate that. I wish gift bags had been around back then…..

      • Yes, reading comments and replying to them gives me a strange feeling… It feels… good?…

      • I agree! Haha, I love comments and I try to respond to the ones I get because I honestly appreciate people taking the time. It’s easy to read and click and move along, so when someone comments I think it’s so nice. Hard to convey that in a response back to them, but I like when a blogger responds to my comments too, so I think it’s good to do!

      • Great point. I’ve been thinking about this recently. Sometimes I see what I think are unnecessary responses to comments, but you do have a point. It is my goal to work on it. It’s rather off-putting when you actually take the time to comment and the author o the blog does not acknowledge it in any way. Yes, sometimes I just “Like” their comments, because I think to myself: “What else is there to say? I agree and like what they said. That’s all”. But when you take the time to read a lengthy post, comment and then not only don’t you get a response (when you think you wrote a comment prompting a discussion), but you don’t even get a “Like”… It makes me think they don’t care. So if they don’t, then why should I…

      • No I totally understand and agree. We all write hoping someone will read, so it’s honestly great when someone indicates they read it! I’ll take a “like” any day . But I also know there is SO much out there to read that we don’t always think to like or comment, but we still enjoy. I like writing and will always do it. The fact that people will read my stuff, you being one of them, and take the time to tell me so is the gravy on top as they say!

  9. Oh, that’s awesome. CongratZ!

  10. It was the perfect story! How often are things in life not wrapped perfectly but ultimately end up being the best gift of all?!?

  11. I subscribe to Virginia Living. That’s wonderful! Congratulations, Stuart! 🎉

  12. Interesting Stuart: I came FROM writing in publications TO blogging. I love that I don’t need to deal with editors and can just write whatever I please. Don’t mind that I don’t get paid, it’s just fun.
    Congratulations to you! Enjoy whatever you do. Best of the season, Muriel

  13. You found a way to make gift wrap so interesting for the entire family. The lumps of paper…just brilliant, and no doubt, covered a lot of issues. Using gift bags today, we are missing out on a lot. Bravo, and congrats on the publication of another lovely story.

  14. Well done, Stuart. Another wonderful story about one of those sweet family memories. It helped me to recall some of my own special shared Christmas moments from long ago. Thank you, Yvonne

  15. Jen

    Fun story, great read that stirs fond memories, thank you!

  16. Thanks for the chuckle. Reminds me of when my parents put a light bulb in a mason jar and wrapped it up for my sister – master package jiggler. She figured it out and then grew up to be an engineer.

  17. Just goes to show you Stuart: a bit of originality can go a long way. Apparently that’s why U2 started writing their own stuff: they were crap at covering other people’s stuff! Well done

  18. Congratulations and continued success.

  19. Stuart, Congrats!
    I tried to leave a comment on the site of the magazine, but not sure if it took.
    I will, however, post it here: Your experience confirms my belief that girls are gifted with the talent to wrap gifts, and boys are gifted with but the talent to only unwrap them.

  20. Hi! Please help me win this short story contest on Instagram by liking and leaving a comment. A publishing deal is involved and that would mean the world to me. Voting ends 7pm tmr. I wouldn’t mind you reblogging my latest post too and sharing on your social media. Please please pretty please. Thank you.

  21. Congratulations! I will read your essay online now.

  22. Congratulations Stuart! Awesome.

  23. Congratulations! I loved the story and the oddly shaped gifts. 😀 I make it a point to read and enjoy your blogs whenever I see them on my Reader. I love the way how you write about everyday life and send the reader across waves of nostalgia. It’s just great. Keep doing that.

  24. moveforward1991

    Lovely Story! I dont have any experience but i always like a good story and its great written, Keep going and writing 🙂

  25. Fantastic story peppered with wit and gourmet humor.

  26. mirrorthesky

    This was awesome! Even at the age of 35, my brother wraps like that on purpose with lots of tape to make it impossible to open easily!

  27. Great post I am still smiling and well done …Happy NewYear 🙂

  28. I read your story in Virginia Living. Congratulations!
    I am not a “wrap star” for sure.. it is almost laughable.. I head for the clearance gift boxes and bags right after Christmas 🙂
    I pray you have more opportunity’s to share your writing.

  29. Congrats! I’ll have to go read it.

  30. Finished reading it. That was quite fun. Well done!

  31. Well done! Thanks for visiting my blog, too. xx

  32. Are you Native American? Why then do you call yourself native?

  33. Congratulations! 😀

    I wanted to let you know I’ve nominated you for the Blogger Recognition Award! Your blog is great, and I wanted to pass on encouragement! My post about the award is at this link. Congrats, and keep on blogging! 🙂

  34. deemallon

    Just catching up — what a vivid and funny personal essay. No wonder the magazine wanted it!

  35. As a person who *hates* wrapping gifts (and as a native Virginian), I particularly enjoyed your article. Hope you publish many more.

  36. Poetry by Livinia Ren

    Congratulations, I am sure there will be many more article’s

  37. That was a lovely story! I’m definitely not the Queen of glitz either, I want to be but, meh! It all goes in the bin! It’s the people that stuff gift bags beautifully with tissue that cause me the most heartache.. how do they DO that?! People this side of the Atlantic are way better at wrapping than the other!

  38. What an effective use of a pun. That headline definitely caught my attention. Good story. Thank you for sharing.

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