Tonight I'm heading off to see the National Ballet of Canada's The Sleeping Beauty with the ladies of the family — my mother, sister and aunt. The tickets were a Christmas present from my sister, and the package we each unwrapped was a uniquely creative way to give the gift of an experience.
Instead of an envelope or card, my sister went with a small, lime-coloured takeout container for each of us. She tied a pink, striped bow on one side of the handle and attached a metal-rimmed, stick-on label with our initials on top.
Inside, instead of the tickets themselves (my sister didn't trust any of us not to lose them), was a linen patch on which she had hand embroidered the words The Sleeping Beauty Ballet. She also included a small tag (not shown) with the date and time of the performance written on it.
When I opened the present, I was so touched that she had taken the time to make an ephemeral gift more of an object to unwrap — and in such a beautiful way. Now, long after I've forgotten the ballet, I'll still have a memento of the evening.